CannonDesigners in St. Louis recently participated for the first time in the annual “We Care” event. This charitable event, co-hosted by international design firm Herman Miller and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, provides children who may not otherwise be able to afford gifts for friends and family the opportunity to craft gifts for their loved ones.

Each year Herman Miller reaches out to local design teams and asks them to come up with a craft that can be made by children ages 5-13. In the spirit of the holidays, we came up with the idea to make colorful Christmas trees out of cardboard and fabric. We were one of ten firms that participated and 500 children attended the event.

“I think our team felt it was very rewarding to help these children who may not have had any other gifts to give to their loved ones. Many of the kids were grateful and expressed how thankful they were and who they intended to give their crafts to in their families,” said Maria Lesko, one of our designers who attended the event. “It was very generous of our office to fund the supplies we needed. We also had fabric sample donations from DesignTex and Maharam to help with our craft.”

The six member team of CannonDesigners spent the night helping children glue fabric to their “trees.”

We Care team

L to R: Brad Eisenbarth, Maria Lesko, Teresa Bridges, Tyler Bick, Allison Macon, Jennifer Sasahara

Maria recalled one of her favorite moments at the event: “One little boy in particular, who I ended up not even knowing his name (sad, I know), designed an interesting and bright Christmas tree craft all by himself and then I helped him glue everything together. He said he didn’t remember seeing me last year and told me he would look for me next year because that’s what friends do.”

The CannonDesign craft table was a popular one. The Christmas tree craft offered a lot of flexibility and gave the kids free creative reign. They designed, and the CannonDesigners helped them put the trees together.


“It was not only rewarding but critical to get out in the community with less fortunate kids and those who may struggle with a difficult home life. The kids were all receptive to our generosity and as the name of the event implies, we showed the kids that people in the community really do care about them as individuals,” said Brad Eisenbarth, another designer who attended the event. “The kids were great too! It was very interesting to see the different personalities come out in their individual Christmas tree designs… I also learned that hot glue guns aren’t the best tools for making crafts with kids and the glue doesn’t feel very good on bare skin.”

Our St. Louis team plans to participate in the “We Care” event again next year.