Leveraging design to elevate a brand

Work Sharp Tools, a brand of Darex, designs and manufactures innovative sharpening solutions. As a market leader in the power sharpening category, its manual sharpening products line offered added value to consumers and retail partners but needed a full line to position the Work Sharp brand as the complete solution and industry leader in sharpening innovation. Darex partnered with Design Central to identify opportunities to enable it to launch a complete line of innovative and high-value manual sharpening products aligned with the quality, performance and innovation consumers expect from the brand.

  • Work Sharp Tools
  • Consumer
  • Product Design
  • Engineering
  • Prototyping

Objective: Provide accelerated product development support to position a brand as an industry leader

Design thinking builds a relationship

Darex, a family-owned business, needed to extend its internal team but was new to creative outsourcing services. Eager to identify new ways of working, Darex engaged Design Central in several remote brainstorming exercises. After experiencing the design team’s process and seeing the results achieved, the teams continued to work together to identify opportunities to differentiate the Work Sharp brand from the competition. Design Central’s innovative industrial design and mechanical thinking led to several blue-sky explorations to identify solutions for new products and component configurations.

Visual brand language extends across line

Design Central explored all aspects of color, texture and shapes in the design the Pivot, Pivot Plus and Pivot Pro Sharpeners. The designers looked at user touchpoints and brand extensions and, in an expedited process, developed the visual brand language for the Pivot line that seamlessly translates to the rest of the Pivot line and across Work Sharp’s remaining sharpeners to create a cohesive and recognizable retail and e-commerce presence.