Join our competition to design a UCL festive bauble for 2023

A festive bauble in colourful packaging
A festive bauble in colourful packaging
Is it too early to start thinking about the festive season? We don’t think so! Read on to find out how to enter our new competition.

Is it too early to start thinking about the festive season? We don’t think so!

UCL Estates Campus Experience and UCL Public Art would like to invite any staff and student at UCL to develop a design for our 2023 festive bauble. This is the first of an annual design competition that will lead to a varied and innovative range of decorations that are unique to UCL and its community.

UCL has a wide community of staff, students and alumni who would appreciate the opportunity to purchase a festive keepsake to show their support and fondness for the university.

This competition forms a small but important part of an emerging programme of opportunities for our students and staff to play a role in shaping our campuses.

Call for expression of interest

We are inviting expressions of interest to design a hanging decoration that can adorn the Christmas trees on our campuses, as well as be purchased by the community as a souvenir.

This competition is open to all current students and staff. Only one entry per person. The winning entry will receive a £500 honorarium.

Key Practical considerations

The bauble will be a spherical shape and the design must be suitable for the material. This will be glass and will be produced by an established bauble manufacturer.

UCL brand guidelines must be considered in an innovative and creative response to the call for ideas.


The bauble would appear on the UCL Christmas trees at all of our campuses.

The Submission

The proposal should consider the following:
  • Materials/weight - the design should work when printed on glass. The bauble background colour will be white, and therefore it should be considered how the design sits against this.
  • Dimensions - of a scale that would be visible on a large-scale public tree. You must take into consideration that the maximum print area is 57mm diagonally. A circular motif makes best use of the print area.
  • Sustainability - Do not use dates as part of the design to prevent wastage of baubles at the end of the year.
  • Relevance/theme - A festive design that encompasses the UCL community.

Submission Requirements

The concept proposal should include:

  • A short, written narrative about the design outlining the inspiration, no more than 300 words
  • A visualisation of the proposal

  • As a part of the submission, we do not expect you to work out the costs of making the work. However, in the development of the idea it is important for you to consider that the chosen design needs to be cost effective to produce in quantities.

    Selection criteria

    A panel will review the submissions against the criteria below:
    • Creativity and innovation: A design that is reflective of UCL
    • Quality/suitability of materials: The design must be lightweight and suitable for internal and external locations
    • Detailed design and implementation: The Estates team, Slade and UCL Public Art will lead on the delivery of the selected concept proposal
    • Future use/merchandise: The designer agrees that their design but may be used with further consent on additional products, such as bags, mugs. etc.

    Timescale Proposals should be submitted through the Competition to design UCL festive baubles Microsoft Form by 11pm on Sunday 3 September. Only one entry per person.
    • University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT (0) 20 7679 2000