How Do Sweater Designers Keep Coming Up With New Creative Ideas?
If you are a sweater designer your creativity and your ability to consistently offer new and exciting designs is your key to a successful business. So it is imperative that you keep those creative juices flowing!
Believe it or not, designers sometimes experience something similar to getting “writers’ block” when they have to keep producing similar products day after day, year after year. It is especially difficult when one specializes in such a narrow niche such as sweater design for example. Even more narrow some sweater designer specialize in a particular category!
To find out how successful sweater designers stay out of this rut I asked top sweater designers what their secret was. I asked:
“What is one thing you do to keep your creative juices flowing and help you come up with new design ideas for your creative sweater swatch business?”
We couldn’t cover every possible angle of the fashion sweater textile business in just one post! This article is part of a 6 part Fashion Knit Business Series. If you want to learn how to become a sweater textile designer or start your own service-based business you can check out the entire series at the bottom of this page.
Advice From Top Knit & Sweater Designers
All Knitted Swatch Design
“The one thing that keeps my creative juices flowing is keeping those peepers peeled! Designing (particularly for fashion), is all about taking in what is going on around you. In fact, I think it is the most important thing to start with in any new knit collection, the rest snowballs from there. To start this I will go to visit exhibitions (the V&A & Fashion & Textile museums are not far from me in London-both perfect starting points). Next, I will start with all my ideas on giant pin boards in rudimentary design themes. Add some gorgeous new yarns in the mix (this is one sure way to get us knitty people going) & all the magic flows from there!”
You can follow Claire @ www.allknitted-swatchdesign.co.uk
“For my business, if I’ve found that I am stuck creatively and need inspiration, I’ll visit art galleries because often times a painting or 3-d texture made of kinetic sand, for example, will be something I’ll want to take back to my studio and translate into a knit structure.”
You can follow Lindy @ www.LindyFox.com
“My design concept is what I describe as “a wee bit of a shock.” Inspiration is a substance almost not expressible in words and terms… In my case, it is rather not about inspiration, but about a prudent vision of the situation surrounding the design of knitwear, which, in my opinion, “suffers” with excessive conservatism. In other words, I am trying to overthrow the tedious dogmas of knitting, while avoiding the shocking “avant-garde” in my work.”
“Being open, adaptable, and flexible! Making mistakes and learning from them. When working with knitted technology or even on a hand knit piece, careful planning is key. Doing your design research extensively and knowing what it is you are going to do is crucial. But in knitwear, anything can happen, and swatches might look different in your mind’s eye than off the knitting machine. Being flexible and knowing how to take a design “mistake” and turn it into a design opportunity. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend ‘going with the flow’ but rather going with the swatch:)”
“Most of my creativity comes from cost-saving measures. Coming up with ideas is the fun part. Making it affordable and wearable is the real challenge for me. I love looking for vintage knits and reading hand knitting pattern books for ideas. I also see sweaters everywhere; on the subway, in movies or TV, etc. Don’t lose sight of what makes them special; the stitch, silhouette, yarn, etc, for a design that’s really unique without being dumbed down.”
You can follow Mary here:
“Living in NYC, I find inspiration all around me constantly. Museums, art exhibits, restaurants and their specific décor, live music, etc. I also keep a knitwear blog which means I have to continually look for trends and inspiration. The “hunt” helps me see a pattern in the concepts that resonate the most with me personally and those are the ideas I work through to influence my designs. I also like to take lots of pictures, many of which may have nothing to do with actual fashion, but the process of looking through a lens allows you to observe things in a different way. I think if you are a creative person, you have to have a finely tuned internal processor which allows you to take even the most mundane observation or idea and turn it into something beautiful and compelling.”
You can follow Wendy here:
Knit Studio Artist
“To keep experimenting with knit techniques whether traditional or very new, and to remain open to what is developing in art and fashion.”
You can follow Ann @ www.yellowminnow.com
“I love to talk to people, especially my family. What they like, what they choose to wear, what are their hobbies, if they had a unique or good experience lately. Even what they like to eat or what is their favorite thing in each season. This helps me to find the right color, designs, and materials for everyone’s taste.”
You can follow Vilmos here:
Fashion Knit Business Series:
If you or someone you know is interested in working as a sweater textile designer you can read the entire blog series here. Learn what it takes to be a successful sweater textile designer, and how to start and run your own sweater swatch service business.
- What Are Sweater Swatch Service Companies?
- How To Get Representation As A Sweater Textile Designer
- Top 10 Tips To Be A Successful Sweater Textile Designer
- How To Build Your Own Sweater Swatch Service Business
- Advice From Top Sweater Designers