For this week’s Worn Out Wednesday, we hear from Simon Enever, co-founder of quip, a crazy cool electronic connected toothbrush with a killer design.
I grew up in creative little city called Bristol (home of Banksy, Massive Attack and Ardman Animations among others) on the west coast of England and I like to think the creative culture of the city was part of the inspiration for becoming a designer. In truth, I knew I wanted to be a designer of some kind since picking up my first Lego brick, and I looked into learning architecture and automotive design before choosing to study Industrial (product) Design at Loughborough University in the UK.
After graduating, I was desperate to dive into the professional world as fast as possible, and started my career at an awesome design consultancy called Native in London. I started working for a New York company shortly after thanks to an opportune consultancy gig and eventually moved to the United States permanently to work at Yves Behars Fuseproject, designing products and experiences for huge brands spanning from consumer electronic devices to food packaging, personal care products, and furniture. After leaving Fuseproject and spending a few years leading design at another New York City consultancy, I was getting the itch to try and make one of the ideas I would usually craft for clients come to life for myself and was impatiently waiting for the right idea to come along!
That idea came to me in an unexpected place–as I sat in a dentist chair during a routine checkup back in 2012. It turned out, I had been getting the basics of good oral care wrong for years and, apparently, I wasn’t alone. The dentist went on to detail his dismay that oral care brands were getting people so fixated on needless expensive features when the real problem was how badly people were brushing, not what model toothbrush they had bought! So the idea for quip was born—an electric toothbrush and direct to consumer (patient?!) oral care service that focuses on fixing the real problems in oral health.
As for my personal style:
Jeans: I’m not cool enough (and probably too tall) for ful-on skinny jeans, but Euro enough to need a slim fit. I find that Levis 511 are the perfect slim fit balance.
Pants: Levis 511 for the same reasons as above. This is all I will wear and have worn for years now.
Suits: I don’t really need a suit apart from for weddings, so I don’t invest much in them. The only important thing for me is a slim, but not skinny fit. I actually could only find my ideal fit at TopShop when I last went suit hunting (5 years ago!).
Shoes: I’m all about function—simple and as all-weather as possible – Brown Clarks Boots are my go-to.
Accessories: I used to work for designer Yves Behar at his Fuseproject design studio and, in my intern days, setup the launch party for his collab watch launch with Issey Miyake. We all received an Issey Miyake Vue Watch for being part of the project and I still wear it to this day. Simple, subtle, yet modern. Haven’t been able to find anything better since!
My Knomo messenger bag also deserves a special shout out! I used to have a huge laptop (for design work) and this thing was a life saver, as there were zero large laptop bags that looked anything but awful at the time. It’s been with me for about 8 years and is still with me everywhere I go.
Outerwear: My most recent purchase – an Everlane jacket – love the simple lines, lightweight, yet warm, collar design and brand. In winter I have another “old timer” I have had for years. A gift I got for myself to prepare for my winter move from the UK to freezing New York was a Ted Baker coat.
Favorite cologne: As a creature of habit, still the same one since I was probably a teenager – Armani il (he). I think it is phasing out now so I am having a nightmare finding it, but I love the smell, even though I chose it originally because the bottle was so much more subtle than the rest of the options on the shelf!
Favorite app: As a workaholic, Slack has to win. Whether on phone or at work, they have done a great job with that app and yet it doesn’t feel boring and work orientated (even though it is).
Favorite piece of technology: Surface Pro– For years, you couldn’t run all the industrial design programs I used on a Mac, so PC was the only choice. Until the Surface Line, it was pretty embarrassing lugging a PC around to meetings, so the entire surface line has been a blessing. Yes, I still get laughed at slightly, but a lot less than before.
Next style/gear purchase: Surface Studio – A designer’s dream functional device in a form factor that looks Apple-esque. I want one bad. It’s next on my list.