An emerging company, focusing on modern design for the aging baby boomer generation, tasked me with creating a line of products for the home. The suite of products consisted of three serving utensils oriented around holiday entertaining; a carving knife, a carving fork, and a cake/pie server. The other two products are a reacher and a light cane. The products needed to be ergonomically designed for ease of use and comfort, relatively lightweight, and elegant. It was crucial that they not have a medical feel, often associated with geriatric design.
This line, Stretch, focuses on a flexible rubber strap that can be used in two different ways. The user can hold the handle as they would normally do with a kitchen utensil, and the rubber provides a non-slip, comfortable grip. If the user isn’t able to tightly squeeze the handle and needs more support, they can slide their hand between the metal and the rubber strap. The rubber will squeeze the user’s hand to the metal handle so they don’t have to squeeze as hard. The strap will hold the user’s hand in place to keep the utensil from slipping.
The kitchen utensils are made of highly polished stainless steel with rubber straps. The carving blade, carving fork tongs and pie server blade each sit at an angle to their handle, allowing the user to keep their wrist from twisting.
The cane and reacher are made of highly polished metal with rubber straps. They have clean lines and bright pops of color to remove the traditional, medical feel often associated with these products.
The cane’s stem and base are triangular in shape to maximize strength and stability, drawing on the triangle as a highly stable form. The triangle has a smaller surface area than the standard cylinder or rectangle, requiring less material, and allowing for a lighter feel and easier mobility.
The reacher has a large, comfortable trigger for opening and closing the grabber. The grabber is magnetized to easily pick up metal items and has a rubber liner to help grip other items.
Dimensions: Carving Knife – 13″ long; Carving Fork – 12″ long; Pie Server – 12″ long; Cane – 36″ tall; Reacher – 33″ long