Wearable Shelter

TEAM: Angela Cho – University of Toronto

a response to live/work balance + the pursuit of happiness

Consumerism promises personal satisfaction which is often measured by how much we can come to possess. These ideals are currently achieved through long work hours which allow us to obtain what is socially perceived as “necessities.” We have been conditioned to believe that this materialistic lifestyle will lead to our happiness…

Opportunities to learn what actually factors into our levels of happiness are presented through experiences that contrast our hectic, urban pace.

Nomadic and alternative lifestyles are currently challenging the way western culture surrounds its idea of success through work and material belongings. Striping down to a bare minimum open up attitudes toward appreciation and sustainability, while pushing exciting interactions outside of people’s comfort zone. Such new encounters can positively affect our levels of satisfaction, influence our attitudes toward mindfulness and encourage the integration of discovery, exploration and pause in our busy lives.

Being dependent on technology or caught up in our busy work lives is not going to change. We need the stimulation we’ve grown so accustomed to and things will continue to become faster and more efficient. The best we could do is try to achieve a balance and remind ourselves to take time to relax, recuperate and not lose sight of the human interaction we all crave.

The proposed transformative product/interior can facilitate social gatherings that bring these experiences within city contexts. Current negative connotations associated with conventional hotels are the way it segregates visitors from locals, which results in unauthentic experiences. The wearable shelter contrasts this idea by allowing itself to be co-dependent from a specific site, while creating unique experiences that can be shared between locals and foreigners alike. It travels with the individual while providing warmth, comfort and function, no mater the itinerary.

The wearable shelter is proposed as the primary tool to gather city dwellers who are looking for a unique experience to contrast their daily routine. Multiple sites can be rented in existing (and rarely used) urban environments such as rooftops or elevated infills, adding levels of exhilaration while having access to building facilities. This can be a time to disconnect and explore primitive forms of human interaction through conversation and rest, while spending a night in a communal sleepover.


The role of objects and spaces are changing. The expectation is growing for all things to be multi- faceted and multi-functional. The focus of services, to products, to interiors are all centered around the user’s experience as a we are finally moving away from conspicuous consumption.

kitchens are the new living rooms in the home. rucksacks are entire rooms with a view.

Experimenting with tessellated forms, fabric and folded structures, this wearable shelter was designed as a layer of protection from the elements during the day, that transforms into a sleeping cocoon at night, providing intimate shelter. Multiple shelters can also be connected to create a large, shared spatial experience. Stripping people to such a minimum is a reminder of what is necessary for survival and encourages a re-exploration of our current surroundings.

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