Fashion collection inspiration:
The ultimate guide to research and developing ideas for your next fashion collection
Everything in fashion creation begins with the inspiration and the thing is, we can’t get inspired whenever we wanted. Fashion collection inspiration is an ongoing process that we need to train our mind to collect ideas and store it in a place where we can use whenever we need especially when creating a fashion line.
Often designers travel around the world to get their eyes on new places and gather inspiration. You can be inspired by anything and everything you see, unless you store them every time, you are gonna forget it and stare at the blank paper when you need.
The first time I wanted to create a fashion collection, I watched many big designers talking about
‘I got inspired by this ancient piece and created a collection out of it’.
and my professors telling us to ‘always carry something to capture inspirations and store them and they are going to help you create beautiful fashion collections’.
that’s exactly what I did, visited national park and museums and captured every image I found interesting. when I take them to the professor, she said ‘perfect, now get inspired and design the collection’.
Excuse me, get inspired what….?
How the heck am I going to inspire from these and build a collection? Do I put these into prints in my design or develop the styles in these shapes? I have no clue and I never got any clear explanation in this stuff. So I avoided it
And what that costed?
- My collection was chaos and it has no direction
- Each dress is on different color that they never match. (seriously they looked like, I theft them from 10 different stores lol)
- I have way too many ideas that were soo overwhelming to choose from.
Once I figured out, all this is because of the inspiration, my primary focus was turned to develop my skill in this and with lots of experiments, I made my own ways which are obviously simple (more like my way if you already know me from my other courses fashion sketchbook challenge and design your own clothes)
If you are anything like me, struggling to get started with your own collection, then I’m gonna break you all about inspiration step by step so you can get started and implement right away.
Today we are going to cover:
- I will walk you through the step by step process of 2 types of inspiration processes, which are design inspiration process and style inspiration process.
- I will walk you through how you can set up your inspiration bank filled with fashion collection inspirations.
- 29 inspiration Ideas to fill your sketchbook
- 5 days challenge to get started with your inspiration bank and get habituated with researching and inspirations.
This is the way I like to do and there might be many other ways that you are free to explore.
Before we get started, click on the pink button below to grab your free fashion collection inspiration challenge worksheets.
The 2 types of Fashion Collection Inspiration Process:
1. Fashion Collection Inspiration: Design inspiration process
Collect an image or that you like the most. Pinterest is the awesome place to get started.
Step 1: Look at its shape and any tiny shapes that’s inside and see if you can create something out of it. It can be a surface design or maybe outline of your silhouette. Let the crazy shapes go and don’t think if its wearable at this point. Turn the image upside down or sideways up and trace the outline for different shapes from same image.
Step 2: Look at the texture, can you apply that look to your fabric? maybe layering multiple fabrics or maybe in form of prints or any other ways? Brainstorm some ideas or create some fabric samples if you can.
Step 3: the color: what colours or colour combinations do you like in it? Do you find any interesting combinations? can you create a palette out of it?
Step 4: Lines, my favorite ones to get started with design. Do you find any interesting arrangement of lines, Draw them into your boxes. I have an amazing lesson on this part that you can find here.
Step 5: Pattern, Using the lines and shapes from your inspiration, can you develop little patterns that can be later transformed to prints or embroidery?
2. Fashion Collection Inspiration: Style inspiration process
Step 1: collect clothing images that you like from runways, brands or your favorite designers.
Step 2: pick all the elements that you liked in those images like neckline or sleeve or any interesting detail.
Step 3: Draw some ideas like how can you do it differently, what can you add more to it, try different variations of that element.
Step 4: How can you apply that element to your own designs, doodle any ideas.
By doing these both exercises, you will have hand full of ideas to work with.
Taking it to Pro-Level
Now the fun part, how can you combine the inspiration elements that you created from Design Inspiration process with the styles you developed from style inspiration process? And that’s how the masterpiece is created. The very own brand new design of yours!
Just imagine, what if you have a bank of these dynamic Inspirations in your hand while you design a collection where you can combine the best things and build masterpieces out of them? Amazing right?
