How a Wanderlust Made the Duffle Bag More Travel-friendly

It took this world a long time to reach this moment in time where we have a product like the Voyage Pillow. Matt Benedetto’s keen eye and urge to solve problems that no one else is solving gave us an incredible product in the Voyage Pillow, that’s part pillow, part eye-mask, and full awesomeness.

Matt’s problem solving approach is rather optimistic in the sense it takes on multiple challenges, combining different plus-points, and oftentimes different products into one solution. The Voyage Pillow solved more than two problem statements and the resultant product saw itself fitting into multiple scenarios. The Voyage Bag is no different in the sense that it tackles multiple problems, becoming a product that morphs into multiple variations as a result, and honestly, that’s a really neat approach because it makes the bag appeal to multiple user personas.

The Voyage Bag is literally a bag that accompanies you on your voyages no matter what they are, short or long, big or small. It seamlessly transforms from a spacious backpack with enough storage for an entire weekend out, to a duffel bag for a quick business trip, to even a gym bag. The bag comes with multiple handles for easy carrying in both vertical and horizontal configurations, a single shoulder sling-strap that can be detached and attached on convenience, and two hidden backpack straps that you can unzip to reveal. Depending on your type of journey, the Voyage Bag changes its avatars to make traveling comfortable for your ever-changing needs. On the inside, the Voyage Bag takes care of every need. The spacious duffel comes with a laptop slot and even a smaller slot for tablets, ebooks, or regular books. Aside from that, it even has two slots for an extra pair of shoes. The circular shape of the bag proves more than ideal for sports equipment. The insides of the bag come in an electric blue fabric, allowing you to see inside the bag clearly, and spot the items you need… another testament to Benedetto’s keen problem-solving eye! The bag’s outside comes in a durable, water-proof fabric (including the zips). Available in a grey/black melange, the bag sees itself being easily used everywhere from leisure to work, to even the gym. What’s more, the bag comes with easy access outer pockets for all your necessities, and a size that makes it just ideal for stowing away on overhead cabins in planes. Pair that with the Voyage Pillow, and you’ve got everything you need to travel with absolute peace of mind!

Designer: Matt Benedetto of Sondre Travel

Click here to Buy Now

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The 2-in-1 design allows you to adapt the Voyage Bag mid-trip to allow for the most comfortable traveling experience.

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The included shoulder strap quickly clips onto the two black metal rings to comfortably carry the Voyage Bag across your chest.

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Two easy to grab handles are located on the top and middle of the bag for those times when you want to head out in a flash!

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For longer trips, the Voyage Bag is compatible with your roller luggage!

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We wanted the Voyage Bag to adapt to your life for any occasion from your daily commute, heading to class, a weekend carry-on, camping, and any adventure you could imagine!

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You can easily store your shoes, separate clean and dirty laundry, keep your water bottle in place, pack carry-on essentials, or simply not use them at all! The possibilities are truly endless!

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The interior zip pocket is perfect for those small valuable items you want to keep safely inside and away.

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Click here to Buy Now

A Durable Monitor for Our Four-Legged Friends

A dog’s journey from A to B often doesn’t follow a well-maintained path, our adventurous four-legged friends seek excitement in some of the muddiest of places, from shallow streams to boggy fields… they are just attracted to dirt! So naturally, this means that any dog-friendly wearable must be able to keep up with this demanding lifestyle! RAWR does just that!

RAWR is an all-weather ready, robust smart collar that features a rugged design. Packed into the dirt and splash resistant exterior is a vast amount of technology aimed at assisting the dog’s owner during the daily walk. Their mind is put at rest as the device can aid in the location of a lost dog, it uses GPS, cellular and Wi-Fi to pinpoint the exact location of the wandering pet. On top of this, an array of sensors continuously monitor the dog’s vitals, this information is relayed back to the user’s smartphone, so any worrying changes can be acted on immediately!

Designer: Nikita Bukoros

Click here to get RAWR first.

