- Designer Kiran Zhu, of Shanghai homeware and furniture brand Ziinlife, has created a stylish case for our times
- The Handy Capsule comes with sections for a face mask, hand sanitiser, temperature-reading stickers and alcohol wipes
What was the inspiration for the Handy Capsule? “Because China was the first area affected by the pandemic, I felt I needed to do something as a designer to help the community. Not something commercial, but something that gave back to society and helped people through this crisis.
“I thought the design community could help shape public health habits. The Handy Capsule is in between a case for make-up and a box for coffee capsules – these were the products that inspired it.”
How did you choose the four products to include in the capsule? “These four objects are being commonly used by people during the pandemic, but they are all packaged independently and there is no easy system to organise or store them. People might take a mask out but they may forget to bring hand sanitiser. The Handy Capsule is meant to create a change in mindset. It’s designed to be convenient to take out and I wanted it to look fashionable, too.”
What material is the capsule made from? “The exterior of the capsule is aluminium, which is easy to manufacture, and it is treated so it is magnetic and stays closed. The capsule is stamped with the shape of the contents as a way to remind people they need all four items. The thickest is in the centre while the thinner ones are on the outside. This makes it more aesthetically pleasing and easier to carry.”
Are you producing the capsule for sale? “At the moment this is still a prototype. But with media coverage we’ve already received interest from people who want to see how it can be turned into reality.
“The ultimate goal is to manufacture this for the wider public, so we would want to work with people in the medical industry. We are product designers and furniture designers so we need to collaborate with somebody who is specialised in that area.”
Are there any other health or pandemic-related products you would like to design? “We’ve all been staying at home for months because of the pandemic. It’s made me think about how to make home life more convenient and comfortable. Some of our products that are foldable or portable have been more popular than usual during this time.
“We’re coming up with some new designs inspired by the pandemic that will be exhibited at Design Shanghai in November.”