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Design for 2050: Clothing Printer

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An in-home clothing printer. Electrolux Design Compeition 2010 semifinalist.
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  • OVERVIEW
     
    This project placed in the Semifinals of the annual Electrolux design competition in 2010.  The brief was to come up with a solution to deal with the rapid urbanization of the population that would begin to make drastic changes in how we live by 2050.  With a team of designers, I helped create and conceptualize the concept for an in home, clothing printer that would bring clothing production into the home.  The design would eliminate the need for closets, washing machines and dryers, thus saving space in the crowded urban environments of the future. 
     
    CURRENT SITUATION
     
    As production and agriculture are being moved closer to cities, there is a massive upheaval in how we obtain the things we need to live.  Thanks to new technology and innovative thinking, urban gardens, a connected global network and private replication technologies, consumers  have more power to stay close to home.  one major opportunity we identified was a revamp of  the clothing industry.  We found the clothing industry to be an extremely wasteful and inefficient use of our resources. Clothing is shipped to several different places before being distributed to the consumer.  Also, its lifespan is only a few years before being either disposed of or re-purposed. 
     
    The ability to create customized objects, such as 3D printing,  is increasing in sophistication and marketability.  People are becoming more and more aware and comfortable with the concept of printing objects for immediate use.  The technology for a clothing printer exists but is not packaged in a form that would be suitable for consumer use.  With the future potential of printing technology, an at-home clothing printer is a definite possibility.  Our challenge was to define the experience.

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