Meet Toby Sanders   

Proportion's New Creative Director

31st January 2020


We are thrilled to announce Toby Sanders as our new Creative Director. Toby brings a wealth of industry knowledge and experience, as well as an impressive thirst for innovation that's better relayed straight from the horse's mouth - Scroll for our quick-fire interview revealing his inspirations, motivations, and aspirations. 

Tell us about your career history


It all began in the VM office of a Luxury fashion House in Milan, designing windows and VM theatre. I then moved onto full instore VM and creative, then to whole store environments. More recently, I ventured into the creative direction of visual campaigns for lots of different brands. Now I’m focusing on display.

What inspires you?


I draw inspiration from a mix of diverse inputs, such as art history, interior and architectural design, museums. That mixing of inputs and cross-referencing inspires new approaches and designs: from ancient history, though to hi-tech futuristic CAD.


I recently visited Pompeii and discovered that some of the artefacts from there (dated pre-67AD) look as though they could have been made in the 19th century - astonishing! There is a sort of eternal sense about some handcrafting skills, which is what interested me in Proportion.


I greatly admire Zaha Hadid ZHStudios and the way they use high-tech computer systems to design their buildings – this is an evolution beyond traditional craft, or a digital evolution of craft.


Favourite designers / artists?


Charles Rennie MacIntosh, Eileen Gray, Corbusier, Sottsass, Stefano Giovanone, Nendo, Thomas Heatherwick.

An aspirational Creative Director?


Miuccia Prada, for her achievements, taste, and playful approach. Also, her connections both with historical and cultural inspirations and her contemporary, perhaps even futuristic, visions. I love her openness to new thinking and the sense of roots that combined, feel inspiring and rich.

THE campaign of 2019?


Hard to choose just one, my top two are ...

LVs FW2019 Men’s ADV campaign and store installations over Xmas - Blade Runner meets Gerhard Richter. Wonderful. And the flagship store expressions were amazing, as always. 


Balenciaga's terrifyingly realistic mannequins for the launch of their New York City flagship - haunting and extraordinarily powerful in perfect measure.


What does the future hold for retail / VM? 


For retailers to survive, an experiential approach is essential; generating new ways to connect with clients and creating standout, memorable displays. The growth of digital is pushing bricks and mortar retail towards greater emotional and experiential shopping environments. The challenge is to develop the tools and ideas to create that connection and energy - and have the display to match!


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