Month: July 2013

Trends: What’s Hot in Design Now, part 2

All the designers we know have a unique way of seeing the world—they notice fine details in typography, color, texture, pattern. And that visual inspiration comes together when they’re crafting their designs in paper.

The Write Stuff recently chatted with one of our favorite designers, Erin Sarpa of Simon+Kabuki and the blog Designer Droppings, about the cool trends she’s seeing right now.

Erin focused on four key design trends. Check out the previous post on typography and color. Here, we’ll cover texture and pattern. Use these ideas to inspire your own design work!

Texture

Natural materials continue to drive the trend in texture — think of linen fabric, burlap, grasscloth and the like. While traditional linen-textured paper is an obvious choice for stationery designs, look at adding other decorative elements with embossing, which can create a more obvious tactile quality to an invitation or notecard. Textures can be embossed over an entire piece or added as a border, like a bamboo or rope pattern. (Ask us about Stationery HQ’s embossing capabilities.)

Sources for texture inspiration:

Texturemate.com — here’s a free source for textures that you can download and incorporate into your work, including fabrics, metals, stone and other materials.

Rope-Pattern

Pinterest.com  — scan through the Home Decor category on Pinterest to find interesting textures in textiles, tile and wood.

Pinterest-Screen-Shot

Pattern

Looking at fashion, graphic design and home decor, Erin is seeing a big resurgence in what we’d consider old-fashioned patterns: herringbone, houndstooth and chevron. (These patterns can be embossed into paper to create a remarkable touch and feel; ask us about Stationery HQ’s embossing capabilities.) Patterns like this are especially interesting when they’re used at a huge scale. Think: a tiny houndstooth check blown up to an inch square or larger.

Another hot pattern trend: Moroccan tile. These ancient patterns are intricate, bold and distinctive — and gorgeous. Moroccan motifs can be used for corner embellishments, frames and other graphic details in stationery and papergoods (think of how cool a sheet of wrapping paper would look with a repeating tile pattern).

Sources for pattern inspiration:

Media coverage of fashion week  — since fashion is so influential, it makes sense to pay attention to major media coverage of American and international fashion weeks for inspiration. You’ll see everything in designers’ collections, from pattern to texture to color.

Moroccan-Tile


What design trends most intrigue you right now? Please share what you’re loving!

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I absolutely love working with your company…

To start the week, here are some kind words from Rachel Green, owner of Printed Ink Designs:

I absolutely love working with your company to print and ship my stationery items. It has been such a blessing to have a good company that I can rely on that produces great products! I have been so happy to have found you all and I love the customer service that you provide. I am also very happy with the products that you offer and it has allowed me to expand my product line and grow it into what I really want it to be.

Thanks for making us smile, Rachel! We hope that your words help to make others smile as well.

Happy Monday!

Trends: What’s Hot in Design Now, part 1



Pantone-screen-shotAll the designers we know have a unique way of seeing the world—they notice fine details in typography, color, texture, pattern. And that visual inspiration comes together when they’re crafting their designs in paper.

The Write Stuff recently chatted with one of our favorite designers, Erin Sarpa of Simon+Kabuki and the blog Designer Droppings, about the cool trends she’s seeing right now.

Erin focused on four key design trends, and we’ll start with the first two here. Use these ideas to inspire your own design work!

Typography

Type is at an all-time high, Erin says, in terms of its prominence, diversity, accessibility and style. Look around, and you’ll see a huge trend in type as art—where lettering isn’t just for communication, it’s the decoration. The buzz-y “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster design is just one example of that; you’ll also see beautiful typographical treatments of song lyrics, quotes and people’s names. Erin’s also loving the trend of hand-drawn lettering and highly customized type, and interesting combinations of typefaces.

Great sources of type inspiration:

Typography.com  — this website shows off the gorgeous fonts from foundry Hoefler & Frere-Jones, including some typefaces originally designed for Martha Stewart and now available to the public. You’ll recognize H&F-J’s lovely typeface Archer — it’s everywhere right now.

LetterheadFonts.com  — a great source for super-stylish lettering (and for visual inspiration), this site offers fonts for sale and shows a gallery of their type in action.

Letterhead-Fonts-screen-image

Color

Erin predicts that a deep, rich red is going to be the “big, gigantic color” in the coming season — in fact, she’s seeing lots of muted jewel tones like dusky navy and pine-y green or olive. These rich accent colors are being paired with interesting neutrals, like not-quite-grey and not-quite black. For inspiration, Erin suggests looking at trendy nail polish colors: greys and super-dark, almost-black purples are hot right now.

In papergoods, she’s seeing lots of muted pastels: soft pinks, peaches and warm creamy tones that convey a vintage feel. Also on-trend? Metallics — but now, they’re warmer, like gold and bronze instead of cool silver. (Talk to us about metallics: Stationery HQ can create beautiful metallic foil enhancements for your designs.)

Great sources of color inspiration:

Pantone Color Forecast  — of course, Pantone is the design world’s go-to source for all things color, and their seasonal fashion color forecast is a must-see for print designers. Fashion is a great predictor of color trends, as designers reveal new collections as much as a year ahead of season.

Pantone-screen-shot

ColourLovers.com  — this website and community for designers is all about color; users can post color palettes and find inspiration from a huge library of color combos.

Colour-Lovers-screen-shot

Where do you turn for visual inspiration to fuel your papergoods designs? We’d love to know about your favorites; please share links here!