Our client was fortunate enough to receive funding for further work with the MAS -Product Development Center. As a consultancy we wanted to broaden the scope for the commercial case, to give the project and brand a wider market presence. For this reason we encouraged the brief to evolve into development of a Knife, Fork & Spoon Set. From the first contact with the sample group of children it was evident that children do not have the wrist strength, due to the cartilage structure being underdeveloped and impossible of translating large loads, for this reason we looked to reduce the mechanical dis-advantage of most knives and moved handle over the top of the work piece. Critical to the specification was researching the correct materials, including soft touch materials that pose the least risk of leaching endocrine distributors sometimes present in some elastomeric materials. We even retro tested a leading brands product which claimed to be BPA free, we found this sample failed the specified test. So our plastics specification lead us into an exploring what TPV, TPE and TPO options existed internationally, due to dish washer heat cycles and fatty food migration this had to be the best material of choice to allow our twin shot overmoulding of the handle which itself was insert molded over the Stainless Steel Cutlery head / Blade.
Phelps Innovation approached us with a simple idea, to develop one of the worlds leading research led Ergonomic Cutlery Items for Kids. They knew what the problem was, so many kids were struggling through mealtimes sometimes measured by tears and the amount of food on the floor. What they observed was that even kids as old as 4 could still be struggling. We set out to solve the design challenge and commercial opportunity to make what is now the award winning Doddl available at John Lewis.