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Illustrations: a creative approach to merchandise

Giving away, or selling, a piece of merchandise, is often only the first part of the challenge. Creating a useful, visually appealing item is key to ensuring it will be used again and again, keeping your brand front and centre within their daily life.

The clever use of illustrations linked into a wider brand image can really increase the appeal of your merchandise. 

When the default option is to simply slap a logo on an item, look at what you can do to improve the design - either visually, or to increase your ROI.

  • add an illustration - is your organisation set in a geographic location, uses/retails specific products, or has something else of visual interest to feature?
  • add a call to action - if your item is a giveaway, a core message or instruction to contact increases specificity
  • add a slogan - is there a catchphrase or message you can use?

For Poacher 2022 International Jamboree, we commissioned external illustrator Lisa Kirkbride to create a youth-focused, friendly repeating pattern that could be stripped back to two colours where needed for cost effective print.

We then worked with our roster of specialist suppliers to develop items that could make the most of this pattern, along with some other items where we used creative colour matching on the logo alone.


These bespoke bags were printed then sewn for a full side surface print area, including a simple white print on each gusset.


These socks were jacquard woven using 5 colour matched threads, and then finished with a retail-style tag.


Caps for the event were bespoke manufactured using colour matched material and white piping for extra effect. The logo was puff embroidered and repeated in small on the reverse.


A pared-down version of the design, with two colour print only, was applied as a wrap to a white vacuum bottle.

This selection of items from a comprehensive range we created for the event, gives an insight into what's possible with some creative thought (and some slightly longer lead times!) Once a design suite is in place, new products can be adapted and created super easily, and the products bear a style and image your customers will actually want to use and hold on to.

We have in-house design, plus access to a large pool of talented illustrators with a wide variety of styles, and an understanding of print requirements. We'd love to help you with your next creative merchandise brief.

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