Behind the Design: Innovating Tablescapes with Rosemary Mingle
World Kitchen product designer Rosemary Mingle has been drawn to design since she was young. She’s also had a lifelong love affair with the city of Corning, New York, so when she had a chance to mix her passion with her hometown, the answer was a resounding, “YES!” This talented up-and-coming designer of Corelle® dinnerware tells us a little bit about her colorful, inspiring journey.
Where is home for you?
I was born in Peabody, Massachusetts, but moved to Corning, New York, at age 4 when my dad got a job at Corning, Inc. He’s still there, working on the business side in human resources. Other than to attend college at Indiana Wesleyan, I’ve lived here in Corning ever since.
How long have you had a passion for product design?
I’ve always been a creative person. If you looked at the drawings in my coloring book when I was little, you’d see I was making things in patterns and plaids. I ended up majoring in painting and graphic design in college, and have been lucky to incorporate that into my career.
When did you start working for Corelle dinnerware?
I started at World Kitchen, the parent company of Corelle dinnerware, in 2011. For the first year after I graduated from college, I did freelance work, designing things like party and wedding invitations. So this is my first “real” job out of school. Before working here, I had no idea you could get a job designing plates. It’s very much a niche market.
All designers have sources of inspiration. What’s yours?
Fashion, movies and music all inspire me. I look at trends to see what people like. I subscribe to some trend magazines and go to trade shows and other events.
How long does it take one of your patterns to get to market?
If my design makes it, it takes about a full year from start to finish. We work on hundreds of designs each year and then release only 10 to 12 new patterns, plus our special holiday lines.
If you were to single out a favorite pattern, which one would you choose?
There are so many great designs that I feel like I have a new favorite every day. At World Kitchen, we designers work on a little bit of everything, but there’s one Corelle pattern I have a soft spot for because I can claim it as my own. It’s called Folk Stitch and it’s sold at Target. It’s a source of pride, and it’s exciting to be able to see it in stores.
How many people do you work with?
There are two other designers and we do most of the design work. There also are three managers, all who work under our Director of Design Anna Eide.
Take us behind the scenes. What does the Corelle design studio feel like?
Most of the time it’s an exciting place and a lot of fun. Like most jobs, it can be stressful at times, but overall it’s very enjoyable. It is a very, very collaborative idea process. We bounce things off each other, and that always gives us the best ideas.
Do you have a family?
Yes, my husband, Kyle, and I will be married 3 years this summer. He’s from New Jersey and has a master’s degree in communications. I haven’t received any pressure from the in-laws yet about grandkids, but I have heard some requests from the grandparent-in-laws!
When not designing, how do you spend your free time?
I have another creative outlet in dance, especially ballet and modern, at the community level. I also like hiking or just being outdoors. They’re all great ways to get creatively inspired!