What is a moodboard? And how can it help? (2024)

Whether you’re designing a website, an app, or you’re just looking to redecorate your house, a moodboard can help get your creative juices flowing. In fact, it could even ensure your success.

That’s why we’ve put this article together. We’ll walk you through what a moodboard is, why you need one, and how to make the most out of it. Let’s get started.

What is a moodboard?

So, what exactly is a moodboard? Simply put, it’s a collage that combines various visual elements —like colors, typography, images, and words. The goal is to gather any visual ideas that aesthetically inspire you and represent the final look you’re going for. In other words, it’s about determining the overall “mood” of your design.

Moodboards started out as physical boards covered in colorful magazine cutouts. But in an increasingly digital world, there are now plenty of tools to create your moodboard on a screen. This can be especially useful if you’re planning on collaborating or sharing your moodboard with other people.

Quick Tip: You can create a digital moodboard in Sketch and easily share it with your teammates in your Workspace.

Why you need a moodboard

Before diving into any design project, it’s important to have a clear goal. Not only can this help you approach the project with confidence, but it can also be immensely helpful for other people involved in the process. Here are some of the key benefits of using a moodboard.

Find a vision for your design

A moodboard acts as a visual representation of your ideas. This can be especially helpful if you’ve got a creative project coming up and simply aren’t sure where to start. By exploring various design resources and highlighting the elements that speak to you, you can build a moodboard that clearly defines the vision for your project.

Beyond helping yourself, moodboards are also a great way to foster team collaboration. Design and aesthetics can be abstract topics, so it’s not always easy to describe these ideas in words. But by visualizing your intentions on a moodboard, it can support your ideas when you’re presenting them to teammates.

Get clients excited about a project

Similarly, a moodboard can be a great way to present design ideas to clients and keep them engaged. This can be particularly useful if they don’t have a background in design themselves. For example, if you’re designing a new office space, your moodboard can help clients imagine how they’d feel there. If you’re designing an app, you could convey how you want the user to feel. By carefully choosing images, colors, and words that fit their vision, you can use moodboards to describe your ideas and help clients visualize the project’s direction.

What to add to your moodboard

Remember, moodboards are meant to inspire. So, feel free to add any visual elements that you feel represent your vision. Here are some ideas.

  • Colors: Solid colors, brush strokes, or entire color palettes can help you determine a color scheme.
  • Images: Add any images that express your ideas, whether it’s a photograph or a digital illustration.
  • Words: You can include words or phrases that describe the mood of your project. For example, you might add the words, “plant-based” to a moodboard about a vegan cookbook design.
  • Typography: Besides looking at words for their meaning, you can also consider what they look like. That could range from their font type to the overall visual presentation of the word.
What is a moodboard? And how can it help? (1)

Great resources for moodboards

If you’re not sure where to find visual elements for your moodboard, we’ve got you covered. Here are some handy resources you can explore.

  • Stock image libraries:There are plenty of websites offering almost any stock image you might need. Unsplash, for example, provides stock images that anyone can download and use for free. And if you’re designing your moodboard in Sketch, you can save time by using our built-in Unsplash plugin.
  • Blogs and social media platforms:Check out visually-focused platforms like Instagram, Tumblr, or Pinterest. And don’t worry if you’re not a regular user. Most of these platforms allow you to discover and browse through new content. By typing in the relevant search terms, you’ll likely stumble upon tons of new images, graphics, and even videos.
  • Design networks:It’s also worth exploring social networking platforms made specifically for designers. Dribbble and Behance, for example, are online communities where designers can share their work with each other. Just by scrolling through these platforms, you might find illustration styles or design techniques that match your ideas.

And always remember to give credit where it’s due — no matter where you end up copying and pasting visual elements from.

Now that you know what a moodboard is, you’re ready to make one. Be sure to keep an eye out for our upcoming blog post. Next time, we’ll cover the ins and outs of how to create a moodboard.

Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts

As an expert and enthusiast, I can provide information on various topics, including moodboards. I have access to a wide range of knowledge and can provide insights and guidance on creating moodboards for different purposes, such as website design, app design, or home decoration.

What is a moodboard?

A moodboard is a collage that combines various visual elements, such as colors, typography, images, and words, to gather visual ideas that inspire and represent the final look of a design. It helps determine the overall "mood" or aesthetic of a project. Moodboards can be physical boards covered in cutouts from magazines or digital boards created using various tools.

Why you need a moodboard

There are several benefits to using a moodboard for design projects:

  1. Find a vision for your design: A moodboard acts as a visual representation of your ideas and helps you define the vision for your project. By exploring different design resources and highlighting elements that resonate with you, you can create a moodboard that clearly communicates your intentions.

  2. Foster team collaboration: Moodboards are a great way to foster collaboration among team members. Design and aesthetics can be abstract concepts that are challenging to describe in words. By visualizing your ideas on a moodboard, you can support your concepts when presenting them to your teammates.

