Surfboard designer Hayden Cox creates wearable payments for the great outdoors
Leading Australian bank Westpac is making sea changes with its latest design collaboration. Following its recent $500 million investment in a new customer service cloud hub, and the 2017 launch of its PayWear technology (a 1.5 x 2.5cm chip replacing the debit card), the bank has approached Sydney-based surfboard designer Hayden Cox to create hand and battery-free, tap-and-go payment accessories.
‘This category is brand new so the challenge was to bridge the gap between function and style,’ stresses Cox. Beyond existing silicone wrist bands and watch attachments, the result is a practical five-piece unisex collection, aptly coined Centsitive Objects.
Cox is the founder of Haydenshapes Surfboards (which sell in over 70 countries), revolutionising the industry with his patented FutureFlex. Utilising parabolic carbon-fibre frames instead of the customary wooden stringer to shape boards, it enhances their speed and control. Similarly, his new water-resistant collection for Westpac seamlessly merges technology, efficiency and design – just don’t call them fashion accessories.
‘The pieces needed to not only blend into a variety of lifestyles and fulfil a genuine convenience, but they had to be aesthetically on point for people to want to wear,’ explains Cox. The resulting objects are lightweight, environmentally conscious (his keychain is crafted partly with Econyl, a recycled fabric made from discarded fishing nets and regenerated into nylon spandex) and subtle, given their minimalist bent and colour scheme: black, stone (light grey) and mineral (blush).
They include: Band + Chain, an attachable keychain and strap that can also be worn as a wristband, making it ideal for exercising (including surfing as it can withstand periods underwater); Centsitive Patch, an internal-facing iron/sew-on for clothing (pictured below); Nostalgia Pin, modeled on the iconic safety pin it hides the technology (a rectangular silicone keeper concealing a PayWear card beneath the fabric it attaches to); Incognito Pin, a tiny, half-domed brooch or lightning bolt topper (picture above) that connects to any fabric and houses the PayWear technology beneath it; and the Slimline Keeper, a small card-slot device that fastens to any watch wristband or fitness monitor (pictured above).
Given his past collaborations with Alexander Wang (creating marble surfboard retail installations plus a limited edition range for sale) and brand ambassador roles with Audi and Samsung, Cox is no stranger to different partnerships or challenges. He fully immersed himself in the creative process, from research and design, prototyping and product testing to managing the manufacturing and packaging for each Centsitive Object. Combined, all enable wallet, card and ATM-free pursuits and ideally extra surf time for some. §