Design for Repair: Things Can Be Fixed

By Derrick Mead

Repair is a design constraint and an outcome of product design. It’s also a practical activity performed—or not—on designed objects. Similar skills and understanding are required to design and fix things well, but these shared capacities are applied to very different practical ends. Design for Repair investigates the historical and current state of repair in material culture as it applies specifically to product designers.

Having handled disrepair in barns, kitchens, and crawlspaces, Derrick Mead remains fascinated with how we use and fix things. His writing has appeared in Metropolis, WIRED, and Architect’s Newspaper; he works presently for Ziba, a design consulting firm based in Portland, Oregon.