Upcycling: a way to sustainable fashion

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by Camille Mansuy - AYCH ambassador

 

With 100 billion of clothes produced per year, fashion in 2020, is the second most polluting industry in the world[1]. The rising of ‘fast Fashion’[2] during the last decade has led to double the amount of clothes produced between 2000 and 2014[3] and more often than not, the designs only respond to the trend of one season and that will not be worn again the following year. As a result, 4 million tonnes of textiles goes to the « trash » every year and for the majority directly into landfill[4]…Whilst the production process of clothes is often questioned, the recycling process cannot be ignored. And if we could simply produce new from old? That is what upcycling offers.

From middle range to luxury brands, upcycling has become increasingly more popular and was recently seen on catwalks during 2020 Fashion week[5]. So, what is exactly upcycling? « Also known as creative reuse, upcycling is the process of transforming by-products, waste materials useless, or unwanted products into new materials or products of better quality and environmental value » (source: Wikipedia 15/06/2020). Transposed to the fashion industry, upcycling is the possibility to give a second life to clothes or fabrics that have already lived.

Why is upcycling interesting? Of course it is beneficial to reuse existing and deadstock fabrics to produce new clothes and accessories in support of reducing the amount of waste produced by the fashion industry. But in addition to this, the process of reusing also reduces the amount of water and chemicals used within manufacturing which are particularly harmful for the environment. However, upcycling also has a deeper meaning. It is built on rethinking the whole production process, from the birth to death of the product in order to create a virtuous circle: the circular economy. By building partnerships through sourcing fabrics and selecting certain factories led by individuals and groups who all share the same vision to build a long-term project that positively contributes to the environment and economy, we can develop a more positive outlook for the future.

But more than this, it enables brands to get out of standardisation and propose unique piece or only small collections. It replaces the fabrics at the core of the process, resulting it more soul by conveying a past story and creativity through a second life. Upcycling is the way to rediscover the real sense of fashion design and the real use of the clothes.   Upcycling is a process that can be adopted by everyone and not only by brands. Custom an old shirt with simple embroideries, take an old jean and make a bag with it. It is easy, not necessarily expensive. A little change for a bigger change.

 

Some examples of brands that take part into upcycling: Les Récupérables, Patagonia[6], Hermès (Petit h), Asos

https://www.modeintextile.fr/marques-de-mode-responsables-parient-lupcycling/

 

 

[1] www.novethic.fr « Les 10 chiffres chocs du gaspillage vestimentaire à avoir en tête avant de faire les soldes » 08/01/2019  (https://www.novethic.fr/actualite/social/consommation/isr-rse/infographie-les-10-chiffres-chocs-du-gaspillage-vestimentaire-a-avoir-en-tete-avant-de-faire-les-soldes-146769.html)

[2] “inexpensive clothing produced rapidly by mass-market retailers in response to the latest trends” (source: google).

[3] https://multimedia.ademe.fr/infographies/infographie-mode-qqf/

[4] https://eluxemagazine.com/fashion/fashion-brands-that-upcycle/

[5]https://www.forbes.com/sites/joanneshurvell/2020/01/08/the-rise-of-upcycling-five-brands-leading-the-way-at-london-mens-fashion-week-2020/#188dd2557478

[6] https://wornwear.patagonia.com/shop/recrafted

 

DESIGN FEATURE – THE JOURNEY TOWARDS SUSTAINABILITY

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[The Butterfly Diagram (Ellen Mac Arthur Foundation, 2015: https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/assets/downloads/TCE_Ellen-MacArthur-Foundation_9-Dec-2015.pdf ]

 

by Louise Honey - AYCH ambassador

 

My name is Louise Honey, I am based in Plymouth, Devon, UK and currently work as a digital content creator and ecommerce copywriter which I do alongside self-directed study within sustainable and circular design. I have a natural interest in design with a focus on apparel and studied Fashion & Textiles at PCA before obtaining a BA (Hons) degree in Performance Sportswear Design at Falmouth University, Cornwall. Since graduating I have worked as part of the fashion and lifestyle industry within numerous roles that have given me a well-rounded perspective on the entire design to consumer process, including research, construction, marketing, styling and customer service.

