Design Trust Launches “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” Initiative to Inspire

4. 9. 2020

Design Trust, a grant funding and community platform established by the Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design, announces “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade”, a micro-initiative conceptualised by Marisa Yiu (Co-Founder / Executive Director of Design Trust). “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” was born to inspire collaboration within the design community in Hong Kong and beyond during the pandemic and to offer solutions to pressing social and environmental needs through creative means and critical making. Through the creation of innovative homemade prototypes, the initiative hopes to benefit the wider community at large and to build resilience and sustainability for our future.

“DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” was born out of a survey within the Design Trust community and collaborators beyond the registered charity. The initiative invited Design Trust grantees, fellows, advisors, Design Trust Futures Studio (DTFS) mentors and mentees, as well as its extended local and international community, to create and prototype an object (sized 20 x 20 x 20cm max) at home that responds to and offers solutions to current societal and environmental challenges. Designers were allotted three weeks each to create their object and were encouraged to collaborate and design for a wide-ranging audience. 

“The desire to make things with our hands is universal and a significant human expression,” explains Marisa Yiu, Co-Founder / Executive Director of Design Trust and Lead Curator of the programme. “While some handicrafts are means of survival, making objects with our hands serves as a creative release. Restricted by the necessary social distancing during an unprecedented pandemic, many designers have expressed a need to connect, collaborate and create. It’s been months of questioning, thinking, and understanding our city, and the role our NGO can, in a small way, activate positivity to go beyond the current situation, add some levity; yet, be creative under constraints for our collective wellbeing. As a perpetual optimist, I believe design can enact positive change, this organic platform has accelerated these recent weeks, during the third wave lockdown, and showcases the humbling power of the community to come together to support each other”

“DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” will grow into a wider community exhibition and fundraising programme. An exhibition launch to showcase the prototypes will be held at Soho House’s House Studio in September where all the creative works will be on display. Following the exhibition, a vetting procedure will determine which prototypes are developed into final products and selected to take part in a series of micro-community fundraiser programmes. These final objects will be part of a community fundraising programme of designer items and one-of-a-kind experiences. All proceeds will go towards the ongoing funding of Design Trust seed grants in relation to the COVID-19 challenges and provide immediate support to social/design programmes that will benefit the wider community.

“DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” brings out the best of Hong Kong design

So far, “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” has 70+ designer participants from the creative community of Hong Kong and beyond crafting objects responding to the curatorial brief. Discover an incredibly imaginative and diverse range of innovative homemade solutions spanning antibacterial door handles to performing arts self-care kits, all created through the collaborative efforts of local and international design talents including mentors, mentees, grantees and friends of Design Trust.

Representing a diverse cross-section of Hong Kong’s design community,  “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” involves established designers to young creatives: DTFS mentor Michael Young, Seed grantees and mentees Florian Wegenast & Christine Lew, as well as friends of Design Trust such as UUendy Lau and prominent artists Peter Yuill and feng shui designer Thierry Chow to design veteran such as Alan Chan, Douglas Young, anothermountainman (Stanley Wong) and sustainability design advocate Johanna Ho.

International contributions to “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade”

The international design community has also made critical contributions to “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade”. New York-based architecture firm Solid Objectives - Idenburg Liu (SO-IL) have created bars of soap, made by repurposing model moulds of the architecture studio’s archive.

Designers from cities around the world have also made their mark on “DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” - Clara Brito and Margarida Jardim (Macau/Portugal), Savinee Buranasilapin (Bangkok, Thailand), Hugh Davies (Melbourne, Australia), Yanki Lee in collaboration with Pascal Anson (London, UK), Maria Roszkowska and Nicolas Maigret (Paris, France), Adam Hudec (Germany), Alyina Ahmed (UK/UAE), Aurélien Barbry (New York, USA), Evelyn Teploff-Mugii (Kanazawa, Japan), People’s Architecture Office (Beijing, China) and Raphaël Monnier (Yangon, Myanmar) showcase the breadth of talent involved in the initiative.

