Oops! Embarrassing Design Blunders

It’s easy for designers to make mistakes while working on several projects simultaneously, often on little to no sleep. We are only human. When we rush to meet a deadline, careless errors can go overlooked. However, when these “tiny” flaws slip through rounds of edits and end up getting published for the entire world to see, the designer is met with waves of scrutiny. Here are a few rather embarrassing examples of silly typos, sloppy Photoshop and careless mistakes that show just how important it is to double-check your work before publishing!  

1. Miami Herald ran a Macy’s ad congratulating the Heat on winning the NBA title. There would be nothing wrong with this ad if Miami had not lost Game 6 of the NBA finals and thus the series to the Dallas Mavericks.

2. The shadow doesn’t quite match up with the voting machine featured on the cover of Time magazine.

3. I hope the bathroom isn’t crowded.

4. Looks like this designer went a little crazy with the clone stamp.

5. Forgetting one letter can drastically change the meaning of a sentence.

6. I’ll give you two clues as to why I don’t think this guy was actually holding a check when this photo was taken. First look at his shadow. Then look at his reflection in the car.

7. Classic case of the missing leg.

8. Classic case of the third leg.

9. Domino’s Pizza box features a six-fingered Idol.

10. Cloning Brad Pitt could be a good thing. Cloning his daughter in this photo isn’t.

11. Valley News misspells their own name wrong on the front page.

12. The girl’s reflection in her laptop is haunting.

13. Media placement fail.

14. Either this photo featured in Playboy was drastically retouched or she was born without a belly button.

15. I guess this is Victoria’s Secret handbag.

16. Got an extra hand?

17. This interactive banner ad gets a medal of dishonor.

18. Wacky fingers on the cover of Mega magazine.

19. A typo has never been so fitting.

If you’ve ever been subject to ridicule or embarrassment as a result of missing an obvious mistake in your work, I hope the list above eases your pain. You are not alone. There is always another designer out there making a bigger blunder (at a higher cost). The least we can do is learn from their slip-ups, and acknowledge our own. What’s the worst mistake you’ve made on the job?

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