How-To

Designer's Block? Get Inspired.

Is this your situation? You’ve got everything ready to go. You sit down at your drafting or drawing table or desk, pencil or pen in hand, and nothing comes to mind. Not one single idea!

What Do You Do About It?

Tearing away at your hair and breaking pencils really isn’t the best way to get ideas flowing…it’ll just give you a headache and a less amount of hair. In cases like these, “inspiration” comes into play. One of the most common forms of inspiration is to look, NOT copy, someone else’s work. Go to a few fashion stores and see what’s going on. Look at various fashion publications, such as magazines and catalogs, for the age market that you wish to design for. This can also help you to stay up to date on the selling fashions. But don’t just be aware of the styles that you see, but also colors and attributes. And remember these change seasonally.

Another popular choice of design is to go “retro.” Vintage-inspired fashions never go out of style. In this case, books would be quite useful. There are numerous historical fashion books that can help you figure out what to design. And a good trick is to look at paper doll books that are for certain time period, for instance the 1900s, or 1940s. These books are fully illustrated in color and usually include the most popular designs and designers of that time. You could also incorporate some aspects of vintage style with your updated designs; make it unique.

And believe it or not, sometimes to get inspiration all you have to do is look out of your own window. Nature is probably one of the most amazing and commonly used design resource. Colors, flowers, leaves, trees, fruits, vegetables and more can inspire a pattern for fabrics or designs for accessories. There is no end to how many things can be inspiring. Always carry a notepad and pen with you so you can jot down anything that you find interesting, anything that sparks your interest that you can use later. Always be aware of what’s going on around you, and use it to the best of your ability.