Fresh out of uni and looking to gain commercial design experience, Winnovate took myself and another graduate on as the first product designers into the new (stunning) building. Four years on and what an amazing experience its been so far, I now manage product design for the Wilko Garden and Seasonal Category, as well as having input into a host of other exciting projects.
Right off the bat we worked with Wilko buyers to scope projects and get our creative minds flowing. In the following months we researched, designed and briefed our first commercial project, Wilko Kitchen tools and gadgets which you can see in store today.
As Winnovate has grown so has our list of successful projects, not only furthering Winnovate's Portfolio but our industry knowledge as designers. This is where I feel Winnovate are unique, giving you the opportunity to manage a category with a large retail client, expand your design knowledge through working directly with Far East factories and developing a commercial design head through close relationships with buyers, QA, packaging and marketing to name a few.
Working with a client that retails across so many categories has also pushed our trend knowledge, something a degree in product design teaches you little about! Developing trend books each year allows us to keep design across categories relevant and interlinked, giving customers clear and interesting stories to buy into.
The Winnovate culture has developed in this time too, starting out as a small team with a big office feels like a lifetime ago. Our studio teams now comprise of Product Design, Surface Pattern and Print and 3D Decorative Design, creating a vibrant, interesting environment surrounded by talented people.
My favourite achievement so far... Winning a Red Dot Product Design Award!