TED Postcard in Berlin II

The final presentations of the students work in Berlin went really well and there were several outstanding ideas.

There were three runners up and they included a Materials Resource that a group of product students want to develop for the college. They currently find it very hard to get their hands on any materials such as wood or metal to make prototypes. This project would be a website and a physical resource that sources waste materials from the various workshops and manufacturers around Berlin. They had already approached several companies who are willing to donate their waste materials. We thought this was a great solution to two problems - the lack of materials that students often face and the excess of materials that currently go into land fill. Pure joined up thinking!

The winners were Vincent, Michael and Peter who created 'Kick Butts', a new product and marketing campaign to stop smoking. They would collect the millions of cigarette butts that currently pollute our streets (they are the second biggest waste stream in the sea after plastic) and create a new materials from this waste . This would be used to make a type of bin that can then be used to collect the butts - like those ashtray bins you see near where people smoke. They also designed a very funny poster campaign to encourage people to think about their smoking habits.

We are hoping to be able to make it back to Berlin to see the final work from the students in July.


TED Postcard from Berlin

TED is in Berlin this week teaching at the Berlin Weisensee college. We are here to share our 'TED Stories' workshops with the textile, fashion and product design students. They have been introduced to sustainable design concepts such as systems and services design and multi-functionality and have been asked to come up with an idea for a new product or service that incorporates a combination of these concepts.    

Today we ran tutorials with the students workshopping their ideas. Some of the ideas so far include:

- a service/retail space run by product designers that customises and adapts redundant children's toys, in collaboration with the child

- a duo of designers who will work with an existing ceramic workshop that employs people with mental/physical disabilities - the designers will run their own 'structured workshops' for the group on developing social and material skills

-a fashion student who wants to work with the fast/slow issue and design a range of garments that are made using a compostable paper fabric that can be thrown away after one wear, and the same range of garments made using long-life materials such as silk and wool

Tomorrow will be the final 'Dragons Den' presentation where they present their final idea. We will announce the final winners then.


The Wallpaper Dress project

TED member Mel Bowles has been working on a very interesting collaborative design project exploring themes of customisation, emotional attachment and local design/production.
In The Wallpaper Dress, Mel has worked with collaborator Sarah Dennis, who had found a sample of old block-printed wallpaper at a car boot sale. Mel scanned the sample and put the design into repeat using Photoshop, which she then digitally printed onto cloth here at Chelsea on our Mimaki printer. The fabric was then made up into a simple vintage-inspired dress and some of the motifs were hand-embroidered to add a handmade element. The entire process took place in an area of 4.5 miles in South London and utilised local skills and services.
The process enabled Sarah to be part of the entire journey from the initial discovery of the print, to the reworking, printing, and making of the garment. This a wonderful example of a co-design fashion production process where the customer and designer work together on making a garment that the customer will truly value and cherish.