I had the chance to present my LOLA show this week over a compostable fabric that was created by the founders of Designtex. This week was more relatable for me and my field of interior design because my fellow designers were the ones sharing unique and sustainable inventions. One topic that stood out to me were the virtual ceiling tiles that created beautiful and calming scenes for hospital patients. Everyone knows what it is like to be anxious in a hospital, whether you are the visitor or the patient, and designers should learn to put themselves in the shoes of the hospital users to better understand how to perfect a design. These virtual ceiling decorations not only create a beautiful space but they also distract the individuals in the hospital and give them a sense of comfort. Another topic that I found interesting was the bark wallpaper that was taken from live trees. This bark was untreated and very natural and is a step in the direction of straying away from paper wallpaper. The bark was safely taken from trees that were already very old and close to falling over. One thing that we agreed on was the next step that this company should take is learning to attach the wallpaper to the wall without any adhesives, but they are on the right track to a sustainable future! Lastly, it was very eye opening to see how gardens and greenery can psychologically improve a user’s interaction with a space. As I listened to these LOLA topics that all related to my field, I realized that I need to keep everything I learned in mind as a grow as an interior designer. It is important that we, as designers, place ourselves in the shoes of our users. Think about what we like a dislike about spaces and use that as a lesson for when we design spaces for other people.
Thursday’s topic broke off the idea of empathic design by going more into detail about the importance of human needs in design. The article that we read stated a very obvious but much overlooked fact that it is hard, in our society, to understand actual human needs and materialistic wants. Mac- Neef’s taxonomy that was brought up in this article is very universal. Humans needs are truly more similar than we think when it comes to comparing between the rich and the poor. There are three concepts that come from this article; having, doing or being. When it comes to having, we are taught that more is better. Although it seems like people who have more money or more material items are happier, that is proven to not be the case. Although most of society is dependent on growth and consumption, we should learn to work with what we have; less is better. Being represents the actions that are taken when we interact with material things. Lastly, doing is how we choose to act on our interactions and values. There is an overbearing issue with over consumption of clothing and that is why so many companies are stressing the importance of recycling clothing or creating clothing that can be multifunctional. In the article, a little brown dress was mentioned that could be worn for an entire year. This was accomplished by adding new aspects to the dress. Rather than going out and buying many different outfits that would only end up being worn once or twice, this artist saw an advantage to creating multifunctional dress. This relates to my field of interior designer because many interior designers and furniture manufacturers are working together to create multifunctional pieces that help in creating multifunctional spaces. This creates less waste and offers more opportunity for creativity along the way.
In this week’s lecture, IKEA’s flat pack house was brought up and the idea of a tiny home is trending in our society right now. This flat pack house is 53 feet long and 14 feet wide and is only $100,000. Tiny homes are popping up all around and this is because people are finally starting to realize just how little we truly need. It used to be that people with the biggest houses and most belongings were the happiest but now we see that individuals can have everything they need without being selfish or going overboard. The idea of having just as much as you need and not anymore is very important because it connects to the idea of less is more. It was also very eye opening to see how much goes into actually making clothing, versus how much we sell it for in retail shops. It is sad to think that people are putting in so much labor and get paid so little, yet the individuals high up that do not put in as much labor get all of the profit. I think it is fair to say that minimum wage should be raised, especially when we look at it the way it was laid out in lecture. To see how clothing can be so cheap to make and the profit in the end is so large, we should realize that the majority of the cost of making a piece of clothing is the labor. Without people making these pieces, there would be no clothing to begin with, and in turn, no profit. The percentage that labor takes up in a clothing’s price should be taken into consideration when we look at how much each laboring individual gets paid.