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luminaire jar

Beautiful, sentimental, and personalized – the Luminaire Jar redefines how we think about care. Designed for the home, this translucent lamp seeks to improve bonds in familial relationships through recollection of memories related to care. Through the process of recording and transferring messages to a connected lamp, loved ones are able to reflect about care and convey gratitude towards one another.


10 weeks, Jan 2019 - Mar 2019


Joanne Chen, Ariel Chiang, Jasper Xie, Elyssa Yim


Research, Ideation, User Flow, Storyboarding, User Testing, Refinement, Visuals, Video Prototype

design challenge

How might we help parents and college-aged children who live apart convey gratitude for past events to better care for one another in the present?

contextual inquiry

To better understand and gain empathy for our target group, we proceeded in conducting research on both parents and their college aged children through three design methods: semi-structured interviews, personal inventory, and a creative entry. Through these various design methods, we were able to gain insight into the relationship dynamics of how college aged children and their parents show care. 


Realization of Care

Participants can neglect the care from the caregiver in the present moment. But will often realize and appreciate such acts later in life.

Long Distance Relationships

When participants are farther apart in distance, the relationships between one another tend to be more intimate and intentional.

Everyday Item

Participants appreciate the day-to-day actions and simple objects that fulfill one another’s needs.


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everyday Integration

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How might we help parents and college-aged children who live apart convey gratitude for past events to better care for one another in the present?

concept development

To address and design for our How Might We (HMW) statement, we proceeded by generating more than 60 ideas to explore various and potential solutions. Through numerous sketches, we were able to visualize a variety of ideas, from an interactive mirror to a time capsule. After our initial ideation phase, we began to narrow down to three concepts: a pair of connected lamps, a hand warmer, and a clock.


We combined elements of three concepts from our sketches to form a pair of connected lamps that better fits with our principles.

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工作區域 61@300x.png
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Care Lamp

Changes the color of your loved one's lamp. Different colors represent different types of care

Jar of Care

Records memories of care into momentos and placed into a clear jar. As time passes, each momento will begin to fade.

Lamp Projector

Projects images, notes, and videos from loved ones before you fall asleep.

participatory design workshop

With a newly refined concept, we began to organize participatory design workshops with two participants, a college-aged student and a middle-aged mother. In hopes to implement the idea of “designing with people”, we conducted various activities to gain insight into our lamp’s form, function, and overall concept flow.


After enacting participatory design workshops with our two participants. We proceeded by updating and refining our overall concept. Instead of completely round, we made our lamp asymmetrical, added editable features, and indication lights to our memory balls.

Asymmetrical Form

Both participants agreed that the lamp would be multifunctional, as a source of light and a piece of decor. Thus, We decided to make our lamp asymmetrical to enhance the aesthetics.

Editable Feature

The process of recording was deemed to be a little stressful for the participant. In order for users to adjust to using the lamp, we made the voice recording balls editable and semi firm texture.

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storyboard & prototype

Building on the participatory design workshop, we created a storyboard to illustrate how a user would use and interact with the Luminaire Jar over time, a user manual to introduce the product, a physical low-fidelity prototype, and a 3D rendering of our lamp for reference. These artifacts gave us an idea of how we can interact with the product, and what the functions should be.



After brainstorming and looking back at our insights from our participatory design workshops, we continued to develop and refine our overall idea through user feedback. 


In asking questions that focused on our product’s form, function, and overall experience, we were able to further gain various insights regarding how our users would use and integrate it.


We realized that some of our features were inconvenient. For example, the opening of the lamp can be larger for easier access and allowing replays of recorded messages right before storing it. Moreover, we decided to add breathing light in the balls to help identify the change in time. Appearance wise, we made the surface of the dial flat instead of rounded, so it is easier to position the ball on top of the dial.



luminaire jar

Beautiful, sentimental, and personalized – the Luminaire Jar redefines how we think about care. Designed for the home, this translucent lamp focuses on the importance of recollection, by holding sentimental memories for both the parent and child to share, no matter the distance. The Luminaire Jar allows users to relive moments in the past and appreciate the care of one another in the present.


Final Design
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record messages

By squeezing the memory ball once, you can record messages up to 60 seconds

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listen and transfer messages

Listen to your message after a period of time to re-live a memory. After listening, the message will be transferred to the connected lamp

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Touch the core of the lamp to listen when you receive a message

authentic. connected. influential.

slide to view full user manual