 

Although not a new concept, for the last few years the term ‘sustainability’ has become more trendy and talked about than ever before. Thanks to social media now allowing customers to directly ask brands questions such as ‘Who Made My Clothes?’ for the annual Fashion Revolution Week, where they have sourced their fabrics and how their packaging can be recycled, the power is now in the consumer’s hands. It is essential for us to ask the right questions and to push for better working conditions, equality within workplaces, quality finishes that increase longevity and less manufacturing waste for the sake of both our planet. However, it is not just about reconsidering the structure of new products that fall under the sustainable category, we also need to better appreciate what we already own and to acknowledge how we can bring a little TLC to our belongings, whether it is by fixing what is broken, adding custom elements or passing items onto a friend if the fit or style no longer suits. It is easy to feel overwhelmed with what is available to us now, both on our highstreets and online, but there is power to be found in the idea that with every purchase you make, you are deciding what sort of future you wish to support.

 

It is estimated that by 2030 when the population is set to hit 8.5 billion, if we don’t change our spending habits we will buy 63 percent more fashion with a total of 102 million tons per year… that’s around 500 billion t-shirts! (1). For years fashion has used trends to guide customers and seasonal schedules, and typically since home-sewn garment culture has become less popular, there has always been two key releases per year for spring/summer and autumn/winter. However, since cheap labour became commonplace through the invention of fast fashion and overseas production in the 1980’s, this number has risen to now being between thirty to forty ‘drops’ (collections of clothing) per year from selected high street stores. This is all well if each item is worn and appreciated but unfortunately it is said that an average American throws away 80 pounds of used clothing per year, with only 2.62 million tons recycled and a whopping 10.46 million tons sent to landfill (2). It is not only the item itself that causes so much waste either, the initial manufacturing process requires enormous levels of water and energy to produce single items and it is a system that cannot be sustained for much longer. Another issue we face is the use of synthetic fabrics such as spandex, nylon and polyester which can be practical, stretchy and highly customisable but unfortunately when washed encourage microfibres into our waste streams which continue to the ocean at a scale that is unidentifiable to the human eye, but negatively impacts marine life. What is coming to light during the global pandemic is a change in how designers present their collections and a movement into fashion weeks being viewed online, therefore reducing conventional ‘seasons’ that will allow slower and more considered creativity and a push for shorter, more local supply chains.

[Microscopic views of microfibers. Photos: Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at UCSB. via Patagonia: https://www.patagonia.com/stories/what-do-we-know-about-tiny-plastic-fibers-in-the-ocean/story-30357.html]

 

With many of us realising that we cannot continue to manufacture and consume at the rate we currently are if we wish to have a healthy planet in the future, there has been a surge in popularity for slow fashion and a ‘buy less but better’ attitude. As the demand for sustainable products continues to rise, the issue that many manufacturers and consumers are finding is price. The cost of organically grown fabrics is still much higher than conventional and an eco-conscious lifestyle is often seen as a luxury limited to those who are able to afford it… but I think there are many different approaches that do not require lots of money such as browsing charity shops, swapping clothes with friends, using rental services such as Plymouth based Dressbox and using second-hand vintage and resale stores. If we each reassess our own habits and make space for a deeper appreciation for what we own, we may find that feel more satisfaction with less in the long run.

[Leather alternatives made from pinapple skin via Haeckels https://haeckels.co.uk/journal/leather-alternatives/]

 

I think what is most exciting about the push towards improving the global supply chain is the experimental approach many creatives are having to design and the level of innovation that is coming out of a necessary change. Whether it is sewing collectives that are teaching different generations how to darn and patch their favourite items so they can be continued to wear, 3D modelling and on-demand manufacture that cancels out waste or bio-designers that see the use in food scraps and how alternative materials used in fashion could also help reduce issues within other systems such as agriculture; sustainability isn’t just limited to one area, it concerns all that we do.

 

There is so much information available online, via podcasts and books on the topic it can sometimes feel hard to navigate, so I have put together my top recommendations for how you can learn more about sustainable fashion and design.

