by Elizabeth Lavis | 30 Mar 2021
Although Fanny de Bray, Founder and Creative Director of Made for You, has hit some incredibly high notes in her career, she remains firmly rooted to the ground and always cognizant of the best piece of advice she’s ever gotten. “Never rest on your laurels,” she said. “Don't take your past achievements for granted and always keep working hard and putting yourself in question.”
de Bray started as an Art Director for TBWA, a prominent design firm in New York City, but she quickly began freelancing to see how other design firms operated. As de Bray’s knowledge base grew, she realized that she was meant to spearhead her own company. “I learned a lot at these agencies, but I decided to found my own and have my own methodology and work with clients,” she said.
Her grit and determination helped launch Made for You, a design firm whose express mission is to give businesses a unique competitive edge by asking tough questions and distilling down what messages businesses want to convey. “We have a strategic and collaborative approach with clients,” she said. “We carry out an upstream audit on the brand by analyzing the competitors and the sector of activity to find points of differentiation in relation to the client. Then we can form a unique and fair brand image.”
Made for You’s process hinges on four essential pillars; understanding, recommending, creating, and deploying. The understanding stage sets the tone as de Bray, and her team analyze the market and identify areas where the client is unique. This stage hinges on an in-depth audit and is the most critical for shaping brand image. Only then does Made for You launch into the second pillar. “We define the most appropriate and promising positioning strategy to identify and guide the next steps,” de Bray said.
This deep investigative foundation does two things; establishes client trust and illuminates the path forward so that great design can flourish. The third pillar is the creative process which encompasses all aspects of the client’s brand image, including packaging, website design, business cards, brochures, and other communicative tools. Finally, it’s time to deploy the campaign through targeted advertising, social media outreach, videos, and events.
de Bray takes tremendous joy in the process. “I love to see the evolution of a brand after we’ve redesigned the logo, the graphic identity, and the website,” she said. “I also like to discover different sectors of activity. I’m a trained graphic designer, so I like very creative projects. I also love the diversity of our clients, which allows us to discover new activities and never do the same thing twice.”
Although Made for You’s forensic process and big picture thinking give them a competitive edge in the design world, de Bray and her team still deal with some bumps in the road. Her approach to harsh criticism is to first seek to understand and then to work with the client towards a successful end result. “I try to understand the origin of the problem and find a solution together. Collaboration is really important to me,” she said.
With 12 years of experience under her belt, de Bray also has the design chops to convince clients that she knows what she’s doing, and she doesn’t mind the fast-paced pressure of the design world at all. “Pressure doesn't stop me from being creative,” she said. “On the contrary, I need a deadline to move a project forward.”
She’s proudest of her work with The Agence Française de Développement. Her team helped define the brand image and issue a unified message to international donors from Australia, New Zealand, and Canada to fight against climate change and promote biodiversity in the Pacific.
de Bray’s influences are continually evolving, and she relies on traveling, cinema, fashion, and art exhibits to give her fresh inspiration. “My personal plans are to travel to inspire me on a daily basis,” she said. “My professional objectives are to continue to have beautiful, diverse, and creative projects.” In this spirit of always moving forward and lifelong learning, we can expect to see greater and greater things from de Bray and her Made for You.