CSS industries / • paper magic group • berwick offray • CR gibson
CSS Industries is a consumer products designer, manufacturer, and distributor of seasonal / all occasion social expression products for mass merchandisers, chain drug stores, supermarkets, party stores and specialty gift shops through their affiliates:
- Paper Magic Group, Inc. - Everyday and seasonal products for social expression and celebration.
- Berwick Offray LLC - Decorative and woven ribbons, bows, gift wrap, gift bags, floral and packaging products.
- C. R. Gibson LLC - Specializing in gift, journal, sentiments.
As creative lead for the creative services teams across divisions, digital production / design, CAD development, pre-flight, and prototype teams were under my responsibility.
I assessed and reengineered processes, team roles and responsibilities as necessary with the specific intent of creating a unified creative services experience across the organization. I introduced new training, tools, and digital workflow and project management in a system where none had previously existed, providing dramatically improved skill sets, project visibility, communication and production output.
While at Paper Magic Group, I art directed, as well as held budgeting responsibility, for multiple lines of seasonal products. Also under my responsibility as Category Manager was the creative and product line development and delivery for the 16 million dollar children's exchange valentine card line. Instrumental in the research and recommendation of new trends, themes and licenses, as well as contractual negotiation for those licenses. I configured innovative product SKUs that drove the line to 24 million, a point of unprecedented profitability in the product line's history.
Some of these licensors were Nickelodeon, Disney, Warner Bros., Marvel, LucasFilm and many more. I also presented the lines at the most critical buyer meetings at Walmart, Target, K-Mart, Michaels, CVS, and more. As a side note, I created their corporate identity which is still in use to this day.
Buyseasons is an internet retailer specializing in costumes for children and adults, as well as party supplies and planning, where I was creative lead for the 26-person retail creative team.
Working with the merchant team, I established a collaborative product program between my responsibilities at BuySeasons and my past relationship with Highlights for Children. This "hybrid" project resulted in a unique blend of the two companys' core competences to achieve a profitable, brand-driven product line powered by;
- the hugely recognized Highlights brand.
- the cost-effective product development of BuySeasons.
- the appeal of exceptional creative at BuySeasons.
- integrating personalization within the product line.
- the keenly targeted marketing program of BuySeasons collaborating with the Highlights editorial staff.