 

  1. Ask questions. Would you like to know more about where your favourite brand produces it’s designs? Use social media to ask them to tell you more or research into others who may have already done so. Many companies are ‘greenwashing’ which means they appear more sustainable than they are, so it is always worth asking.
  2. Think about what you want to express. What we wear and how we adorn our personal spaces is a direct reflection of ourselves and an expression of what we believe in, our interests and a way we can communicate without words. Maybe you want to say that your friend made your jacket or it is just as unique as you are. By choosing independent brands or by attending second-hand markets, there is no saying what shiny gems you might find and chances are there won’t be many others like it.
  3. Reconnect with nature. Play around with how flowers and natural fauna can change the colour of fabrics. If your favourite t-shirt could do with some excitement, why not try not to try a simple tie dye technique using turmeric powder, tea leaves or beetroot. Australian based brand Tinta have put together a beginners guide to natural dying and on their blog you’ll find a great film shot in Japan about the history of the colours you can achieve using natural materials. https://studiotinta.com.au/blogs/journal/in-search-of-forgotten-colours-sachio-yoshioka-and-the-art-of-natural-dyeing. A favourite of mine, California based Older Brother solely uses natural dyes and demonstrates what a wonderful finish you can get from non-toxic chemicals.
  4. Learn how to repair. Search on youtube different stitch techniques or how to darn knitwear. Patagonia has some quick fix guides or check out my friend Molly who has been teaching online Japanese Sashiko repair workshops during quarantine.
  5. Organise swap parties or sign up to a clothing rental service. Need a special dress for an event, outfit for an interview or just feel like trying a new look? There are alternatives to buying brand new items which will save you money and encourage pieces to be worn more than once. Why not organise a clothes swap with your friends who also want to refresh their wardrobes or look into rental services such as Plymouth based Dressbox which allows you to borrow multiple items at the one time, letting you wear new pieces without the commitment of owning them.

 

——

References:

(1.) Thomas. D, 2019, Fashionopolis, CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon.

 

(2.) The Balance Small Business https://www.thebalancesmb.com/textile-recycling-facts-and-figures-2878122

 

se Honey - AYCH ambassador

 

António Luís Ferreira: Consultor, Formador y Emprendedor

por Anna Szlendak

Hoy estamos hablando con Antoni Luís Ferreira, un experto de Aych en Modelado de Negocios de Portugal.

Antonio, eres un entrenador de negocios, ¿cómo funciona?

Bueno, hago varias cosas, soy entrenador de negocios, soy asesor de negocios. Trabajo así como diseñador de productos en varias áreas, me refiero no sólo en los negocios, sino también en la cultura, la innovación social, el turismo, el desarrollo territorial y así sucesivamente.

Uno de sus proyectos es Verde Novo.

Bueno, en realidad es una pequeña empresa. Trabajo en dos pequeñas empresas, una más orientada al negocio y ésta, Verde Novo está más enfocada en el área del turismo, la cultura, la innovación social y el desarrollo territorial. Tratamos de crear un valor, pero no sólo económico, sino también cultural y ambiental. Tenemos un enfoque sistémico hacia los territorios y sectores y lo que hacemos, desarrollamos planes estratégicos, trabajamos también como consultores en esas áreas, ayudamos a concebir y planificar proyectos. También organizamos eventos, publicamos libros. Hacemos muchas cosas, según lo que nuestros clientes quieran, pero también desarrollamos una gran cantidad de proyectos por nosotros mismos. A veces tratamos de implementarlos, a veces buscamos socios que nos ayuden a hacerlo.

¿Qué opina de la cooperación internacional?

Creo que es muy importante, he estado trabajando en algunos proyectos que están relacionados con ese tipo de dinámica.

¿Qué hay de su cooperación con AYCH?

Fui entrenador en la primera fase del proyecto en Santo Tirso. Sobre todo estaba entrenando proyectos de emprendedores. No conozco todo el proyecto, trabajé sólo en parte de él, pero por mi experiencia puedo decir que tiene una buena metodología. Es ideal para los jóvenes emprendedores tener la oportunidad de cooperar e interactuar con otros empresarios de otros países. Creo que a veces no es fácil encontrar muchos emprendedores con el perfil adecuado para beneficiarse de todo lo posible del proyecto. Desearía que más jóvenes tuvieran la oportunidad de conocer el proyecto. También participaré en Creative Jam en Santo Tirso, cuando tendrá lugar en otoño.