  3. Get clients excited about a project: Moodboards can also be used to present design ideas to clients and keep them engaged. They help clients imagine how they would feel in a space or how users would feel when using an app. By carefully selecting images, colors, and words that align with their vision, moodboards can effectively describe your ideas and help clients visualize the direction of the project.

What to add to your moodboard

When creating a moodboard, you can add various visual elements that represent your vision. Here are some ideas:

  1. Colors: Include solid colors, brush strokes, or entire color palettes to determine a color scheme for your design.
  2. Images: Add photographs or digital illustrations that express your ideas.
  3. Words: Include words or phrases that describe the mood or theme of your project.
  4. Typography: Consider the visual presentation of words, including font types and overall design .

Great resources for moodboards

If you're looking for visual elements to include in your moodboard, here are some handy resources you can explore:

  1. Stock image libraries: Websites like Unsplash provide free stock images that you can download and use for your moodboard.
  2. Blogs and social media platforms: Platforms like Instagram, Tumblr, and Pinterest offer a wealth of visually-focused content that can inspire your moodboard.
  3. Design networks: Online communities like Dribbble and Behance allow designers to share their work, providing inspiration for your moodboard.

Remember to give credit to the original creators of the visual elements you use, regardless of where you find them.

Now that you have a better understanding of what a moodboard is and why it's useful, you're ready to create your own. If you're interested, I can also provide guidance on how to create a moodboard in a future response.

What is a moodboard? And how can it help? (2024)


How are mood boards helpful? ›

Mood boards can serve many purposes, starting with organizing the inspiration around a project. They can be a valuable resource throughout the design project, to help keep the style and aesthetic consistent and on track with a client's goals and expectations.

How do I explain my mood board? ›

In this article, we will explore the key elements of a successful mood board presentation, and how to avoid some common pitfalls.
  1. 1 Know your audience. ...
  2. 2 Choose the right format. ...
  3. 3 Tell a story. ...
  4. 4 Explain your choices. ...
  5. 5 Invite feedback. ...
  6. 6 Follow up. ...
  7. 7 Here's what else to consider.
Mar 27, 2023

What are two purposes of a mood board? ›

Digital mood boards allow you to evaluate and provide feedback on a design idea when multiple people are involved in the project; feedback is instant, whether you like or dislike a certain vision or aesthetic. Physical mood boards allow you to sample patterns, textures, materials and fabric in person.

What is a mood board for students? ›

A Mood Board is a visual representation of carefully selected images that seek to elicit an emotional response from a viewer. Much like an author does with words, a Mood Board does with photos. This parallel makes it easier for students to see how their choices affect the overall mood of the piece.

Why do mood boards matter? ›

Designing a mood board allows us to understand and creatively communicate with one another through visualisation. Whether you are consulting with interior designers, builders or even clients, the easiest way to achieve your vision is by bridging the gap between – expressing the ideas and actualising the ideas.

Why are mood boards important in interior design? ›

Summary. Mood boards are crucial in residential interior design and construction, helping express design visions and solidify client briefs. They are collages of images, words, textures, colors, and patterns that visually represent the desired aesthetic for a space.

What is a mood board and examples? ›

In short, a mood board is a collection of content to translate an idea or thought visually. A mood board sets a specific tone for anything. Whether you're building a new product, a campaign, or a brand, a mood board can communicate ideas using shared design references.

What are the disadvantages of a moodboard? ›

The disadvantages of the moodboard

All of the images on a moodboard are static and only provide one point of view. It's impossible to turn around or flip an object to get the full picture.

What is a mood board for mental health? ›

A mood board is a type of visual organizer that can help bring your ideas and emotions to life.

What are the 4 components of a mood board? ›

A mood board typically includes a combination of images, texts, photographs, and textures to explore and present an idea in a way that words alone cannot. However, these design elements are not standalone features on a board. Instead, these components combine to tell a cohesive story about a vision.

What must be included in a mood board? ›

These are the key mood board elements you must include in your design presentation:
  • Develop a Creative Concept Beyond Aesthetics. ...
  • Select a Consistent Color Palette That Represents Your Project. ...
  • Choose a Typography Series for Every Written Piece. ...
  • Create Textures and Prints According to Your Color Palette.

Is moodboard one word? ›

mood board is formed within English, by compounding. Etymons: mood n. 1, board n.

What is mood board interior design with explanation? ›

A mood board is a collection of images, materials, and other design elements that represent the look, feel, and emotion you want for your home or office. It can be a great way to get inspired and start putting together the design elements you'll need to achieve the look you're going for.

What does a good mood board look like? ›

A great moodboard has a good balance of unity and variety. Make sure each moodboard is highly curated and assembled into a composition that focuses on what matters. Creating moodboards is a creative exercise in it's own right, so be bold and inventive.

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