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FRESH ARTISTS' DESIGN LAB & STICK-LETS®

In 2018 we launched a 3-day Design Lab with our local partner and non-profit, Fresh Artists. Fresh Artists, located in the East Falls section of Philadelphia, was founded by Barbara Allen and son, Roger Allen. We invited about 12 public school students from the region to participate. The young artists, ranging in age from 8-16, explored pattern making, stamping, painting, silk screening, bag design, nature play and, of course, fort building with STICK-LETS®!

To help support Fresh Artists' mission and our local public schools, we paid a Designer's Fee which went straight to the underserved art programs for art supply purchases. 

 

A BIT ABOUT FRESH ARTISTS: EMPOWERING YOUNG LIVES THROUGH ART

Fresh Artists has created a range of imaginative, hands-on programs to engage kids in making art and encourage their partnership in saving art making in public schools. The Fresh Artists' studio is the ideal setting for young people to learn real-world applications to art and art-making. The studio is fully equipped to demonstrate how professionals address challenges in product design while giving kids hands-on experience.

In these focused, one or three-day weekend workshops, young artists are mentored by design professionals in the creation of actual products that go to market. Design Labs are part of the Cool Jobs initiative, introducing children to real jobs in the creative economy. They have worked with partners like Knoll, DENY Designs, Crate&Barrel, and Jefferson University. The company approaches Fresh Artists with a product in mind, and they invite art teachers in the 5-county Philadelphia region to nominate kids to participate, usually from 5th through 8th grade. 

 

PAINTING: THE SURFACE PATTERN

The younger crowd was teamed up with two local fine artists, Dora Ficher and Heidi Schifferli, and Fresh Artists' Studio Manager, Katie Latona. Inspired by the natural materials they gathered around our Philadelphia studio, along with design criteria and suggestions provided by our CEO, the talented and energetic students developed an incredible array of 2D work for our tote bags. The entire floor of the studio space and hallway were decorated with their paintings. By the end of Day 1, the young artists were covered in smiles and paint, ready for another day full of creative exploration and learning!

 

INDUSTRIAL DESIGN: THE STICK CARRIER

The older group worked on the industrial design portion of the project. They were asked to create a few concepts for a stick carrier bag, or quiver, to assist with Stick-letters who are on their fort-building adventures. With the assistance of Fresh Artists' Creative Director, Roger Allen, who has a background in industrial design, they kick-started the design thinking process to evaluate the possibilities for this fun challenge.

They confidently launched into full-scale prototyping to showcase their concepts, learning about the brainstorming process, how to sew, and how to test and refine the product. The three student designers incorporated a net pouch with velcro closure to carry the silicone connectors, adjustable straps using our Monarch Orange STICK-LETS®, and a top entry for sticks with a cinch closure.

 

FINAL DESIGN LAB PRESENTATION

The artists and designers ended their Design Lab weekend with a presentation of their favorite pieces to their family members, our CEO, and the Fresh Artists crew. The proudly stood by their work and their collaborative creation of a STICK-LETS® Small Shop stand, as pictured below. Impressive bunch of kids -- truly!

 

THE FINAL DESIGN

Last year we were able to commit to one surface pattern for a modified stick carrier bag inspired by the ideas unfolded by the young artists. We chose a full-bleed and colorful pattern resembling a landscape - water, mountains, trees, rolling hills - created by Khaly, who was 11 years old at the time of the Design Lab. 

 
Take a moment to watch the kids in action here.

 

In 2020 we settled on the ideal surface pattern for the modified stick carrier, which we named the 'Forest Fort Bag.' Christina modified, prototyped and tested new iterations of the original quiver bag design to make the fort building adventure easy and fun. Learn more about the bag's features here.

   

 

 
The surface pattern designer, Khaly!
HOW TO ORDER 
Show your support for the young artists by purchasing a Forest Fort Bag! We are currently accepting pre-orders for the Forest Fort Bag. Inventory is scheduled to arrive end of March. Orders will ship from our Philadelphia warehouse. 
Learn more about the bag's features and purchase HERE.

