© 2019 by Andy Ma.

Punch Whisk :

Redesign the balloon whisk on utility

Project Background

It is an eight-week project to redesign an object from IKEA based on our understanding of “Utility”. This catalog records the whole process of the project and helps me communicate ideas with others. Because “Utility” is not a stylish and subjective word, to understand it better and apply it to my design, I need to understand the word “Utility” further.

Defining the Word - Utility

In this project, definition of Utility is an important guideline for following design work. So we classified Utility into 4 adjectives below for better understanding:

INTUITIVE

Using or based on what one feels to be true even without conscious reasoning.

INTENTIONAL

Using or based on what one be done on certain purpose.

EFFECTIVE

Fulfilling a specified function in fact, though not formally acknowledged as such.

EFFICIENT

Achieve maximum productivity with minimum wasted effort or expense.  

Marketplace Research

Whisk was classified into six categories below; each one has a distinctive form for particular usage:

Balloon Whisk

It is one of the most popular types of whisks. The uses for a balloon whisk are not limited to mixing eggs, vigorously whisking air into egg whites or cream to create meringues or whipped cream, lightly mixing dry ingredients in lieu of sifting.

Miscellaneous Whisk

Miscellaneous whisks have no loops. Instead, a group of individual wires comes out of the handle. Since there are no crossing wires, the Miscellaneous whisk is easier to clean than traditional looped varieties.  

Flat Whisk

It looks like a balloon that has been flattened. This orientation makes it uniquely suited to stirring in shallow pans such skillets. Owing to its harmonious nature with skillets, this whisk is an excellent choice for making a roux or various pan sauces.

Coil Whisk

Unlike other whisks, which are stirred around the bowl to aerate liquids, this type remains stationary in the bowl and is pumped up and down. Perfect for lifting sauces or thick mixtures from the bottom of a pan, especially in a deep vessel;

Ball Whisk

It allows for quicker and better aeration of the substance being whisked. The speed with which the ball whisk aerates makes it a favored choice for whipping egg whites, making for perfect meringues.  

Cage Whisk

The added muscle of that inner “cage” allows for thorough blending of thick mixtures, ensuring a smooth, silky texture. This whisk is especially popular for whipping cream, and with good reason: whipped cream was never so luxuriant as when whipped with a cage whisk.

User Interview & Problem Finding

To better observe how people use whisks, I organized a series of on-site interviews with people in their kitchens. Through the ‘User Journey’, I divided their using process into three steps (Whisking, Cleaning, and Storage). Finally, I found three main problems of the existing whisks in the market.

 

· Hard for Cleaning, especially for cream and eggwhite

· Too much whisk in kitchen (one type, various sizes)

· Take up too much space in kitchen

Direction A: Cream Shaker

Inspired by Whiskey shaker, Cream Shaker totally changes the traditional way to whip cream or egg by shaking.  The flat metal net in the middle is easier for cleaning with same or better whipping efficiency. To prove the new whipping way keeps the same or better whipping efficiency, I made a real-size mock-up to test. As a result, I just spend 3:58mins getting a whipped cream, which is much faster than traditional balloon whisk.

Direction B: “Balloon” Whisk

“Balloon” Whisk is easier for cleaning by blowing up a balloon inside metal wires to squeeze all creams and egg whites out. To test the “Balloon” Whisk, I made a mockup by adjusting a blood pressure cuff. As a result, the blown balloon indeed squeeze creams out from whisk wires. But the complicated structure is much harder to clean even than traditional whisks, which pushed me to come up with some solutions in the refinement period.

Prototype Test

Refinement Sketch

Refinement Sketch

Final Rendering