Entonces, ¿cómo es el proceso de coaching?

Estamos disponibles para ayudar a todos los proyectos que fueron seleccionados, es como 17 o 18 proyectos. Contamos con un equipo de entrenadores y estamos ayudando de manera muy flexible. Una parte de eso tenemos alrededor de 5 talleres en áreas específicas, como teaming, modelado de negocios, finanzas y marketing. También hemos programado sesiones de coaching para cada proyecto y si alguna de ellas necesita un consejo siempre puede contactar con nosotros.

António Luís Ferreira: Consultant, Trainer & Entrepreneur

by Anna Szlendak

Today we are talking with Antoni Luís Ferreira, an Aych expert in Business Modeling from Portugal.

Antonio, you are a business coach, how does it work?

Well, I do various things, I am a business coach, I am a business advisor. I work as well as a product designer in several areas, I mean not only in business, but also in culture, social innovation, tourism, territorial development and so on.

One of your projects is Verde Novo.

Well, actually it is a small company. I work in two small companies, one is more business oriented and this one, Verde Novo is more focused in the area of tourism, culture, social innovation and territorial development. We try to create a value, but not only economical but also cultural and environmental one.  We have like systemic approach to territories and sectors and what we do, we develop strategic plans, we work also as consultants in those areas, we help to conceive and plan projects. We also organize events, publish books. We do a lot of things, according to what our customers want, but also we develop a lot of projects by ourselves. Sometimes we try to implement them, sometimes we look for partners who would help us to do that.

What do you think about international cooperation?

I think it is very important, I´ve been working in some projects that are related with that kind of dynamics.

What about your cooperation with AYCH?

I was a coach in the first phase of the project in Santo Tirso. Mostly I was coaching entrepreneurs’ projects. I don´t know the entire project, I worked only in part of it, but from my experience I can say it has a good methodology. It is great for young entrepreneurs to have a chance to cooperate and interact with other entrepreneurs from other countries. I think that sometimes it is not easy to find a lot of entrepreneurs with right profile to benefit from all what is possible from the project. I wish more young people have a chance to get to know the project. I will take part in Creative Jam in Santo Tirso as well, when it will take place in autumn.

So, how does coaching process look like?

We are available to help to all projects that were selected, it´s like 17 or 18 projects. We have a team of coaches and we are helping in very flexible way. A part of that we have around 5 workshops in specific areas, like teaming, business modelling, finance and marketing. We have also scheduled coaching sessions for each project and if any of them needs an advice they can always contact us.

Luc François: an Aych Ambassador in Korea

by Anna Szlendak

Today we are talking with Luc, an AYCH Ambassador in Korea.

Hi Luc, can you tell us a little about yourself?

I graduated 4 years ago in both urban planning and European project management within the university of Lille. This education gave me a good knowledge of EU communication rules, institutions and policies and I looked forward to start working in European cooperation. But a professional opportunity made me start my career in the managing of an eco renovation platform promoting energy efficiency in buildings. Even if this experience was really interesting, I always wanted to go back to my original study and volunteering for AYCH Interreg project was the good opportunity to do this and I have to say that it has greatly exceeded my expectations.

How did you discover AYCH?

I was looking for a mission abroad, especially in Spain, so I first found out about the project through the Interreg Volunteer Youth programme. It gave the opportunity to be enrolled in a 6 months volunteer mission in the AYCH project at Vida Lactea.

Why should exist programmes like AYCH?

I think it is a new way to see education and propose something complementary. To better find a job or to create your own business, you also need to have soft skills that are easier to develop in such programmes like AYCH

What opportunities does AYCH offers in your opinion to young people?

It offers the opportunity to learn and create at the same thing without the risk or fear to lose (like money). It is also a good way to gain self esteem.

What did it give to you?

Among the fact that this experience was the best way to learn or practice new languages, it was also a good way to improve my skill like team work and communication skills, that is to say, be able to explain my ideas and try to sense or understand how others feel, based on what they are saying or by their body language. It was particularly true during the transnational activities with the other European partners, where diplomacy and mutual understanding were the key of everything.

What are your current plans? Can you tell me a little about your future ideas?