Since its founding in 2014, Design Trust has built a tight-knit community of creative individuals across all genders and collectives focusing on research. Through this micro-initiative Design Trust hopes to bring its inspirational community together to benefit the wider public. To support the community, Design Trust provides flexible and responsive funding for creative projects and research initiatives that positively impact Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area region and internationally. Through this micro-initiative, Design Trust hopes to encourage giving back to the community in ways that allow for connection amongst the global crisis. The programme’s next phase is powered by a generous patron community and brand ambassadors such as kapok, ZS Hospitality Group, Chinachem, WOMANBOSS and COLOURLIVING, to help realise the prototypes into a late Fall/Winter showcase.

For more information please visit our Design Trust: Critically Homemade homepage here.

“DESIGN TRUST: Critically Homemade” Prototype Exhibition at Soho House Hong Kong

Location: House Studio, Soho House Hong Kong, 33 Des Voeux Road West, Sheung Wan

Exhibition Hours: Mon 21 September – Sun 4 October 2020: Daily 12pm – 7pm

The exhibition is free of charge. Prior registration is required, please RSVP here

*To ensure the health and well-being of our staff and guests, we will take the following safety precautions:
Guests may be asked to wait outside to prevent overcrowding.
Visitors will be asked to fill in health declaration form and wear a mask throughout the event.
We kindly ask those who have traveled within the past 14 days to refrain from joining the event


Lead Organiser

Design Trust

Design Trust Champions

Kapok, ZS Hospitality Group, Chinachem Group, WOMANBOSS, COLOURLIVING, VSFG

Design Trust Leaders 2020 

Joyce Tam, Stephen Cheng, David Au, Tai Ping, Kamsen Lau, William Lim, Michael Ling, Jennifer C. Liu, Merlin Swire, Selina Kong

Design Trust Influencers 2020 

Evan Chow, Stefan Rihs, Inna Highfield, Geoffrey Chuang, Ivan Pun, Yenn Wong, Angela Chow, Justin Ng, Aron Harilela, Jackson Chow, Jo Soo Tang

Exhibition Venue Partner

Soho House Hong Kong

International Media Partner


Social Enterprise Collaborator

Cookie Smiles

Design Trust would like to other individuals who are making this platform possible:

Alan Lo, Marisa Yiu, Ivan Pun, Denise Lau, Gabriela Kenndey,  Alfred Lam, David Au, Desiree Au, Geoffrey Chuang, Inna Rodchenko-Highfield, Jason Basmajian, Jonathan Cheung, Joyce Tam, Nathan Clements-Gillespie, Sean Fitzpatrick, Shera Law, Stefan Rihs, Aric Chen, Eva Franch, Keith Tam, Lars Nittve, Marc Cansier, Shin Wong, William To, Zoë Ryan, Robert Cheng, Bastian Wong, Aaron Lau and Arthur Kuipers

Participating Designers:

