A lot of people describe working at Design Bridge as like being part of a big family, so it’s always extra special when someone who leaves us for pastures new somehow finds their way back into the family. A little while back our Amsterdam Studio recently welcomed a couple of familiar faces to the team: Jessica Chote and Ashleigh Lambert, both of whom used to work in our London Studio. We caught up with Jess and Ash to find out what they’ve been up to and how they’re finding life in a new city…
Hi Jess, hi Ash! First things first, tell us what do each of you do at Design Bridge?
Jess: I’m a Senior Client Manager working with 2 very different clients: Akzo Nobel (who own paint brands like Dulux and Sikkens) and Barry Callebaut, one of the world’s biggest cocoa producers and whose products are used by some of the best chefs and chocolatiers in the world.
Ash: I’m a Senior Designer and I’m currently working with coffee brands Senseo and Tassimo, as well as on a couple of Barry Callebaut projects with Jess.
How did you end up in the Amsterdam Studio?
Jess: I started my career in London as a Research Assistant at a brand research agency, then I moved to Design Bridge’s London Studio to work in the Client Servicing team. I was there for 2 years before I switched to freelance, working in client servicing and project management roles at various integrated and brand design agencies. After a short stopover back in my hometown of Wellington in New Zealand, I am now back in the Design Bridge family – this time in Amsterdam. During my career I’ve worked across various clients including luxury, corporate brands and government, but I am now back to my FMCG roots. Once a packaging design gal, always a packaging design gal.
Ash: I also used to work at DB London. After moving to London from New Zealand in 2012 I joined as a Designer and was there for 5 and a half years, working on a range of brands including KFC, Fortnum & Mason and Cadbury. My proudest moment? I was super happy when the Karhu Limited Edition can that I worked on won a Silver Pentaward!
What did you get up to while you were away?
Jess: I initially left Design Bridge as I wanted to explore the wider branding world – both bigger agencies and brands, but also some of the smaller start-ups that live within it. The past few years have been a great opportunity to see the different shades of grass and broaden my experience.
Ash: I moved home to NZ and was there for about 14 months, working at a small agency called Dow Goodfolk. During my time there I think my favourite project was rebranding a primary school, It was great being able to redesign everything, from all the school signage, through to the uniforms.
Why did you decide to come back?
Jess: I missed the support that you get being part of the DB family and also the opportunity to work with some inspiring people who have been in the game for far longer than I.”
Ash: I realised that I wasn’t ready to settle in New Zealand just yet. I missed the ease of being able to travel to other countries, the rich history in Europe, and the culture and exciting events that happen over here.
What’s the best thing about working in the Amsterdam Studio?
Jess: It’s a really diverse environment and I love being surrounded by so many different nationalities. There’s a really relaxed vibe in the Studio, which makes for a nice working culture.
Ash: It feels familiar but different, which has been really nice for me. The general working processes are the same as in the London Studio, and the core values and goals are obviously the same, but there are different brands to work on, new people to work with, and a whole new city to explore.
Top 3 tips for life in Amsterdam?
Jess: So far I would say:
1. Get to know some locals for the non-touristy recommendations.
2. Be prepared to feel somewhat illiterate with your non-bilingual self!
3. Always say “yes”!
Ash: Hmmm I’m still getting to know the place, but if I was to give advice to someone who had just moved here it would be… don’t wear flip flops when riding a bike, get a rain radar app and if the weather is nice, hire a boat and go down the canals, it’s the best way to see the city.
Seeing as you’ve both done it more than once, what advice would you give to someone thinking about relocating to a different county?
Jess: Don’t over think it, regardless it will be an interesting experience.
Ash: If you get the opportunity just say yes and figure the rest out later!
Welcome back to the family!
If Design Bridge sounds like the kind of family you’d like to be a part of, check our Careers page for the latest opportunities to join our Studios in Amsterdam, London, New York, Shanghai and Singapore.