My sewing inspiration nearly always comes from one thing - Fabric. Movies and extant garments and fashion plates all help clarify that, but the fabric, it speaks to me.
Nearly everything in my stash has at least a lose idea around it of what it will be and in some cases an extremely specific one. In fact, sometimes when I try to change my idea of what I want to do with a specific fabric I find it's almost as if there is an invisible force staying my hand - no! It's not meant to be that, stop! And I usually listen. Because if I don't I end up with something that isn't right and I don't like. A large part if it is what the fabric looks like of course, but hand is super important too. A fabric that I bought to make a pretty 18th C polonaise with turned into a regency open gown on arrival because the hand was so soft and flowing...I could just see the trained skirts billowing out behind me...that's what is HAD to be. Other times a loose idea falls away as I suddenly see what the fabric was MEANT to be - ah, that blue/black changable silk taffeta is going to be a Titanic evening gown! That goes perfectly with the black net sequined fabric and those black beaded motifs and....you get the idea.
After going through what I made this year and then looking at my stash I can feel the ideas whirling around. Despite being awakened by sick kids I went back to sleep with a smile on my face as visions of fabric and costumes to be danced through my head.