James Shen, Zang Feng, He Zhe, Anouchka van Driel, Olivia Chen (Beijing), Michael Young (Hong Kong), Florian Wegenast, Christine Lew (Hong Kong), Adonian Chan (Hong Kong), Elaine Yan Ling Ng (Hong Kong), Jesse Mc Lin, Julie Progin (Hong Kong), Clara Brito, Margarida Jardim (Zhuhai/Macau/Lisbon), Soilworm Lai, Vanissa Law (Hong Kong), Xavier Tsang (Hong Kong), Stephen Zimmerer (Pennsylvania), Manuel Corriea da Silva, Luanha Tavares de Almeidae (Macau), Natasza Minasiewicz (Hong Kong), Cyril Lee (Hong Kong), Yelta Kom, Elif Cak Kom (Berlin/Istanbul), Yanki Lee (Hong Kong), Pascal Anson (London), Maria Roszkowska, Nicolas Maigret, Pauline Briand, Julien Maudet, Clemence Seurat(Paris), Joel Austin, Kwan Q Li (Hong Kong), Diego Caro (Hong Kong), Rony Chan, Ire Tsui (Hong Kong), Andrea Palmioli (Hong Kong), JJ Acuna (Hong Kong), Ole Bouman (Shenzhen/Amsterdam), Adam Hudec (Vienna/ Hong Kong), Alfred Lam (Hong Kong), Alyina Ahmed (Dubai/London), Aron Tsang, Hera Lui (Hong Kong), Aurelien Barbry (New York City), Christopher Choi, Esther Fung, Ian Tam, Keith Hui (Hong Kong), Douglas Young (Hong Kong), Evelyn Ting, Paul Tse (Hong Kong), Evelyn Teploff-Mugii (Kanazawa), Frédéric Gooris & Paulina Chu (Hong Kong), Jing Liu, Emma Silverblatt, Yuanjun Summer Liu, Astrid Steegmans (New York City), Johanna Ho (Hong Kong), Joshua Ng (Hong Kong), Kaliz Lee (Hong Kong), Kevin Mak, Ken Fung, Lee Kin Ming (Hong Kong), Kevin Siu, Shuyan Chan, Bob Pang (Hong Kong), Lijun Guo (Beijing), Nelson Chow (Hong Kong), Otto Ng, Yip Chun Hang (Hong Kong), UUendy Lau (Hong Kong), Michael Leung (Hong Kong), Kristof Crolla, Yip Fai Martin Lau, Ling Sum Evangeline So (Hong Kong), Alan Chan (Hong Kong), Charles Lai (Hong Kong), Derek Lee, Geeio Yuen (Hong Kong), Donn Holohan, Elspeth Lee (Hong Kong), Fiona Lau (Shanghai), Frank Chou (Shanghai), Li Fu (Shenzhen, Beijing, Los Angeles), Hugh Davies, Yoko Nakazawa, Joyce Cheng , Nikki Lam (Melbourne), Jason Chan (Hong Kong), Peter Yuill, Thierry Chow (Hong Kong), Jonathan Mak (Hong Kong), Savinee Buranasilapin (Bangkok), Maggie Ma, Mark Kingsley, Kelvin Chan, Luka Ng, Elsie Kan (Hong Kong), Fung Ming Chip (Hong Kong), Raphaël Monnier (Yangon), Kacey Wong (Hong Kong), Ron Wan, Mildred Cheung (Hong Kong), Sarah Lee, Yutaka Yano (Hong Kong), Deborah Lam, Une Szeto, Kay Chan (Hong Kong), Nikolas Ettel, Lidia Ratoi, Annie Lye (Hong Kong), Troy Conrad Therrien, Violette Van Pary (Paris/New York City), Polly Ho (Hong Kong) Zoe Siu (Hong Kong), Ming Shan Connie Yuen (Hong Kong), Ida Kwei (Hong Kong), Betty Ng, Chi Yan Chan, Jay Lee, Juan Minguez, Katja Lam (Hong Kong), Henry Chu (Hong Kong), Stanley Wong (Hong Kong), Sam Jacob (London, Chicago), Movana Chen (Hong Kong), Toby Law (Hong Kong)

Prototype Exhibition, Event Management & Curatorial Team
Marisa Yiu (Lead Curator/ Creative Direction), Joyce Li (Assistant Director, Programmes, Media & Events), Cindy Tai (Manager, Production); Naomi Altman (Curatorial Support; Editorial); Melissa Kong (Event Support), Rosalia Leung (Exhibition Design Co-ordination)


Design Trust was established in 2014 by Hong Kong Ambassadors of Design, a registered charity in Hong Kong since 2007, as a grant funding platform and community. Design Trust supports creative projects that develop expertise, build research initiatives and content related to Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area. Working across a multiplicity of design disciplines from graphics, media, architecture to the built environment, Design Trust aims to actively accelerate creative research, design and development of meaningful projects that advocate for the positive role of design.