FAQ - Entrepreneur

Whether you have spotted a gap in the market or are drawing from your past experience having an idea for a product is an exciting moment. It’s worth searching the internet and asking friends and family to check that your idea is either new or represents a significant improvement over what you can currently buy.

Around half our clients are entrepreneurs similar to you, so don’t worry, we’re used to guiding people through the process. All projects are different, but typically we begin by creating a specification of what you want the product to do, generate and evaluate concepts, prototype, test and engage with a manufacturer.

Intellectual property is an important part of the design process as it offers a protection against someone stealing your idea.  There are different types of IP protection (not just patents) which protect different aspects of your design. 

An NDA (Non-disclosure agreement) is the first thing you’ll want to use to protect yourself when talking to anyone about your idea. When you contact us we can arrange one for you as part of our initial free consultation.

The two main ‘exit strategies’ to monetise your idea are either through selling a licence for it to be produced by an existing more established company or for you to produce and sell it yourself. There are pros and cons to both which we can explain to you.

Unfortunately this depends on the complexity of your product and the amount of support you need. As a small consultancy we’re able to be very competitive.

Even though we only work on projects which we feel have a real economic and market potential, we try to keep our business model based on being a design service provider. However. If this is something you are looking for, let us know as we often hear about grants which you may be eligible to apply for. 

We’ve enjoyed working with several companies in China over the years for prototype and production parts. Depending on what you want to produce this can be the best option for you, but it’s worth discussing properly as manufacturing in the UK can have distinct benefits also.

We have a trusted network of suppliers in the UK who can help with a wide range of processes such as metal fabrication, prototyping and moulding of plastics and rubber. Using ‘local’ factories can be beneficial for logistics, quality control and communication.

Honestly, we regularly say no to work. As part of the initial free consultation with you we’ll be able to get a feel for the potential value of your idea, roughly how much it may take to develop and manufacture and the size of the potential market. If it doesn’t feel like it adds up, we’ll say or possibly suggest a different approach.

Yes. we’re based in Surrey (UK) but find it very easy to work remotely. We keep in touch with regular scheduled calls and emails. We’re also happy to visit you for meetings if it’s easier.


“Highly Recommend”
James tactfully showed me there are 'many ways to skin a cat' and came up with a product design that exceeded my expectations. The design has since progressed quickly and efficiently. James has always been available to pinball ideas off and advise the steps involved in getting an idea to market.
Chris - Toy
18 May 2020
I’ve been working with James Barr design for a couple of years on our products and it’s been very productive. The result has been products that are aesthetically pleasing without compromising on function.
Lawrence Adeokun - Sport
6 Apr 2021
“Exceeded my expectations”
James has been able to take words and ideas from my head, producing a tangible product, that exceeded my expectations. He always keeps you updated and provides good insights in the world of design.
Highly recommend.
Christian Jolley - Sports therapy
31 Mar 2020

“Truly blown away”
We have recently used James Barr Design to design our product. We contacted James with the idea, sketches and notes and also had a brief call to discuss the product specifications. From this information he was able to turn it into highly realistic renderings along with a material and manufacture pack. James has really brought this on from a concept to a product and for this we have been truly blown away - he really is a master of his craft
Barney Hunt - Travel accessory
15 Nov 2021

" Thank you James for all your help - You've been such an important part of the journey!"
Sophia Procter - Pre-school dining/tableware
Jul 2020