 

FRESH ARTISTS' DESIGN LAB & STICK-LETS®

In 2018 we launched a 3-day Design Lab with our local partner and non-profit, Fresh Artists. Fresh Artists, located in the East Falls section of Philadelphia, was founded by Barbara Allen and son, Roger Allen. We invited about 12 public school students from the region to participate. The young artists, ranging in age from 8-16, explored pattern making, stamping, painting, silk screening, bag design, nature play and, of course, fort building with STICK-LETS®!

To help support Fresh Artists' mission and our local public schools, we paid a Designer's Fee which went straight to the underserved art programs for art supply purchases. 

 

A BIT ABOUT FRESH ARTISTS: EMPOWERING YOUNG LIVES THROUGH ART

Fresh Artists has created a range of imaginative, hands-on programs to engage kids in making art and encourage their partnership in saving art making in public schools. The Fresh Artists' studio is the ideal setting for young people to learn real-world applications to art and art-making. The studio is fully equipped to demonstrate how professionals address challenges in product design while giving kids hands-on experience.

In these focused, one or three-day weekend workshops, young artists are mentored by design professionals in the creation of actual products that go to market. Design Labs are part of the Cool Jobs initiative, introducing children to real jobs in the creative economy. They have worked with partners like Knoll, DENY Designs, Crate&Barrel, and Jefferson University. The company approaches Fresh Artists with a product in mind, and they invite art teachers in the 5-county Philadelphia region to nominate kids to participate, usually from 5th through 8th grade. 

 

PAINTING: THE SURFACE PATTERN

The younger crowd was teamed up with two local fine artists, Dora Ficher and Heidi Schifferli, and Fresh Artists' Studio Manager, Katie Latona. Inspired by the natural materials they gathered around our Philadelphia studio, along with design criteria and suggestions provided by our CEO, the talented and energetic students developed an incredible array of 2D work for our tote bags. The entire floor of the studio space and hallway were decorated with their paintings. By the end of Day 1, the young artists were covered in smiles and paint, ready for another day full of creative exploration and learning!

 

INDUSTRIAL DESIGN: THE STICK CARRIER

The older group worked on the industrial design portion of the project. They were asked to create a few concepts for a stick carrier bag, or quiver, to assist with Stick-letters who are on their fort-building adventures. With the assistance of Fresh Artists' Creative Director, Roger Allen, who has a background in industrial design, they kick-started the design thinking process to evaluate the possibilities for this fun challenge.

They confidently launched into full-scale prototyping to showcase their concepts, learning about the brainstorming process, how to sew, and how to test and refine the product. The three student designers incorporated a net pouch with velcro closure to carry the silicone connectors, adjustable straps using our Monarch Orange STICK-LETS®, and a top entry for sticks with a cinch closure.

 

FINAL DESIGN LAB PRESENTATION

The artists and designers ended their Design Lab weekend with a presentation of their favorite pieces to their family members, our CEO, and the Fresh Artists crew. The proudly stood by their work and their collaborative creation of a STICK-LETS® Small Shop stand, as pictured below. Impressive bunch of kids -- truly!

 

THE FINAL DESIGN

Last year we were able to commit to one surface pattern for a modified stick carrier bag inspired by the ideas unfolded by the young artists. We chose a full-bleed and colorful pattern resembling a landscape - water, mountains, trees, rolling hills - created by Khaly, who was 11 years old at the time of the Design Lab. 

 
Take a moment to watch the kids in action here.

 

In 2020 we settled on the ideal surface pattern for the modified stick carrier, which we named the 'Forest Fort Bag.' Christina modified, prototyped and tested new iterations of the original quiver bag design to make the fort building adventure easy and fun. Learn more about the bag's features here.

   

 

 
The surface pattern designer, Khaly!
HOW TO ORDER 
Show your support for the young artists by purchasing a Forest Fort Bag! We are currently accepting pre-orders for the Forest Fort Bag. Inventory is scheduled to arrive end of March. Orders will ship from our Philadelphia warehouse. 
Learn more about the bag's features and purchase HERE.

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