Clothes for women in wheelchairs
This year, 450 projects by Temasek Polytechnic graduating cohort are showcased at The Design Show. DANELIA CHIM (firstname.lastname@example.org) looks at two interesting ideas
When they tried to re-imagine fashion for wheelchair-bound women, two design students came up with an unusual solution: magnets.
Their brainchild, Orzora, is a fashion and store concept for a line of clothing that would theoretically allow wheelchair-bound women to dress themselves.
The final-year project by Miss Denise Gow and Miss Dorcas Lum, both 20, is one of the 450 showcased at The Design Show, which will be open to the public today and tomorrow, from 11am to 8pm.
The genesis of the project came when Miss Lum took an interest in the wheelchair-bound - like her two elderly grandmothers.
Miss Lum said it took her grandmothers some effort to change clothes.
"I noticed that they were always very tired afterwards," she told The New Paper, adding that she also started paying more attention to young people in wheelchairs.
Seeing an opportunity to do socially-conscious work, she approached her ex-classmate, Miss Gow, for their final-year project in Apparel Design and Merchandising course.
As they explored the issue, they realised that there was not much clothing designed for the ease of wheelchair users.
Miss Lum, who designed the clothes, said their items are created to give women their independence and empower them.
That's why she and Miss Gow chose the name, Orzora, Hebrew for God's strength.
Miss Lum said: "We want to evoke that feeling in our customers so that they will feel strong even if they're in a wheelchair."
The clothes are made of bamboo-blended fabric and have magnets or zips to secure the clothes in place.
Even the placement of the magnets are strategic.
For example, the magnetic closures near the hands are placed on top and not at the wrist, such that when people eat, the magnets would not stick to the utensils.
Miss Gow's job was to design the store, which was challenging because there had to be more space than usual for shoppers.
On Orzora, Miss Lum said: "It's a potential sideline business but it still needs more research."
The students did not test the clothing on their target users, but on fellow students who modelled the size 6 to 8 designs on a catwalk.
The Design Show 2016
WHERE Temasek Polytechnic,
Block 21, Tampines Avenue 1
WHEN 11am to 8pm, today and tomorrow
Hot, healthy meal at your work desk
INVENTION: Miss Chua Pei Shan (left) and Miss Thalia Lam with their Inbento lunchbox. PHOTO: TEMASEK POLYTECHNIC
While on their work internships, they noticed that their colleagues had unhealthy eating habits and they wanted to design a product that would advocate healthy eating.
So Miss Chua Pei Shan, 21, and Miss Thalia Lam, 20, came up with Inbento.
Having worked together before, the two paired up again for their final-year project for their product and industrial design course.
Miss Lam said she noticed that when her ex-colleagues bought packed food during lunch, "the portions given don't fit with the recommended servings by the Health Promotion Board".
The duo's solution: Inbento, an electronic stackable lunchbox which allows users to steam their food at their work desk.
It consists of an induction cooker, water tray and three containers.
The user only needs to pre-pack the raw ingredients and plug in the device. The three containers allow for the correct serving of vegetables, meat and carbohydrates for a meal.
Miss Chua said Inbento's compact design and user-friendly interface is a plus point in a market filled with bulky electronic lunchboxes with limited functions.
While it is simply a product design, the students' lecturer, Mr Marcus Heng, 42, said: "They have done their research and it is a realistic solution."
While Miss Chua and Miss Lam have researched the electronic components of Inbento, they are design students and are unable to fully develop the technical parts of the project.
The team was one of the selected few to pitch their product to technology company Philips and, according to Mr Heng, it was "well-received".