Ask DN: Design for the Non-Designer

over 7 years ago from , Developer

As a developer I'm often working on side projects which are small in scope and relatively quick to put together.

When I think something has potential I usually post it up on HackerNews/reddit/etc but as someone with an appreciation for design but very little ability I often find myself disappointed with my applications, because even though they function correctly they usually don't look so great.

Hiring a designer would be the best approach for an actual product but for a side project that doesn't really make sense because of its scope.

Is it best to just not worry about it or is there anything I can do to improve how they look?

What approach would you recommend for design on side projects for non-designers?


  • Noam ElbazNoam Elbaz, over 7 years ago

    For starters - Show it off to DN and you'll probably get a bunch of decent feedback that you could probably quickly implement your self, like color, margin, padding, alignment, font size etc.

    1 point
  • Alex Cason, over 7 years ago

    Some good suggestions, thanks. :-)

    I'll definitely post things up here for suggestions and critique and hack design/design for hackers looks great.

    0 points
  • Joe BarberJoe Barber, over 7 years ago

    You could put out feelers for designers looking to work on fun side projects. There are plenty of us. :)

    I'd also recommend hackdesign.org as a good place learn some design principles. It's a great resource for designers and non-designers.

    0 points
  • Jonathan YapJonathan Yap, over 7 years ago

    Or, you can try and seek out a designer who might be interested in the project. Some will get involve without requiring much/any price. Its a long shot, but you might find someone who's willing to do so as part of a learning experience :)

    0 points
  • Geri ReidGeri Reid, over 7 years ago

    Recommend David Kadavy's book: http://designforhackers.com/

    0 points