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2019 / 10-week / team project

Luminaire Jar is a pair of translucent lamps that allows users to relive moments in the past and appreciate the care of one another in the present through transferring messages and feelings of care.


In our fast paced world, we often don’t have the time and space to realize the care from the people closest to us. When it comes to care, we tend to never think of the implications of such a term and how care affects us on a daily basis. Especially in the relationship of parents and their college aged children, we noticed there were many difficulties in regards to being able to express gratitude towards one another.

My Role

UX research synthesis, Storytelling, Product design

View Product

What it does....

The Luminaire Jar redefines how we think about care. It 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.

Contextual Inquiry

To better understand and gain empathy for our target group, we proceeded in conducting research by interviewing a total of 13 participants, including both parents and their respective college aged children with three design methods.

Semi-structured interviews

We interviewed college students and their parents separately. We framed questions to allow for conversation that provided insights into the feelings and experiences associated with care

Personal Inventory

Each participant brought an item that reminds them of their family member’s care. Participants explained the significance of the item to better reveal how care is shown within the relationship.

Creative Entry

We asked each participant to creatively express what care means to them in the context of the family. Some examples include: drawings, poems, and lyrics.

Research Insights

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

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

Everyday Items

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

Design principles



Everyday Integration

how might we

help parents and college age children who live apart to convey gratitude for past events to better care for one another in the present?


To address and design for our How might we 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.

Participatory 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.

To understand what types of memories participants would want to record into the lamp


Participants were given a set of eight cards with different emojis.They were asked to reflect and write down memories/feelings associated with the type of emotion expressed by the emoji.


We asked our participants to use clay to craft an ideal lamp. They were also given samples of materials(ex. glass, acrylic, matte plastic)to reference the texture the preferred for the lamp.


Participants were asked to walkthrough a scenario of where their lamp would be placed in their home. Following this, they showed us how they would use, interact, and speak into the small objects

To understand what physical forms and materials participants find appealing

To understand where the lamp would be used in the home and the process of recording the memories

concept updates

Asymmetrical form to enhance aesthetics

Editable voice recording balls with semi firm texture

Indication light will appear when recording and not

Balls can be squeezed to edit voice recordings

Squeeze x1 - Start recording, Stop recording
Squeeze x2 - Delete recording

User Feedback

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. We enacted three sessions with two college aged students and one middle aged mother, all of whom live in different states or countries apart from their loved one.

We presented our participants with a refined storyboard, user manual, low-fidelity prototype, and a 3D rendering of our lamp for reference. We decided to design a user manual to further flesh out details and features of our product. 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 the Luminaire Jar into their lives.


Now that we refined our design direction, we continued our design process by prototyping.We realized that some of our features were inconvenient and unclear. For example, the opening of the lamp can be larger for easier access. 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 it.

Larger opening

Breathing lights

Flat dial

APp / motion tracking
App /  uiuX Design
Web / UIUX design