The humble beginning
When we designed the Strawbees, we didn’t really know exactly what we were doing. It was when our DIY clothespin was used as a construction toy by kids in India we figured that maybe we should try designing a real construction toy.
Our goal was to make a connector everyone could afford that could be made using commonly available scrap materials.
One day at a public workshop at the Science Center Universeum in Gothenburg the organizers asked us if maybe we could come up with something smarter than the fragile connectors they had been using for some maths activities, a fully proprietary system with proprietary straws. That’s when we started playing with regular straws, and found that the quarter inch straw is one of the most common dimensions globally.
All of a sudden this little thing appeared and after some tweaking we had developed what seemed to be the lowest common denominator for the joints of most polygon structures. Below is our peixe azul, the blue fish, one of our first creations.
Since then we have been trying it out inhouse, modifying it a couple of times and we have made four different tools and thousands of prototypes.
After that, we tried the Strawbees at public workshops and visited NY Maker Faire where we got a lot of positive reactions but most importantly young maker Chris Hodges came up with the brilliant name. A lot of people wanted to get their hands on them, but we weren’t ready back then. Now we feel it’s time to let it out into the world.
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