Design fails are everywhere around us, from relatively innocent ones like poorly designed baths to massive city planning disasters which make everyone’s life hard. Good design requires a certain dose of skill and ingenuity to make them both practical and interesting but it takes one small oversight to turn the best of designs into a true nightmare.
We all know how annoying it can be to buy a much-advertised product only to find out it’s been poorly designed and barely functional. When that happens we often wonder: ‘Who approved these’? because we can’t wrap our heads around the fact someone’s actually thought these designs are going to work.
Prepare to be amazed, slightly annoyed, and to have some good laugh while looking at these 70 outrageously bad designs you won’t believe exist.
1. “Made by Professionals…”
Imagine you’ve entered the toilet and rushed to wash your hands, only to have a water spout aimed at your crotch instead. There’d be a million questions as to what happened after you finally gathered the strength to leave the bathroom.
2. Urban planning 101
Urban planning is not an exact science and accidents happen but this is no accident, it’s design fail of epic proportions. Whoever is in charge of public drainage in this city should definitively search for a different job.
3. Quiz failure
If you study hard you will pass the exam – or a quiz, well in most cases. There are always exceptions when your best is just not enough. Next time you must give 110 percent becaue a mere 100 won’t do.
4. The gallows
If you thought this is a scene from a horror movie, you’re wrong. It’s a bizarre and disturbing clothing display design. One thing is certain: this design won’t leave anyone indifferent.
5. Mutant duck
They may say it’s a duck but we think it’s a horrible mutant that could’ve only been a result of a nuclear disaster. The design is a disaster, of that there’s little doubt.
6. Someone help the poor animal, it’s bleeding out
This poor platypus looks like it’s been involved in an old-school shootout. We can’t be sure whether it will survive or not.
7. Shoplifting has never been easier
Potential shoplifters would have such a hard time getting around this brilliantly designed device. Let’s hope no one will be tempted to steal Nexium, though. That’d be ironic.
8. “Parking fee just gotten real”
The world would be a much better place if everyone just asked nicely. Who could ever disregard a kind reminder such as this?
9. “Not for navigational purposes”
If Columbus had used a compas like this one, the history of the world would have been radically different. We don’t recommend you use this compas for anything other than decoration, though.
10. Unorthodox Wheelchair Access
It takes a genius to design a wheelchair access automatic door which leads to a staircase. If it was a joke… we didn’t find it funny.
11. Safety first
Everyone knows how annoying false alarms can be. That’s why these folks came up with a simple, yet elegant solution to prevent false alarms: letting you watch as the flames slowly consume your house before they also consume you too.
12. “Put Barbed Wire Across The Top Of The Gate. We Don’t Want Anyone Climbing Over It”
Potential tresspasers will immediately get discouraged when they see an obstacle as formidable as this. Unless they simply decide to walk past the fence.
13. Winnie from hell
Toys should not be designed to freak out kids which is what this Winnie will most definitively do. This is probably the crappiest toy design ever.
14. Action man
Here’s another brilliant example of innovative toy design. Original, multi-functional, and embarassing.
15. Please stop
Whoever thought of this design has definitively got some issues to work out. Moreover, the snowman’s face looks very creepy.
16. “For when you want a near death experience every time you use the stairs”
We get it that some people like fancy stair designs; they can make your home classy and modern-looking. However, this is just a perfect way to break your legs, or worse.
17. Game of numbers
There’s really no way of knowing what happened here. It could be a super-complex math equation or a cryptic message someone left. Whatever the case, this is not a kind of elevator we’d want to step in.
When they designed this T-shirt they probably did not forsee women would wear it. Or it was simply meant to tell everyone that Putin has a very large… brain.
19. The power of slogans
Everyone knows that a good slogan is vital for business success. This is just too good to be true, though.
20. A world without Europe
A globe so small can’t possibly have all the details a larger one usually has. Who needs Europe anyway?
21. “I never imagined the Golden Gate Bridge was as bike friendly as it is”
Keep this in mind next time you feel like you want to take a stroll on the Golden Gate Bridge. Or simply use a bike. Pedestrians are a dying breed.
22. Ingenious passport design
All of you who still despair over how bad they look on their passport photos can now breathe a sigh of relief. Things could’ve been much worse for you, as we can see from this poor woman’s example.
23. A pair of extra legs never hurt nobody
It took us a bit to determine that something’s terribly wrong here. One of these girls is a centaur.
24. Period pizza
The designers of this package have forgotten what’s the proper word order in a sentence. We assume the intention behind it was to win the pizza of the month contest.
25. “Do not leave children unattended at Whole Foods”
This gives us creepy vibes, like the stuff you’d usually see in horror movies. The company’s creative team has some serious thinking to do before making ads like this.
26. Colon relaxer
If you decide to take both, be sure to keep clean sheets nearby for the morning. You’re going to need them.
27. Clever political poster design
Political posters can be really annoying, especially if there’s an election around the corner. It doesn’t have to be that way, however. A poster like this will make everyone laugh out loud.
28.Squeaky clean counter
Believe it or not, this is an actual counter design. We don’t know what the people who designed it were thinking.
29. “Insert here”
Colonoscopy should generally be left to professionals but you could still try to give yourself one at your own risk. Remember to wear gloves, though. Hygiene first.
30. Building a safer future
It’s never too early to teach your kid how to use construction tools. Providing your insurance covers disability.
31. I’m watching you
This is either a sloppy design or a stroke of genius. Would you be comfortable having those, big, glowing eyes starting at you from the rear of the bus? We wouldn’t.
32. Leisure time
We guess this is how protect the wires from overheating in Hawaii. The one obvious problem with that design is that it won’t last for too long.
33. Cinnamonbun Earrings
Now, this is just unfortunate on so many levels. Don’t get ahead of yourself, though, it’s just sugar glaze. What else could it be?
34. In life and death
Nobody really knows what exactly was the designer’s intention here but it ended up looking like a kind of wedding you’d usually see in horror movies. There’s a technique they teach in art schools and it’s called perspective. The designer of this card should try it out.
35. “Put a Braille sign on the Fun Mirror”
The people who put this sign on a mirror must have a good sense of irony. Or they’re just plain mean. Whatever the case, that’s one horrible idea.
36. “It’s supposed to be a safety pin…”
This is a safety pin is. No pun intended.
37. That makes sense
Do you remember what’s the big idea behind measurment labels? To make it easier to measure the amount of liquid in a transparent bottle. Well, perhaps this bottle was made for people with X-ray vision.
38. Shoot your pets
What you’re looking at is an invention made specifically for people who got tired of their pets and decided to do something about it. Alternatively, whoever designed this leash had a quite bizarre sense of humor.
39. “Let’s Alphabetically Order The Floor Numbers”
If you’re looking to get to the eleventh floor, you only need to take one floor by stairs. Laws of physics don’t necessarily apply to floor numbers arranged in alphabetical order.
40. “This gnome salt shaker”
Gnomes usually shouldn’t be white, unless you keep them in your backyard and they’re covered in snow. Here we have just another salty racist gnome who’s up to no good.