Darwin Designs

 In All, Handmade Feature
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lex Jones’s playful illustrations will make you smile. Located in the UK, she has designed earth-friendly greeting cards for just about any occasion. (Hint, Hint: Father’s Day is just around the corner.)

World's Greatest Dad - Father's Day Card by Darwin Designs

I asked Alex to share the story behind Darwin Designs. She took the time to answer a few of my questions. Enjoy!

 

Tell us a bit about you and your shop.

In the last year of my illustration degree, I took a business and entrepreneurial module that discussed how to use your creative skills in business and gave advice on becoming self-employed. It was one of my favourite modules and after I graduated I decided I wanted to give it a go and become a small, creative business owner. After a few months of research and experimentation, I launched Darwin Designs, selling recycled greetings cards. The cards went down really well and it just grew from there. Just over a year later and I have hundreds of different card designs, notebooks, stickers and other gifts and stationery now available.

 

What inspires you to create?

Anything can inspire me to create, sometimes just spotting a nice colour combination will give me an idea.

The reason I decided to call myself Darwin Designs was partly because my style is always evolving and developing, for example when I find new influences or materials I want to work with. It’s not the most conventional way to create a brand, but I try and make it work for me.

If I’m having a little creative block though, I think getting out into nature is very helpful and inspiring. In my opinion, all the best patterns, colours and shapes come from nature in some way.

 

What are your favorite materials?

I go through phases with materials but you can’t go too wrong with just pen on paper. I often start with just a black and white drawing then use different materials to add the colour, maybe watercolours one day, digitally the next.

I absolutely love printmaking and painting but unfortunately I don’t do this often enough… I need to make sure I make time for it in the future.

 

What’s your favorite item in your shop? And why?

It’s so hard to choose! I really like the constellation cards and prints as I think they’re really timeless. Even the small card versions look great framed with just a hint of gold glitter (I have the Pisces card on my wall).

I love sending out the Personalised Pets as well because there is normally a story behind them (I’ve had customers who have sadly lost their pet or maybe just adopted a new one) and you know the pet owners are so excited and passionate about them. I’ve had lots of people tell me afterward they’ve framed their pet cards, which is always lovely to hear.

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