Southwest Airline Snack Pack Prototyping

About: Hello, I am a graduate student studying for a dual MBA/MA between Johns Hopkins and Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). I work in illustration, photography, fashion and business, a wide variety of tal...

A project for the join degree MA/MBA in Design Leadership between MICA and Johns Hopkins.

The airline industry is riddled with opportunities to do something great. This prototype is the first step in that process. I set out to reduce landfill waste and this is the solution I came up with. The plan is to make this vessel into a reusable container, one that can be washed and have a much longer life than the plastic cups we currently see on flights. This is a design for Southwest Airlines, but could ultimately be implemented across the many various national and international flight industry leaders.

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Step 1: Prep

Cut material into size needed, I glued mine together with rubber cement and it held throughout. Remember to let the glue dry, make sure it is weighed down and leave it overnight.

Step 2: Make Your Marks

Make sure your marks are clear as they will be your guide going forward.

Step 3: Get Cutting

I didn't have any specialty cutting materials for this project, a bread knife worked out, given a little ache in my hand. This method is not recommended after having completed the project, my youthful sprightly hands took a hit on this one.

Step 4: Laugh Over the Materials You Have Slain

This step is not necessary, but based on the pain mentioned in the previous step, might be appropriate.

Step 5: Use Other Kitchen Materials

So, as I said, I don't have any specialty items, instead I used this grater in place of a rasp to smooth down the cardboard. This created great transitions on the surface of the material to make sure that the later steps would sit evenly on the prototype.

Step 6: Start Assembling

Start putting your pieces together! Now we are making things happen.
This is the first step where I noticed that things were really coming together. Moving the unifying support to the middle of the structure worked out to be a better application than the other places I had originally had it, allowing for a better user experience.

Step 7: Add the Graphics

Here I did some outside work on the packaging design, not advised, children.
So this is my first time prototyping such an item, creating the skin was very fun and I would love to continue it to the other major airlines, a great application in tying to implement branding on a commercial product, something very new to me.

Step 8: Bask in the Glory

Well, sorry about all of that folks, the adventure is complete!
Feel free to ask questions, but like, not difficult ones, haha.
Hope you enjoyed my project and I am excited to create more!

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    5 Discussions


    4 years ago

    What does "SWA" stand for?

    This looks interesting, but I'm curious what it is a prototype for.

    4 replies

    Reply 4 years ago

    It says Southwest on one side so I'm assuming SWA stands for South West Airlines. It might be be a prototype for some sort of snack pack.


    Reply 4 years ago

    True on both accounts, thank you for commenting in my absence, I appreciate it!


    Reply 4 years ago

    Ah, good eye. I didn't make the connection, but that makes sense!


    Reply 4 years ago

    SWA stands for Southwest Airlines, sorry about not being clear!