Made By…

A normally anonymous mass-produced object gains personal significance and perceived value by giving it a personal touch, relating it back to one of the many people who were involved in its production.

Each product is hand-signed by one of the many workers involved in its production chain. By scanning the label with the signature, customers can access information about the working conditions, materials, methods, and the specific worker who signed the product they purchased. This creates a degree of trust and increases transparency between the customer and the company.

Customers can also respond to the worker by posting a picture of themselves using the product, which decreases the degree of alienation of labor usually experienced by factory workers. As a result, both parties feel more connected to the product.

In addition to the Made By… product labels, we also installed boxes with images of workers and the production process throughout Tiger stores, giving customers an opportunity to peek into the process behind the products they are browsing and purchasing.

Our research and interviews showed that the main concern raised with inexpensive products in particular were suspicions about unethical working conditions, and Made By… increases the levels of transparency and trust between customers, workers, and brands.

As this project was focused on people-centered research, we learned techniques and methods for conducting interviews, both on-site and off-site. A key benefit from this course was building confidence in our abilities as interviewers. We also utilized co-creation methods, allowing users to become part of the design process. Partnering with Tiger also helped frame the concept of designing for transparency in the context of designing for happiness.