AYCH has been a strong asset for boosting my career. Thanks to AYCH, I found a job in School of architecture as a manager of the international affairs, and thanks to this I then get a job at the French embassy in Korea. It is a 2 years contract, so now I’m focusing on that job and I will think in two years.

João Sebastião Ataíde Goulão: Aych Ambassador in Santo Tirso

by Anna Szlendak

Today we are talking with João Sebastião Ataíde Goulão, an AYCH ambassador in Santo Tirso.

 How did you discover AYCH?

Santo Tirso asked us to be a part of the project, because we are a few of people in Portugal doing circle economy and design in the same time. It was a pleasant suprise to work for the project. We´ve been invited, me and my team to be a part of jury of Hackathon  of circular economies. So we´ve been mixed in all of that kind of activities. For us it makes sence to be a part of AYCH.

So, why did you become an AYCH ambassador?

The everyday world expands in knowledge but the distance between each of us shrinks. It is important to build good relationships between the various creative tribes across Europe. With the increasing mastery of digital tools, it becomes essential to add people capable of developing critical mass for new visions with social, artistic and creative effects. I would like to be a part of this moment in history and collaborate with this network of expectant and creative people.

What are you doing in your professional life?

I started working as an architect , after that i went to Rome to study environmental architecture. From then I started to do a project with friends, it´s called FLOWCO. It´s a project of design with use of recycling materials. We still are developing the project. It started as an start-up and now we are a company working with a lot of creative people. We established our network that goes from thinkers, at universities and institutes, to major industrial factories.

How does it fit into circular economy?

We try to apply the latest methods of design thinking to produce new products from waste. We also try to communicate to people about environmental awareness. We decided to go where the people are and there are a lot of them in music festivals, so we started to work with main music festivals in Portugal. We design equipment, furniture, we can say for those festivals, so when people are using these they can think about what was the concept and connect them with social sustainability. We created small brand called GOMA and it is dedicated just to created materials. With that we try to establish a new ecological and sustainable way of working and creating in construction business. World is now in this point when people start to understand that using recycling materials instead of traditional ones add a value to the product.

Aych Hubs: A Methodology for Atlantic Youth

by Anna Szlendak (Aych Communication Team)

Hello, my young creative friend with a head full of ideas. If someone will guide you, one day those ideas can change the world. Don´t you know where to look? Let me take you to the world of incubation of AYCH, specifically to our Spanish partner – Lug Open Factory.

Everything starts with contacting young people, give them a space where they can freely express their ideas. For that purpose Lug Open Factory decided to create 4 Hubs: Lug, Ferrol, USC (with Santiago University) and Monterrei. In that first phase we use Bright Mirror tool, an ice-breaker game created by EDNA, to build a real team which can work together. It´s really important to listen to young people, to get know them, their ideas and the possibilities they have. Profiles of young people vary a lot and depends of the Hub. Hub Lug has the sharpest structure, because all participants are connected with entertainment world and have already some projects and ideas defined. In Hub Ferrol there are people who are from out of Spain, some of them have clear concepts, others not. In USC they have very clear picture of what they want to do, they just need methodologies, mostly to energise their ideas. The last one, Monterrei is the most inconstant and it needed to start from zero, so from the moment of creating an idea.  An incubation process starts with a Youth Session, where young people work in teams on developing their ideas using informal education methodology.

The next step serves to analyse needs of participants and it´s made through AYCH Quest, a game created by L’Ecole de Design Nantes-Atlantique. Young people with that game create an ideal path of their incubation. They create also avatars, who will be their companions during this adventure.

Often, young people don´t have very precise ideas, then the next step, Design Thinking is dedicated to help them find and structure them. Trying to find solutions to a particular problem and using their skills and imagination impact so positively in their incubation process. It helps them also find their own idea to develop. It starts with brainstorming and clearing out topics and ideas. Then they identify potential users of their solution, what problems those users have and how we can approach them. Later they create a technical diagram of a global vision of our prototype. The next step serves to validate those ideas.

When the idea is already clarified, what young people needs is an analysis of reality. That means that we analyse possibilities of the prototype, sector in which we focus and our zone of influence. It helps to clarify needs that young people have to develop those ideas, e.g. education, contact with experts, participation in concrete events, etc.

