Overview: New to the city, I found myself in the Tenderloin with my skirt rudely blowing up and exposing my nether regions. Men were yelling obscene things at me and I felt betrayed by my apparel for not having my back(side)! Naturally this insight (on there being a problem with the way apparel supports women) hurled me into interviewing 300+ women about their apparel wearing cumbrances and habits, and reading countless articles on the nature of the fashion industry. I realized that while men’s apparel is based on both function and form, women’s apparel is fundamentally lacking in everyday usefulness. For example, 90% of women's dresses don't even have pockets!
The following product design (and creative direction) work is for the The Playsuit Reinvented (Ready-to-play Wear) - inspired by the importance of feminism via women-specific functionality, playfulness, and the chic French "je ne sais quois."
While completing my Master's in Design Thinking (Technical Entrepreneurship), I began cultivating a toolbox of methodologies to help me in developing creative concepts. My toolbox contains methods like biomimicry (resulting in insight/concept: Sharklet), The Kano Model, Lotus Blossom, False Facts, and Blue Ocean Strategy.
For The Playsuit, one my favorite creative thinking methodologies was lateral benchmarking (LB); looking at how adjacent industries and products solved a similar problems. The problem I was tackling was "How can I make women's clothing more functional to our daily needs?" Using LB, I looked into how men's and baby's clothing was made useful. The snap crotch in the Playsuit was a concept directly inspired by how baby's clothing typically has them, and how men's boxers has an analogous easy-go fly hole!
Taking a step back from creative thinking methodologies, my overall process of consists of 5 steps; 1) Observing: gathering data2) Synthesizing Data: extracting insights and making connections3) Ideating: prototyping/conceptualizing 4) Testing 5) Evolving: next steps.
In the images above, I am wearing early prototypes of The Playsuit!
Each Jolie playsuit presents as a lovely dress and is made with a medium weight knit base fabric with four way stretch. In the seat of the skirt hides a pair of incognito shorts – preventing conventional mishaps in windy climates, and allowing for secure bike rides. An over the hip design allows for easy dressing – eliminating pull over pains that result in disheveled hair and makeup. Additionally, a snap closure in the suit’s crotch makes ladies’ room visits all the more quick and easy! A special wicking lining throughout the suit protects against perspiration and UV rays, whilst incognito pockets allow wearers to live a semi purse-free life.
The Playsuit was designed to be versatile and easy to laver. In this shot, the model is wearing The Playsuit with a collared blouse underneath + platform sandals.