The finalist teams of the Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab teams are developing their first prototypes right now – and we’re getting closer to the day they’re going to be presented! We’ve had four questions that every team answered for us. After Team LYRA it’s now Team SmartChair’s turn to answer.

Which are the methods that you use to develop prototypes? Do you do researches or do you use any modern approaches like, for example, „Design Thinking”?

Basis of our developments are always the first impulses we get as part of the requirement analysis within the team. We then create a draft that features all functions and characteristics we’ve discussed before. Our team is very interdisciplinary, so perspectives and approaches are always different.

Next to researches, theoretic approaches and digital drafts we do create our prototypes by creating 1:1 models – which we then revise again and again, before we finally develop the prototype with the materials that were originally planned for the original.

Our creative center is the JAK Hamburg. We’re working with students, professionals and professors in retail design & fashion which is very valuable, as we can implement their knowledge into our drafts. We visit the FabLab frequently and the coaching provived by the challenge helps us a lot to complete our workflow when we’re developing prototypes.

How do you test your prototypes? Are you going into the field or do you do test in laboratories?

The whole developing progress consists of non-stop testing and recreating. In the early phases of the whole process, we actually do the tests in our laboratories or inside Lufthansa planes.

Do you already know by now, how the time after the Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab should ideally look like?

All team members do have a job next to the challenge. This obviously is difficult to coordinate sometimes speaking about  time management. We are really happy and do highly appreciate the support by Telekom and Lufthansa and really do hope, that we will keep on working together after this challenge.

Looking back on the last few months – do you have one special tip that you would like to share with designers or developers to be?

As a designer it is important, to always stay true to yourself and your style. Still, we have learned within the challenge, that it is very important as well to look at some things from another perspective and to be open to ideas and suggestions from different people. It’s not always working the exact way you might have imagined. Especially in the process of development it is important, to stick close to your team and to always be open to receive new ideas from „outside“.

If it’s possible, use the opportunity to work alongside companies like Lufthansa or Telekom, to realize your visions and dreams. Those companies have the resources and relations to make your ideas become reality.

Last but not least, the most important thing is – although the schedules are tight – to keep having fun by doing what you do. Every challenge brings new experiences that have big influences on your own personality. It’s the big missions that make you grow – and it’s a mind-blowing feeling to be able to say: „That’s our design. That’s our solution.“