Design Works (Goes) International

Featured

Happy Friday everyone! Before we head off into the weekend we want to share a little inspiration from our creative director, Nancy Fire, who spent the last week traveling through Paris, Lisbon, and Madrid. Nancy discovered and captured some gorgeous colors and patterns on her adventures and we thought we would share a little bit of her finds with you today! (Aren’t you lucky?) So sit back, relax, and lets go on a little trip to Europe (visually, at least).

Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 11.51.41 AM.png

Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 11.51.52 AM.png

Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 11.52.04 AM.png

Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 11.52.11 AM.png

From the world traveler herself:

“Inspiration is everywhere in Lisbon, especially if you love Azulejos Tiles. Today these tiles are dominant in every Portuguese city and are embedded in its history and culture. The word “azulejo” means “small polished stone” and although they are not a Portuguese invention, by the 18th century no other European country was producing as many tiles as Portugal. Over the years, azulejo tiles have become an art form used for a variety of design applications both in exterior and interior home design. Spending time in Bairro Atlo and Principe Real, two older areas of Lisbon, I spotted various azulejo tiles on homes in different color combinations and patterns.”

In the name of print & pattern,

DW

Print..Pattern & Product -Design Works International NYC celebrating its 27th year! 

Hard to believe that this month our NYC based design studio, Design Works International will be 27 years old! I can still remember our first day in business and our original 1000 sq ft studio on west 35th street between 7th and 8th ave.

We started as a textile-art studio creating hand painted original pieces of artwork for mainly the fashion industry. Our clients were based in NYC and many were a few blocks away from our small studio space. At that time we employed 4 full time designers and had about 10 clients.

FAST FOWARD to 2015 where we are now located on 36th street between 5th and 6th ave in our 10,000 sq ft studio employing many more designers and working with hundreds of clients.

Besides feeling thankful and blessed for having “survived” in NYC for the past 27 years I truly feel proud of what my husband Neil and I have accomplished over the years. It’s not easy working in the “Big Apple” when your a “mom and pop” business as the city is not kind with incentives for small business…finding affordable rent, benefits for employees and the everyday rising cost factor of having the privilege of living and working in NYC…but we did it and today we celebrate our Design Works International anniversary!

Neil Co-Founder Design Works International and First2Print


Over the past 27 years we have had the privilege of working on so many creative and exciting projects! From working with famous established designers, up and coming designers as well as successful corporations like HGTV, GAF, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Calvin Klein, JoAnn Stores, Dollar Tree, Jeremy Scott, Peter Marino, Marc Jacobs, Kids 11, Crate and Barrel, Beanstalk, Macy’s and Kimberely Clark…just naming a few!

How did we establish ourselves over the years in our business you may ask, LOTS OF HARD WORK and constantly moving forward with fresh and new ideas! About 14 years ago my husband Neil felt that digital printing would be the future of printing in this country as well as around the world and started our company First2Print which is housed in the same studio space as Design Works International. He hired a fantastic creative women, both technically as well as aesthetically, Dani, our Director of Operations and the two of them have built a fantastic digital studio with the collaboration of DigiFab located in Vernan California, the west coast office of First2Print! Clients have included many of the same from Design Works International with additions like, Graceland, Sony Pictures, Book of Morman, Elf the Musical, Marc Jacobs, Coach, Yigal Azrouel and Jeremy Scott, just to name a few!

Dani, Director of Operations at First2Print

About 7 years ago I started a division of Design Works International called “Creative Corporate” where I consult with companies on trend, color, print, pattern and product development. Many of our Design Works International clients naturally needed this consulting part of our business and became clients because of the one on one attention needed in business today talking about brand and lifestyle.

Nancy Co-Founder and Creative Director Design Works International.
Social media has played a huge part in our business and we are proud to say that we cover this on our own…yes I know that we “might” have more followers if we hired someone to do this for us, but we choose to be authentic and post articles, pictures and life stories on our own, after all we have survived in the “Big Apple” for 27 years, we surly can do our own social media!!!!

Our dedicated team of illustrators, surface designers, product and digital textile artists really help us complete the team at Design Works International and First2Print. We are truly international with so many on our team from many countries!

We are blessed with a talented team of designers, some still with us from the very beginning 27 years ago…and over the years we have become quite the work family…my brother Russ, our sales manager and “super duper salesman” has been with us for 19 years and Frank for about 15 years….Frank not only handles sales, he helps with art direction, design strategy and maintains his client base! Zach is our newest addition to the super sales team…giving us our millennial edge!

Our  super duper sales manager…”Brother Russ”! 
Frank….sales and all around creative!

Zach our “Millennial Man”
Meet Claire and Selina, our design director and art director of our “Chelsea Print Collections”  both from different parts of England and both incredibly talented! Selina spends her free time creating @thejellyempire and claire ventures throughout the boroughs @cnewton3 taking very cool street scenes!! 

Meet Elena our studio manager who is quite the talent scheduling our service work studio, designing and keeping the work flow…flowing!! Corinne, our art director of the “HOME” Collection is constantly in creative mode with lots of upbeat energy and uber talent!

