Jiyeon Chun, a junior at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Design studying Product Design and Human Computer Interaction (BDes ’24), spent this past summer interning with Petit Pli, a London-based material technology company, as they opened a flagship store at Battersea Power Station. You may have heard of Petit Pli’s best known creation to date, “Clothes that Grow,” which are garments that grow with children for up to seven sizes.
The idea for “Clothes that Grow” was inspired by the birth of founder Ryan Mario Yasin’s nephew, who rapidly outgrew his infant clothing. Using his background in aeronautical engineering and deployable satellite technology, Yasin launched Petit Pli and effectively started a “sustainable Childrensware revolution.” Since then, the company won multiple awards including the James Dyson Award, the H&M Global Change Award, and the Red Dot Award.” Most recently, Petit Pli’s MSK reusable face covering was named one of the “100 Best Inventions of 2020" by Time.
The previously online-only brand recently opened its first physical retail store in the historical Battersea Power Station. The store, designed alongside Landini Associates, is set up to feel like "a moon landing without having to step off Earth."
Over the summer, Jiyeon worked remotely with the design team in London to create branded objects and packaging, as well as to develop concepts for the store service and shopping experience through research, prototyping, graphic design, and illustration. More specifically, she designed paper and gift bags for purchases, a customizable canvas tote bag, stickers and embroidered patches to go on them, and more.
“It was really exciting to collaborate with such a tight-knit group of innovators and to be able to work so closely on something that would actually make it into the ‘real world’— sit on real shelves and circulate a store and city in real peoples' hands,” said Jiyeon. “I learned a lot about how to take a product from concept to maturation in making decisions at every stage that stay true to their company ethos in order to tell a compelling brand story through a tangible experience."
Banner image courtesy of Landini Associates & Andrew Meredith