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Made in Britain

March 6, 2017

Sources of inspiration every designer needs to know about

By: Luke

Dashes Graphic

Feeling stuck in a design rut? Switch things up and open your eyes to new sources of inspiration:


We all secretly love people-watching. By taking an active note of what strangers on the street are wearing, you can also quickly top up your creative mojo. All you have to do is grab a pit-stop on a park bench and draw.

See how that woman has styled her jumpsuit? Or the way that chap has rolled up his shirtsleeves? You’ll soon find your sketchbook is full.

If you’re short on time, make Instagram your new best friend. Follow streetstyle photographers such as Who What Wear and Streetstyled for a glimpse of what people are wearing.

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Sometimes a change of scenery can help to refresh your ideas. Let the sights and sounds of the great outdoors be the boost you need to finish that project you’ve been putting off.

Feeling overwhelmed? Countryside calm can also give you the headspace to put your ideas in order. Make a playlist of relaxing tracks, grab your walking boots and get exploring.

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If you’re more of an indoors type, grab a brew and join Pinterest. Start by making boards based around colours, textures and trends to help you organise your thoughts.

Once you’re a few boards in, you’ll start to recognise themes and avoid repeating previous ideas.

Independent magazines

Vogue and Elle are great aspirational editorials but as international magazines, they’re read by thousands designers who’re seeking inspiration every month. If you’re absorbing the same glossy pages as them, you’ll find it hard to break out of designing similar garments.

Instead escape the mainstream and sign up to Stacks. This online subscription service sends you a monthly selection of independent magazines – perfect for delving into the lives of lesser known designers, musicians and artists.

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If you always end up making the same silhouettes and shapes, try looking up. The buildings you walk past everyday could inspire the structure of your next design. Take note of the textures of historical chapels or the angles of new skyscrapers.

Snap away using one of these camera apps and get them printed by La La Lab. You can use your pics to start a shape-based scrapbook for whenever you’re designs are feeling a little lacklustre.

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Tell us how you keep your ideas fresh

Tweet us or send us a snap of your sketchbook on Instagram and let us know your suggestions for coming up with new ideas.

Happy with your collection but think your branding could do with a refresh? Just get in touch and we can help.

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