Design at play

A box of 89 method cards creates inspiration and structure in the design process

Even though they look like a deck of cards size x-large, the so-called Co-Creation Cards, which are now printed by the publishing house U Press with funding from Design School Kolding, are not worth a whole lot in a game of whist. Indeed Co-Creation Cards is a set of method cards that you can use to drive and structure innovation and design processes.

- With the method cards you can establish a common and tangible language around the creative process. They can be used by individuals, teams, leaders and facilitators, explains researcher and teacher at Design School Kolding, Silje Kamille Friis, who developed the Co-Creation Cards.

The box containing 89 cards is divided into six categories. The first category, Collaborate, focuses on methods that support team collaboration. The next four categories, Collect, Comprehend, Conceptualise and Create telated to the phases of the creative process. The final category, Communicate, concerns methods of communicating the work to others. Each category has its own individual colour – black, green , blue, purple, red and orange.

The methods are categorized randomly within each category and can be selected and combined to each situation and project. There is no correct order. - This is an important point, says Silje Kamille Friis.

- It means that users can pick the cards that match the specific project. But I’ve also included blank cards. As the methods change with the users, new methods will emerge and I hope that blank cards will serve as an inspiration to others to experience, experiment and develop their own, she elaborates.

Breaking habits and ways
Silje Kamille Friis’s method cards have been tested in advance by several people, including Poul Rind Christensen, Professor at the Institute for Entrepreneurship & Relation Management, Southern University of Denmark, Campus Kolding, who says:

- Co-Creation Cards gathers the diversity of productive methods related to design, innovation and creativity in a clear and manageable way. I have benefitted greatly from the collection and they inspire me to break the habits, ways and routines that I have built over the years.

The first set of method cards saw the light of day in 2006 and inspired Anne Katrine Gelting and Silje Kamille Friis to make set at Design School Kolding in 2011. Since the method cards have been further developed with contributions by professional practitioners, researchers, teachers and students. The visual layout is designed by former student at design School Kolding, Graphic Designer Mai Bjerre.

You can purchase the cards on or at Design School Kolding.