Sunday, 7 March 2010

Designs of the Year 2010

I've always loved the London Design Museum. It's an intriguing white box on the edge of the river, and houses far too many fascinating exhibtions to name. Although one I have been back to each year is the Brit Insurance Designs of the Year exhibition.

Overall my favourite design was Sugru - a mouldable waterproof silicone which can be used to repair or change just about anything. The concept behind it is to "hack things better". In other words, to improve things which are shoddily made, customise them, or fix broken objects so they can continue to be used.

On display was a plethora of household examples - the rubber was moulded into the inside of a shoe to fix the sole which was coming away. It matched the shoe and was seamlessly invisible. Another was Sugru was moulded around the handle of wrench, for better grip, and used to fix together the pieces of a broken vase. One is left wondering; is there anything that Sugru can't do?

Aside the fact that it's clever, what it does is provide a means for repairing and improving items we use every day, instead of throwing them away and replacing them. I LOVE this. We've all become far too materialistic and generally treat everything as disposable. Using something like Sugru is another way to recycle, and extend the life of the things we own. Now THAT is clever.

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