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Get productive during self-isolation: 6 tips for starting a design project

Get productive during self-isolation: 6 tips for starting a design project

With many of us on lockdown and working/ studying from home. We may be feeling anxious and unproductive. Now is the time to use some of your saved energy from a long work commute and time spent socialising after work and put it into working on a passion project of yours from the comfort of your home. Here are a few ways to get started on your design project.

Often getting started is the hardest part but the most important thing is to start from the place where you are, don’t wait for the perfect time, life waits for nobody. Consider the excitement that comes from starting a creative journey on a fresh canvas. If that still terrifies you feel the fear and do it anyway! 

1. Document and write your ideas 

A good way to start is by writing your ideas down. For some that’s in on their phone as its easily accessible, for others it’s in a journal where they feel able to fully express themselves, it’s all up to you, but good ideas don’t come often so when you get them, stop what you’re doing and write it down. this doesn’t have to be a full-blown plan just as long as it makes sense to you. 

2. Create a moodboard 

A moodboard is a great way to see some of your ideas and concepts visually. One image is not enough to grasp a whole concept so compiling and curating pictures can be a good idea for you to visually see the creative direction of your designs as well as exploring different routes you maybe had not considered. To save you the effort of printing and glueing all day, use Pinterest a great website where you can create different boards for different projects and find all kinds of inspiration on there from fashion, to art, makeup and various designs. Pinterest also recommends images based on the content you have already saved to your board. So you are constantly able to build and evolve your moodboard! 

By Ruth Obediah



3. Productive binging

Something to not look past is video inspiration, combining images with video is a great way to really begin to see your design whatever it may be, come to life by seeing similar things come to life. Watching someone else’s production process is also a great motivator to push you in the right direction. ‘Next in fashion’ is the perfect binge-worthy series for all aspiring designers. The contestants competing to be named the winner of next in fashion let us in on their creative design process as well as their production process from the first idea to the runway.

4. Get out the colouring pencils

Being so used to doing things digitally, there is just something about grabbing some colouring pencils and just going for it, there is no backspace or delete button, you just have to roll with it. Some of the mistakes you make can end up being the very thing that leads your designs to stand out and this is the daring and fun part of going back to the classic colouring pencils. 

5. Go to a fabric store 

Stepping into a fabric store can be like walking into heaven for many designers. Patterns and colours you may not have considered jump out at you and force you out of your comfort zone.  Take your time walking around the store, feel the materials, ask questions and buy small material samples and work with layering them together in different ways. You will slowly start to see things come to life. If you have been advised to stay at home skip this step for the meantime and explore using prints and materials you already have at home.

by Ruth Obediah

6. Sketch it out

Now you have figured out the theme and concept of your designs, its time to figure out the shape and silhouette of your designs. This may be a long process of drawing, screwing up the piece of paper and doing it again but its all part of the creative process, no attempt is a waste of time or a failure just a learning curve. Remember empty spaces matter just as much as the covered spaces, work with juxtaposing and allowing room for emptiness. 

by Ruth Obediah


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