Volunteer in Africa

Past Product Design Projects

Alice Grau
New York, New York
Every year Global Mamas updates their product line to provide new and exciting products. The creative talent, energy and ideas of many volunteers have gone into the new products throughout the years. Though this has provided many wonderful products, it also created many inconsistencies as garments were created with many different sizing standards. At the end of 2008, Global Mamas faced the challenge of not only producing new products, but also standardizing fit across the brand for the launch of the 2009 catalog.
During her stay in Ghana Alice achieved the following:
  • Work with other volunteers and the Global Mamas to design several new products including the travel jewelry roll, the panel dress, the clutch purse and the dragonfly batik print.
  • Research the fit of market competitors and establish a standard fit for Global Mamas.
  • Orchestrate the production and fit process of 23 new apparel and cloth accessories.
  • Review all continuing products from 2008 to ensure that they followed the new standard fit.
  • Assist other volunteers in photographing and preparing digital files of all batik products for the 2009 wholesale catalog.

After spending several years with a corporate design team, Alice was thrilled by the freedom allowed in creating products for Global Mamas. Most importantly, she cherished the opportunity to work directly with the producers who would be making her designs. Alice was very eager to take on the challenge of reviewing the fit of existing products while designing new products. She said that seeing each of the products hit the "final" stage on her checklist and witnessing the women have an "Ah-hah" moment with one of the new designs was very encouraging throughout the whole process. Aside from the work, Alice truly enjoyed the opportunity to travel with the other volunteers, especially the "epic" trip to the North and Burkina Faso to visit the shea butter producers, see the different cultures and attend the SIAO.

"I will cherish everything about this experience for the rest of my life. From getting to know the women of Global Mamas and how they work to seeing all of the beauty Ghana has to offer, every bit of it will shape me."