I had the honor to be one of the selected 19 students from Parsons to participate at the IKEA workshop with Tom Dixon from March 10th to 13th. It was such an extraordinary and amazing experience working in a true multidisciplinary team of students, and mentors from IKEA and Parsons, including the head of Design at IKEA, Marcus Engman, Product Developer and Creative Leader at IKEA, James Futcher, as well as the Deans and professors at Parsons.
The workshop took place at the brand new making center at Parsons encouraging the participants to design and utilize school resources through the process of making.
Dixon, Engman and Futcher all offered some valuable insights about IKEA, DELAKTIG and their general view on design. DELAKTIG is a modular and flexible home resting solution developed by Tom Dixon and IKEA, focusing on the idea of product with longevity. The idea is to allow IKEA hackers easily transform it into many things based on their personal needs. The goal of this workshop was for the studnets to think outside the box and explore different ideas on what else could we do with this platform?
WHAT IF WE ...
- Add expression?
- Change the shape?
- Challenge the upholstery?
- Add a clash?
- Add mobility?
- Take it outdoor?
- Challenge the size?
- Challenge the slats?
- Sleep in new ways?
- Make it into a storage?
- Make it vintage?
- Add technology?
- Share it?
- Make it into a service?
These are some of the questions given by IKEA to get our idea muscle warmed up before we kicked off the design process. One of my favorite quote from the workshop was:
DESIGN CAN ADD VALUE TO OBJECTS
This was the first time I go through the design process with 19 different people at the same time. It was very messy and stressful at the beginning given the short timeline we have. We started brainstorming as a group, then broke into smaller teams to discuss, and went home to explore more crazy ideas individually. The next day we put all of our idea sketches on one big table and build upon each other ideas. Surprisingly there were many similar concepts. This was probably the most valuable lesson I got from the workshop - learn to share your ideas and collaborate. You are not the only one who can think of a cool idea.
" START WITH A PROBLEM STATEMENT, AND THE IDEA WILL COME. "
By the end of day 2, Gloria Mejia, Miranda Garrido and myself decided to form a team to take 2 of our ideas further, focusing on the problems of loneliness, city life, on-the-go lifestyle and stress. We were a team of entrepreneur, fashion designer and Industrial designer. I could not ask for a better team, and we wouldn't have achieved what we did without each other.