I grew up in church with the understanding (or better yet, enough understanding exhibited by a 12-year-old girl) that my body was a temple. I would practice my posture in dance class, slather on sunscreen during swim meets and always, always ate my veggies. Yet somewhere along the way, the temple’s architectural lines blurred a bit. Soda and Sun-In and sloth-like Saturday afternoons infiltrated my temple like an army of indulgence. And just like that, my temple became overrun with bad habits, all in the name of good fun.
British designer Sarah Reader’s swimwear brand Project 104 explores this relationship between our body and choices in its debut collection, “My Body, My Shrine.” Limited edition swimsuits depicting addictive lifestyles are displayed in the midst of artifacts associated with each, from candy-coated gluttony to poker-chipped greed. And the suits are lovely, yes. But the challenge is even more so.
I simply cannot get enough of creative lookbooks and products and portfolios that encourage us to consider the why behind the what. That force us to think beyond our daily routines and deadlines and habits to dig deeper, seeking to understand a bit more about what makes us human, flawed and beautiful. And while this particular lookbook is making me regret the bag of Skittles I inhaled last night, I love that it’s making me think and reflect. I love that it’s making me feel.
After all, that’s what design should do, right? It should build foundations and concepts, uniting and establishing connections, like the very brick and mortar which holds our temples together. And today, it’s a temple I celebrate. (Also, I vow to throw away the Skittles. Perhaps tomorrow?)
Image Credits: Project 104
p.s. Why design matters.