2021 Featured Programs



Irrie Catchings III and Julia Fernandez

Are you a senior Design Student or a recent graduate? Do you have a solution or outstanding idea that shows your talent as a designer? Would you like to have the opportunity of showing your creativity and skills in a less rigid format?

San Francisco Design Week invites you to participate in Hire Me, a way to showcase your talent and get the spotlight on your unique way of solving for challenges.

Read more on how to participate



Whether you’re entering the job market for the first time, transitioning in your career, or just want some sage advice, our mentors are there for you to provide essential feedback. Join us during Design Week for the perfect opportunity to speak to the experts about how to put your best foot forward. Our mentors will meet you one-on-one to offer their feedback in the following topics:

  • Portfolio review
  • General Mentorship
  •  Interview practice/feedback
  • Resume review/feedback
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    Spotlight with Zahid Sardar Interview Series

    This series is a dynamic, fun and informal virtual forum, hosted by acclaimed California design editor Zahid Sardar. The talks illuminate ideas and creativity where design is engaged to solve everything from global issues affecting billions of people, to rarified, customized design programs. The 60-minute webcast format includes a visual presentation of recent work, and a personal live interview with Zahid Sardar discussing some of the most creative ideas today we can all use.

    Past interviews include architects Clive Wilkinson, and Takashi Yanai; interior designer Gary Hutton; industrial designer Robert Brunner; and Henrybuilt founder Scott Hudson; landscape architects Surfacedesign, and Andrea Cochran, as well as other acclaimed creative leaders of the region.

  • Spotlight with Zahid Sardar: Architect GREG FAULKNER. Hosted by FLEXFORM Thursday, 6/10 5:00 PM
  • SPOTLIGHT WITH ZAHID SARDAR: Geographer-at-Large EAMES DEMETRIOS Friday, 6/11 3:00 PM
  • SPOTLIGHT WITH ZAHID SARDAR: Artist & Designer Walter Hood Friday, 6/11 5:00 PM
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    Small Batch & Made to Order

    Digital and In Person Exhibit

    The exhibit “Bay Area Made: Small Batch & Made to Order” will showcase high quality, innovative, and locally made products of the broad and diverse Bay Area Made maker community. It will highlight the making processes and conscious choices from concept to finished product that result in products that are better for the user, the community, and the planet. This will be the first exhibit of its kind in the Bay Area.

    Founded in 2017, Bay Area Made is a platform dedicated to showcasing products made in the Bay Area and the people who create them. Through our member directory, journal, social media, events, and exhibits, we highlight the richness and diversity of our region and the creativity, craftsmanship, and values of the companies that have chosen to make their products here. Additionally, Bay Area Made plays a key role in building community amongst local makers, which facilitates collaboration, innovation, resources, and shared best practices.

    Visit Bay Area Made


    Adobe Event Series

  • How to Design for Emoji Inclusivity with Jenny 8. Lee, and Yiying Lu
    Thursday, 06/10 2:00 PM

  • The Reinvention of Illustrationwith Eric Snowden, VP of Design at Adobe
    Tuesday, 06/08 4:00 PM

  • A Workshop on How an Emoji Becomes an Emoji
    Wednesday, 06/09 1:00 PM

  • The Emoji Story

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    A History of Arab Graphic Design with Bahia Shebab and Haytham Nawar

    Tuesday, 06/08 9:00 AM

    Arab graphic design emerged in the early twentieth century out of a need to influence, and give expression to, the far-reaching economic, social, and political changes that were taking place in the Arab world at the time. But graphic design as a formally recognized genre of visual art only came into its own in the region in the twenty-first century and, to date, there has been no published study on the subject to speak of. A History of Arab Graphic Design traces the people and events that were integral to the shaping of a field of graphic design in the Arab world. Examining the work of over eighty key designers from Morocco to Iraq, and covering the period from pre-1900 to the end of the twentieth century, Bahia Shehab and Haytham Nawar chart the development of design in the region, beginning with Islamic art and Arabic calligraphy, and their impact on Arab visual culture, through to the digital revolution and the arrival of the Internet. They look at how cinema, economic prosperity, and political and cultural events gave birth to and shaped the founders of Arab graphic design.


    Getting Started as a Designer in AR/VR with Diego Mendes and Morgan Chin

    Friday, 06/11 1:00 PM

    Have you ever wondered how to transition from 2D design to AR/VR? What are the skills you need? What are hiring managers looking for? Join Diego Mendes, a Product Design Manager in the AR/VR team at Facebook Reality Labs, and Morgan Chin, an incoming Product Designer and former Intern to learn from their experiences and perspectives.


    Podcast: Technically Speaking with Harrison Wheeler

    Mon 06/07, Tues 06/08, Weds 06/09, Thurs 06/10, and Fri 06/11

    Weekdays, 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

    The Technically Speaking podcast amplifies the voices of underrepresented leaders to inspire the next generation of black and brown designers through authentic, thought-provoking, and immersive storytelling.

    The conversations will cover a wide scope of insightful topics like communicating effective design, activism, career tips and everything in between. Take a journey through the in’s and out’s of UX with host, Harrison Wheeler.


