Member Spotlight Robert Cantwell

Member Spotlight Robert Cantwell

“Being a member of Color Marketing Group for over 30 years, and having access to their color trend information, gives me credibility and helps my clients confirm their own forecasts.”

 — Robert Cantwell, Partner, The Associates Group, LLC 


Robert Cantwell is Partner and the creative inspiration in The Associates Group. We invited him to share how his position relates to color and design.

I am the creative side of our business. I design the product, its function, and its appearance. Once a design is finalized, I then think about the application of color and how it would look on the retail shelf. As I work with the buyers/clients, I suggest colors targeted for the client’s end-user, the consumer.

How do CMG’s Forecast and color information help you within your position?

CMG color forecasts are the basis for my color direction for our clients. I  construct a digital forecast and combinations based a great deal on CMG’s Forecast. Being a member of Color Marketing Group for over 30 years, CMG’s color trend information gives me credibility and helps clients confirm their own forecasts.

What’s the value of CMG in your role and how do you apply our Color Forecasts?

CMG is the primary color direction and adds credibility to my color directions. Our development cycle runs from May to November. Starting in December, I build my forecast for the coming 12-18 months for presentations to clients. Using CMG’s Color Forecast, l create color styling of the product with the appropriate colors depending on the client and product and then final samples are ready to show clients.

Share with us a color design project that you worked on and where the right color made all the difference and why.

The project was to design a new method of supporting and integrating lighting in a structure. We developed a unique and patented product that became the most important part of a shelter structure. (a backyard gazebo) A central hub that not only supported the structure but provided 6-8 hours of lighting. Because all the supporting structure was either black or white, black was chosen for the color of the hub. However, because it matched the frame color this important item was lost in the frame color. I knew the hub needed to be brighter to help show its importance. I reviewed  CMG’s forecast colors and saw the color Golden Rule 15-1049 TPX from their 2017 Forecast. It reminded me of the sun, a color metaphor.  We changed the color to Golden Rule and it made our product “shine”.

The Associates Group

The Associates Group, LLC is a lean, nimble product development, design, sourcing, and manufacturing organization formed by partners Robert Cantwell and Jerry Tombleson. They combine a unique set of skills with in-depth market understanding, all tightly focused on improving the client’s bottom line.  Product/Service includes: industrial design, graphic design, sourcing, manufacturing, importing and distribution of consumer products such as patio product, gazebos and backyard items, tents, sleeping bags, resin tables, and chairs


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