Plush+

Product Design

Course
Senior Capstone
Project role
Creative Direction & UX
Project year
2020

Celebrating kids with all abilities.

For our senior capstone project, the plush+ group formed with the mission to create a product for children centered around empathy, compassion, and play. After 20 weeks, we developed a toy that teaches kids to embrace their friends with different abilities. The configuration of each plush doll is unknown until delivery, encouraging kids to welcome the unexpected delights that enter into their lives.

Research & Insights

Our research began at the Magical Bridge Park, an accessible playground in Palo Alto, CA. Despite an excellently designed physical space to interact, children of different abilities weren't having as many positive social interactions as we anticipated. How could we foster more of these friendships? Through more conversation, we noticed that early, sibling-like relationships between kids with different abilities often led to more compassion.

Form

We strove to create a toy for young children, unique in its differences, that illuminates and celebrates what it means to be different and encourages more positive interactions among all types of kids. After many iterations, we developed a blueprint to create a lovable, bear-like toy that appealed to kids aged 5-9.

Palette & Typography

Every single plush toy would have colors and features that represented a unique ability. We selected a color palette that was warm, vibrant, and inviting which could be easily be paired on different plush toys. To compliment this we chose a typeface that is friendly and versatile, which we used in titles as well as copy on our packaging.

Making the Connection

Key in connecting with kids was allowing them to assemble their plush themselves, making their plush unique inside and out. After stuffing and patching their toy up, they could give their plush an identity and learn about its different abilities.

Response

We ran a brief campaign across various social media platforms, and conducted user testing on a beta plush+ website. The response from parents and potential buyers was overwhelmingly positive.

Credits

Print Design

Kelly Lim
Sarah Walker
Julian Body

Proj. Management

Kelly Lim

Fabrication

Sarah Walker
Rebecca Walker

Art Direction

Marco Lee

Graphics & Patterns

Marco Lee

Web Design

Sarah Walker
Julian Body