Functional Centerpiece

Dear Deer

Dear Deer is an innovative centerpiece that sits elegantly between your dishes, and supports your dishes on its antlers, which provide more room on the table for your dears. 150 units were manufactured and were sold out to the greater MIT community. The project goes through the process of opportunity identification, design research, concept generation, concept selection, detail design, manufacturability, and sales.

Project Type / 

School Project

 

Role / 

Design and Stragegy

 

Team / 

Prerna Sekhri,

Pushpaleela Prabakar

 

Year / 

2016

User Research

To understand the users need during a dinner party, five parties were observed and ten frequent hosts were interviewed. By research, we found out that table space was needed during both preparing stage and dinner.

Mood Board
Needs List

The raw data from user interview was interpreted in terms of customer needs and was organized into a hierarchy. This is to make sure the product is focused on customer needs and that no critical customer need is forgotten.

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The product is easy to use.

The product allows the user to reach dishes.

The height allows communicating with people.

The product is easy to use.

The product is light in weight.

The product should be easy to assemble

 

The product is aesthetically appealing.

The product is with good appearance.

The product decorates the table.

The product serves as a centerpiece.         

 

The product is structurally sound.

The product is stable.

The product accommodates different dishes sizes.

The product carries weight.

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The product is space efficient.

The product is easy to store.

The product is not bulky.

The product is modular.

The product helps to expand table space.

 

The product serves multiple functions.

The product can also double as the serving dish.

The product works for desserts.

The product applies to shared dishes.

The product isolates hot food from the tabletop.

The product is able to turn around.

 

The product is clean.

The product is easy to clean.

The product keeps food clean.

Persona

To understand the users need during a dinner party, five parties were observed and ten frequent hosts were interviewed. By research, we found out that table space was needed during both preparing stage and dinner.

Retired Couple

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Alicia & Kostas

Age: 68 & 77

Occupation: Retired

House Type: Two-floor house

• Enjoy hosting small dinner parties

• Prefer to serve complete which include soups, salads, turkey, veggies, bread and wine on the table

• If Alicia hosts a large group of people, she serves appetizers only and spreads them out on the table

• Putting sauces and condiments on the table

• Using lazy susan during breakfast

• Keeping things around the kitchen

Graduate Student​

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Mark Hoedemaker

Age: 27

Occupation: Graduate student

House Type: 4 people with individual bedrooms, shared living-room, kitchen, and bathroom

• Having dinner by himself or with roommates on weekdays; holding a party with friends on weekends

• Usually have dinner in his room by himself; in the kitchen or on the balcony with roommates; in the living room when there are more people

• Put dishes in both kitchen and table

• Start to eat while cooking to save table space.

• Share food that brought from different friends.

Young Couple

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Jeronimo & Guillermo

Age: 32 & 33

Occupation: Designer & Management Consultant

House Type: 1 bedroom apartment

• Living with their dog Lula

• Hosting their friends and other young couples at least once a week

• Usually inviting between 4 and 10 people, sitting in their living room

• Often making one main dish with a lot of accompaniments

Mood Board
Needs List

The raw data from user interview was interpreted in terms of customer needs and was organized into a hierarchy. This is to make sure the product is focused on customer needs and that no critical customer need is forgotten.

Design Concept

More than 30 design concepts were generated for saving table space, and some of them were made into prototypes.

Manufacture Process
Final Design

Dear Deer is an innovative functional centerpiece that serve for both decoration purpose and space saving in dinner party. 150 units were manufactured by three people within two weeks, and were sold out during the online pre-order and MIT selling gala. Two deer, Comet (big) and Cupid(small), and two colors were provided. The cost per unit is 4.5 USD. The price for Comet is 25 USD and for Cupid is 18 USD. Selling by pair is 40 USD.