One of the most important parts of whole incubation process is not only work on the idea, but also to know how to build a network of contacts and establish a work network between young people. Other needed step is to make a research about market, means to find possibilities to make our idea different and more attractive of what already the market offers.

When idea is clear and we have everything ready, there is a moment to go deeper in developing our prototypes. We start to create a name of our company and our own brand, which means creating logotypes, colours which identify our company, etc. With experts help young people discover also the world of digital marketing and learn how to move in it. If an idea requires, we help them also discover possible sales channels. They also have classes with an expert about the art of negotiation and sales, which help them in contacts with clients and with future projects.

Comes the moment to present prototypes to potential investors. In this phase young people work on presentation, create a video, visit cards and posters presenting their ideas. They also create their web pages and learn how to use SEO for make their brands more visible in Internet. Moreover, they analyse use of apps, if it can be useful for their ideas, how they can use it, etc. It can be very useful to be able to present those prototypes in physical form, by creating it in 3d printer or by laser cutter. Other form of presenting their ideas is to use podcasts and audiovisual resources.

Last touches are transmitted by classes related with financial recourses that can be use, intellectual property law, business planning and customer management, working in network and circular economy.

AYCH incubation offers also tools that help to create networks of cooperation. By using local and international jams, residencies and internship programmes, young people obtain fresh vision, new solutions and contacts which will help them to develop their ideas.

Aych Ambassador: Kay Nicholls

by Anna Szlendak

Today we are talking with Kay Nicholls, who is an AYCH ambassador in Plymouth College of Art.

 You took part in an incubation process.  How did it look?

For me as a mature student it was really nice to participate with younger students. I think that is was a bit unfortunate because of my age I wasn´t able to participate in the exchange abroad, but apart from that I can’t prize the whole course enough. Workshops we did where really important, we had an opportunity to speak to specialized people, we also had an opportunity to work in groups, to help and assist each other and I think the best thing is to have all this information in one space.

So, what did you do exactly through your incubation programme?

Through the incubation programme I settled for social enterprise company for predominately recycling household textiles.  I´ve been holding a workshops for what we called in UK hard to reach communities, so that are people on low incomes, low-wage families,  that could be single parent or single people in general who for some reason don´t have good disposable income. With local council we discuss in that moment possibility of run a workshop to encourage the recycling, promote circular economy. Hopefully each person will learn skills which may help them to save money. With my skills I can show them how to prolong lives of their clothes. So I start with basics, get them to know how to use sewing machine, to control a power of the sewing machine and take them forward with projects and if this is that what they want to do. It is like an open dialog. I go with sewing machines, I talked to them, introduce myself and tell them what I hope to do with them, then I asked them for any tipe of comments, they always do. Then I have this positive or negative feedback and I tell them how important it is to express their thoughts, even if there is something that I don´t like, because in that way I can improve that or think of alternative way to help them to learn.

What does being an ambassador mean to you?

For me I become an ambassador so I can help any potential people who wants to go to the programme to have them understanding that it´s a working progress, it´s a group as well as singular so you can go to do things on your own, it´s up to you. By speaking with people, networking and sharing ideas and concepts they may have an addition to their ideas. As an ambassador I would like to share a potential of the programme. I hope some of the younger students will get some tips from my experience.

How would you describe AYCH programme?

I think this is invaluable which for me is more than important, because of different elements which are in different countries. A connection between different countries through creative jams and different visits, it is not  only opportunity to share experiences of individuals but it is a network, you built of that an ability, a network of contacts. Through that you also learn about other cultures and get different experiences in various countries.

THE INFLUENCE OF DESIGN ON THE CREATION OF IDEAS, PROJECTS AND BUSINESSES

by Danae Vélez de León - Interior Designer at Ikea México

Starting to create new ideas is always a complicated step, whether it´s to create a product, project, business, etc. Design can be a potential tool to shape an idea and be able to communicate it to others in a particular and essential way. The concept of “design” is often used in the context of arts, architecture, graphics, among other disciplines, precisely because design implies a visual representation of an idea. However, what is the role of design in the creative process and how can it influence a project or business?

Apart from being a way to visually communicate an idea, design is also a tool that guides our thoughts towards possibilities. One of the methodologies most used by companies is called “Design Thinking”, which, by using essential elements for a design, such as empathy and experimentation, can lead to innovative solutions.

