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Hello, I'm Ilsa

I work with teams to solve complex business challenges through empathetic design thinking. Following 15 years as an industrial designer, academic and entrepreneur, I have spent the last 5 years leading design teams in human-centred approaches to digital problem-solving, particularly UX research & service design in the healthcare sector.

I am passionate about ensuring that citizens have the right to be able to fully access important public services, & should have the opportunity to experience quality digital opportunities and user-friendly experiences in all their daily digital interactions.


My skills combine commercial strategy and research expertise with deep knowledge of the design process, to develop quality outcomes, confident teams & proven practices. This results in inclusive & intuitive digital products & services, building client trust & investment in the value of good design.



Principles in practice

Career Highlights



Products created

Prior to my recent digital career, I was previously an industrial designer and commercialised a wealth of physical products.


Public presentations

I have been a guest speaker at over 20 organisations and have been Keynote speaker several times, whilst a Senior Lecturer in Product Design at the University of Lincoln.


Recognitions awarded

I have been recognised by Design Council UK, Sustainable Furnishings Council, Audi, Phillips, and more whilst working as a creative consultant, 


Publication references

I was a features editor for 4 design publications, my industrial designs have been referenced in 7 books & 2 journals with multiple press articles celebrating outcomes.


Media appearances


Businesses founded

I have founded 4 creative businesses to foster creative talent:

5ML Design Collective 

Rethinkthing LTD

MYNE boutique

Batala Manchester.



Patents granted

My most well-known design, the "Flo standing and Walking aid" had patents granted in the USA and UK. One of my freelance clients also has a patent granted for his Q'ears device that I created for him.

Ilsa is an excellent design professional with a highly creative and innovative outlook; her ability to problem-solve is outstanding and she has an expert understanding of digital design applications and an exceptional hands-on ability.

Stewart Bibby Deputy Head of Lincoln School of Design at University of Lincoln

Ilsa truly is an expert in her field. Always willing to help and support us to deliver our projects with our audience in mind. A joy to work with! 

Sophie Johnshon PhD. Senior Innovation Consultant at Alder Hey Children's Hospital

Her proactive attitude, ambition to raise the profile of North West design community, creativity and design knowledge all make her a great person to work with - as well as being an exceptional designer.

Lesley Morris Ex Chair of the Design & Technology Association
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Outside of work

I spend much of my free time as an international Samba Reggae percussionist. 


Since 2016 I have been drumming with “Batala”, a global organisation of nearly 2000 players worldwide. We travel throughout Europe, USA and South America, passionate about bringing Brazilian candomble inspired rhythms to the streets. I co-founded a new band in Manchester in 2003 and I play Dobra, Caixa and Repinique, I am also a conductor. 

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