Elliott McKnight is a Creative Director based in Atlanta, GA.

Client: Pensole Lewis College + Timberland
Project: PLC DiverCity

Out of hundreds of applicants I was selected in a group of 16 students for a five-week online program with VFCorp and Pensole Lewis College. 

I worked as a color and material designer in a team of 3. One apparel designer and one accesories designer. We worked directly on a project for Timberland by reimagining what Timberland will look like for the next 50 years to come.

  1. Adaptive Modular Attire: How can we provide our Creative Artisan with a versatile modular wardrobe that effortlessly transitions between work, commute, social engagements, and outdoor adventures, all while ensuring durability and performance for Fall/Winter '24?
  2. Elevated Safety Essentials: How can we craft stylish, innovative safety accessories – including safety glasses, ear plugs, and gloves – that not only prioritize protection during work but also resonate with the aesthetic sensibilities of the Creative Artisan?

It was my responsibility to develop the target consumer, sustainable POV, design langua the color palette and materials palette. Below is a recap of the project. 

Timberland Consumer Pitch

Meet Christine Espinal: A 24-year-old Dominican maestra of set design working at Lichen NYC. Our creative artisan. You may be asking yourself, well what does that mean? Well instead of just telling you, we want to bring you into a day in the life of Christine.

Her apartment in Bushwick is a tapestry of her life—eclectic yet organized. As she opens her rustic wooden door, aged with character, she hangs her Timberland overalls on a hook. This isn't just a statement piece; it's a chameleon, much like her. The aroma of sandalwood greets her, filling the entire room.

When dawn breaks, Christine is already in her element. Early morning cardio is her ritual, a practice she follows religiously. Post-exercise, she luxuriates in the warmth of a sauna, savoring a sip of invigorating green tea.

Emerging from the cocoon of her home, she takes the J train at Kosciuszko St. Christine wears her Timberland pants. Her sketchbook, filled with designs and visions, rests inside her Timberland tote. It's a bag that effortlessly blends utility with style, equipped to hold her iPad, a ruler, and a tape measurer. A triple waist belt, cinches her pants, the compartments holding lip gloss and small tools, each item a testament to her layered life.

By noon, she finds herself enveloped by the ambiance of the Brooklyn Roasting Company on Jay Street. Taylor, the barista, who knows Christine by name, would prepare her favorite, the Flat White, forming a velvety shape of the Dominican Republic in the foam. Every detail in the café, from the industrial décor to the leather couch she's seated on, resonates with her aesthetic.

Later, Christine takes the 2 train to arrive at Sunset Complex, a Brooklyn warehouse. She unzips her Timberland tote, as her hands reach for the tape measurer, Jordan Ward, the music artist, makes a last-minute request. With grace and precision, Christine adjusts the set, her Timberland products adapting to her needs just as she adapts to her ever-changing environment.

As twilight descends upon the city, Christine walks through Prospect Park to pick flowers and retreats to her apartment. On her worktable, a laptop runs Blender, next to sketches and doodles. In the background you can hear the sounds of Jungle’s new album on vinyl.

Christine embodies the Timberland spirit of the 'Creative Artisan.' Our new collection doesn't just dress her; it lives with her. It's in the bag that carries her tools of trade, the jacket that morphs according to her needs, and the pants that are as dynamic as her life. In championing Christine, we're not just paying homage to Timberland's past; we're carving a path to its future—a future that's as adaptive, stylish, and sustainable as the artisans we serve.

"The Artisan's Palette"

The "Artisan's Palette" we’ve crafted for our collection is rooted in the fawn color of the C1 mirror designed by Christine. This warm hue creates a perfect backdrop for the cooler autumn months, harmonizing seamlessly with Timberland's iconic wheat boot colorway. As the days shorten and leaves crisp into auburns, Christine's fawn mirror evokes that sense of groundedness, a return to origins—much like Timberland’s commitment to durability and authentic style.

Our palette extends this fawn base into an analogous color scheme, effortlessly blending with Timberland's historic palette. The mix of maize, atomic tangerine, and terra cota—echo the natural world, drawing parallels to the colors that define an autumn landscape in Brooklyn New York.

"The Domino Palette: Aqua Soul, Cultural Roots, Crafted Legacy"

Our collection’s color palette draws direct inspiration from Christine's steel teal dominoes. Mirroring the Caribbean sea surrounding her native Dominican Republic—a poignant, tactile link to a heritage rich in family and community. This striking blue becomes the central color narrative.

The steel teal is more than just a hue; it’s a statement. It captures her unique blend of heritage, creativity, and craftsmanship—a trifecta that also encapsulates Timberland’s core values of authentic style, rugged performance, and sustainability.

The split complimentary elements pay homage to Timberland's commitment to timeless, enduring style, while the teal accents channel the spirited energy and personality of Christine.