Incase Step Light

Guiding you through the dark

The Problems
My goal was to solve the issue of waking up in the middle of the night to use the restroom and having to turn on the lights, making it harder to fall back to sleep. I wanted to design an object that would guide you through the dark with soft light, making it easier to fall back to sleep. 
Design Inspiration
Incase conveys a sleek design with simplicity. I focused on their laptop sleeves with round corners, leather edging, and neutral-toned grays and blacks.
Ideation
Through sketches, I explored the idea of lights that followed you and guided your pathway, which led me to the idea of lights in a carpet.
For the second round of sketches, I explored different ways the light could shine. I designed carpet squares so that the carpet could fit in other spaces. I also kept in mind the battery placement and how it could be charged. Finally, I realized that I could make the carpet three sizes to fit in the bathroom, bedroom, and hallway. 
Mock Ups
Through mock-ups, I was able to see what forms and carpet ideas would work and feel comfortable.
Light Testing
Light testing helped me to see what kind of light would work best inside a carpet and how bright they could shine if they were under a material. I tested LED lights most of the time, but the comfort of stepping on them was a struggle.
Carpet Research
I realized my designs evolved around cloth materials. I wanted a carpet that looked authentic. I went to Home Depot to look at the carpets to see how they felt and were made. I also went to our school's material library and saw how to incorporate fiber optics into a carpet.
Research
1. Fiber Optics: Transparent plastic wire that can transmit light. When a light is placed at one end, the light can shine through the fiber optics. 
2. Energy Harvesting: Piezoelectric crystals are circles that, when stepped on, can send a charge to a battery that can eventually charge a full battery.
3. Wireless Charging: Charges with a loop of coiled wires around a bar magnet. When an electric current passes through the coiled wire, it creates an electromagnetic field around the magnet, which can be used to transfer a voltage or charge.
Detail Exploration
I reexamined incase products and explored edging and carpet patterns that they use in their products. I also sketched out different light patterns that could be used in the carpet.
Final Light Testing
I wove fiber optics on a mini loom to test the carpet materials and fiber optics to understand how I wanted the final design. I also explored plush carpets with fiber optics, but walking on them was uncomfortable. 

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Final Design
The carpet comes in three sizes for your bathroom, bedroom, and hallway.
What's Inside
The carpet has woven fiber optics with LED lights at each end. The lights connect to piezoelectric crystals that charge a battery on your footsteps
How it works
App Details ​​​​​​​
The Incase Step Light app helps users manage light brightness, color change when the carpet can turn on, how sensitive the motion sensor can be and when to recharge it. 
In Use 

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