Volume Creative: Women in Design

Since 2015 Volume Creative have been an exciting new presence in the design industry. Lead by Callie Tedder-Hares, the interior and product design studio champions sustainable and responsible design with a focus on guest experience. The team know how to make a splash: Volume Creative are part of the Creative Collective of Virgin Voyages’ industry-disrupting ship Scarlet Lady.

Collaboration is at the heart of Volume Creative’s creative vision. That’s why it’s so exciting that they have welcomed Francesca Henley, Emma Lally and Kate Brewer as new partners. Each are longstanding members of the Volume Creative team. Each bring their own unique history and perspective to the design melting pot.

Meet the team

Volume Creative’s work on Virgin Voyages’ cruise ship Scarlet Lady. Photo credit Phillip Hardman

Emma Lally, Partner and Head of Customer Experience, has a background as part of an in-house design team. Having been on the other side of the table, she utilises her understanding of the customer journey to act as clients’ brand guardian. She says of her experience, ‘This gave me understanding of operational and commercial constraints and the tools to navigate the design process from brief to hand over. This client-side experience helps us understand our client’s perspective and allows us to be true partners, delivering succinct and considered design.’

Francesca Henley, Partner and Head of Interiors, has grown her career from intern to Design Director. Having studied Architecture and Design she developed her career primarily in luxury retail and hospitality for 12 years. At Volume Creative she is able to tap into every element of her experience, saying that she ‘[delivers] all aspects of a project from concept through to completion.’

Kate Brewer, Partner and Head of Product and Art, melds a background in product and furniture with extensive experience as a commercial interior designer in high-end retail. It’s the detail of a project that really catches her attention, which, Kate says, ‘comes from my product and furniture background whether designing small or large scale.’

Meanwhile, at Volume Creative, Callie Tedder-Hares has taken a step outside of her experience as an in-house designer working in service design and design management roles. However, her knowledge of the client’s needs and priorities has given her a broad view when working on projects. She said, ‘This experience allows me to design with the big picture in mind, understanding the impact that each design decision has on wider business.’

Collaborating to create sustainable design

Asking Volume Creative’s partners about how they use their diverse backgrounds to create remarkable sustainable experiences – a corner of their design ethos – reveals how combining multiple design perspectives can generate thoughtful and layered results. For Emma, the secret to next-level guest experience comes from creating an experience that’s more than a memory. She said, ‘It should be an experience that opens up dialogue, and challenges expectations.’

Kate is also interested in creating a narrative. She said, ‘taking an experience to the next level is about layering that narrative, whether through tactility and/or sensory moments that marry with materiality and always questioning, is this good for the planet?’

Material development at Volume Creative. These material samples feature recycled plastic.

Francesca picks up on the impact of tactility and its role in lodging an experience in a guest’s memory, ‘We create full sensory experiences which goes much deeper than what you see.  Scent, sound and touch are as equally important as sight to take the design to the next level.’ she says

Callie grounds this through line with Volume Creative’s dedication to fulfilling the brief. ‘Good design’, she says, ‘is only good design when it is thought through responsibly.’ Volume Creative’s role is, ‘to strike a balance and help our clients spend on the experiences that will matter most, and I believe this is achieved in part by designing experiences with longevity, knowing where your products and materials come from, and where they will go at the end of their lifecycle.’

Looking to the future

With Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady delivered – a project that Volume Creative say pushed their different skill sets – we look forward to seeing what’s next. The team teased some of their upcoming projects. This includes a collaboration with Table Place Chairs to launch a new product for the marine and hospitality sector. Plus, an eco-light with an exciting UK brand! No doubt the result of Volume Creative’s teamwork and commitment to consumer experience and the client’s brief will be fresh and exciting. And, we don’t doubt, challenge the design status quo. As Kate says of the projects, ‘… nothing is off limits in our brainstorming sessions… Trust, communication and our unique perspectives are fundamental for all our projects.’

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