Effective Design

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Sophie Maxwell, Pearlfisher.
Sophie Maxwell, Pearlfisher.
The recently re-launched nippy value car the Fiat 500, Method's home and self cleaners and the U.K.'s Topshop, the chic-onomic clothing brand recently launched in NYC - three very different brands, three very different products. But these guys are part of the new guard helping raise the style bar that fabulous holistic design can bring to the bottom line.

Effective design, the proven results through investment in good design, is the design subject closest to my heart and seems a good introduction for this, my first entry for OnDesign.

The Fiat 500 city car.
The Fiat 500 city car.

TopMan NYC, photo from Racked NY.
Creativity must be effective at all levels and in these tough times the commercial effectiveness of design is having its booty call.

Unfortunately, cutting corners to cut costs could so easily be the slogan of now. It's an easy knee jerk reaction, but if we intend tomorrow to be better than today, shouldn't we be aiming a little higher, thinking more bravely about the long term, and taking a leaf out of some of the brands mentioned earlier?

We need to change our mindset from "If in doubt, don't" and not be afraid to take bold steps. We need to anticipate and engage with the future desires of consumers and reappraise the value of what we already have in terms of our heritage and qualities and breathe new life into categories by challenging accepted codes and cues. This should have a positive effect for the future by ensuring differentiation and creating fresh interest.

With new record profit losses, plummeting a reported 77% for Starbucks and 97% for Adidas in two recent nail-biting cases, now is the time for reappraisal and results.

Have a look at a little film on YouTube, that favorite twenty-first century soapbox, from my firm Pearlfisher about our thoughts on effective design.


Sophie Maxwell's fashion background as a graduate and now guest lecturer at London's Central St Martins is put to daily use in her role as Head of Creative Insight at Pearlfisher.
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