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Student Spotlight: Westinghouse Light Bulbs Concept

by Tiffanie Pfrang on 04/06/2011 | 3 Minute Read

How many people does it take to buy lightbulbs? Sometimes it takes a whole household to find one that is best for the light above the kitchen sink. This concept, done as a part of the 2011 IOPP Repackaging challenge makes buying lightbulb more user friendly and sustainable. Check it out! 


"Brief: At the 2011 IOPP Repackaging challenge, the brief was simple-choose one of four products and redesign the packaging to make it more functional, user-centric and sustainable.

 Westinghouse Light bulbs

Problems and Process:

Design: A visit to the hardware store revealed that light bulb packaging is laden with bullets that don't necessarily inform or assist in making an appropriate purchase. What do quantities like1200 lumens and 20 Watts mean without context? The average uninformed consumer (young mothers, families, singles, even me) hardly knows and often ends up buying the wrong kind of bulb for a room. 
Sustainability: Most light bulb packaging comes in plastic or cardboard packages that lead to a lot of material wastage. Plus, there often is no provision within the package itself for storage of used bulbs.

Fast-track Solution:

Design: An intuitive range of light bulbs called enlighten was created for Westinghouse. Using different colours and names like intimate, peaceful and energize to indicate moods, so different kinds of bulbs for different lighting conditions can be easily identified. Instead of using terms likelumens which don't help much in isolation unless you're a physics grad, intensity or brightness of the bulb is described by an icon that is easy to read. In addition a system of icons provides useful visual information suggesting room pairings (much like wine and food pairings) helping consumers make the right choice for their house/office, etc.

Sustainability: The package is a clam shell made of unbleached paper pulp made of plant fibers that is biodegradable. It only uses a simple paper band around the top for all the product information, minimizing paper use and printing costs. A used bulb can simply be stored in the clam shell box. Additionally, the package can be used as a planter for seeds, and the package can be transplanted into soil to return to the earth. If nothing else, you can just trash the package and it will decompose to become part of the earth once again. In this way, the package puts very little emphasis on the consumer to be responsible or 'do something', and instead uses minimal components made of sustainable and biodegradable material, making it a self-responsible package.

From brief, to concept, to final packaging, everything was created in less than 48 hours in a group collaboration!"

Designed by Sanyukta Kothari, Lane Thomas, Christine Sutton, Cate Kennedy, and Clinton Saldana


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