Born is a London-based design consultancy that delivers integrated 2D and 3D branding projects. Founded by designers Melanie Crolla and Leigh Radford in 2003, its individual approach with projects, breadth of experience across diverse sectors and broad client base set Born apart.
In transferring its deep understanding of the customer experience in commercial design to a wider audience, Born refuses to have a house-style – rather, it consistently delivers distinctively crafted and engaging projects.
Over the past decade, its clients’ success and positive changes in their users’ and customers’ behaviour has resulted in Born’s organic growth and ongoing strong partnerships.
A deep understanding of customers is core to its work today and while it would be inaccurate to describe Born’s design as commercial, its portfolio is less about pure design and very much based on the experiences design creates.
British Council, Central Working, Comptoir Libanais, Creativevents, dRMM, Ernest Jones, The Fine Food Company, Glyphics, The Home Office, Light Bureau, London Zoo, Motoden, MyHotel, NHS, RIBA, Tossed, UK Trade and Investment Department, Urban Projects Bureau, Yalla Yalla.
Born was shortlisted for Best Restaurant in the Independent Restaurant category in the 2010 Restaurant and Bar Design Awards for its work on the brand and store design of Comptoir Libanais on Wigmore Street in London.
Vogue, Elle Decoration, The Financial Times, Time Out, The Guardian.
Born has received mentions for its designs for Central Working, a workspace for entrepreneurs, the most recent of which has recently opened in Whitechapel. The design of the British Pavilion exhibition and its accompanying catalogue at the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale was also covered in numerous architectural journals.
Born’s home and studio were featured in The Guardian’s Weekend magazine, in October 2011.
Born has prototyped cycle products and exhibited at the Cycle Design Show in Islington. It will be launching these products in the UK and US soon.
With a degree in Graphic Design, Melanie started working life as a design assistant at Blueprint Magazine and then as the print studio designer at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, where she designed school literature and books for AA Publications.
Experience with large-scale brand and communications projects was gained at BamberForsyth/Fitch working on identities including AMEC, The National Gallery and Sure Start, and also on corporate reporting for FTSE 100 companies such as RBS, Whitbread and Smith & Nephew.
Melanie has taught on Kingston University’s Art and Design (Foundation) Diploma.
Publications include: Translations from Drawing to Building and other Essays by Robin Evans, Thermal Bath at Vals by Peter Zumthor and the Venice Takeaway Exhibition Catalogue.
A love of materials and colour inspire her approach to graphics, alongside a belief that humour should permeate all areas of life and work.
A BA in furniture established Leigh’s love of the craft of building and to this day it is the practical realisation of both small and large projectsthat brings him the most joy. This natural talent, combined with his aptitude for the design of experiences, has resulted in some outstanding environments.
Prior to starting Born, Leigh held influential creative positions at some of London’s top branding and design agencies working principally with UK and international retail brands in developing new store concepts for the likes of Sainsbury’s, Pret A Manger, the Eden Project, the Early Learning Centre and Adidas.
This broad portfolio of clients instilled a profound understanding of consumer consciousness of various sectors including fashion, sports, food,department stores, supermarkets, banks and restaurants and how to effectively communicate with them via design.