Designovation Philosophy Products!

Above are just a few of the textile products sampled & produced ny Designovation.

'We first tested our Designovation®formula & philosophy with the development of our product the 'Totykids' travel system and my husbands innovation the 'Shoogle' children’s exer-gaming & fitness Product.' Denise

Within a 3 month period​ we completed the Shoogle's research, proof of principle, prototyping and I.P filing (trademark, design & patent rights). As our first product developed using our Designovation Philosophy it was nominated & exhibited for 4 months in the prestigious Glasgow Science Center, it has a granted patent, academic testing from the University of West of Scotland PLUS trademark (winning a trademark infringement challenge from one of the world’s biggest brands.)
why is branding important

What is Branding & why is it important?

Branding or corporate identity is a key element to successful product design (in addition to its role in marketing for your business no matter how large or small). This will be the look or identity of your product or in the case of a business the image of your organisation from day one. It is your visual communication with your customers & the first thing your customer see ‘their first impression of you’.  

The combination of a well designed logo, brand or corporate identity is especially important for the small business owner as it can portray trust, credibility and reinforce the quality of your products or services and influence how you command premium pricing. 

A poor logo design or brand can lower customer confidence in their buying decisions and even instil an air of unreliability, if the company brand isn’t right.  

The development of a successful brand requires expertise and understanding of design using the subtleties of: Colour, symbols & fonts. With the correct professional expertise the execution of a well designed brand will pay dividends in attracting the correct clients and developing a strong marketing message identifiable with your brand & company.

Today you may be selling a small quantity of products or you may be a micro business. But to build a long term strategy for your business you need to start with the correct brand from day one. A well designed brand, logo or corporate identity will distinguish & set you apart from the competition.

With the proper professional advice your brand & corporate identity can help promote your company values & message and allow you to be seen with the potential of a much larger enterprise building your momentum for growth.  

What is Brand Guidelines & why is it important to YOU?

Any Graphic or Brand designer worth their salt with a simple understanding of the frustrations of launching a product or new business will recommend that in the process of developing your ‘Logo Design’ you have your ‘Brand guidelines’ document created.

The No.1 failure in branding by most new products & small business’s to large multinationals is their failure to fully execute their branding. In my years as a designer advising on branding & corporate identity many companies succeed in creating a great name, logo & brand identity but fail to maximise their investment partly by not having, creating or using their existing ‘Brand guidelines’document.

Your Brand guidelines detail the essential ingredients that make up your brand from your choice of pantone colours, family font etc. And unfortunately for many after they spend all that valuable money on getting their brand design right fail at the last hurdle by failing to implement & execute it across their business.

The Top tips in Brand guidelines:

No.1 Ask your designer to produce your Brand guidelines while designing your Brand or Logo.

No.2 When you receive it use it, apply it, implement and ultimately be “Congruent” stick firmly to your brand guidelines- don’t water it down or mess about with your brand- colour, styling, fonts & detail.

No.3 Repeat & execute your brand through every visual interface with your new product- labelling, packaging, brochures, promo videos. For a business ensure you apply it across your stationary, website, interior, signage, vehicles to uniforms ( refer to your Brand guidelines).

No.4 Be consistent, don’t get lazy and fail to display your brand repeatedly.

Contact us for further details on Branding.

How Important are Creative Thinkers to our Economy?

How Important are Creative Thinkers to our Economy?

Over the years I have avidly studied & researched entrepreneurs from attending their seminars, reading their books to talking to them face to face. Through my contradicting career in both business and design my research has concluded that the disappointing mortality rate for business start-ups in the UK beyond year one is based on the absence of one essential SECRET ingredient PLUS;

  • Understanding of how to Design & Engineer a sustainable business fit for the 21st Century. 
  • Knowledge of whether you have the characteristics of the Entrepreneur.

The ONE essential ingredient rarely discussed in business is the same essential ingredient which is responsible for creating solutions, progress, innovation & economic growth and is central to my books ‘The Enterprise Black Box Thinking’ & ‘The Entrepreneur White Ball Thinking’.


Look at the UK statistics!

  • Why are the majority of New business's Sole traders with no employees?
  • Why do we have such ridiculous Business failures- or infant mortality rates Year 5? mortality rates Year 10? in the UK.

Here is just one piece of the jigsaw puzzle- our current obsession with robotic process's, systems, and the franchise phenomenon is eroding free thinking and our economical competitiveness for growth.Why? 

At the age of 25 as a relatively new business start-up, I had already read & listened to multiple business books and audio programs due to being brought up in a family in business. I was introduced to a book by a fellow young Scottish entrepreneur (whom later made his multi million pound fortune in Mobile Telephones). This book totally transformed my perception and thinking of business forever, and provided a solution to building a business which later enabled me to build a successful micro business (allowing me as a mother to put my young family first). 

That book was Michael Gerber's "The E-Myth Revisited”. Almost 20 years on this is still one of my No.2 Favourite books which I have recommended to countless business friends. For those of you unfamiliar with the E-Myth it simply promotes the benefits and logic behind the franchise culture and business's built on strong, methodical systems and operating systems.

