Imagination and child’s play were very important to Walt Disney, so when we entered the competition to design mannequins for The Disney Store’s new Imagination Park concept, we wanted to honor those values. To get ourselves in the right frame of mind, our creative team packed school lunches (PB&J & juice boxes), played dress up, and took our toys to the park stir up that kiddie creativity.

We then turned our design studio into a play area complete with costumes and props, and we hosted a focus group comprised of children.  We let them loose to have fun, taking some footage of how they played and later asked them questions about what mannequins could be, from a kid’s point of view.

When it came time to present our ideas to the Disney executive team, we brought milk & cookies and showed them the pictures of our creative process and some of our pose ideas for the child forms that would go in the stores – the Buzz stance, a princess curtsy, “jumping boy” and others.

We were told that we won the design competition because of our creative approach, and that our mannequins captured the exuberance and creativity of being a kid. However, we like to think that maybe – just maybe – it was the milk & cookies that sealed the deal.