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Christmas comes but twice a year

If you’re a designer that is. Like the rest of the population, every December we experience the joys of over-consumption, surprise presents and extended time spent with seldom-seen relatives. But we also get to spend a magical month or two in the middle of the year immersed in a glittering, marzipan-scented world of santas, robins and all things Christmas. Yep you’ve guessed it: the Christmas gift catalogue.

Hot-off-the-press copies of Macmillan’s Shop to Change Lives catalogue that I worked on earlier this year have just landed on my desk and they’re looking good. Along with a healthy sprinkling of that staple, the charity christmas card, this year’s edition also features an expanded range of gifts and festive accessories. From delightful tree decorations to tasty baking goods, our sales team worked really hard sourcing stuff that’ll hopefully appeal to all our supporters and keep the much-needed money rolling in. And our job in the Creative team was to beaver away putting together photoshoots, concepts, copy and page layouts to show them all off at their best and make it easy for our customers to find what they want. (Phew! managed to finish the paragraph without slipping in an elf reference.)

I’m sure the suspected robin and Santa overdose I suffered in May will be worth it when the virtual cash registers start ringing at macmillan.org.uk/shop 

Only 158 shopping days ’til the big day so get clicking

Macmillan Information Zone – at Boots

Presenting the new Macmillan Information Zone, being piloted in Boots’ flagship store in the High Street, Birmingham.

Launching on Wednesday 13 October the unit will be open every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10am – 5pm where Karima, our Information Specialist, will be on hand to talk through customers questions and concerns. This is part of the West Midland’s pilot scheme where Macmillan has a range of customer facing information materials available in a selection of different sized stores, accompanied by display materials sign-posting to the Macmillan Support Line, our web-site and to local Macmillan services.

The zone’s been designed with modular panels which can build different shaped zones within a range of stores, features the bold and eye catching visuals that are part of the partnership branding and provides access to a range of publications, even when the unit is closed. Internet access means we can view and print off our amazing online information content or order materials we may not have on site for our customers.

The pilot runs for the rest of 2010 and will be evaluated by an external agency before we look at rolling this out further in 2011 and beyond.

Like a Virgin

The latest Virgin TV ad builds on their somewhat controversial ‘sexy 80s stewardesses’ ones from last year. This time they’ve pulled out all the stops and gone knowingly over the top. Think a James Bond title sequence crossed with the bowling dream sequence from The Big Lebowski.
Relationship to the actual reality of a Virgin flight: zero. But since when has reality played much of a role in air travel advertising, it’s all about aspiration and fantasy. Watch out for the humourous debunk at the end.


Great little idea for raising a bit of cash for those who have nothing. Selling nothing in a tin.

Check it the campaign here

Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry, Green Lorry, Green Lorry, Green Lorry

Those lovely people in Corporate Partnerships offered us the opportunity to create a set of new lorries for Ford.

We played around with lots of ideas, but decided that less was more (didn’t want to cause any accidents) and chose simple messages such as ‘lightening the load’ in green, green and green. We think they look fab. If you live in the South East and see one near you, please take a snap (not while driving!) and send it in.

We’ve now designed lorries, vans, buses, racing cars and taxis. Submarine anyone?

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