Emilee Novak Project Portfolio

Aesthetics in Design Course

Throughout my projects for this Aesthetics in Design course, I utilized my current skills and also learned new ones. I was able to reach out of my comfort zone and also learn a lot about aesthetics. I learned that engineering is not only about the functionality and efficiency of a product, but also about considering the aesthetics, beauty, and look which can increase the experience with a product. This class taught me that there are so many different aesthetics that I can incorporate into my everyday life and also future designs. I think I overall reached out of my comfort zone and met my intended aesthetic for my Upcycle Project and Main Project. I am happy with my outcome and proud of the projects I created in this class.

Upcycle Project – Cottagecore Patchwork Jeans


For my upcycle project, I went for an aesthetic that I was familiar with, cottagecore. I felt like this aesthetic captured my overall vibe and what I envisioned for my project. I upcycled a pair of old jeans that I do not wear anymore and use various fabrics to sew patchwork designs on it. I created a stencil of an indie flower shape and cut out various sizes of different patterned fabric I found at the craft store. I then used a sewing machine and also hand sewing to do the patchwork as well as adding a few crochet details. I have crocheted and sewn many projects in the past as a hobby so it was a useful project to upcycle clothing and make a new use for it. Overall, this project taught me how to repurpose clothes and fabric instead of giving/throwing away these items when they are not being used, and it also taught me how to reach out of my comfort zone and deal with the challenges that come with that.

Project links:

Upcycle Aesthetic

Upcycle Progress

Opposite Upcycle Aesthetic

Upcycle Design Report

Main Project – Organic Modern Mirror


For my main project, I chose to focus on getting out of my comfort zone. I decided to do a different aesthetic than my upcycle project which was cottagecore, and I chose the organic modern aesthetic. I did research on the aesthetic and I found it to be very useful in interior design. It also fit what I had in mind for my final project. I wanted to create an interior design mirror that acted as a piece of furniture that can be used but also as a design piece that is unique. I could have gone down the route of creating a more abstract and colorful frame for the mirror but I chose to keep it in the organic modern neutral color scheme in hopes that it will be able to fit many different environments and places I may live in the future. I made a wavy framed mirror with foggy acrylic and a warm natural light feature. I felt like this project was a great way to get out of my comfort zone and use different fabrication techniques while also creating something I can use in the future.

Before this project, I had never made anything this large of a scale before which required a lot of woodshop fabrication. I just recently learned how to use the laser cutter because of other classes I was taking alongside this one but none of those projects were the large scale that I was going for. Creating a frame for a mirror taught me many new skills that I would have never taken the time to learn otherwise. For this project, I learned how to create organic shaped lines for the wavy frame by hand drawing the design on my iPad and importing the design into my CAD software. I also learned how to use the table saw to cut the majority of the other remaining materials. I had to be able to adapt to changes when discovering the size of the laser cutter and work around new dimensions. I also learned how to cut and solder led light strips as well as cut a mirror. Overall, I learned how to work my way through a new medium. I am proud of my final product and learned that I am capable of creating larger scaled pieces of furniture that I will use in the future.

Project Links:

Main Plans

Main Aesthetic

Main Design Preview

Main Specifications/Constraints

Main Progress

Main Final Report Pt. 1

Main Final Report Pt. 2

Overall, I really enjoyed taking this class and the assignments that were provided. I am a super creative and artistic person so I enjoyed being able to create different projects and learn more about aesthetics. I really enjoyed my final design for both of the projects in this class and I am taking away many new skills and techniques. Both the patchwork jeans and wavy mirror will be admired and used for a long time to come. I feel as though I learned many valuable skills during this class that I hopefully can utilize in the future. I am glad I took this class and enjoyed every aspect of it, even though I was online it did not limit my abilities to create something amazing.

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