Tapestry is a software solution with which memories, stories, photos, videos, audio, letters, recipes and ideas can be collected, stored and shared between the person with dementia and their loved ones and carers.
Memory loss connected with dementia can pose communication problems between those with dementia and those that love and care for them. The design team sought to create opportunities for a meaningful and enjoyable time together by visualising each person as a rich mix of stories, experiences, passions, loves, hates, skills and secrets. Capturing this whole tapestry of life through the use of existing technology was a chance to restore communication and retain an individual’s respect.
Tapestry is a software tool that provides many opportunities to improve communication and mutual respect. It serves as a:
With a flexible menu structure, Tapestry enables access to memory items allowing individuals different ways to interact with the programme and each other. Selections from the programme are downloadable to other formats where computer access is limited. Tapestry also holds potential for development in carer support, storing patient information to help with briefing, daily care handovers, and general care plan support. Tapestry is portable and can be downloaded to a USB device so that a patient’s records can go with the person wherever they are as digital records, and can be updated and taken back to where they live be it a care home or the family home.
The panel loved the name for the project. They felt that it expressed the possibilities of an idea based on the celebration of and respect for a long life well lived and the ability to share its richness between generations in a way that invited participation by all - the audio input in particular was an excellent idea. One could see how grandchildren could play a vital role in creating a Tapestry of a beloved grandparent where all the visual and sounds threads were woven in.
"The DBA Inclusive Design Challenge has been exciting and truly challenging but well worth the effort, informing N1’s design and design philosophy. It has shown how design can make the best impact when the way people live their lives, their needs and desires are taken as the foundation… and how simple elements in design can have a large impact on their ability to enable or disable users."
Gavin Mackie, N1 Creative