Podcast Design

Matty Benedetto: Design Tangents Episode Eight

Our inspiring conversation with the self-described “evil genius” inventor and content creator

Behind more than 400 inventions over the last four years, serial creator Matty Benedetto—the founder of Unnecessary Inventions—is as prolific as he is entertaining and inspiring. A self-described “evil genius,” Benedetto works from a studio in Burlington, Vermont, solving problems, assembling unexpected creations and sharing content to millions of loyal fans on Instagram and TikTok. Benedetto makes for a thrilling guest on our latest episode of Design Tangents, where he provides insight on social media success, being authentic first and foremost and operating as a one-man company surrounded by nothing but ideas and his machines.

Benedetto’s entrepreneurialism began when he crochet ski hats—at age 13—for his friends. By the time he went to school for business and marketing, he already had his own company. Our paths first crossed in 2012, when we became obsessed with his cloth iPhone cables. “I am just jumping from one idea to the next at all times,” he tells COOL HUNTING. “Every few years I need to reinvent what I am doing.”

I see the final image of the invention in my head before I start making it. I work backward

After his first invention when viral on Reddit, Benedetto volleyed his online success into a series of (often silly) problem-solving pieces. “All of my inventions I create, I see the final image of the invention in my head before I start making it. I work backward,” he explains. These have ranged from the Burrito Bumper (which funnels spillage into a taco) to a Tic Tac organizer (which stifles the jangling sound inside a case), as well as Airsticks (AirPods paired with chopsticks) and Gator Grip “Croc” gloves (which led to a cease and desist letter). None of these have ever been for sale. That’s not the point. “With the internet these days, you have to do something that’s unexpected to be noticed,” he adds. “Everything’s been done a million different ways, a million different times.”

by Josh Rubin

Benedetto often makes the astounding possible—and encourages others to do suspend disbelief and do the same. “A lot of people give themselves false roadbloacks to bringing something to life that they want to see. I think I ignore all that,” he says. With a new board game on the market (after a year and a half in development), Benedetto also has a product people can take home. Learn about it all at this episode of Design Tangents now.

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Design Tangents is presented by Genesis and produced and edited by SANDOW Design Group. Special thanks to the podcast production team: Rob Schulte, Hannah Viti, Wize Grazette and Samantha Sager and to Amber Lin for creating our show art. Discover more design podcasts from SURROUND at surroundpodcasts.com.


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