This week’s featured Guidecraft team member is Sr. Toy Designer, Suvimon Siriwong, in our new Bangkok office. She is a very welcome addition to the Guidecraft team and we’d like for you to meet her too.
GC: Tell us a little about your young life and growing up in Thailand.
SS: I was fortunate to be born in a beautiful province, close to the beach, in the eastern part of Thailand. Aside from its great geographical location, it is also rich in history and known for its unique food and abundance of tropical fruits (durian, rambutan, jackfruit, mangosteen). I grew up in a big, warm, multigenerational family. Early on, I went to Catholic school and was active in the Thai Performing Arts. As I grew older, I liked to study math and science. I then added fine arts to my studies and finally at the university level, I added industrial design as well.
GC: When did you first know you were going to be a professional designer?
SS: Even when I was young, I really loved to draw. Everywhere I went, I sketched. My father was very artistic and a great inspiration to me. Everything in my home was created by him. He spent his money on good books and toys for me. He loved movies too. He particularly loved Star Wars, and even gave me the nickname “Jord”. I think I always knew that I was going to be a designer, only back then, I thought I might become a fashion designer instead.
GC: Why did you pick children’s toys?
SS: It was at The University, that I first learned how to make a toy. My teacher, Mr. Pornthep, inspired me to not only design, but also to fabricate a toy. I really loved doing it. It made me feel so young again.
For my thesis, I researched and analyzed toys for blind children. I found that toys actually help to develop the senses and improve so many skills. It’s a wonderful thing. I then became a trainee at a toy company, and have now worked many years to create toys for all children.
GC: Are there any particular rules you follow when designing toys?
SS: These aren’t necessarily rules, but more of a philosophy and environment that produce great results.
- Be curious, be observant ——-> New ideas and solving problem
- Think of other people ———> Worth
- Creative —————————-> Innovation
- Neat, Organized —————–> Quality
- Taste ——————————–> Value
GC: What was your proudest professional moment?
SS: Many years ago, for just one year, I taught an art program to children in my hometown. One of my students from then, went on to graduate from the architecture program at The University. Afterwards, she went on to become an art teacher herself, in a very well known university. I was very proud when she told me that she had been inspired by that year of study with me.
GC: How easy is it to reach success in the design world as a woman in Thailand?
SS: I think we must be willing to learn new things and work hard to make progress and to find good opportunities in life. You have to make this day a good day, so that tomorrow will be even better and you don’t have to start at zero. Learn from what’s going on around you. It’s a good clue.
GC: Why do you work for Guidecraft vs. another company in a similar space?
SS: It’s a place where I can use my creativity and all of my experience, and continue to grow.
I’d like to also say, thank you to everybody who has come and joined in my life, you are all a part of my success. Everything I learned – both good and bad – has helped me gain experience and knowledge.