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Lizzie Raby

MA work

Big Black Coat

One in every four people In the UK suffer with a mental health issue each year, according to the Mental Health Foundation.

The Big Black Coat is designed to stimulate awareness and dialogue among young people about mental health issues such as stress, anxiety and depression though multi-sensory experiences.

Tools embedded inside the coat include a game to explore the technique of cognitive behavior therapy. The Big Black Coat is based on six months of research, including interviews with specialists and patients; workshops; cultural probes; and desk research. Further funding would enable me to take this project into schools and the wider community.


  • Lizzie Raby
  • MA Degree


    School of Communication


    MA Information Experience Design, 2014

  • The RCA has given me the confidence to create my own role. To pick the strings that best fit my bow, from research to experience, sensory and graphic design. The tools that I have gathered are encompassed in the work of the Design Education Society, a company that has evolved from my desire to share knowledge through designing interactions and tools to trigger conversations.

    Using co-design and participatory research methods to involved people from the beginning, this allows me to gain unique qualitative insight into often niche communities. Over the past two years this has included people with Autism and Parkinson’s and those with mental health problems. While also supporting their views with that of associated healthcare proffesionals, carers and teachers. My work aims to create debate and discussions often about taboo subjects through engaging the user through humour, play and the senses.

  • Degrees

  • BA (Hons) Visual Communication: Graphic Communication, Birmingham City University, 2012
  • Experience

  • Research assistant, The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, London 2013-14
  • Exhibitions

  • Mastication, Hockney Gallery, Royal College of Art, 2014; Work-in-progress Show, Royal College of Art, 2014; Work-in-progress Show, Royal College of Art, 2013; Birmingham Made Me, Mailbox, Birmingham 2012
  • Awards

  • First Place, BlackBerry Competition, 2013 (in collaboration with Kirsten Abildgaard, Polly O’Flynn, Marion Ferrec and Caroline Claisse); Best of Year, D&AD Social Design, D&AD and The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, 2012; Pitch Consultants Visual Communication Award, Winner, 2012