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Trend predictions for 2019 in the workplace

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2018 has sped by with 2019 knocking on our doorsteps already! And as we go about making our new year’s plans, let’s plan a bit about our work situation too. This article, by Lindsay Tigar, gives us the seven trends stated by industry experts that list down the things that will shape our office culture in the coming year. So with the best of season’s greeting, bring the new year in along with some food for thought as to how you can navigate your office next year.

Looking to hire an awesome designer to take your company to new heights in 2019? Post your requirement with YD Job Board to connect with our dynamic young professionals who are always on the lookout for interesting opportunities.

Looking for a job change to kick-start the new year? Check out Yanko Design Job Board to find an opportunity now.


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Another lap around the sun, another 12 months to make goals, another four quarters to propel your career and make some moves. There’s a reason so many people look forward to the beginning of a New Year since it signals an opportunity to refresh, reflect and restart their lives, perspective and for most, their careers.

Industry experts also track change and progress year over year, allowing them to predict trends that will emerge in the workplace. From how companies will hire, to the best practices for employees continuing their education, 2019 will bring a shift in the professional workforce and setting.

Companies will focus on great social and emotional intelligence

As the number of millennials not only enter the workforce but start to lead teams and get promoted to the c-level suite, business coach Christine Agro predicts companies will zero-in on communication. More specifically, they will become smarter about the way they develop strategies surrounding internal and external best practices.

“There is a greater awareness that not all people react and respond the same way and that past experiences affect how we communicate and what we communicate, coupled with differences in generational approaches,” she continues. “In order for companies to create positive and effective workplace culture, the healthy development of advanced social and emotional intelligence — particularly at the executive level — is going to be essential in attracting and retaining high level, skilled employees.”

Companies will embrace automation

Over the next few years, head U.S. Analyst at the trend-predicting company Stylus shares rapidly advancing automation will revolutionize our working lives. How so? One word: robotics.

“We are already seeing more fluid, interactive forms of collaboration between people and robots that complement each other’s strengths,” she continues.

However, adapting to the shifting dynamic may take time, since Alyson Gough says many workers will feel wary of automation. However, she notes companies that enable trust-based, easy and natural ‘co-bot’ workplace relationships will reap the benefits.

In fact, Pennsylvania’s Carnegie Mellon launched America’s first undergraduate degree in Artificial Intelligence this fall, making a case for how much more we will rely on robotics across many industries in the quarters to come.

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Education will continue to be encouraged

More than ever, there are numerous resources available for eager professionals who want to continuously improve their skill set. Whether they desire to learn a completely new leg of the business or they want to refresh an area they already have experience in, career expert Steve Grant predicts the year ahead will bring a heightened awareness for the need of education long after graduation.

 “2019 will continue to see knowledge seekers obtaining the additional training they want and need but companies will also continue to push their employees to do more of such readings, lectures as lessons,” he explains.

From LinkedIn Learning, Busuu and Coursera to Udemy, edX and The Khan Academy, many lessons and modules meet budget constraints and should be an ask of any employee who wants to exceed.

Retention will remain a growing concern

While previous generations remained committed to the same job from the time they were fresh out of college until retirement, chief learning officer at MentorcliQ Paul MacCartney explains millennials have a much shorter attention span. He explains the average job stay is now 2.9 years, especially as more professionals branch out to start their own companies or become freelancers.

This could be beneficial and lucrative or the individual, but it makes employers wary and prompts them to double-down on their retention strategy. “For the long term, companies need to retain top talent for a longer duration of tenure. This is what drives succession programs, he explains.

Career expert Jeff Kohl echoes MacCartney, added the issue on everyone’s mind is a shrinking workforce — both due to the new millennial way of approaching success and the fact we’re entering the age where baby boomers are retiring.

“A smaller workforce creates numerous challenges including finding labor and paying them competitively,” he continues. “There is also the challenge of creating a fun culture that makes new hires happy and keeps current employees engaged so you don’t lose them.

“This is the time to analyze your company culture. People don’t run away for a few dollars an hour, they run away from bad management.”

