Product Design gone Slow

How is it that industrial/product design can be slow? For starters it’s about slowing down the processes of industry and slowing down the consumption of fast and cheap products. The time has come to eliminate built in obsolescence and return to products which are made to last, to be treasured and to make us the consumer aware of where it came from, who made it and why. Slowing down industrial design will be essential in creating a liveable and sustainable world for the future. It is now possible to apply our knowledge and technology in production methods and new materials to avoid the fast, mass-produced, consumed and disposed. The problem is that slowing down production also comes with a higher price point and we will need to de-condition ourselves from the urge to choose the cheaper option and instead make informed choices on products, their quality, lifespan and opportunity for re-use.

Below are some examples of ways to Buy a bit slow:

Handmade and hand-crafted objects

Made for re-use and have an intended afterlife

Repairable products/products with replaceable parts (eg. electrical products which can be repaired instead of thrown out)

Use good quality materials/Indented to be long lasting

Made of  re-used or re-invented materials (eg. recycled paper or truck tarp used to make bags, see Freitag bags below)

Made using sustainable or slow production methods. (eg. woodworking, metal craft)

Local products (products made from locally sourced materials or using local production methods)

One-off unique products, made in low batch numbers

Made-to-order products

DIY products (flat packed items which can be home assembled, customised, mended, user friendly part replacement    etc.)

freitag truck tarp bags

I too shall be sharing with you my

endeavours to slow down production methods

in my own work as a Product designer.

Would love to answer any of your questions,

try your suggestions or read about your own

slow/sustainable projects.

Best

Sab

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