Disappointingly though 20 years on it's success and like minded business philosophies have been taken quite literally. Tell me if I am wrong, we now have a culture of business obsessed with operating systems & rules. 8 out of 10 Call Centres or banks etc. are scripted, impersonal, many with systems for systems sake, rules over ride personal initiative and common sense.

Yes rules, systems and processes are essential to business but this is only 50% of what makes a successful & sustainable business & economy. The fact is that our Greatest Entrepreneurs & thinkers don't define the characteristics of the business analyst or bureaucrat:  

Apple- Steve Jobs/ Steve Wozniak -Innovation, Design, Engineering,Imagination.

Microsoft- Bill Gates- Technology, Ideas, Vision.

Dyson-James Dyson- IP, Patents, Innovation, Engineering.

Paypal/Tesla/ Solar City/SpaceX- Elon Musk- Vision, Engineering, Science.

They epitomise freedom of expression, thought & ideas, they are predominantly rebels and are all ultimately free thinkers.

  • Where are the creative thinkers, Designers & Innovators in your organisation?
  • What are you investing your time & resources in?
  • Why not Products & R&D? (MUST see Dyson/Dimbleby lecture ) is all your focus on Advertising & MARKETING??
  • Are you generating new ideas & models of enterprise? or are you bogged down in refining processes systems & rules?
  • Are you creating the next innovation & investing in IP or are you too focused on building a safe unimaginative business model i.e. franchise, service business. 
  • Are you building a team of skilled, free thinkers i.e. engineers, technicians, scientists? or a predominantly robotic workforce another Call centre culture.

I wrote ‘The Enterprise Black Box Thinking’ & ‘The Entrepreneur White Ball Thinking’ to promote the importance of Creativity, Creative Thinkers, Designers & Inventors. Interested in learning more? READ ON!

To Patent or Not to Patent?


Here we have our suggestions and turn on Intellectual property through our personal experience of I.P.Lawyers, Patents, Trademarks, Design Right and Copyright. We have a few unique suggestions as a small business that has had a crash course in I.P. and the various pitfalls of I.P. from; facing a lengthy & costly patenting process to obtain a patent and dealing with a trademark infringement challenge with one of the worlds biggest internet brands & succeeding.

Please consider the following question and statements:

Do you need your idea protected or not, and what are you prepared to gamble? Finances & Time?

No.1 Are you prepared to invest the time and resources to obtain a patent for your idea or product? If so you need a realistic financial plan and funds for a lengthy & costly legal process that realistically may take 4 to 5 years before you see a return on your investment. This does not guarantee a water tight patent that hasn't already been super ceded or become out of date before you get it to market. But with a good idea and patent you could potentially have a very lucrative & legally protected product long term.


No.2 Alternatively with the same resources, finance, time and energy forget a patent & take the risk of being the first product & brand to market. Could you prototype, tool and manufacture the product and saturate the market before the competition catch on. And invest in building a brand synonymous to the product and identifiable to the consumer, start turning a profit and create something more powerful than a patent.

Before even looking at developing a product and considering a patent ask yourself?

What is your Long term goal?
To establish a business around a product? Manufacture?
Or License the product? Sell product/ concept? Build a range of products?

Do you have a Budget for the following?
IP; Intellectual property i.e. patents & protection of idea.
Business Plan, Manufacturing, Marketing
Total Budget?

Do you have a time scale?
Final prototyping
IP: Trademark & Patent
Completion Date/ Co. Sale

Do you have experience in this market or business?
Do you have routes to market?
Contacts in manufacturing/retail?
Existing company/customer base?

How are you protecting your idea? 
Have you disclosed details of your product to any 3rd parties? 
Do you have a confidentiality agreement? 
Do you have an IP Lawyer?
Have you filed Design rights?
Have you filed for a Trademark?
Have you filed a Patent?

If you are looking at developing a textile product please feel free to contact us for details on our business consultancy rates and services. Why not see if we are the right match for your project?


Designovation; the process for bringing plans into reality!

  • Who replaced the word Hoover with a Dyson?
  • Where would Apple be without Steve Jobs or Steve Wozniak? Where would we be without our I-pads, I-phones etc.?
  • Where would Disney be without Walt Disney and his brother Roy and their team of Imagineers? What would our childhood memories be without Disney?
  • What will our children's future and our environment look like without more people like Elon Musk? Without SpaceX, TESLA, Solar City?

Where does enterprise, economic wealth & prosperity start i.e. The Industrial Revolution in Scotland in the mid-eighteenth century and the late nineteenth century, the IT explosion in California’s Silicon Valley in the 1970’s etc. Each of the above explosions began in cities filled with great Designers, Innovators & Creative thinkers that possessed something different from everyone else. Some say they had a dream, an innovation, inspiration- I call it something else!

My fascination for understanding entrepreneurs began over thirty years ago in my early teens observing and listening to my father and the many business owners I met through the family business in manufacturing and engineering. From my life long interest in entrepreneurs it brought me to one conclusion- there is an essential ingredient shared by great achievers in life and individuals who fulfil their potential. The same ingredient is responsible for the execution of solutions, progress, innovation & economic growth.