    Podcast: Google Design Notes

    After a year-long hiatus, Design Notes, Google’s podcast series, will be debuting a special new episode for San Francisco Design Week. Host, Liam Spradlin will be interviewing fashion designer, Julian Zigerli on his collaborative design practice and what it means to be a queer designer in the Zurich fashion scene.

    Design Notes is a Google Design podcast about creative work and what it teaches us, hosted by Liam Spradlin. In each episode, we talk with people from unique creative fields to discover what inspires and unites us in our practice.


    Designer Loneliness: Cause, Cure, and Connection with Kat Vellos We Should Get Together

    Thursday, 06/10 3:00 PM

    This presentation explores why so many designers experience loneliness in their roles, and how this leads to struggling in individual designers’ lives and attrition across the design field. The solution cultivates greater connection, inclusivity, humility, and non-transactional peer support. In this session, attendees will have a chance to open up about their experiences with loneliness, hear inspiring research about how to cultivate closer feelings of belonging in the design community, and leave feeling more connected to each other.



    Google Design

    Join SF Design Week with Google for 4 unique events with Google Design. Google Design is a cooperative effort led by a group of designers, writers, and developers at Google. We work across teams to create content and produce events that showcase Google’s design work and champion innovators in our field.

  • Career Transitions into Product Design June 7th, 6pm
  • Typography in the Variable Age June 8th, 1pm
  • Why Google needs art directors the importance of storytelling June 9th, 6pm 
  • Creating racial equity in product design inside google June 10th, 6pm
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    Diane Dorrans Saeks presents Cocktails with Top Interior Designers and Architects

    In this trio of webinars produced and directed by best-selling design author Diane Dorrans Saeks, we examine and celebrate this current moment in design and architecture—and fact the future of design with optimism and renewed energy.

    Each highly accomplished designer and architect will speak of works in progress, new work, and what they see happening in the near future. These three webinars celebrate achievement, creativity, the power of ideas, and the power of optimism.

    Diane Dorrans Saeks is an editor, design journalist, lecturer, and instructor. She has written for the New York Times, Harper’s Bazaar, Australian Vogue, C Magazine, the Times, London. She is the founder of THE STYLE SALONISTE blog, and posts on her Instagram sites @dianedorranssaeks and #mylifetimelibrary. She is the author of 24 books on design. Her publisher is Rizzoli.

    The Modernists Monday, June 7th 6:00 PM

  • Gary Hutton
  • Mead Quin
  • Eche Martinez
  • The Modern Architects Wednesday, June 9th 6:00 PM

  • Joshua Aidlin of Aidlin Darling
  • Anne Fougeron of Fougeron Architecture
  • Zoe Prillinger of Ogrydziak Prillinger Architects
  • Modern Women of Design and Architecture Thursday, June 10th, 6:00 PM

  • Anne Wilkinson BAMO
  • Susan Collins Weir
  • Catherine Kwong
  • Leanne Conquer and Alexis Tompkins CHROMA
  • Open to designers in all disciplines, architects, students, entrepreneurs, tech specialists, apprentices, interns and the public.


    The Creator

    A new system is needed for a new reality.

    We have experienced various system shocks in the past year. We recognize that the system that we’ve created is broken, and we can only create our ways forward.

    As part of 2021 SF Design Week’s official program, The Creator is an initiative launched by designers and venture investors to advance the discussion of POWER to challenge the status quo and demonstrate the efficacy of thoughtful creation through connecting design and venture.

    Read more about The Creator.


    Support Local Businesses! Featured Design Sight: Poet and/the Bench

    The arts and culture history and engaging experience that our town of Mill Valley offers is part of its fabric, and we are passionate about preserving this history. Just over the Golden Gate Bridge, we have created an intimate presentation of contemporary fine art and design from emerging and established creatives from the Bay Area and nationally. The Poet and/the Bench edit reflects our passion for discovery and a considered fascination with narrative, taste and a devotion to craft. From pop icons of hope, optimism and unconditional love to dreamy photography of Golden Gate Park that looks like painting with a camera, hand painted desert-inspired textile designs, Scandinavian-inspired ceramics to fierce and sublime jewelry. Special exhibit during Design Week!

    11 Throckmorton Ave
    Poet and the Bench
    MILL VALLEY, CA 94941

    Monday, Wednesday – Saturday 10:30 am – 5:00 pm
    Sunday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
    Closed Tuesdays

    Visit Poet And/The Bench


    Virtual Platform: Boomset

    This year as we thought of Design Week fo this year, we wanted to continually improve upon attendees and hosts’ experience. We partnered with Boomset Virtual Platform to host SF Design Week 2021 15th Edition. The whole event will be held with the SF Design Week Festival on Boomset with all the features you need to participate in an engagement and meaningful way. Read more about Boomset and SF Design Week 2021 15th Edition.
    This year’s platform has a wide array of ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES!

  • Closed Caption
  • Multilingual Translation
  • Accessibility Profile options like Seizure-Safe, ADHD-Friendly and for the Visually-Impaired
    • • Content Adjustments for easier readability
      • Color Adjustments like Dark, Light, or Monochrome mode
      • Orientation Adjustments to mute sounds, stop animations, hide images, and more!