The search for individualism : Self-expression through product personalisation

Grant, Kathryn E., Straker, Karla, Muller, Celeste, & Wrigley, Cara (2013) The search for individualism : Self-expression through product personalisation. The International Journal of Designed Objects, 6(1), pp. 17-29.

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This research paper explores the impact product personalisation has upon product attachment and aims to develop a deeper understanding of why, how and if consumers choose to do so. The current research in this field is mainly based on attachment theories and is predominantly product specific. This paper researches the link between product attachment and personalisation through in-depth, semi-structured interviews, where the data has been thematically analysed and broken down into three themes, and nine sub-themes. It was found that participants did become more attached to products once they were personalised and the reasons why this occurred varied. The most common reasons that led to personalisation were functionality and usability, the expression of personality through a product and the complexity of personalisation. The reasons why participants felt connected to their products included strong emotions/memories, the amount of time and effort invested into the personalisation, a sense of achievement. Reasons behind the desire for personalisation included co-designing, expression of uniqueness/individualism and having choice for personalisation. Through theme and inter-theme relationships, many correlations were formed, which created the basis for design recommendations. These recommendations demonstrate how a designer could implement the emotions and reasoning for personalisation into the design process.

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ID Code: 57326
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Product Design, Product Personalisation, User Individualism
ISSN: 2325-1395 (online) 2325-1379 (print)
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > DESIGN PRACTICE AND MANAGEMENT (120300) > Design Innovation (120302)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: © 2013 (individual papers), the author(s)
© 2013 (selection and editorial matter) Common Ground
Copyright Statement: All rights reserved. Apart from fair dealing for the purposes of study, research, criticism or review as permitted under
the applicable copyright legislation, no part of this work may be reproduced by any process without written
permission from the publisher. For permissions and other inquiries, please contact <>.
Deposited On: 17 Feb 2013 23:34
Last Modified: 09 Mar 2017 22:52

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