Mystique; ‘Bling Bling’ that stays in style

Tasked with redesigning a shoe to fit a user’s needs, firstly we went in search of an individual with an interesting story. Wearing funky gold shoes, or ‘Bling Bling’ as he referred to them, we found a gentleman who was concerned with style, brand name and trends but had limited space to store or transport all of his shoes; with over 70 pairs at his parents’ home he was saddened that he was only able to transport 10 pairs when he moved to the UK. Shoes are incredibly important to him, perhaps the most important part of his outfit, as he selects his clothing on the basis that they match the shoes.

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We determined that this particular user is looking for something unique, durable, adaptable to style changes and of high quality. With only an hour to design and develop a product for this user we quickly settled on the idea of creating a shoe that was customisable. Aiming to be innovative, with no budget or structural limitations, we adapted the traditional website based customisation process and made it readily available in the users home. This was the birth of mystique.

For all the fashionistas who don’t have space to store a variety of shoes but want to change their style at will, Mystique is a fully customisable shoe. Shape, colour and design can be altered creating a unique and personal design. The user is provided with a plain white shoe and a box with paint and printing capacities. The shoe is placed inside the paint printer and a design is programmed into the box. The shoes are then printed to these specifications. By washing the shoes with a specialist paint print remover the new designed features are washed away and the user again has a blank canvas to work with. Unlike Nikes customisable shoes Mystique enables the user to change the design at will, daily if they choose and from the comfort of their own home.

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The beginnings of our prototype; not my personal style but the product was designed so mistakes could be erased

Heavily inspired by our trip to the DIGICAL event the activity allowed us to see how events and activities we participate in outside of class effect our ideas. In reality this idea would be fairly costly and difficult to programme but for a short hour project it allowed us to explore an accelerated version of the ideas development process and design a shoe that has the capacity to permanently be in style.

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