2021 is a very special year for us here at Design Bridge. This September, we were proud to honour our 35th anniversary!
It goes without saying that such a momentous occasion couldn’t go unmarked, despite the difficulties faced around the world over the past 18 months, so we set about planning how to suitably celebrate all of DB’s passionate people, our generous culture, iconic work, and fantastic success through the years. Whilst we’ve all had to adapt to a new normal, and there are some restrictions still in place (which we did of course follow in the different regions), we wholeheartedly welcomed the opportunity to physically connect once again after so long apart, and to raise a glass to all of our incredible achievements since the birth of the first Design Bridge Studio in London back in 1986.
Even though we weren’t all able to come together as one group, we had the idea of staying connected through one rolling celebration, with each of our studios involved in 35 hours of festivities around the world – proving that even in the face of adversity, you can do a lot – with a little creative ambition…
Following the flow of time differences in each of our studios, our team in Singapore commenced proceedings, before passing the virtual baton to Amsterdam, then London, on to New York, and finally concluding in Shanghai, with each studio taking inspiration for their unique celebrations from the decade in which it was established.
Keep on scrolling to hear a little bit more about what we all got up to…
Starting in the humid metropolis of Singapore, our team celebrated the noughties with Y2K fashion statements inspired by low rise jeans and the women who ruled pop culture at the time; we’re talking Charlie’s Angels, Destiny’s Child, and Britney Spears to name just a few! Teams played games that featured the iconic brands we’ve worked with in the past and present. This included a “Guess the Brand” online quiz, a fabulous scavenger hunt around Singapore, as well as getting creative with a video and poster-making competition.
Next, it was over to the bicycles and windmills of the Netherlands where they celebrated their founding decade – the 90s. Decked out in scrunchies, fanny packs, and bomber jackets, our teams gathered at our fabulous new studio at Amsteldok, with incredible views from our roof terrace overlooking the river. After a long-awaited catch-up over lunch, the team, of course, took a boat trip down the city’s canals and was (thankfully) met with beautiful weather all day long…
From Amsterdam’s canals to the streets of London town, the team took over a venue under the railway arches at Goldhawk Road, with our founding decade of the 80s providing ample inspiration for a celebration full to the brim with retro games, glittering disco balls, shoulder pads, shiny shell suits and a whole lot of lycra. There were stars in our eyes with an abundance of George Michaels, Madonnas and Freddie Mercurys, all taking to the dancefloor to boogie the night away…
To the city that never sleeps, our New York studio brought to life their decade – the 10s – in a slightly more refined way to the other studios; instead of fancy dress, the teams just went straight up fancy. After 18 months in sweatpants, it was time to dust off our party clothes and head out for a night on the town. The team hosted their festivities on a boat that overlooked the skyline, and in true NYC style, enjoyed marvelous drinks, wonderful food, and, of course, the best company.
And lastly, the final stop on our world tour was Shanghai, a place known for its combination of history and modernity – which our team certainly lived up to! Heading to a glamping site in the mountains above the city, the team started their celebrations at one with nature, planting trees in Shaoxing (more on this below…). The team then enjoyed some collaborative activities before bringing our 35 hours of studio celebrations to a close with their own party in the evening. As the newest established office, the theme was “20s and beyond” – think Mad Max and Burning Man, with outlandish outfits to match!
To wrap up the occasion, in previous years, we have marked our anniversaries with beautiful prints celebrating everybody who has ever worked at Design Bridge – (you can see some of them here!) This year, we decided to give something back by planting a tree for every person who now makes Design Bridge the very special place it is.
If you’d like to be part of our next 35 years, then head on over to our careers page – we’d love to hear from you.
Contributors: Thank you to Holly Nicholas, Laura Bird, Tayler Spellis, Mike Perry, David Zhou, Yi Jing Zhou, Adriënne Jansen, and Jazz de Koene.
And a huge thank you to all the party planners at each studio!