Project: Thesis for Masters in Industrial Design from Pratt Institute
Client: Pre-teen and teen girls

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SubRosa is Latin for “under the rose,” and in English it denotes confidentiality and secrecy, which alludes to the needs and desires of this age group. Derived from the Sanctuary teen research, the brand goals of SubRosa are to provide the basic tools to spark creativity and individualization, to encourage re-invention for a sustainable lifespan, to create a personal sanctuary, to compact for small spaces, and to be economically accessible to young teens.

the Undercover
Many girls I spoke with had a journal but also didn’t feel safe with writing personal thoughts. In a similar realm, teen girls are also sometimes embarrassed to read about things that interest them. Inspired by rubber cell phone covers, I chose to cast a stretchy silicone. This material has a natural static electricity that adheres to many surfaces, it protects from water, has a great tactile feel, and can be easily and cheaply reproduced.  I embedded spandex lace into the rubber to give it more stability when cast thin.

The kit itself would come with the undercover, a cd filled with book cover templates- of classic literature as well as templates for DIY, a roll of contact paper, scissors, and an idea booklet to spark creativity.

the SafetyClutch
The SafetyClutch is a secret personal storage piece that can be further camouflaged by the user.

I found inspiration in Japanese puzzle boxes, which are beautiful boxes that appear to have no clasps, but can be opened by a series of steps known only to the owner. The hidden closure creates a natural repellent from unwanted predators.I was also inspired by the tactile, edgy, and sporty nature of built NY’s Neoprene lunch sacks.

The outer shell is a cut neoprene, with glimpses of the spandex lace core. The size was informed by its ability to hold pictures, notes, a small journal or other small items. There are 3 hidden closures on this clutch for safekeeping.

The HanginIn is a solution for creating a private space within a shared room using the idea of the beaded curtain.

I was inspired by Anthropologie’s Holiday felt gift wrap. I loved the the way light played through the felt circles strung on the twill tape and the insulating acoustic qualities of the material.  Each felt circle is simply attached with friction to the ribbon. By stringing them in multiples, a serene environment is created.

Out of the box, the Hangin’In sets up easily. Each strand of felt comes in one base color, and in one base shape- the circle. The circles increase in diameter as they get closer to the floor for increased privacy. Since this design solution needs to be suspended, I sourced an inexpensive track curtain rod from Ikea.

From here, other shapes and colors can be added to the curtain. Using mini-barrettes, the user merely places the felt over the ribbon, and clips them on. With the felt/barrette system,the user can attach multiple shapes and colors, and even attach a stuff pouch for holding things like pens or notes, or a photo frame for personalization.

The majority of the girls I showed these products to were excited about the prospect of being allowed to create their own space, especially with the edge of secrecy that the products provided.