There was an undeniable sense of deja-vu upon seeing the efforts of Korean industrial design student 7 Nepo pop into my feed. His popsicle-shaped design, the Handyfan Popsicle looks remarkably similar to a design I proposed years ago working as a toy designer while heading up a new line of a children’s collection of treat-based accessories (unfortunately tooling costs nixed the project).
The novelty and appeal of the design relies upon our childhood associations of good times with cooling down with a popsicle in hand. The inclusion of a leather strap serves the purpose of portability, especially appealing to those used to traveling by crowded public transportation during the summer months. Though, one has to wonder how the user is supposed to hold up the fan in a vertical position with the proposed soft strap; if redesigned with a wrist loop with a snap, the fan could conceivably be hung from an overhead subway car handrail to cool nearby riders.
Admittedly, even with the inclusion of what appears to be a USB-C port located on the rendered case for recharging purposes, there’s nothing particularly cutting edge about the design…it’s simply a cute example of student work, utilizing the proven and effective fan mechanism seen countless times before. Nevertheless, it’s “cool” to see the idea I once imagined in another iteration proposed by another generation of designers – a nostalgic treat of sorts.