Weaving a Home: Collapsible Woven Refugee Shelters


Human life throughout history has developed in alternating waves of migration and settlement. Navigating this duality between exploration and settlement, movement and stillness is a fundamental essence of what it means to be human.


In the aftermath of global wars and natural disasters, the world has witnessed the displacement of millions of people across continents. Refugees seeking shelter from disasters carry from their homes what they can and resettle in unknown lands, often starting with nothing but a tent to call home.


Designed by Abeer Seikaly, “Weaving a home” reexamines the traditional architectural concept of refugee shelters by creating a technical, structural fabric that expands to enclose and contracts for mobility while providing the comforts of contemporary life (heat, running water, electricity, storage, etc.)


Design is supposed to give form to a gap in people’s needs.


This lightweight, mobile, structural fabric could potentially close the gap between need and desire as people metaphorically weave their lives back together, physically weaving their built environment into a place both new and familiar, transient and rooted, private and connected.

Structural Fabric Weaves Refugee Shelters into Communities







In this space, the refugees find a place to pause from their turbulent worlds, a place to weave the tapestry of their new lives.

They weave their shelter into a home.


Structural Fabric Weaves Tent Shelters into Communities | Abeer Seikaly