What does this wallet convey about its owner/designer’s constraints? Lack of pockets in a longyi is one factor that drove this user to seek a lighter money-carrying solution. Unpredictable weather could also plays a role – leather wallets tend to rot with surprising speed during monsoon season, and also fail to protect their contents during a downpour. Besides not protecting the inside’s contents from the elements, they also fail to protect clothing from the unfortunate side-effects of a permeable container filled with dirty pieces of paper being soaked over the course of a typical-length rain shower, when leather wallets turn into unintended money laundries of sorts.
Beyond the form of the wallet itself, a colleague also repurposed the affordance of her carry to cope with the monsoon season. Wanting to keep a memento of her son, she needed something that would afford her favorite pictures dryness during the daily rains (a repurposed package of cotton swabs, in this case). When I asked whether she would have preferred to simply store the photos on her phone, she replied that she disliked the low-quality screen on her phone, and thought that her son looked cuter on paper than on her phone’s display.