It should come as no surprise that Guests love special mementos from their Disney vacations. The Disney Parks Merchandise team annually introduces commemorative merchandise celebrating a particular year. Embellished with images of Disney characters and attractions, these products with a date quickly become the most popular items found at Disney Parks. But how does the merchandise team keep this annual assortment looking fresh? According to Dan Howard, senior creative director with Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media Creative Group, artists and product developers look to the latest design trends as seen in this year’s Disney Parks 2018 Collection.
“This year’s artwork has a handcrafted, tonal look with nods to the rich heritage of The Walt Disney Company. This design approach gave merchandisers many options for making stylish new products that appeal to even more Guests,” explained Dan.
Almost two years in the making, work on this collection began with a style guide. Product developers use elements from this guide – such as logos, graphics, colors, or patterns – to ensure the overall merchandise assortment has a consistent look.
Products in this year’s assortment include everything from collectible pins and toys to headwear and accessories. Inspired by hand drawn animation, Disney characters – Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto and Goofy – are often seen interacting with the products in creative ways.
“We interjected some playfulness into the designs by using iconic items from Disney Parks such as Chip and Dale hiding under an oversized Mickey Mouse ear hat. It became a plush figure and a holiday ornament,” continued Dan.
The number 8 in “2018” also ties the collection together as artists incorporated repeating circles filled with sketches of Disney landmarks, attractions and icons throughout the designs.
The apparel team created fashionable options for adults and kids by adding these circles to t-shirts and sweatshirts. For the home décor team, the number eight made the perfect handle for a coffee mug.
Look for the Disney Parks 2018 Collection in select merchandise locations throughout Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. Select products are also available on ShopDisney.com or Shop Disney Parks.