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Companies will be wishy-washy on remote-work

In recent years, many companies have adopted the thriving ‘gig’ economy, hiring freelancers to take on some of the deliverables in a speedy, contracted fashion. This has inspired many full-time professionals to bargain for the ability to work remotely or have a varied schedule that thrives on flexibility. Argo says this may shift in 2019, predicting the pendulum could swing away from work-from-wherever and back to an in-office mandate.

“I see this as a reaction to policies that have gotten too frayed and taken advantage of, resulting in unquantifiable work hours and a breakdown in cohesive team dynamics,” she continues.

However, she notes it won’t solve the issues employers might attribute to remote working since the heart of the issue is not having a clear and defined company culture. Within time, they could again be open to talented professionals who prefer to be productive outside of a corporate setting. How come? They’ll realize what matters most.

“Although geographically disparate, this trend speaks to the emerging employee pool in industries where employers see skill as the most valuable asset, not a person’s physical presence,” she explains. “Great communities and relationships can be built via video conference, and those companies that understand how to make room for remote workers will continue to attract those that are highly skilled, think organically and oftentimes outside the box and who desire new experiences.”

A surge in mentoring programs

And not merely volunteer ones outside of the office, but corporate programs that are a top priority in developing culture, according to Kohl. He notes a study conducted in 2017 by the Association for Talent Development found 71 percent of Fortune 500 companies already have this in place.

Whether this is a pairing, a monthly event or a course that new employees take, there is a priceless value on mentoring, especially since it has aided so many people in the advancement of their career. In fact, the same study found 75 percent of executives credit mentors with helping them to arrive at their success and tenure.

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A renewed approach to wellness

Though wellness has been a hot topic in the workplace for years, Gough says companies will be hyper-aware of their employees well being than ever before in 2019. Not only does this mean implementing a health-focused culture that supports productivity, but modeling the open-floor plan to be more conducive to the need for quiet.

“Next year, we’ll see more of emphasis on mental wellbeing as correctives for noisy and privacy-lacking open plan offices, and biophilia is incorporated into spaces to restore, relax and revive workers,” she explains. “Incorporating greenery seems obvious, but increased awareness of biophilic design’s positive impact on wellbeing is framing these new workspace needs.”

She also adds that more subtle tactile and visual cues will also be used to trigger our brains into perceiving a sense of nature through natural-mimicking lighting, sounds, and air quality, for a reassuring essential connection.


YD’s endeavor is to increase your efficiency by connecting you to your ideal candidates. Yanko Design has curated Industrial Design followers for the past 15+ years, and we know these are the best match for your company. To recruit now,  Post a Job with us!

The original write up by Lindsay Tigar published on the Ladders can be found here.

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YD Spotlight: Nicholas Baker’s Chair Sketch Challenge Pt.4

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Every week (although the timing isn’t particularly fixed), I see a chair sketch on my Instagram feed, and after having seen and liked dozens of them, my mind can almost instantly recognize @nickpbaker’s style and brand of creativity anywhere.

Given the hashtag of #nickschairsketches, Baker uploads unusual conceptual chair designs almost every week. The chairs showcase inventiveness that one rarely sees in furniture design, as concepts take inspiration from quite literally anywhere. Scroll down to see a few of our favorites.

Designer: Nicholas Baker

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Highly appropriate, given the season we’re in, this chair takes direct inspiration from Santa’s sled, and isn’t ashamed of it too! In fact, it ditches the chair legs for sled-skis too! Don’t go pushing this chair downhill though!

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A result of Weekly Design Challenge’s 99th design brief (Plant Pot), Nick combined the two challenges to make a full-scale terracotta seat with planters integrated into its sides, so you can smell the roses as you sit outdoors!

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Made of six pieces of wood and a felt cushion, this concept chair turns into a lounger when you pull the cushion outwards (almost like a cabinet drawer). Pull it further and you’ve got yourself an extra Ottoman stool to sit on, as one chair magically transforms into two!