I believe that our current challenges in our economy hinge on the absence of a word that describes this ingredient. I call it Designovation.

What is Designovation? I hear you say.

As children we were brought up to know the words dream, creation, innovation but never a word called designovation. Yet this is the word that truly describes the essential ingredient that differentiates the following individuals from everyone else on the planet from; Carnegie, Walton, Roddick, Dyson, Jobs, Gates, Disney, Kroc, Musk to Branson.

They each understood and practiced the following;

Dreaming; the formulation of an unpractical & unrealistic idea.

Imagination; forming ideas not present to the senses.

But more importantly even although the word did not exist they each practiced and embodied this word;

Designovation; the process for bringing plans into reality,

Are we encouraged to have both a Dream, an Imagination & a Designovation? 

Would you like to learn more? 

How would you like to create your Designovation?

Learn more about the Designovation Philosophy- 

Available from Amazon in both Paperback & Ebook

Also available on AppleBooks

Part One: The Entrepreneur; White Ball Thinking


Are Colleges teaching graduates how to sustain an income & career in the Arts?

Since an early age I have always loved listening to great storytellers; especially authentic life stories. An interest that began listening to my Dad with his adventures as an entrepreneur selling his latest engineering invention’s. This continued into adulthood as a business person listening to the fascinating stories of self made entrepreneurs and professionals.

Memorable Meetings

One of my fondest memories came when I met two distinguished gentlemen in the Hilton Edinburgh one day. For what was supposed to be a brief business meeting- developed into the most insightful and positive three hour’s of my career in business. 

One of the many topics we spoke about that day from patents, trademarks to business systems and theories was the immense creative unrealised potential of our great Art Colleges in Scotland. With the ear of an ex-board member of one of Scotland’s leading Art Colleges I raised a question to Norman. Whether our Art Colleges were teaching graduates how to sustain an income and career in the Arts on graduating?

Unlike other Art & Design graduates I had an equal measure of commercial business skills that came from being born and bred into an entrepreneurial family. But what about all that creative talent exiting those Art College gates every year?

Truth is often stranger than Fiction!

Norman shared one brilliant story about the successful Scottish Artist Jack Vettriano.

On Leith Walk in the outskirts of Edinburgh is a small Barbers that Norman regularly visited for many years. Another customer that shared the same barbers was a poor dishevelled undiscovered artist called ‘Jack Vettriano’.

Norman recalled the regular banter and jokes in the barbers about Jack and his unpaid barbers tab and the barber continually commenting that he was promised one of his paintings in exchange for his bill.

Several months past and Norman noticed Jack’s absence and enquired to the barber about Jack, only to be told that he was now living somewhere in the Mediterranean.

Weeks and months passed and then one day as Norman sat in the barbers a new smartly dressed and transformed Jack Vettriano appeared in the barber’s doorway with the money for his unpaid barbers tab. With Norman recounting one of the most important things that Jack said;

”I am now a brand!”

And well the rest is history!

33 years on from graduating from Art College I ask the question. How many creative students graduate with the additional skills to sustain an income and career in their chosen field?

Thank you Norman & Gilbert 


Why is your Brand & Trademark so important?

One of the biggest mistakes in business or in my industry product design is branding. No matter how wonderful a product idea or innovation you have your brand name & identity is crucial. This is one area where cash is often wasted and crucial mistakes made. It is essential that you obtain the correct expertise and advice. Especially when making what may seem like a simple decision like the choice of company name or logo design or even more importantly securing your URL's.

As a designer I have had years of experience in developing brands, logo's and filing trademarks. I've even had the pleasure of a trademark challenge from one of the worlds biggest brands over a brand my husband & I own which ends in the letters 'oogle'.

Here are just a few suggestions for the business start-up, new inventors or if you are looking to rebrand your existing business.

The ultimate word in in branding is being "congruent" from your company name, your logo, web design, to vehicle or uniform design. Everything must synchronize to tell the same story, one that appeals to your customer needs and wants.


Make your name short, memorable and unique. Ensure it is available; does someone already have the trademark, registered company or URL's. Do you have your ?Avoid misspellings, negative connotations or conflicts with your major competitors. (see &


Securing ownership of your domains is now as equally important as obtaining an available company name or title. We live in the technology age where your website is as important as your social media network profile.(see


If you plan to be a sole trader or partnership, still think ahead if you decide to become a limited company. Is the company name or brand owned by someone else? What will be the cost and loss to you and your customers down the line of lost brand continuity. And at worse re-branding; vehicles, signage, stationary, paper work, website etc.


Like your registered company name it is essential that you check for any conflicts with other companies, brands, competitors in relation to your logo mark, symbol to your choice of colour pantone & font.


Your marketing mediums start and end with everything from; stationary, brochures, website, social networking pages to premises signage, interior design, staff uniforms, vehicle design to dress code. Your marketing mediums represent your visual company C.V, they are the visual communication of your company to your customer, supplier and competitors.    

Interested in learning more? Read on! Amazon or Apple Books