Pins of Unsaid Stories
Talking is a way to express our mental status. However, in some circumstances, people don’t always want to talk. What are the things you want to express that you feel you can’t talk about? What are the stories you can’t tell? What are the reasons behind those unsaid stories? Why is it improper to talk about some mental states but not others?
I am using design to make signs and signals so people don’t always have to talk. I designed a series of pins representing different types of unsaid status, like the pin for "Dysmenorrhea" (Painful Period) and the pin for "Just Friend". The pin as a wearable tool can be an alternative way of expression but also a tool for self-identification or self-communication. This was inspired by jewelry design, for example, when you wear a bracelet with text on it, in addition to the aesthetic function that is more public, the text functions as internal communication, a message to yourself. When you wear this text it means that you identify with an idea. The wearer can have different understandings and usages of the pin depending on their needs.
Learning about the unsaid stories was so empowering, I started to see where I wanted to go with this project. I saw a real impact in the wearer who used my design tools. It was really exciting to see people have different responses to my projects, and who debate about them, which is a part of my purpose; to arouse an open debate and discussion on these sensitive topics. Some users feel uncomfortable and unsafe to wearing Social Awkwardness pin while others would love to use the wearable signs and attract attention from others. The controversy makes the projects more critical and revealing.