Blog 5: Bamboo houses, Smart skin and more

This past week I used a lot of what we read to draw from personal experience and look into the future to think of new possibilities. Personally I had experiences from the smart skin article that I took into account during and after reading it. When I read the article I couldn’t help but draw from my years in athletics and wearing products labeled ‘Dri-Fit’. We are already trying to draw this principle by wicking the moisture away from the skin with the fabric, although it is often not as successful as it would seem. Which left me wondering how things would be different with the smart skins and how we could alter the current designs with the structures and the different properties. We could improve the Dri-Fit that we already see in the market by having it regulate an athletes’ body temperature, while I’m not sure how energy harvesting could be used in athletics. It is something that I believe could be used in interiors, although it is not my field. It could be used as an energy source or even used to power lighting or other possibilities within the house. Drawing from another personal experience, I can remember that a lot of the Dri Fit products that I have purchased or been given, usually do not last a long period of time. They always seem to get thin after being washed a normal amount of times, along with an irregular amount of pilling. Which could be leading people be practicing cradle to grave instead of cradle to cradle. If we were to use the smart skin principles, we might be finding ways to create more durable goods, or even to close the loop on the production cycle.

This week we also visited biomimicry, which we have previously touched on in this class. Using the structure of a plant we can change how we go about producing the textiles in our industry. By changing the layering technique we can help to improve the Dri-Fit technique that I mentioned already. We can use it to change our outlook on active wear for instance; we can completely change the industry. Making things more durable and closing the loop instead of the same production cycle that we are so accustomed to.

The TED talk about the bamboo houses really opened my eyes as well. Because my concentration is not in interior design or merchandising I usually do not look that far into the field. After watching the video I considered how we could incorporate bamboo into housing in the U.S., even I would consider living in a bamboo house. It is a sustainable source for building and would leave more rain forests in the world. Especially when you look at how it was mentioned in the TED talk that there are multiple types of bamboo that is not being used, we could take advantage of this resource and use it to create a more sustainable building solution. We really should be opening our eyes and ears to the world around us and listen to what it has to say. If we were to just slow down and spend more time looking around, we would see how we are a failing to see the solutions to our problems.

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