Mood Boards and Design Development

In follow up to their recent ‘Inspired’ co-design workshop (see Inspired wearables for more details) the designers created personalized mood boards to represent a visual flavour of the conversations they had with each of the residents who had shared their inspirations, likes and dislikes. These mood boards were intended to support these same residents to develop and refine a design narrative for a personalized wearable. Their mood boards featured drawings, photographs, patterns, colours, fabrics and motifs that are representative of the topics of interest that residents had shared. E.g. dancing, dress making, travel and painting. Some of the imagery and words depicted were chosen in direct reflection of the descriptions and direction provided by the resident’s and information gathered using the ‘Getting to know You’ activity sheets. Other linked imagery was also incorporated into the mood boards to aid design development, decision-making and flow of conversation. The mood boards were presented in such a way as to be deliberately unfinished and not ‘designerly’ as to encourage residents to freely critique them and make changes. The visual and tactile nature of the mood boards was interesting to the residents – one resident identified with her mood board from the offset of the activity, pointing to an image of a highland dancer saying ‘That was me!’ The mood boards acted as good prompts for conversation – providing a natural ‘picking up’ of topics of conversation from the last session. Staff members praised the simplicity of the mood boards and the activities coordinator stated that she thought the wider resident group might respond well to creating visual snap shots of their selves in this way. She suggested that some residents might even like to hang their mood boards decoratively in their rooms.

During the session, residents could filter their previous choices and sort through fabric and materials swatches presented on their mood boards to begin to build a collection of potential design components for their proposed wearable design; fabric for the main body of their wearable and any personalized motifs or embellishments.

The resident who had been a dancer chose tartan fabrics for her design linking back to her days of highland dancing. She is drawn to reds- coordinating on the day of our session, with her nail polish and cardigan. The designers are now creating a wearable with these materials using this resident’s design direction. She will critique the prototype design and make any further developments or adjustments to her design in their next visit.


Event Details
  • A Workshop
Location Details

United Kingdom



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