<trp-post-container data-trp-post-id='27727'>De the function à use à through the time

You may have recently discovered this immense "gift package set up in the Place de l'Hôtel de Ville - from 1 to 6 November - wrapping an exhibition of "Furoshiki.

The term refers to a traditional Japanese fabric-wrapping technique used to transport clothes, gifts and other objects.

More or less a vast square of fabric, the Furoshiki dates back to the VIIIth century - in the Nara era - when it was used in the bath, either to wrap up clothes to avoid getting them wet, or even as a blanket on which to sit, the term originally meaning "blanket". "spread in the bath.

Then bath sheet and garment bag, the Furoshiki has evolved into a kind of suitcase for carrying a wide variety of objects - not just clothes - and a whole art of folding has developed to optimise packaging and make carrying easier.

Today, the Furoshiki is once again being transformed into both a fashion object and an eco-friendly shopping bag: a fashion object, sold as scarves in the nearby Uniqlo shop; an eco-friendly shopping bag, promoted by the exhibition organisers as a worthy replacement for our usual plastic bags.

Mutation, disruption... or how an everyday object that has lasted for centuries is now being reinvented as a trendy product: and some lessons to be learnt in terms of innovation.

LYou take a bath sheet and use it to carry your clothes, then your groceries to the market, then to wrap gifts, as a scarf, etc. It's an innovation that changes its purpose.

You take a mobile phone and turn it into a digital music player, organiser, camera, pocket computer and so on.

You can also use the method to lead creative groups by asking participants to imagine all the things they could do with an everyday object, what functions, even baroque ones, they would like to add, and so on.

You can observe how people use the same objects in their homes, how they divert them from their normal function.

But the main lesson to be learned from FuroshikiThis is because a product does not exist in itself for its physical characteristics, but for the use to which it is put, and that the same object can be transformed into different products depending on the different uses to which it is put.

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