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Designing Wanderlust

How and why we designed the Traveller's Collection

Chapter 1 - Inspiration

To want what we can’t have is natural. To look across a field knowing you can’t cross it is not. Over a year of lockdown has filled us all with what our inaccessible German neighbours call 'fernweh,' or an ache for the far away - awaysickness - sometimes translated as wanderlust, which doesn’t quite capture the pain.

We’re explorers. No matter how firmly we plant our roots in one place, there’s always that voice calling us to adventure. That’s why we travel. And that voice is what inspired the Trendhim team to design the Traveller’s Collection.

Chapter 2 - Pen and Paper

As travellers, we set out to design items that speak to the wanderer aching for the freedom to explore. We grabbed our pencils and sketchbooks and got to work.

The most iconic symbols of travel are the compass and map, and the round nature of these allowed for some interesting combinations and complementary designs.

“Free as a bird,” the expression goes, capturing the essence of the traveller’s spirit. The Trendhim team designed the wing pendant to represent this yearning for freedom. Many others are in the works, all inspired by our nomadic heritage and pent-up desire to experience the world.

Chapter 3 - The 3rd Dimension

Once the paper designs are complete, the Trendhim team moves them into 3D. Sometimes, what looks awe-inspiring on a sketch simply doesn’t work in 3D. And if it doesn’t work in 3D, chances are it won’t work on you. Some designs we scrap, but the survivors are made stronger.

Models ready, we 3D print the elements for closer inspection. Again, what works in 3D doesn’t always work in real life. This process allows us to identify weak links and imprecise details or design flaws. For instance, when we printed the elements for one of our bracelets, we found that the toggle clasp was too small.

Identifying these issues through an incremental design approach prevents them from ending up in your package.

Chapter 4 - Reality Check

Samples from our supplier can look different from the 3D printed designs. The metallic shine can drown out details or highlight imperfections. This is another iterative process, and we often go through multiple samples before we get every detail right.

We’re now focused on the durability of the steel and its plating, making sure it’s ready for the lifestyle of an active man re-released into the world. Stress-testing links to ensure they withstand anything you throw at them and abrasion-testing the coating, so you never have to take it off before jumping in the water.

Chapter 5 - Sooth that Fernweh

When the Arkai Traveller’s Collection goes live, it’ll be ready for adventure. Will you?

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