Design with a lively hive: Application for Spring 2016 mOb Design Session opens

Storefront's Design Session program engages professional and emerging designers to provide conceptual assistance on community-initiated projects. Through a partnership with VCUarts called mOb (Middle of Broad), Storefront offers a unique track of design assistance that engages a lively hive of 30 students representing the fashion, graphic, and interior design departments (with a handful of students from The School of Engineering and other departments). These are Storefront's community design apprentices. Each semester, interdisciplinary student teams work alongside professional mentors and directly with clients to arrive at a set of design deliverables. Projects can range in type, scale, and feasibility. Some of these projects have included:

  • Identity for the Partnership for Smarter Growth
  • Little Libraries of Highland Park
  • Interior design for TheaterLAB's venue, The Basement
  • Graphic identity for community strategist Lillie A. Estes
  • Design of fences and sheds for 1st Avenue.
  • A seatbelt cover for Massey Cancer Center chemotherapy patients
  • And more!

When applying to become a client of mOb, consider the following:

  • Anyone can apply — nonprofits, businesses, individuals, and even state and local government agencies have been clients.
  • mOb is not a design-build studio. Students can, however, provide prototypes and offer conceptual deliverables to help with the initial phases of the design process.
  • Projects should be compatible with a semester-long timeline (January 2016 - May 2016).
  • While secured funding is by no means a prerequisite for applying to participate in mOb, some knowledge about budgetary constraints helps students make informed design decisions.
  • Participants of Design Session are asked to contribute to the mOb + Storefront partnership on a pay-what-you-can basis. These contributions go toward studio supplies for drawing, printing, and prototyping, and significantly improve the quality of project outcomes.
  • Applications to become a client of the mOb studio are open until January 4, 2016. Spring 2016 clients will be notified by January 11.

Questions? Contact Storefront's Program Director Tyler King (, or stop by our studio at 205 E Broad St.