All posts tagged: experience design

Nesting

So, it turns out that I had quite a few things in that Hong Kong flat mentioned in my previous post. Not only that, but I had a fair number of items in my mother’s storage unit back in the States. Thankfully the London flat absorbed the majority of the stuff that arrived in April without issue. I won’t bore anyone with another itemised list, but safe to say I have more sets of dishes than any one person could possibly need. However, it’s wonderful to have everything under one roof and I’m slowly but surely editing. If I had to describe the design theme emerging in my new home, it would be “industrial repurposed”. There are a wealth of clearing houses, restaurant supply stores, second hand shops and other treasure troves filled with used industrial equipment and furnishings, all at reasonable prices. I’ve added many of them to my Local London map. Constraints breed creativity, and it’s been so much fun figuring out what I can make out of my finds. Hard to believe that none …

Starting from scratch

It’s not every day that you have the chance to begin with a clean slate and choose every aspect and detail of your daily life anew. Of course, the opportunity rarely comes without it’s own set of constraints (perhaps geographic, financial or otherwise), but constraints are exactly what designers thrive on. As you may have guessed, that is exactly the situation I have found myself in, hence the recent radio silence. Luckily it has provided ample opportunities for applying design to life, which I hope to share over a series of posts. Location location location. For me, the most important decision is where to live. Few decisions have more impact on daily life and require a clearer set of priorities. For me it boils down to the following criteria: convenience (access to public transport, green space, shops, ≤ 30 min commute), neighbourhood (safe, diverse and vibrant street-level culture), space (“good bones” and efficient layout, outdoor space a plus), community (close to groups with whom I want to be active, such as friends, fitness programmes, makers, startups) and cost (≤30% of salary is a common reference). There were a …

Reflecting on a year of pop-up dinners

Almost one year ago, a casual conversation over coffee became an ongoing experiment in crafting immersive dining experiences to build lasting connections through engaging dialog. Six dinners and many tweeks later, I’m beginning to hone in on the building blocks that form a foundation for success. While Hong Kong is an extremely social city, almost all interactions happen outside the home. Apartments are small and kitchens even smaller, so people rarely entertain in their own space. This creates an unfortunate dynamic where conversations tend to be artificially shortened by local restaurant dining customs and there’s usually a point when participants must “ante up” in order to continue the discussion. Interactions don’t have the opportunity to organically unfold over time in a relaxed atmosphere. One of the few exceptions to this rule are junk boats, where the people are captive for a full day and the financial obligations are sorted in advance. However, this environment is not conducive to deep discussions because there are so many stimuli competing for attention. Hong Kong expats often find that while they have many casual friends, they are missing the deeper …