About My Work


Background & Work Process

My work as a designer and maker is informed by an understanding of how a product is made, and by an extensive knowledge of the properties of different materials and how to use them.

My years of experience in manufacturing companies have taught me about many of the techniques used in mass-production, and also about the way that large and small-scale businesses are run. I have worked directly and over long periods with factories in the Far East, visiting them and liaising with them on a daily basis to ensure successful development of products.

I also have an affinity with the one-off, or bespoke item, and occasionally make hats for Ascot.

When discussing a new product with a client I take into consideration all the standard elements such the target market, price, function, timing and competition, but I also put myself in the client’s shoes, seeing the product as they imagine it... I have been complimented many times on my ability to visualise through the eyes of the client, whilst adding something of my own vision.

I am also aware that, when designing, making or developing a product, detail is everything. I have always been a perfectionist in my work, and when it comes to creating a new item I won’t stop until every detail is exactly as it should be, even on a tiny scale.

I have a love of creativity and colour generally, but also enjoy working in 3D, and have a fascination for technical and mathematical challenges, which truly cannot all be solved by a computer programme.

I have always loved fabrics and textiles, and have always been excited by a product appearing as a result of my work.


Clients and companies include: Go to top

V&S Entertainment, Tomy, Character Options, Vivid Imaginations, Chapman Entertainment, Designworks of Windsor, WWF, Nokia, Clarks, ADM, Fifa, Sir Paul McCartney, Golden Bear, Toys R Us, Hamleys, Totem, John Adams, Carte Blanche, Pedigree, Gund, Gosh!, Rainbow Designs, Alberon, Sindy Doll, Hasbro, Mattel, Pleasant Company.


Properties I have worked on include: Go to top

World Cup mascot 2010, Olympic mascot 2012, Mike the Knight, Everything’s Rosie, Raa Raa, Doctor Who, Harry Potter, James Bond, Madagascar, I Love Pony, Animagics, HMAF, Crayola, Little Britain, Sindy Doll, Scooby Doo, Spot the Dog, Snowman, Eeyore, Piglet, Pooh, Tatty Teddy, Forever Friends, Hacky Sack, Virgin Atlantic and Buggy Boot.


Design and Product Development Skills Go to top

Soft toys:

Soft toy concept creation
Licensed character plush making
Soft toy making
Pattern making
Sample making
Mohair teddy making
Designing – hand drawing, painting, Photoshop, Illustrator, Creative Suite.


General soft goods designing and making
Technical pattern making
Fabric design
Fabric sourcing
Packaging design ideas
Graphic design concept creation
Presentation boards


Doll concept creation
Doll body design
Doll face design for sculpting and painting
Doll feature creation
Doll outfit making – patterns and samples

Product Development:

Long term range planning
Ideas generation
Project management
Sourcing suppliers
Briefing work
Monitoring development
Coordination of product marketing from literature to trade shows
Coordinating licensors, suppliers and factories
TV appearances for product promotion
Taking products from concept to finished production


Costume making


Go to top



"Alison Mills is a first class designer and seamstress with a meticulous attention to detail and an eye for bringing character and personality to her designs. The finished product is always of the highest quality which is testament to the time she gives to research, sourcing materials and pattern making."
Vickie Corner, Managing Director and Producer, V&S Entertainment (Everything's Rosie).