At the time of writing this, a beanbag chair called the MoonPod had raised $699,028 on Kickstarter. And who can blame early-bird buyers? The MoonPod makes a great GIF. You can sit in it like a chair. Lean back in it like a recliner. And even lay back in it to take a nap. But instead of sort of losing its shape like an uncomfortable blob as most beanbag chairs do, it supports your body through more thoughtful materials and engineering.
Most of the time, the seat stands up in your living room like a gray boulder wrapped in soft, elastic fabric. It’s the height of a short adult, and has the pudgy shape of a Studio Ghibli character. Little did I know, its creator John Fiorentino–who raised $4 million launching the hyper-viral weighted Gravity Blanket in 2017–actually developed the MoonPod during his time in Japan, working with manufacturers to bring the Gravity Blanket to scale. His inspiration? A large stone at a meditative rock garden he frequented, and Hayao Miyazaki’s animated films like My Neighbor Totoro.
You can watch the video above to see how the seat held up during our quick test, but, long story short, it really does work–and it’s quite comfortable, at least for a few minutes of sitting. The beads inside feature a relatively high friction coefficient, which means they can actually mold around your back or neck, rather than rolling away to leave you unsupported.
These amorphous chairs are certainly becoming more popular as of late, with competition including models from Comfort Research, Big Joe, Cozy Sack, and Chill Bag. The MoonPod lands somewhere between the low and high end of the market since it’s priced at $400 if you don’t score a preorder discount on Kickstarter. To my mind, that’s still a lot to spend on a beanbag chair. But to my back, the MoonPod was more comfortable than the average lounger that starts at that much–or more.