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  • Shaelyn Leung


I started my Capstone Project Research on designing a furniture system for small spaces, this has now transitioned into redesigning a baby highchair targeted towards millennials that can be easily integrated into the sharing economy but still follows the same principles of affordability, high design, and small spaces. This transition occurred from the problem of millennials choosing not to have kids was a frequent issue that came up in many housing market, millennials financial struggles, and small space articles.

There are many more factors and reasons why millennials are not having kids but these are some of the main ones and more logical ones that have been evident through my research. These are just the main ones that I want to focus on and that will impact my design. After speaking with some experts with the research I currently have, I have been challenged to research more and not only blame these problems. My product will not solve every problem

but will create a system that is affordable and support millennials who want to have kids. Of course, I cannot change the minds of people who for sure do not want kids. Although, this highchair design will focus on the big issues and current problems that millennials face which are being limited to living in small spaces, financial stability is harder to achieve, and social pressure to want to raise a child with the best.

It is highly evident that small spaces limit the growth of families, either it

being restricted to 1 to 2 bedrooms or having under 1,000 square feet to live

in. The new housing developments in Toronto are continuing to build more 1

bedroom condos than 3 plus bedroom condos. The small spaces can help

support the choice to not have kids as it is harder for millennials to buy a

bigger place in Toronto that can allow them to grow their family with ease.

The housing market in Toronto makes it increasingly harder for millennials to afford to own a house due to rapidly competitive and increasing house prices. Likewise, millennials job salaries do not match up to the housing market, making it even harder for them to achieve financial stability and own a house. This makes the choice easier for millennials to opt out of

having kids because of financial and economic issues. Affordability when raising a baby it is very important since there are a lot of expenses that are required for the child.

The millennials lifestyle will highly impact this design of being minimal, modern and function-focused. The design has to be easily adaptable to their living space. From my research, the lifestyle of Minimalism is on the rise. This shows how people are not keeping things that they do not need any more or that brings them joy. And that they are limiting themselves to how much products they consume. This is important for my highchair design since after the baby grows out of using the highchair, it will be passed on or thrown away.

Millennials are more environmentally aware and have been choosing not to have kids because of climate change and the effects of over population. Therefore, my product will focus on extending its lifecycle and not just being thrown into a landfill in the end. It will consist of research on materials that are less impactful on degrading the Earth.

In the end, the research will help me back up how these variables affect the problem of millennials choosing not to have kids. It is a real current issue that can be hurtful for the future of population growth and society. I will use these main problems as key part of my design and ensure that they are kept in mind with any decisions I have to make on my design.

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