Day 12 - Playing with Patterns



Welcome to Day #12 of the 31 Days to Better Branding series! To learn more about this series, click here and find links to the other days so you'll be able to follow along or catch up if you happen to miss anything. I am by no means an expert but after hearing a lot of the same questions, I figured others could benefit from a few lessons in branding. Hopefully it will give you a place to begin or even just a few tips to improve your business and bring you more clients. Feel free to add in your thoughts and what has worked for you in the comments!

Unless you want to keep things really minimal, you're probably going to want a pattern or texture design that adds some interest to your overall look. Here are some ways to use patterns in your branding...

  • As a background for your online presence (blog, website or facebook or twitter)

  • As a border for your letterhead or business cards

  • As wrapping or labels for your package design (on boxes, bags, bottles, etc.)

  • As a wallpaper or art print design for your physical studio

When I choose a pattern, I try to think of it the way a decorator might add in throw pillows or rugs - as an accent. I consider the type and mood that already exists and what decade the style represents (if any). If the type and imagery is busy I might want to choose something really subtle and understated. Or if the type and imagery is really clean but boring, a bold pattern might be just what it needs. The pattern usually isn't the focal point, but it can create unity to a design.

Search digital paper packs, printed scrapbook paper, wallpaper designs, throw pillows, rugs, fabric stores or even your closet. And you don't have to choose just one if you can get everything to balance well. I like how photographer Laura Winslow is able to get this to work with her branding. It doesn't feel overdone. So get creative and test out a few different designs with the design elements you already have you already have. Make sure to get feedback from a designer or those who understand your style.

Homework: Set your time for 15 minutes and explore some patterns! Browse some of your favorite online clothing or home decor stores and see if there are any patterns that pop out at you. Flip through your favorite magazines and cut out some inspiring textures and designs.