Tag Archives: Graphic design

Graphic Design student designs store displays for local baby clothing brand

Student Ashley LeMay designed and produced 25 point-of-sale (POS) displays for Tumblewalla–a local baby clothing brand–that can be found in retailers around the Twin Cities.
Graphic Design student Ashley LeMay

Graphic Design student Ashley LeMay

Ashley LeMay came to Dunwoody after working for 10 years as a teaching assistant for special education in the St. Paul Public School system when Dunwoody Pre-Media Principal Instructor Pete Rivard came to teach a Photoshop lesson during her students’ digital photography class. Afterwards, Rivard talked to the class about what a graphic designer does.

“I just knew immediately that that was my calling–it was where I needed to be” LeMay said. “All the stuff he was talking about was stuff I can’t stop myself from doing like analyzing color and typesetting.”

She immediately applied and was accepted into Dunwoody’s Design & Graphics Technology program. When she felt she was ready to make the change, she enrolled in classes.

LeMay’s decision to change her career path proved to be a good choice. She recently took on her first real-world project designing and producing point-of-sale (POS) displays for Tumblewalla – a local baby-clothing brand. Her work can be found in Pacifier stores, Kiddywampus, and other retailers throughout the Twin Cities.

Tumblewalla fills need for more playful baby, toddler clothing

Tumblewalla POS display, side viewWhen Sonal Gerten, Founder of Tumblewalla, started the baby clothing company, she saw a need in the market for more spirited, pure, and comfortable fabrics for babies and toddlers that represented the vibrancy and yoga traditions of her Indian heritage. With that, she brought Tumblewalla – loosely translated as “one who tumbles,” – to life.

When it came time to bring her products to retailers, Gerten wanted to highlight the playfulness her brand represented. She was looking for someone with “the expertise and passion to make this happen” so she reached out to Dunwoody’s Design & Graphics Technology department.

Graphic Design Principal Instructor Tom Herold then invited interested students to learn about the job opportunity from Gerten after class.

“This project was Ashley’s from the beginning. She had the time, she had the energy, and she had the ability,” Herold said. “Frankly I don’t think Sonal could have had a better designer working with her. This was about as complete a job that she could have gotten anywhere else.”

LeMay overcomes design challenges to create the perfect POS display

Tumblewalla POS display, front view“The first display was designed to look like a letter block.” LeMay said. “[Gerten] liked this but her concern was that she needed a place to hang a onesie up because her sales do better when there’s one out on display.”

When parents shop for baby and toddler products, they love to touch and feel pieces before buying them. However, retail space is often limited–making it difficult to showcase a product in the shelf-space allotted for it.

LeMay needed to adjust her first POS display so it could both hold the packaged product and display a single onesie for parents to touch and feel–all without increasing production time and material cost.

So with that, she designed and built a display with a high back made to look like a clothesline. The onesie could be hung up on the display using wooden clothespins. The display needed to be technically executed so that the cardboard would not fold under the weight of the product.

LeMay delivered on all fronts.

In addition to being functionally sound, Gerten wanted the display to communicate the playfulness yet sophistication of the Tumblewalla brand. For this, LeMay suggested using cutouts of Tumblewalla’s lotus motif along with a deep contemporary blue paint.

LeMay working on a Tumblewalla POS display

LeMay working on a Tumblewalla POS display

The deep blue “aesthetically pops on the shelf and conveys who we are in a simple yet fun way that’s very aligned with our brand positioning,” Gerten said.

LeMay built and hand-painted all 25 POS displays seen in stores around the Twin Cities. The project–from start to finish–took 30-35 hours.

“Ashley is a problem-solver–no challenge is too difficult for her.” Gerten said. “She also quickly understood the Tumblewalla design aesthetic and surpassed my expectations in terms of design options. She is a joy to work with and extremely talented!”

The Dunwoody Difference

Dunwoody’s Design & Graphics Technology instructors are constantly looking for ways to connect students to industry throughout their education. From the annual Internship Expo, to participation in national student competitions, students are given every opportunity to gain industry-standard experience and skills before graduation.

Find more information about the Design & Graphics Technology department.

Multiple programs benefit from new fabrication lab

Architecture student Roman Zastavskiy and President Rich Wagner assemble a chair model created using a laser cutter.

Architecture student Roman Zastavskiy and President Rich Wagner assemble a chair model created using a laser cutter.

Students in Architecture, Interior Design, Construction Management and Graphic Design now have access to a new, state-of-the-art fabrication lab located in Red 67.

Rocky Phandanouvong and Tyler Barres.

Rocky Phandanouvong and Tyler Barres.

The “fab lab”—also referred to as “digital fabrication lab” (dLab)—is a hands-on laboratory that provides students with the necessary resources for material testing, prototyping, product design and development, visualization, and digital fabrication at all scales.

“The fab lab fulfills Dunwoody’s mission to provide a hands-on education that serves the industries in need,” said Architecture Program Manager John Dwyer. “Architecture is expanding its role into computational design and digital fabrication to create buildings with greater performance.  This gives students the capacity to gain the skills for these emerging professional tracks.”

Josh Kulus

Josh Kulus

Among the fab lab’s tools relevant to the architecture industry are: model making and prototyping tools (laser cutter/engraver, small sander, small table saw and dremel); full-scale fabrication tools (CNC router); and product design and development tools (3D printer). Future fab lab tools will include a large format laser cutter, vinyl cutter, mini mill and portable 3D printers.

Interior Design students will use the fab lab for prototyping and testing product concepts for improvements and innovations. “The actual making helps to reinforce a true hands-on educational experience unique to our college—and so important to our students learning,” said Interior Design Principal Instructor Colleen Schmaltz.

Construction Management students will focus on collaboration with other disciplines in the fab lab. Program Manager Heather Gay said: “We plan on working with Architecture, Interior Design, and Graphic Design on multidisciplinary projects such as model building, cost and buildability analyses, and full-scale construction.”

The Graphic Design department will use the fab lab to cut larger retail display components than their new Kongsberg V20 table can handle and also to possibly create 3D-printed prototypes to stand in as product samples and enrich the package design process.

“The other programs will be using Graphic Design’s new CAD table as well for their furniture design and model making when they can,” said Graphic Design Principal Instructor Pete Rivard. “Our table has expandable tooling options that extend it beyond paper and corrugated and allow materials such as plastic, vinyl, wood and aluminum to be cut so there are options available to Architecture and Interior Design to share the cost of tools while making the Kongsberg table available to more Dunwoody students.”

Rivard added that the programs all sharing materials will make the procurement of materials more cost effective for the College.

Laser-Cutter-and-ComputerThe fab lab was funded largely by private donations through the Dunwoody community of donors as well as a matching grant from First Technologies.

“We are applying for an annual grant to continue expanding the lab and are hoping to eventually integrate the fab lab with the materials lab, currently on the Green Level, and house all of them on the Red Level,” Dwyer said.