The Design of the CURVD mug

The Design of the CURVD mug

The thought behind the design of the mug was to stay as close as possible to the popular gift shop mugs, the same classic white mugs you find at every diner. If the look of the mug is anything too far from “the average”, it will be recognized as a special mug, or just for the disabled. 

While we tried keeping the overall look familiar and recognizable, we wanted a new, modern, minimal design to improve the. current gift shop mugs to encourage businesses to change their view of customizable mugs for their marketing.

We identified common mistakes in the design of the majority of mugs in the market. We tested numerous mugs from well-known brands, those that are designed for people with Parkinson, and those who offer great aesthetics. 


It’s Not Art, It’s Science.

Here we briefly explained the science behind the design of the mug and what design choices have made the CURVD mug fit all hands regardless of their shapes or capabilities:

The angle serves two purposes:

1- Natural grip for every hand is at a certain angle, we optimized that based on testing with 200+ users.

2- That tapered design allows those with partial limbs to hold the mug with ease.

The wide handle helps with holding the mug from slipping inside the hand. 

The firm grip inside the fingers holds the mug from rotating sideways. It also allows the mug to rest on the hand of those with lower dexterity.

The smooth profile of the handle helps with a soft touch, comfortable grip, and enjoyable drinking experience.

The wide opening makes it easy for women’s hand to slide in and to transfer the weight to the muscles rather than finger joints. 

The smooth top and bottom ensure no pinching for those who like to slide their fingers inside. 

The smooth bottom creates a friendlier experience while giving the mug on your desk an elevated look.

Design Innovation:

Until now, those with upper limb differences, arthritis, Parkinson or hidden disabilities could not do something as simple as dine out in restaurants due to the lack of accessibility seen in common dinnerware. The focus of design was the shape of the handle. It was created by considering all hand and upper limb shapes. Ergonomic curvature at the bottom and top of the inside of the handle provides a tight grip for those with partial upper limbs. The wide handle provides the best grip for a typical hand shape, and locks the mug from rotating around the centerline of the handle. The specific angle transfers the pressure from finger joints to the muscles, allowing the handle to rest on all fingers or the palm of the hand, resulting in a comfortable grip. 

In the past, medical professionals have prototyped and tested mugs that solve this issue, but the designs lacked familiarity and were not attractive to the everyday consumer.

Featured Finalist at International Design Excellence Awards 2021
Benefit to User:

The majority of our end-users are those with upper limb challenges and differences. Regardless of their limb shape or challenges, lifting a drinking vessel with one arm or with their less active arm allows them to be more productive, multi-task, and carry out functions that were not previously possible. Furthermore, this product will improve the quality of  life for the user and empower them by providing options that are available to everyone else.  Our product will increase productivity, range of motion, and seamlessly integrate into the everyday life of the user. 

In our restaurant example, those with upper limb challenges reported that they felt a sense of inclusion and independence not having to ask for a cup that would be easier for them to hold. In other words, they did not require any special provisions to be made for them and their disability.

Benefit to Client/Brands:

When purchasing mugs for a restaurant or for a business, the same considerations can be made for Curvd that would be made for any other mug. However, unlike most mugs, Curvd will accommodate everyone that will use them. They can be purchased for any establishment and be easily incorporated with the rest of the dinnerware. 

Our brand focuses on inclusive design, meaning that all of our products possess ease of use for each and every human on the planet.  

Benefit to Society:

Curvd products are designed with everyone in mind to create a more Human Friendly world. By nature, the design accommodates every type of limb to offer an inclusive and accessible experience like never before. Those with both visible and hidden disabilities will feel more accepted by society because attention is not being called to their physical differences and capabilities. 

Simply put, this mug can be used by anyone in any setting. It is our hope that by incorporating this level of inclusivity in all our products, we will make an impact on the world. 

Our brand focuses on inclusive design, meaning that all of our products possess the ease of use for each and every human on the planet.  

Aesthetic Values:

We value aesthetics no more or less than inclusivity. The Curvd represents more than a tangible solution to an everyday problem. The smooth curves represent good nature and friendliness. The wide handle provides a feeling of safety and security. The comfort provided by less pressure on finger joints offers relaxation.  Finally, the warmth that radiates from the contents of a comfortably held mug brings joy. 

The overall form is inspired by the curvature of the handle. The smooth subtle round bottom gives the mug a sleek design aesthetic without compromising accessibility. 

We intentionally created this mug in the same colors as a gift shop and diner mugs to look as familiar as possible. We improved the quality compared to low-cost ceramic mugs to avoid cracking when dropped. The mug is 10% lighter than mugs with the same fluid capacity. The glossy finish makes the mug easier to clean. It is the same size as standard mugs and fits easily in commercial dishwashers for mass-market appeal. The mugs are also sublimation coated for ease of business logo application.

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