This methodology was created at Stanford University in California, however, it was the design consultant IDEOU who first applied it to commercial projects. Initially this methodology was only related to product development, but today it is also used for the development of services, processes, experiences, business models, etc.

Using design tools makes it easier to identify what is currently desirable, from a user / customer-centered point of view, with what is technologically feasible and economically viable (1). This methodology inspired by the design process, can be divided into 6 actions:

  • TO EMPATIZE. The first step is to understand the context in which our problem arises, and to be clear about for who the idea, product, service, project, etc. is for, in order to analyze their needs and aspirations.
  • TO DEFINE. To filter the information collected about our context and user/client, in order to define the problem and understand the possible reach.
  • TO DEVISE. To generate ideas that can solve our problem no matter how crazy they sound, always keeping our user/client in mind.
  • TO PROTOTYPE. This will help us quickly convert an idea or concept into a physical and tangible form. At the same time that will allow us to identify the technological scope of our idea.
  • TO TRY. It is advisable to test the prototypes with real users/clients, to be able to improve all versions for their final release.
  • TO IMPLEMENT. To put the vision into practice.

A case of business success through “Design Thinking” is the example of Airbnb, which in 2009 did not generate much profit. However, whe

n one of its founders (Joe Gebbia) learned about the methodology at the Rhode Island School of Design, they began to focus more on the user´s experience, improving the quality of the photos, and modifying the star rating system by hearts, a week later the profits were doubled (2).

Contrary to popular belief, design is much more than aesthetics and colours. It also involves functional and technical issues, by solving problems through a process that allows to understand and to connect with the user/client in order to generate innovative ideas to create or improve projects, services, experiences and/or businesses.

REFERENCES

  1. IDEO. www.ideou.com
  2. Díaz, Javier. Negocios y emprendimiento. Airbnb, un caso de éxito del Design Thinking. Enero de 2017. www.negociosyemprendimiento.org.
  3. Nielsen Norman Group. What Is Design Thinking, Really? www.nngroup.com.

AYCH contra COVID-19

por Pablo Castro

Los servicios de salud en diferentes países, como se puede ver en la imagen, de la Zona Atlántica ya están recibiendo las viseras protectoras creadas en los diferentes FabLabs del Proyecto Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs.

Socios del proyecto como Plymouth College of Art a través de su FlabLab “FabLab Plymouth” y Space * en el Reino Unido; Grand Angouleme a través de “AngouLab” en Francia y Vida Láctea a través de “Lug Open Factory” y Gijón a través de “Medialab” en la Universidad de Oviedo, en España; Están trabajando duro para crear y distribuir material protector de una manera altruista.

Esta iniciativa surgió como resultado de la decisión tomada por varios grupos de fabricantes de 3D en todo el mundo, que tomaron la decisión de imprimir viseras y otros equipos de protección en ausencia de recursos del sector de la salud. Después de estudiar la situación y ponerse en contacto con iniciativas de fabricantes como CoronaMakers y Coronavirusmakers Galicia

en España, el Proyecto Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs decidió poner sus impresoras 3D y expertos a disposición de la sociedad, para fabricar los materiales necesarios. Esta actividad se casa a la perfección con los valores que el Proyecto Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs difunde entre los jóvenes europeos, destacando la necesidad que tiene la solidaridad en situaciones como las que estamos viviendo hoy. La puesta en marcha de la solidaridad y la cooperación entre socios y jóvenes del proyecto como aprendizaje de esta situación que nos abre a futuras actividades que se realizarán de manera diferente, ya que aunque gran parte de la actividad del proyecto se mantiene a distancia (formaciones, incubaciones, etc.), se ha decidido dar a los fablabs de los diferentes socios un carácter más solidario , centrando estos recursos en la fabricación de material de protección.

Las viseras se imprimen en PLA o ABS para luego incrustar una hoja de acetato de tamaño A4 y una goma para la fijación; más tarde se entregan a las autoridades y centros pertinentes que necesitan dicho material. Con esto, el Proyecto AYCH quiere contribuir no sólo a salvar vidas, sino también a avanzar hacia una Europa más unida.

En la foto, una enfermera con nuestras pantallas, tan necesario para su trabajo!