 These guys….Jim (@jamessimonartist) and Michael, both “graphic gurus” have been with us the longest and have awesome computer talent! Always fun collaborating with this dynamic duo!

 Pauline, Rosie, Nicole and Ellen are designing original prints non-stop in our fast paced studio…and we are blessed to have them on our creative team!

 Cannot forget Angela, our receptionist and Linda our office manger, both amazing women who are part of the Design Works International family.

Angela  Linda

 First2print celebrates Michelle, Romalia, Alex, Melissa and Lisa…a dynamic team of hard working and talented designers. And a special “shout out” to Eleah who is leaving our team to focus on a writing/pr career…we wish her all the best❤️

Michelle    Romalia

  Alex

Melissa
  Lisa


And of course Michael, our faithful and hardworking messenger who is truly the best! 

Kudos to all of you at DWI and F2P…we have a lot to celebrate…so let’s get started!

Sending lots of love and respect to the best creative team in NYC!

Nancy and Neil

Paris..products and lots of “purdy stuff” at Maison Objet!

How many years can one person attend a show and still get inspired…the answer is 20! Yep I have been coming to Maison Objet for the past 20 years and I still get excited spotting fresh and fun products. Sometimes it’s just an updated color or a new texture or technique that inspires me but you guested it…key word is INSPIRED!

So many people today say that retail is flat and that products are not interesting, but I beg to differ because products today “have to be exciting in order to survive because the competition is so vast” so let’s start looking in the right place….shows like Maison that inspire us to be “our best self” in the product world of course…

It’s true that the show is large and getting larger each year…why because this is where you come to be in inspired…sorry had to throw that in…but it’s true…that is why we schlep through millions…or it seems like millions of aisles to find those inspiring products and ideas that make us smile…

Here are a few of mine…..

 Lalie Design  Trend Hall

 Flamant

  Mero Wing

 Vent de Boheme

  Twoolies

  SebraRina Menardi

 Toulemonde Bochart  Vitra

Check out my other blog colorchaosandcreativity.com tomorrow for an overview of Kind + Jugend, an International trade show for kids products in Cologne Germany.

Thanks for following….

Nancy Fire

“Everything is Design. Everything.”

Paul Rand

Paul Rand

“Everything is design. Everything.” – Paul Rand

It’s a great quote and it is something we at Design Works believe in and think about on a daily basis. Paul Rand was an American art director and graphic designer. He is best known for his corporate logo designs, which include IBM, UPS, ABC and Steve Job’s NeXT, to name a few. His posters and book covers are some of the most recognizable graphic design in the world and we see them every day. He was one of the first American designers to embrace and practice the Swiss style of graphic design. The Swiss style or International Typographic Style emphasizes cleanliness, objectivity and readability. Always a very important approach to design. It’s more difficult to think minimally than over fill the space to distract the viewers eye.

The Museum of the City of New York is hosting an exhibition of Paul Rand works; “Everything is Design: The Work of Paul Rand” through July 19th. The exhibit features more than 150 advertisements, posters, corporate brochures by Mr. Rand. Click here for more information.

Paul Rand is a great influence as he was tasked with similar issues that we deal with on a daily basis. He was a problem solver, but was able to create beautiful designs without unnecessary busyness. Here are a few examples of his work. We’ve also added a few pieces to our Pinterest board .

Paul-Rand

Street Art in NYC

NYC is truly the center of the creative universe; amazing museums, film festivals, concerts, Broadway shows. One of the wonders of NYC is wherever you look there is some sort of art to inspire you. Just this morning, walking to our studio this morning I was greeted by this great “graphic graffiti” inspired truck… great inspiration to start the week.

Street-Art-2

Fall into Color

Fall into Color

Burnt Oranges are trending for 2015, but they’re a bit more subdued and just a dash of yellows welcomed into the mix.

postcard_001

All photos by Nancy Fire

Europe 2014 Graphic Prints

TRENDING…Graphic Geometric Patterns on dec pillows, rugs and accent chairs.

Here are 3 examples focusing on simple shapes, updated color and bold lines. CLICK IMAGES TO SEE MORE

Printing mixing is a great way to add stylish updates to any space, some simple considerations like color and scale of a pattern are important elements to consider. All photos were taken at Maison Objet and in Paris shops. Enjoy! CLICK IMAGES TO SEE MORE

 

NEXT… Outdoor Furniture!!

Europe 2014. Color Hit List For 2014-15

Beautiful Bright Berry Bliss

Happening now in exteriors to interiors…fiery red, cranberry and burgundy.

berry

Acid Yellow

Seen in colder, greener hues, yellow offers a bold statement in tabletop, soft accessories and furniture.

yellow

Into The Blues

Calming yet powerful, the blues are used in saturated hues, with blue metallic finishes, washed denim tones, all-blue textiles and even watercolor effects.

blues

All photos by Nancy Fire

NEXT! Graphic Prints!

COMING UP… More from Europe & Tutorial; Repeats in Adobe Illustrator