Now Let's build your inspiration bank with Fashion collection inspirations:
It’s just a sketch book or design journal that could be digital or physical to collect and store your ideas in visual form through doodles and images.
Step 1 is to figure out where you are going to build your inspiration bank. digital or physical? I suggest to set up a sketchbook which is handy to carry everywhere you go.
Step 2 is you need a camera to capture your inspirations.
Step 3 is set up a pinterest board dedicated to your inspirations, so you can save anything that was interested and print them later.
Step 4: Start filling your inspiration bank. if you are not sure how to get started,Look below for the list of ideas and tasks to pick from and build your inspiration bank. By the end I want you to train your brain to get habituated of sorting inspirations and develop ideas that improve your creativity.
And I made this 5 days fun challenge for you to get started with inspiration bank. Make sure to download your copy.
Grab your copy of Fashion Inspiration Challenge
29 ideas to get started with fashion collection inspiration bank
Pick a local museum or visit an online museum and pick an interesting piece that you loved. Make some doodles inspired by it.
Research what’s happening in your place and visit the exhibition. I want you to draw or photograph anything that you liked and note any ideas how you can create your version of it.
visit any art store and take a painting or an art as inspiration and fill up your ideas with your drawing. Look for colour combinations and interesting textures here.
look at the lines, patterns and structures. find some interesting construction and develop any ideas and see how you can apply these to your creations
Research a clothing item
Pick a clothing item like dress, sleeve, top etc and research the history about it. like how it’s born, how the design changed over time, how we wear it now. make all the sketches and develop your own version of it.
Research about denim
Look at the history of denim and find how it’s made, look at all the surface Ornamentation techniques, trims that can be used. Now design your own denim creation. Imagine what if you have only denim for your whole life, how will you wear it differently from others and make your mark?
Research about your traditional clothing
Ask someone old enough from your family about what they used to wear on old times, for their school, college, casual wear etc. if you have to design them in that time, what would you design?
Watch a movie and sketch one character clothes from whole movie.
Identify how many costumes they changed, how they dressed up for different scenes. If you have to design for a particular scene, what would that be?
Find different leaves with different shapes and try to develop some ideas.
Your favorite flower
What’s your favourite flower? gather images and develop ideas of colors, texture, patterns etc
Fruit or vegetable
take a fruit or vegetable in real life, take photographs as whole and sliced. Make some doodles inspired by it and note any ideas.
pick some unusual item like switch, screw etc that don’t belong to fashion and develop ideas from it like how you can create fashion out of it.
walk around the street and take pictures or doodle what others are wearing. this helps you learn what people are buying and what you should create.
Take an old clothing item and think how you can recreate it to a brand new piece. May be by cutting several places and adding trims or whatever.
Fashion show report
visit vogue fashion shows and look at latest fashion show. Draw any designs that you loved or collect images of them.
Fashion designer new collection (your favorite)
look at your favourite designer collection and draw your favourites
Random designer from random country
pick some random country that you never heard much about and research top fashion designer in that country and look at the collection. Learn their traditions when comes to clothing. draw any interesting things that you found or collect images.
what was the clothing in your country a 500 years ago? Research and collect images.
Time period clothing
Pick any time period and research the clothes people wore on that year. collect images of kids, men, women of that time and draw your variations
pick a jewellery photo and develop ideas out of it to apply for clothing
Collect an abstract art and develop ideas from it
collect images and develop ideas
collect an image and develop ideas
select a folk art and research about it and brainstorm how you can apply it to your designs.
develop some gothic design ideas
collect images of medieval period and how will you design for that time period
research and develop ideas
Select a game and research the character clothes, find out who designed them. if you have to design for that character what would it be.
collect interesting images and develop designs
Grab your copy of Fashion Inspiration Challenge
Here’s What you need to do now…
- Download Fashion collection Inspiration worksheets
- Set up your Fashion Collection Inspiration bank
- Pick 10 tasks from the list.
- Block your calendar for the next 30 days to work on the inspirations (2 hours per day)