Elise hounslow toy designer

About Me

I'm a sustainably conscious toy designer from London, UK. I've had the opportunity of working for some great companies such as IMC Toys, Hasbro, WOW Toys, and heading up the design team at Xcel Bespoke. My career has allowed me to work on a vast number of projects ranging from Magazine Toys, Technical Garments, Gifts, Social, to top rating Toys & Games and Sustainability Strategy.

Let's see how we can work together!

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2013-2014  - 1 years placement 

Games Product Designer - Intern 

Working on Monopoly, Scrabble, Game of Life, Bop-it, PAY DAY, Pictureka 

and more...

I started working alongside the other games product designers on products for the 2014/15 line. I took on greater responsibility managing 7 of the products in the 2015 product line due to product owners maternity leave. The role included game ideation, logical problem solving, prototyping mock-ups, games testing in house and at schools, presenting concepts to the USA team in Rhode Island and team concept brainstorming. I visited the Essen Speil Toy Fair in Germany and many other toy fairs reporting back to the team. The following products are some I was a part of the design team for, from concept to shelf:

Scrabble Junior - Lead Designer, Game of life Junior - Lead Designer, Game of Life Despicable me - working with Universal on design decisions. I also had one concept selected for further development for the StarWars team whereby I was chosen to pitch my concept to the senior design team and company leadership.

  • Games product design

  • Managing design of 7 products

  • Game ideation

  • Logical problem solving

  • Prototyping mock-ups

  • 3D printing + model making

  • Games testing in house and at schools

  • Presenting concepts to overseas teams

  • Team concept brainstorming

  • Essen Speil Toy Fair and trend reports

  • Working with external licensing

  • Concept toy generation StarWars team

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2014-2015  - 1 year project

Lead Product Designer

Design of a Solar and Wind harvesting Tree for SolarBotanic, who plan to 

launch the project in 2021. http://www.solarbotanic.com/

  • Research into solar technologies

  • Consumer research

  • Human factors

  • Aesthetics + styling design

  • Solar cell design working in collaboration with G-Cell

  • Solar cell fabrication prototyping overseas

  • Piezoelectric technology

  • Electronics + energy output calculations

  • Materials research and testing

  • Business plan + feasibility plan

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August 2015- April 2016

Games 3D CAD Product Designer  (Freelance)

Working on Monopoly, Scrabble, Game of Life and more...

After a successful Internship at Hasbro, I was asked back to freelance on the same team after graduating (until they closed the UK department). Working on CAD concept visualisations using Solidworks and 3D printing, pitching to the US teams and play-testing.

  • CAD concept generation

  • Hardline games concepts

  • Electronic handheld game design

  • Packaging design

  • Logic calculations for digitalisation of traditional games

  • 3D Printing technician

  • Rendering and presentations

  • Inventor relations + concept development

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April 2016 - Sept 2018

Head of Design (Product and Garment)

Designing toys for kids magazines, bespoke merchandise garments and product, for major brands such as Disney, Ted Baker, Benefit, Bacardi, Milwaukee, Orla Kiely and many more. The role was very diverse project wise and included managing other designers and projects, liaising with factories and even designing and building their website http://www.xcelbespoke.co.uk/.

  • Worked for high-end clients, pitching to their in-house teams

  • Managed the design team including overseas freelancers

  • Influenced design led thinking across the business

  • Lead concept design development

  • Developed concepts and product ranges that met the business objectives of the organisation and that advanced the brand and proposition strategy

  • Ensured that design and creative projects were delivered on time and to budget, ensuring commercial success

  • Working as direct point of contact with the factories

  • Provided quality control over design outputs and production, testing and photography

  • Established and developed best practice with the design and creative team including quality control, testing forms and documentation

  • Rebranding the company Xcel Bespoke

  • Web design and coding

  • Social media channels and content development for rebrand, Linkedin + Facebook

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Sept 2018 - Aug 2020

Toy Designer

Working on the full design process from research, concept development to final product sample sign-off, liaising with FE factories, including designing new product categories for the company and sourcing factories. Refreshing social media channels, maximising engagement, creating content, scheduling and planning story and feed posts. Implementing social sustainability strategies and materials research. Trade show planning, 3D modelling and web design UI.

  • Future design thinking

  • Design strategy

  • Sustainability + materials research

  • Sustainability strategy

  • Concept development hard-lines

  • Concept development soft-lines

  • Bespoke product design for clients

  • Working with external licenses

  • CAD design

  • 3D printing + model making

  • Presentation design

  • Digital media design - web + social

  • Trend reports

  • Trade show stand design

  • Rebranding and content creation planning + engagement strategy Instagram and Facebook

  • Instagram and Facebook advertising

  • Amazon Seller + Vendor Central advertising

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Dec 2020 - APRIL 2022

Toy Designer

I started my new adventure at IMC Toys in December 2021 moving to a new country during the pandemic, some may call me brave some may say crazy. At IMC I worked on numerous brands and managed new inventor products, and most recently working exclusively on BUBILOONS and BLOOPIES. I also worked on the sustainability team helping to creative sustainability strategy and a 5 year plan for the company. I've worked on a diverse number of products for both boys and girls ages baby to 12 years and worked hard every day to push the boundaries of what is expected in the toy industry creating new and exciting avenues.

And yes, the weather is great! 

  • New materials research

  • Sustainability + materials research

  • Sustainability strategy

  • Concept development hard-lines

  • Concept development soft-lines

  • Working with internal licenses and content teams

  • Designing toys to work in parallel with the Youtube/Netflix series and animators

  • CAD design - Rhino + Blender

  • 3D printing + model making

  • Presentation design

  • Digital integration

  • Working closely with marketing teams

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 Tracey Small - Senior Director of Product Development

Elise has demonstrated an extraordinary level of proactivity and tenacity in her time at Hasbro. I have been impressed with Elise’s lateral thinking during brainstorms and development meetings. She has consistently gone above and beyond our expectations of what an intern could and should deliver, and as a result has been given responsibility for tasks and projects that would usually be given to seasoned designers. 

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Toby Hextall - Senior Designer

Elise has done well at Fantastic concept generation with strong ideas and thinking. Elise has been very proactive in getting things done and working out ways to solve problems as they come up. She has picked up a rounded understanding of the complexities of working in a multi-disciplinary team, and within the constraints of a very large global corporation. She has taken on more responsibility than the students in the past, and managed it all within her stride.

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Richard Heayes - Director of Design

I hired Elise when I was Director of Design at Hasbro. We were looking for smart, self motivated designers who could work alone but also be a dynamic member of a multi disciplinary global team. Elise was a perfect fit and was hired past her placement. She worked on a variety of top tier game brands and added real value to all the projects she was part of. I know she has continued this in her recent jobs as we often catch up at Industry events. I have no hesitation in recommending her

"And I was a hand model!"

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