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Elf has always been my favorite. Why? Well, I don’t really think this requires much of an explanation. Will Ferrell…in a giant elf costume. “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!” However, I have a three-year-old and have recently been introduced to the Polar Express. So I guess that snuggling on the couch with my little nugget has probably made that my new favorite Christmas movie.



I love the movie How the Grinch Stole Christmas. It’s always been a tradition between my sisters and I to watch that movie the night before Christmas.



It’s a Wonderful Life and Christmas Vacation.  It’s a Wonderful Life because it’s charming and Mr. Potter is a hero to us all.  Christmas Vacation because, well… “shitter’s full”. 


Love Christmas Vacation…especially the cat chewing on the lights scene! Most of those who are closest to me will understand why.


Die HardDie Hard is a Christmas classic.  They tried to recreate the magic in Die Hard 2: Die Harder, but it pales in comparison to the original.


Home Alone (and Home Alone 2). I don’t think I need to explain why.


I’ve got to go with the classic A Christmas Story, but I also have a soft spot for those stop motion Rankin/Bass films from the 60’s. Who doesn’t love “The Bumble”? 


I don’t like Christmas movies.




When I was about 8, my sisters and I opened a box that just had a key in it and were told to go look out back. When we went to check, there was a four-wheeler sitting on the deck!


Probably the Ghostbusters Fire House. It was like the crown jewel of playsets, and provided me countless years of action figure mayhem. I think that came out in ‘87, which makes me three years old at the time. It was probably just as tall as I was.




I guess the best Christmas gift has to be the only one I can remember right? I was 10. All my brothers and sisters had bikes of their own. I walked downstairs Christmas morning and BAM… Awesome Huffy 5-Speed bike with a speedometer and the gear shifter in the center of the handlebars. I still have it today actually.


Boy, that’s a tough one. So many great ones through the years. I’m going to have to say the one I haven’t received yet… My son Bryan, daughter Erin and wife Jamie are getting me hooked up with a really sweet Trek Domane 4 Series bike. It really pays to know people in high places (Bryan is an industrial designer for Trek.)


It was Christmas 1992. I was six and we spent Christmas morning in Ohio with my Grandma before driving nine hours home to New Jersey. Despite having already opened presents at Grandma’s, when we got home there were gifts aplenty under the tree. Highlights included the Crash Test Dummies Crash Test Center, which provided 101 ways to kill Crash Test Dummies, and a Creepy Crawlers machine. Probably the best Christmas ever.



When I was in sixth grade I wanted a Yo! MTV Raps leather jacket (don’t ask questions). I was certain it was my ticket to eternal, epic coolness. And sure enough, my parents totally bought it for me for Christmas. Then, tragedy struck. Before you could say “Downtown Julie Brown”, my aunt told my clueless, suburban, not-so-music-minded parents that Yo! MTV Raps was a rap/hip hop music show (evidently the name wasn’t telling) and they promptly returned it for something they deemed more “age appropriate”. Worst. Christmas. Ever.


BEST CHRISTMAS GIFT?!  Yeesh.  Hard one. I’ve been really lucky. So many people in my life have really paid attention the little things that make me… well, ME. so picking one gift out of so many awesome gestures is impossible.  From my mom and dad getting me my first set of tools which helped me with countless little projects… to my best friends giving me paintings they made, or drawings they created… to people giving me a really great song they think I might never have otherwise heard.  All of those things sort of just became a part of who I am. Those were, and I guess always will be, the best gifts I could ever get.  

NOW.  BEST GIFT GIVER?!  Man, that’s  Alexandra Charitan.  This is a person that I SWEAR thinks about Christmas ALL YEAR. And has to be, by far, the most endearing, thoughtful person at Christmas I’ve ever met. Every Christmas detail is always perfect and genuine. And I can’t not think about how awesome someone with that much heart makes christmas that much better.  Or. Worse, if you think of it as a competition, because you lose. 


Nacho cheese. Two years ago, my mom wrapped up little packs of nacho cheese because I didn’t have very many presents that year and she wanted to get me multiple things. So she found them and thought they were cute. And I don’t even really like nacho cheese, so it was pretty random. I told her this year not to wrap up any food items. Its always a disappointment to get food. 

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What differentiates you from Kyle?

Not much, we are actually siblings — twin spies genetically engineered and sent by [edited for legal reasons] to infiltrate your company and corrupt your files.  Our operation is going well — so far.

Where did you go to school?

Wellington Exempted Village public schools K-12

That sounds made up.

When is your birthday and what embarrassing thing about you can we ice on a cake?

