I first met W’innovate at New Designers 2016 while exhibiting my final major project with the University of Huddersfield, straight out of Uni, trying to take those tricky (and terrifying) first steps in the world of commercial design. After chatting to the Product Design team at New Designers and completing a 7-day mini project I was offered the amazing opportunity of a year’s graduate contract.
When I first arrived the whole team made me feel really welcome. They’re a really friendly, eclectic bunch, with a whole host of different skills and experience. Once I got started it was clear I wasn’t going to be there as ‘just an intern’. I was put in charge of the Storage category, designing whole ranges of high-investment, high volume products. As a fresh graduate, this was a great responsibility to be able to take on.
At W’innovate I’m constantly learning and developing every day. Getting to work alongside designers from such varied backgrounds means I constantly learn new ways of working, thinking, researching, conceptualising, and developing. Not to mention the huge amount of new technical knowledge. Working with Wilko means you will get the chance to see your products in hundreds of stores across the country, as well as understand the business and corporate side, including the buying process, supplier visits, working with manufacturers in the Far East, and presenting designs to the board. As a designer here I also get to help create the yearly Trend books, which was a big eye-opener, a great learning curve, and something a graduate might not get to experience in other roles.