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FLO STANDING AND WALKING AID

Ilsa developed this idea for a “biomorphic” body lever that could assist with support for standing and walking. Entitled "Flo", the idea was conceived whilst participating in the BBC programme “Design for Life with Philippe Starck”, a reality documentary which saw Ilsa beat off twelve other designers to secure work in Paris by designing a product which could "help humanity to survive". The item aims to provide dignity for those with weak lower body strength in elevating from seated to standing position unaided and in an elegant way without feeling the burden of the stigmas attached to traditional medical and geriatric equipment. This multifunctional "Salvador Dali" sitck can later be used as a cane like support when travelling.

Upon return from Paris, "Flo" was developed from foam model stage to a finished item. Ilsa collaborated with Unilever, Liverpool John Moores University and Manchester Metropolitan Universitie's engineering department with financial assistance from the NWDA to further develop the form and structure ready for testing. Following a range of prototypes in several possible materials, the final form was 3D scanned, stress tested to determine ultimate load bearing ability and modified to comply with specification. 


The finished prototype was 3D printed, from which a fibreglass mould was made. This mould, could then be used to produce replica models, wet lay up in carbon fibre, to bear the desired load, without compromising on the overall elegance of the form. The item is currently available made to order in one size and several cololurs. We plan to seek further investment to reduce production cost using methods recommended by Ilsas research. The product has won several awards and is patent protected in the US and UK.


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