October 31st  — I know that has to set me up for something good, I have high expectations.

What terrifies you most about Justin Tokos?

Any type of food he tries to put on my desk. (Especially when he waits there and stares at me to see if I will or wont eat it.) Suspicious.

We were thinking you would say something more along the lines of “everything.”

Nope, just the food thing.

Aw, that’s cute.

So, what brought you to 427 — besides the extravagant pay check, two day work weeks and free kittens (we don’t have any of those things here, by the way)?

4 plus 2 plus 7 equals 13, the unluckiest number?

I’m not as good at math, but what does 4 + 2 + You’re Fired equal?

Still 13.

In “427 Design: The Movie”, who would play you?

[Edited for legal reasons], for obvious reasons. 

Who is your favorite Ninja Turtle and why?

Venus, because she is the most hated. 

I’ve never heard of her, but she sounds awesome.

So, what’s with all the vests?

They hold in my soul. 

Don’t tell Justin.


So, Kyle — what’s it feel like to be the second of three “K-named” people we’ve hired in a month?

Kinda like being the middle child. But a lot better than being the third (sorry Kevin).

What differentiates you from Kaitlyn and Kevin?

That’s probably the hardest question honestly. I don’t really know Kaitlyn or Kevin that well yet.

Neither do we.

But Kaitlyn is shorter than me and Kevin is taller than me. I know that much.

Where did you go to school?

I went to Manchester High School in southern Summit County and I graduated from the University of Akron last May.

When is your birthday and what embarrassing thing about you can we ice on a cake?

My birthday is February 7th. The most embarrassing thing I have ever had happen to me in my life (so far) was when I accidentally used a women’s restroom in college and was almost caught, so take that as you will I guess. But I find it hilarious now.

Now. We’ll talk again on February 8th.

How do you feel about not having a window in your office?

Well, I do have a window.


But I am forced to absorb all my sunlight for the day secondarily through Brad’s office.

What brought you to 427 — besides the extravagant pay check, two day work weeks and free kittens (we don’t have any of those things here, by the way)?

I WAS told about the kittens so that played a big part until I found out it wasn’t true. But the history, talent, and expectations 427 has makes working here a fun and challenging experience.

In “427 Design: The Movie”, who would play you?

Ryan Gosling

Who is your favorite BK Kid and why?

BK Kids may have been a little before my time, but from what I vaguely remember I’d say Kid Vid because of how much he loves videogames and his cool goggles.

Well, now that I feel officially old, can you explain to me how this Internet business works to me in five words or less?

A series of everlasting tubes.

So just like Discovery Zone?



It’s always a challenge for us to design pieces for ourselves — it’s hard to find the right balance between wanting to entertain our clients and friends, while also injecting the piece with our personalities. Our Christmas card this year was actually two years in the making for this, and other, reasons, but we’re super excited to finally debut the finished piece.

We had the idea last year to do an homage to 1965′s A Charlie Brown Christmas, and we knew immediately that it had revolve around the dancing scene. Equal parts ridiculous and charming, the characters dance so distinctly and we wanted to remain as faithful as possible to the original. But of course, instead of the usual cast of Peanuts characters, we are the ones doing the dancing.

As with a lot of projects, the animation was deceptively simple. What might look like two or three frames turned out to be many, many more in some cases. Here’s a sneak peek into our process:

Reference Material

Everyone who has ever turned on a TV in the month of December knows of A Charlie Brown Christmas — 47 years later, there’s still a Charlie Brown balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. We didn’t want to parody the classic characters, rather, we wanted to remain faithful and respectful to the original. This meant doing our research, and painstakingly capturing the scene frame, by frame for static reference.

Turning Peanuts into 427 Design

Our illustrator, Joe, took those reference frames and turned them into sketches — one-by-one modifying the Peanuts gang into the 427 Design crew. We chose characters that were close to our own personalities or with which we shared a physical characteristic: Joe is holding a jacket instead of a blanket, Allie and Sally are both blondes, and Andrea added a blazer and pants to her pink shirt.

Hundreds of Frames

After each character was born, Joe illustrated their dance sequence, frame by frame. Some were more complicated than others, but he drew hundreds of frames for the final animation. These line drawings were then colored and animated in After Effects.

Final Touches

In addition to the actual characters, we wanted the entire animation to feel like it took place in the Peanuts universe. We illustrated our office building for the beginning, and a snowy field for the ending. Everything you see is custom and hand-done, from the individual borders at the end, to the ribbon type “Merry Christmas”.

We hope you enjoyed watching our card as much as we enjoyed creating it! Merry Christmas from all of us at 427 Design!