Ask Chris Benz: How Do You Keep From Getting in a Rut?

Dear Mr. Benz, How to do you keep from getting into a rut? Sometimes I feel like I'm running out of inspiration. Yours, Needs a Recharge Dear Needs-A-Recharge - Inspiration is a tricky one, for sure. On one hand, it is easy to be inspired by something specific much longer than one season, which unfortunately doesn’t work so well with the Fashion calendar. Obviously, there are things that should be continually inspiring ... For me, it’s Katherine Hepburn, Lauren Hutton, Shelley Duvall--always a casual, glamorous, colorful character. On the other hand, a deadline may be approaching whereas you have to be inspired.
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Dear Mr. Benz, How to do you keep from getting into a rut? Sometimes I feel like I'm running out of inspiration. Yours, Needs a Recharge Dear Needs-A-Recharge - Inspiration is a tricky one, for sure. On one hand, it is easy to be inspired by something specific much longer than one season, which unfortunately doesn’t work so well with the Fashion calendar. Obviously, there are things that should be continually inspiring ... For me, it’s Katherine Hepburn, Lauren Hutton, Shelley Duvall--always a casual, glamorous, colorful character. On the other hand, a deadline may be approaching whereas you have to be inspired.
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Dear Mr. Benz, How to do you keep from getting into a rut? Sometimes I feel like I'm running out of inspiration. Yours, Needs a Recharge

Dear Needs-A-Recharge -

Inspiration is a tricky one, for sure.

On one hand, it is easy to be inspired by something specific much longer than one season, which unfortunately doesn’t work so well with the Fashion calendar. Obviously, there are things that should be continually inspiring ... For me, it’s Katherine Hepburn, Lauren Hutton, Shelley Duvall--always a casual, glamorous, colorful character. On the other hand, a deadline may be approaching whereas you have to be inspired.

Something I sometimes do to ignite inspiration is research something you think you hate or seems completely boring – for me, it could be a hunting magazine, hot rods, sports memorabilia, that type of thing. Or, seemingly-dull time periods can also bore your brain into thinking of something interesting. Often, you will find something inspiring in these materials and then become obsessed.

Another good trick is to commit to a few hours of perusing eBay. I like searching broad search terms such as “chrome,” “mid century,” or the like. You might come across a vintage chrome ladle or something, whose shape could inspire an entire collection! If you can zone out and let your instinct guide you, some surprises tend to befall.

If all else fails and you’re still in a rut, get a giant iced coffee with a lot of sugar and just start sketching!

xx CB

Got a question for Chris? Email him on askchrisbenz@fashionista.com.