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Guaranteed to bring the child out in you, this chair literally has some bounce. Part trampoline, part seat, this concept keeps you active while you’re seated, although your productivity may take a slight hit as you bounce up and down in childlike glee through the day!

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This chair’s build is what makes it interesting. Multiple pieces of felt are stacked together, giving the 2D sheets a 3D mass. After a point, the sheets become longer, and bam! You’ve got yourself a backrest. The sheets of felt are held together by brass rivets at the bottom.

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This visually delightful chair may have one of the most simple constructions yet. A transparent sheet of acrylic is thermoformed into the shape of the seat, while a routing machine carves notches into two pieces of wood that allow the acrylic sheet to fit in. Voila! Instant chair!

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The beauty of this chair is in its DIY assembly. Two cushions and four pieces of wood are flat-packed and shipped to your home. Putting them together is as simple as plugging the wood pieces in, resting the cushion on top of the X, and gluing or nailing the backrest in place.

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This chair comes with the additional option of cocooning yourself into your own private little space. The chair comes with a draping of felt around the back and sides. Keep the draping open for regular seating, or lift the drapes up and button them together and you’ve got a completely enclosed (and even sound-absorbing) enclosure that lets you work or relax in peace.

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A single bent piece of pipe forms this seat’s structure while a leather sheet gives you a hammock-like seating area. Sit regularly or sideways, this chair is comfortable, and adds a touch of simplicity to its surroundings.

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Literally a definition of bilateral symmetry, this chair comes in two identical halves, fastened together at the center. Made out of bent sheet-steel (cheap, reliable, and long-lasting), the two modules can be mixed and matched to give you color combinations that suit your space well. The colors are brought about by simply powder-coating the steel, preventing it from rusting and giving it a nice, glossy color finish. Finally, the two mirrored pieces are riveted together at the base, giving you a chair that’s unusual but comfortable!
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Click Here to check out the rest in the Nicholas Baker’s Chair Sketch Challenge series

Swipe Right to open your Holiday Gifts!

Our generation is so used to swiping at things that it only seems natural that something like the Nimble Cutter would exist! Cleverly named, the Nimble is a thimble that sits on your finger, but instead of preventing needle pricks, this little bad-boy comes with a blade that’s capable of being the best cutter you’ll ever own. Convenient in its design, the Nimble’s silicone cap shape allows it to comfortably rest on any finger. A tiny blade on the tip lets you simply slide across surfaces you want to cut, be it paper, tape, clingfilm, etc. The blade’s small enough to slice through packaging, but too small to actually cut skin, which means the most the Nimble will do is poke you a tiny bit.

Perfect for the upcoming festive season (what with all the unboxing you’ll have to do), the Nimble takes a natural gesture, something we pretty much do all day on our touchscreens, and converts it into something useful, so you can ditch those harmful boxcutters and deadly knives!

Designer: Version 22

Click Here to Buy NowW

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This pure porcelain side-table gives the illusion of fabric

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A Gold Winner of the German Design Award this year, the Plisago side tables by Studio Besau-Marguerre showcase an unusual choice of material coupled with an aesthetic that isn’t common to the material either. It’s a confusingly attractive combination that makes your eyes question what they’re seeing before your hands touch them to confirm your guess, while you, all along, admire its strange beauty. The Plisago side tables come made from porcelain, a material that’s completely alien to the domain of furniture. The table also comes with a design that gives it the appearance of fabric. Multiple seams and folds adorn the side of the table, with their own imperfections, generated by a special parametric software. Its tactile, textile appearance gives it the feeling of tightly stretched, lightweight fabric, until you rest your fingers against it, only to feel the cold touch of porcelain. It seems unbelievable at first, but the designers at Studio Besau-Marguerre did manage to cast a porcelain model as big as this, something that requires technique, know-how, and a great degree of confidence and risk. The fact that the designers succeeded in pulling this off is an award-winning feat in itself, while the tense-fabric-like unconventional form of the Plisago certainly merits its own awards too!

