UX designers surely know a good product when they see one, right?
We think so - that’s why we decided to ask our in-house UX designers here at CareerFoundry what their ultimate stocking fillers are.
Guess what we found? Our UX team (like many teams across the globe no doubt) love good old-fashioned pen and paper.
What’s more, they recommended these five tools for taking analog to a whole new level. If you want to test them out, enter our competition for your chance to win. We’re giving three lucky winners the complete toolkit.
Each toolkit includes:
- The Betabook Pro
- Multi-colored Post-its
- 3-pack of Field Notes (graph, ruled, and plain)
- Faber Castell 9000 Graphite Sketch Pencils 12-pack
- Copic Doodle Pack including 4 marker pens
These five items have you covered for tons of different UX activities, and they complement each other perfectly. Check them out!
#1 Betabook Pro
Love analog, but don’t want to waste heaps of paper? Enter the Betabook Pro. This handy portable book turns into an A3 whiteboard. It’s wipe clean, so you can use it again and again. Had a great planning session? Simply take a quick photo, and wipe clean.
Recommended for: creating personas, wireframing, site architecture mapping, user flow mapping, brainstorming, mission statements, note-taking.
Post-it notes have become synonymous with UX design. So much so, it’s almost a running joke, but there is a reason they’re so loved amongst the UX community. There aren’t many UX exercises that couldn’t be made easier with Post-its; from simply gathering ideas or opinions and and then grouping them by theme, to designing a whole website taxonomy.
Recommended for: agile planning, retrospectives, card sorting exercises for site architecture, brainstorming, and of course, leaving your colleagues friendly greetz!
#3 Field Notes
These little notebooks are perfect to keep on you at all times. They’re compact, stylish, and made in the U.S.A. Their cute, rustic design was inspired by promotional memo books distributed to American farmers by agricultural companies throughout the 20th century.
They offer a range of different versions, but we recommend the mixed pack of 3, which includes one book each of graph, ruled, and plain paper. A look at their website will show you why they are a clear favorite for many designers. The site has a nice user interface (check out this page of traditional memo book covers) and they’ve got some cool products such as limited editions, and even short story books, on offer.
Recommended for: mission statements, user interviews, creating personas, wireframing, project planning, note-taking (or cathartic doodling).
#4 Faber Castell 9000 Sketch Pencils
Sketch pencils are a classic for designing - with the right type of notebook paper and a good eraser, you’ve got lots of room for trial and error. Our team recommend the 9000 sketch pencils set from Faber Castell.
The 9000 has been on the market since 1905 and comes in 16 different degrees of hardness; the classic and most well-known being the HB pencil!
Recommended for: anything sketchable - user interviews, wireframes, user personas, note-taking and of course, doodling.
#5 Copic Doodle Pack
Copic marker pens came highly recommended from several UX designers. The Doodle pack includes 4 pens in complimentary color combinations. They are satisfying to draw with and make your sketches stand out. They are especially good for making cool-looking wireframes with nice shadow effects, to really lift it off the page and bring your designs to life!
Recommended for: like with sketch pencils, Copic marker pens are good for all-things-sketchy, but that you don’t want to erase: wireframes, site architecture, user flow mapping, paper prototyping, offline moodboards, and anything arty you want to try!
So there you have it: if you want to set up your analog UX design ecosystem, these items are a great place to start.
What You Should Do Now
- If you’d like a step-by-step intro to find out if UX design is right for you - sign up here for our free 7-day UX short course.
- If you are interested in becoming a UX Designer check out our UX design course (you'll learn the essential skills employers need).
- If you’d like to speak to an expert Career Advisor for free about how you can really get a new job in tech - connect with us here.
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