A few weeks ago we visited Fab Lab London. This kind of lab is a creative place where entrepreneurs, artists and all creative minds have the opportunity to develop a product for their businesses.


We got a brief from Unlimited Lab, which “…designs and manufactures products to encourage people to repurpose waste in creative ways with 3D printing” (here) and works within the Fab Lab London. Their main goals are to reverse the way we see waste and bring new value to it by bringing it into new resource, for instance sustainable material for 3D printing. 

1 Unlimited Lab‘s vision is “to create a world where waste doesn’t exist” and mission to design consumers habitat exclusive to their needs with contribution of sustainable materials.


For this particular project, the first step was to carefully go through those four assumptions as we needed to include those facts in our product. Those four assumptions represented behaviour of our consumers, so we needed to combine all of them in our final outcome.


After we got familiar with the assumptions our consumers are most likely going to be facing with, we started to think about how to transform the idea through MVP into the final creative output.

Afterwards, it was time to design a quick business model canvas


We started to think about which broken product do we have at home, but at the same time feeling attached to it. The product that we do not want to throw it away and it represents a “waste” to which we could bring new value by designing some missing pieces. Through conversation with my group we have realised how many of us actually have broken headphones which are just taking place in our wardrobes but no one has a courage to throw them away. The reasons varied from person to person. From having nice memories while listening to a certain song and wearing those headphones, paying a lot of money for them, receiving them from a special person etc.

Therefore, based on that observation, we had quite a clear idea, what do we want to design; a frame for broken headphones. 

This would be the solution for that problem and here went our first-ugly:) prototype in the picture below.


Our model on what principle our headphones’ frame would work. As we have decided to use the recycled wood, this model represents solution on how to make wood flexible.


A file in Adobe illustrator of the frame for the headphones, ready for laser cutting.


We chose the suitable wood and afterwards based on the file above, our design was laser cut by the machine shown below.


Laser cutting in the process.


Different stages of our prototypes, starting with ugly paper until developed the wooden one.


Further research on how our design is going to work like, as well as look like.


And here goes the product we have designed combining a waste of broken headphones into a new innovative product made from wood.


1. NAME: FraMe.

2. SUMMARY: Customized 3D frame for your broken headphones.

3. INSPIRATION: Too many times we have bought expensive noise reduction headphones where the head set breaks and they become useless. We aim to solve that problem by supplying custom frames to fit to broken headphone sets to cut down on waste. With customised colours and sizes, you can have your own individual style headphones without having to spend a high price for a brand new set.

4. THE NEED/ PROBLEM: Solve the problem of broken headphone frames, without having to buy a new pair, reducing the waste of having too many useless headphones at home.

5. PRODUCT: FraMe is a wooden frame with size customization. We have created two flexible mechanism for attaching the headphones to the frame. This represent Y shape where hadphones slot onto. Then we covered it with a rubber sock where the headphones goes into, which is attached to the frame. Customized wooden frame attach old headphones (broken frame) to. 

Works like: Ergonomic, comfortable, light, recycable, smells nice like fresh wood:)

Looks like: Unisex, sleek, shape to head size, colours option, reduce waste, maintain the sound quality of the original product.

6. ALTERNATIVES: The only alternative to our product is to buy a new set of headphones, adding to consumerism, increasing waste and adding to the lack of sustainability in our society.

7. FIRST CUSTOMER: Hobbyist, women & man that cares about the environment, design / electronic savy, musician. 

People who wants to: reuse waste, electronim components, customize objects.