‘The cuddly chair’ – a bean bag made from your childhood toys.
In creating our prototype we realised the limitations of our idea. Beside the gruesome undertones of pulling apart your own teddy bears, the shipping of materials and the length of time taken to manually stitch an entire bean bag were enough to deter us from trying to get users to test the product. We also realised the product was missing value. It may be perfectly viable as a hobby done for fun but we determined there was a lack of a market for this specific product.
The next idea to develop from this exploration was the idea of users uploading or sending a specific image to our company, we would then develop the image into a 3D piece of furniture or pillow. We cut the shapes for the materials and detail how to construct the whole piece, then send the package back to the users. This provides a personalised pack to users with their specific design. Our issue then was that this new product didn’t use customised personal reusable materials.
While presenting it was suggested to us that we could have the users bring the design they want and materials they have from home into a store. We would then use these materials to create the furniture, toy or pillow. A specific suggestion; if someone you are close to passes away and you have their shirts but would never use them again; if you want to keep their memory alive the user could bring the shirts to the store and request a specific creation e.g. A teddy bear. We would then design and construct the bear in the store. The user gets to contribute to the design, it uses reusable materials and is personalised, giving purpose to a sentimental but useless item.
The idea of having a physical location users could interest with hadn’t occurred to us. We were previously more focuses on users shipping materials and the use of a digital interface.
It was interesting for us to see the effect that actually constructing a prototype makes on the decisions that follow. When you physically make it you can easily identify its flaws and I feel this is defiantly a lesson we will take on when designing and creating our next product.