Sunday, March 20, 2011

Where does inspiration come from? And a new CU Freebie!

If you're here just for the freebie, it's at the bottom of this post.

I think more than any other question, where I get my inspiration for kits and other paper crafts must be the winner. I'm not one of the lucky few that inspiration "just comes" for. I have to dig for mine, and over the many years that I have been a graphic designer, I've learned some of the best places to go to catch that elusive butterfly. One really good place is to go to the websites of any of the major women's magazines, since women are by far the largest segment of my audience. Better Homes and Gardens, Traditional Home, Country Living, and of course, Martha Stewart are my favorites to find colors and patterns that work well. I also tend to stick to grunge and shabby, so any pattern I want will usually undergo a lot of transformation before it is released.

(Did you know you can do a screen capture and then bring the photo up in your software of choice to get the colors shown. I'm sure, if I only knew how, there is a way to get the patterns as well, but plagiarism is not my thing. I only want inspiration!) 

Another place to find great patterns and color combinations is the online catalog of stores—like Macy's, for instance—where bedding is sold. It's a wonderful place to find not only trendy, but classic as well. I subscribe to a good many creative magazines, too. My favorites are Papercraft, Crafts 'n Things, Card Maker, and anything published by Stampington.

A source of inspiration that keeps you abreast of what's popular is fashion. Yeah, like O Magazine, or Vogue, or even Cosmo. (I don't read this one because of the articles! That's almost funny. Men always say "I read Playboy for its articles," and I would say, "I read Cosmo for its pictures!" Except that I don't. And I also don't read Playboy!)

A walk down my street gives me ideas for textures, and when my camera is working, which it is not now, I can snap textures from nature or from stuff man has made. Chicken wire and window screens are my favorite, although they often are such subtle textures in my designs that you might not even be aware that they are there.

And one last place of inspiration is you! Yes, you. I lurk around a number of galleries and then I download the ones I like. I keep them in a folder on my desktop named "Inspiration Only!"

I hope you've enjoyed this article! I love writing and designing for you, my friends. And here's your freebie! (As always, just click on the image for immediate download.)


  1. Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave in the DigiFree category today [21 Mar 01:00am GMT]. Thanks, Maria

  2. hmm? I'm a "hit me" inspiration person. Somedays I'm just not inspired no matter what I see.

  3. Thank you so much for this post. I want to let you know that I posted a link to your blog in CBH Digital Scrapbooking Freebies, under the Page 1 post on Mar. 21, 2011. Thanks again.

  4. Thank you for the article and the freebie....