Designer: Studio Besau-Marguerre for Fürstenberg

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Biomimicry meets drone-design

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Engineering dictates that the easiest and most obvious layout for drone propellers is in a square format with four propellers. Nature, however, sticks to the basic layout of two wings across all its flying creatures. From birds to insects to the occasional reptile and mammal, nature’s always bestowed a bilaterally symmetric, dual wing setup… so Carota’s drone puts faith in that setup that’s developed over millions of years of evolution. Carota’s Hornet drone sports two propellers on either side and a movable arm at the base which houses a camera module as well as a gimbal. The movable arm along with the dual-propeller layout give it the appearance of a hornet with its wings and positionable stinger. While conceptual, the Hornet drone does make one think whether four propellers are entirely necessary. Yes, they make lift-off easier, but it isn’t impossible to have a drone with two powerful propellers giving you vertical takeoff and landing. The propellers as well as the camera come with foldable arms, allowing the drone to be folded down to a compact package when not in use. I say this looks much more convenient! After all, nature can’t be entirely wrong, can it?!

Designer: Carota Design

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A Table that Transforms to Your Every Need

Most of us don’t just live in one place our entire lives. Furthermore, most of us enjoy mixing up the look of our interior once in a while. Created with these two ideas in mind, the Transforming X Table 2.0 is designed to adapt to your needs on a whim.

Simplistic yet multi-functional, the design consists of a metal X-shaped base that can be adjusted to three different height settings: coffee table, dinner table, and desk. The top surface is also made to fold so that two sizes are available to accommodate different uses. With a number of different top finishes ranging from lacquer to wood, it can also be customized to the users liking.

Designer: SpaceMaster

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A Fun Yet Functional Item of Stationery

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It would come as no surprise to hear that a lot of us spend a seemingly ‘unhealthy’ time at our desks, but seeing as this may be the case, we might as well surround ourselves with items that we love! Little desk accessories have the ability to bring a little bit of character and personality to the workspace, and Logger is no exception!

Logger is the result of the two products coming together to make one complete product, an automatic pencil sharpener, and a tray. As soon as the pencils have been sharpened in the protruding cylinder, they satisfyingly rest within the arc of the lid, where grooves have been introduced to house each individual pencil. This lid rests upon a translucent base that allows the user to see how full the collection compartment has gotten, without having to lift the top off, and without the aesthetic-compromising view of the pencil shavings.

Designer: Homm. Studio

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In the future, smartphone displays will be embedded in our eyewear

Probably for the first time, spectacle wearers may be at a strategic advantage as North acquired all of Intel’s Vault AR patents. The company aims to build and launch, in the near future, smart AR glasses that are incredibly light and indistinguishable from regular glasses. They’re stylish (and look nothing like the abomination that was Google Glass), and come with a module built into the side of the glasses (the stem) that projects an image on your spectacle lens and uses the glass of your eyewear to reflect that image directly onto your retina. The image is seen by you, the wearer alone, and more importantly, can be focus-calibrated according to your eye-power.

Intel has been struggling to get the technology off the bench, but North’s acquisition of its research and its patents may just mean that we, the spectacle wearers, will have AR-enabled HUD eyewear very soon, that may make taking the smartphone out of our pocket an entirely unnecessary activity. The laser projection module can tell you the time, share notifications, even let you browse maps or know who’s calling, and North’s experiments with their own ‘Focal’ series of AR glasses even came with a ring that let you browse through and control your content, as well as Alexa, so you could give commands to your smart-glasses… and while this is an incredible breakthrough, the fact that North’s glasses still look like normal, off-the-shelf prescription eyewear is extremely noteworthy. It shows a realization that wearable technology must conform to the standards of fashion, if it is to see the daylight of mass acceptance. Me, I’m glad that eyewear (something I cried about and hated as a kid) is stepping into an incredible, powerful future, and probably the next time someone calls me ‘four eyes’, I might just be able to google a nasty comeback without them noticing!

Designer: North

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