In order to create a hybrid object I firstly needed to have a think about two different objects that would work great together rather than apart.
When the weather is not so great outdoors, I still have a problem of where to dry our clothing and bedding, hanging it on an indoor airer isn’t a problem, it’s the length of time the clothing takes to dry that’s the problem. Every Autumn and Winter I try so hard not to use the tumble dryer, I’m conscious of the energy the machine uses to dry the clothing and the cost to electricity bill, so with this in mind why not design a heated airer that also connects to an oscillating fan that blows warm air! It’s important that both objects are initially fuelled by a solar panel, once that energy level drops it can be used by plugging into the mains!
I have made sketches of the two objects in plan, elevation and section. The airer is large enough to hold quite a few pieces of clothing, the oscillating fan stands high enough to blow warm air directly onto the clothing and/or bedding hanging on the airer. Et voila!
I then did some further research only to find you can actually buy heated clothes airers, who knew?!
Another idea I thought of was to make my life a bit easier when drinking my favourite hot drink, a cup of tea, I prefer a cup of black tea but leave the bag to stew in the hot water for a little longer than maybe usual. So with this in mind I thought of bringing a cup and teabag container together, one that would screw or fit on the bottom of the cup holding the used teabag, this way it can be portable and used everywhere you go.
I then looked at a design that I believe would help people like myself who wear glasses but also need reading glasses for close work. I read books most days and use a bookmark inside the book. Why not bring both the book and glasses case together in a way that is secured to the book and doubles up as a bookmark too, keeping them both together in one place, saving you time and effort trying to locate your glasses that could be anywhere in the home! Ta da!!
Finally, I have come up with a design that I would gain a lot from. My working desk is a piece of plywood attached to the wall with batons but it is only 600mm wide, I am very limited with width space in the room I use as an office. So by creating a desk area with a maximum length of 15000mm I can have a long desk, but I still have the problem of storing such things as pencils, pens, glasses case, hand cream, sketch books etc. These items would usually sit in a drawer or plastic container. With this in mind I would create cavities in the desktop for such items to sit in, with a perspex lid that covers the hole so that the surface is still usable. My two objects are a desk top and storage container, that will create a hybrid.
I then made technical drawings both by hand and using Autocad in plan, section and elevation at scale 1:10 drawn by hand on an A3 page and at scale of 1:20 drawn in Autocad, I then produced a written specification for my hybrid object.
Once I had moved past the sticky point of knowing which two objects I should put together to make a hybrid, the rest of the exercise seemed to flow quite nicely. It took me several attempts of putting together different objects to finally come up with a hybrid I would be happy to have in my own home. As with any concept, lots of sketching and changing of ideas is a helpful process, I have learnt to accept that this is an important step towards creating better designs and I’m beginning to enjoy the process so much more than previously.
Fig. 1-9 – My own annotated drawings/images of my hybrid object desk with concealed containers Walker, T (2021) [Pen & Paper, Autocad] in possession of: the author: Stoford