Design Inspiration at TomboyX

Meet our Senior Designer

Woman designer looking at fabrics | Design at TomboyX


Have you ever wondered how we come up with the designs and colors for our cute undies? We sat down with our teammate, Tani Bland, Senior Designer here at TomboyX, to talk about the process, inspiration, and how we get your feedback on our designs. 

TomboyX: First of all, thanks for taking the time to do this. I know you’re super busy. 

Tani Bland: Not a problem at all, I absolutely love sharing any insight into our design process here at TomboyX.  

TBX:  Could you tell us about your role here in the design process for new products at TomboyX?

TB: I’m the Senior Designer for TomboyX.  My role is to lead and conceptualize the development of new products, prints, graphics, and raw materials from the very beginning stages of the design process through production.  

TBX: So when does this process start? A few months in advance of a new product or print launch?

TB: Actually, the design process typically begins a year in advance. We start with developing and sourcing new raw materials and trims that will be used to create our new underwear silhouettes and new products for the season.  Once the raw materials are landed and developed, I create the concept, color palette, and direction of the season that will inspire the designs and artworks we’ll create.  After the concept is landed, that’s when I design into the individual styles, signature prints, and graphics. This last step is my favorite point of the process as I get to sketch and be as creative as possible!  At this point I team up with the rest of the production and merchandising teams to develop, assort, and bring the product to life!  

TBX: Wow! That’s a long time! How can you possibly guess what’s going to be popular a year in advance?!

TB: It is exactly what you just said, it is always a guess. But we do have some great resources that I use to follow micro and macro trends that drive what will be popular for the coming year.  I use resources such as trend forecasting companies, fashion snoops, runway, and social media like TikTok and Instagram.  I also listen to trend webinars and follow culture trend analysts who predict how consumers will shop and what will drive their purchases in order to make the best decisions on what trends and styles to push. All of this research combined helps me make the best guess at what will be popular in a year at the end of the day.  

TBX: That’s interesting! So you have all these predictive resources looking at the future. Is there anywhere else you look to for inspiration?

TB:  I’m also very inspired by everyday life and individuals.  I’m constantly keeping an eye out when I go shopping, traveling in airports, going to the coffee shop, and working out in the gym.  Keeping an eye on what people around the country and world wear in everyday life is extremely important. That can also help drive product decisions, and inspire versatile and functional products that are realistic and necessary for our customer.  

TBX: How do you incorporate feedback from our customers? 

TB:  Getting input from our customers is extremely important to us. I’m constantly inspired by them on a daily basis.  Some of my favorite times are when I get the chance to talk with our customers in person, like this year at our Pride Booth in Capitol Hill. But we can’t be everywhere, of course, so we also listen to feedback through other friends and family of our staff here. We also read the online product reviews our customers write, and get feedback sent to us from our customer service team.  We’re always looking for ways to improve, constantly problem solving in order to make sure that we are offering the best possible products with the best fit and quality possible.  As a designer here at TomboyX, I am constantly searching for ways to answer challenges in our customers' wardrobes and to provide our customers with unique products and prints that they can't find elsewhere and helps them feel special and comfortable in their own skin all day long regardless of the activity.  I also send out monthly surveys to internal and external customers in order to always stay close to our customers and use it as a way to include their feedback and choices on product designs, prints, new innovations, etc.  

TBX: Dang, that’s a lot. I know as a longtime fan myself, I’ve had a ton of fun joining the feedback sessions you host with the rest of the team here.  So, what’s the most rewarding part of the work you do here?

TB: As a designer, there is nothing that warms my heart more than seeing a customer in the product you designed and hearing how it brought a smile to their face. Our customers are so extremely passionate and knowledgeable, so I very much appreciate the conversations I have had with them and I am inspired every day to provide the best product I can for these amazing people! 

TBX: That’s awesome! Okay, one last question for you. Can you give us a hint on what’s coming out later this year? We won’t tell, promise! ;)

TB:  I can’t share too much, as we love a good surprise!  I can share that we are shaking up our soft bra assortment and coming out with some new and exciting new styles in our beloved core fabrics with the same great comfortable fit.  We also have some great new fabrics coming that our customer will absolutely love and will add a little more texture and coziness to their wardrobe!  Definitely keep an eye out. 

TBX: That all sounds promising! Thanks again for giving us this behind-the-scenes peak at how we design new underwear, boxers, bralettes, and so much more here at TomboyX!

TB:  Thank you so much for having me!  It was such a pleasure :)