Skin Deep

Our paper titled “Skin deep: perceptions of human and material ageing and opportunities for design”  has been accepted for presentation at EAD2019, the 13th International Conference of the European Academy of Design, which will be held in Dundee in April 2019 ( The paper was written by Ben Bridgens and Debra Lilley in collaboration with Hannah Zeilig and Caroline Searing at the London College of Fashion.

Abstract: Rapid unsustainable purchasing and disposal of mass-produced objects is, in part, driven by ‘cosmetic obsolescence’ – changes to the pristine material surface which are perceived as damage and degradation. In Western society there is an obsession, fuelled by pervasive advertising, with hiding the effects of ageing and maintaining skin that exudes ‘youthful perfection’. We consider the parallels between these attitudes to changes in material surfaces and human ageing, and propose that actively considering future material change in product design could increase product longevity.

ENDURE to exhibit at The Baltic

Adele at MaterialDriven invited us to exhibit our ’changed’ material samples from the ENDURE project at an exhibition called ‘FUTURE THINKERS’ at The BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. The exhibit is part of ‘Idea of North’ which runs from 11 May to 30 September 2018. And here it is:

Our triangle will form part of a geodesic dome which visitors can walk through and around, showcasing a wide range of materials, from traditional materials to experimental and futuristic materials.

Material change app

ENDURE invites designers, architects and material specifiers in academia and industry to review our app-based resource which explains, exemplifies and illustrates material change.

The prototype app provides succinct information on how materials change with use and in response to different stimuli. Changes to how a material looks, feels and behaves are illustrated with inspirational case studies of products and materials, as well as time lapse images and gifs of physical samples subjected to various stimuli (UV, ammonia, salt etc.) and accelerated ageing techniques.

We’d love to hear your feedback! please go to: view and evaluate the prototype.

Granta EduPack workshop featuring ‘ENDURE’ resources

Granta EduPack workshop to be held at Loughborough University in January. On the second day of the workshop we will demonstrate prototype ‘ENDURE’ resources within the Granta ‘Products, Materials & Processes’ database. And we will be asking participants to have a go and give us feedback on these resources which highlight the role of material change in design.

Material metamorphosis resource development

From the moment of purchase, pristine objects are subjected to an array of stimuli including wear, impact, heat, light, water and air which alter their tactile and aesthetic properties. Material change is often regarded as ‘damage’ or ‘degradation’, but has potential to be used as a tool to engender emotional engagement with an object.

But how can we convey to the designer the role of the complex interaction of material choice, surface finish, form, physical interaction with the user & environmental exposure in determining the future aesthetics of a product?

The ENDURE team have got some ideas… click on the thumbnail for a full size image showing some of our initial thoughts on resources to educate designers about ‘material metamorphosis’:

ENDURE material metamorphosis resource development



Welcome to Material Metamorphosis!

We are a team of Designers and Engineers exploring the role of material change / ageing / transformation / metamorphosis in design and consumer behaviour.

More content will be added soon…