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HIER X Bruxelles Environnement

Improving watch bracelets for Belexpo

8 April 2020
Work in progress
Work in progress© HIER

MAD Incubator's resident studio HIER did a collaboration with Bruxelles Environnment to rethink and produce the watch bracelets of the exhibition BELEXPO.

Let's discover this new design! 

About the context 
Belexpo is an exhibition, by Bruxelles Environnement, about the environment, the city and the climate. It is mainly addressed to children from 10 to 14 years old.
This exhibition is highly interactive, very successful, and thus challenged and worn by its many mini-visitors.
For an ultimate experience of the exhibition, the visitors are given a watch to go over their wrists and that activates the many challenges of the exhibition. The watch allows the interaction between the visitors and the elements of the exhibition and is a crucial tool for Belexpo. 

Bruxelles Environnement has witnessed a rapid degeneration of the bracelets holding the watches and could not access space parts to replace them with. Not that the replacement would have been smooth anyway. HIER has been asked to look into this problem, analyse it, and research to find a solution that listens to the needs of both the user and the staff handling the product everyday. 
The brief is to develop new bracelets for the watches of Belexpo.

"We chose to concentrate the production in Brussels, to make sure that the products are easily reproduced or repaired without any need for costly maintenance equipment."


Watch used in the exhibition Belexpo (the context)

Product specifications

  • Adjustable
  • Easily fixed around the wrist
  • Respects hygiene conditions/ easily cleanable
  • Sustainable, long lasting, and easily replaceable

Work in Progress

HIER has put together a product in progress that is manufactured in Brussels, partially by HIER, and partially by its recurrent collaborator, L’Ouvroir. 

L’Ouvroir is an association located in the heart of Brussels. It is an initiative carried by people with disabilities wanting to be engaged and participate in their society. Together, despite their disabilities, they built a workshop where they undertake varied manual/productive activities.
They are producing the fabric part of the bracelet while we are modelling and 3D printing the details adapting to the existing watch and holding together the fabric bracelet. 

For the fabric part of the bracelet, HIER choses Nylon. A recyclable strong plastic, resistant, and cleanable by machine. HIER has designed the 3D printed details in a way that allows the team to easily remove the nylon bracelet and clean it in a washing machine. This nylon bracelet has a Velcro sewn on it by l’Ouvroir making the bracelet easily fixable around the wrist of both an adult and a child; the velcro making the whole adjustable. 

For the 3D printed parts, HIER has chosen to work with PLA which later becomes an industrial compost, recyclable. HIER has printed these parts in 5 different colours to facilitate recognising the charged watches from others. Those 3D printed parts are easily mountable and replaceable, making their maintenance smooth.

The design is adaptable, adjustable, and efficient. HIER choses to concentrate the production in Brussels, to make sure that the products are easily reproduced or repaired without any need for costly maintenance equipment.

HIER has listened to the needs of our client, Bruxelles Environnement, worked on different options, together with them and l’Ouvroir, to come up with this version of the product in process; the fruit of this triangular collaboration!

Process 1  © HIER
Process 2  © HIER
Process 3  © HIER
Process 4  © HIER
Process 5  © HIER
Process 6  © HIER
Test back   © HIER
test front  © HIER