It’s the Little Things

Innovation & Entrepreneurship


It’s the Little Things is the third animation in the award winning Secret Life of Things series created by Leyla Acaroglu and her team. It tells the stories of everyday objects, and how they can inadvertently be misused and neglected, as well as shining a light on ways in which we can all help to reduce the environmental impacts of consumer choices. The Series was created because there were hardly any fun and engaging resources that explain what life cycle assessment is and how young designers and engineers can engage with life cycle thinking and eco-design in the design process. So in 2009, Eco Innovators set about developing a project to help overcome this gap. ​

“I was made this way. I know I was designed cheaply and to break. This part here is a single molded shell so that nobody can get inside and fix me. If only my designers had made better choices.” –Phillip, the animated flat screen TV (cue cutest Australian kid’s accent!)

About Leyla

Leyla has a stellar history as a sustainability leader and has been involved in numerous creative and bleeding-edge sustainability projects through her organization Eco Innovators. She has developed an award-winning, animated educational series called the Secret Life of Things to help consumers understand (through humor) the impacts of their behavior, and she’s graced the TED stage too. Watch her recent TED talk (below) about the debate around Plastic vs. Paper and environmental folklore.

Engage one-on-one with Leyla

We are currently accepting requests to join the Collaborative Product Design course at MCAD this fall. Leyla will be co-teaching the course with Jeremy Faludi. This is a 15-week course that is offered fully online and is corporate sponsored. Virtual teams of students work together to innovate real-world redesigns of products that are currently on the market. Teams use Life Cycle Analysis and biomimicry (as well as other tools) to arrive at innovate, sustainable solutions that are then pitched to companies. The course begins on September 2. We currently have 8 seats in the class remaining.

Email sustainable_design[at] if you are interested in learning more about joining this course.

Image courtesy of Leyla Acaroglu