Turtles on the Beach — Another Fabric Design

Spoonflower’s contest this week is to design a one-yard zigzag cheater quilt.

I immediately thought of the turtle I’ve used in a few other designs.  This post shows a Hawaiian design I made using the turtle.  I figured it would be a fun motif to use in a zigzag design.

One of the things I love about creating designs to print on fabric is that I can make them much more complex than I could if I were to create a quilt using traditional methods of piecing and appliqueing fabric. Continue reading

Not Boxed In

The latest design contest at Spoonflower is all about geometrics, and creating the design using only two colors (RGB #a7bb7d and #724b64) plus white.  I like geometrics, so I thought this would be a fun design to work on, though I never would have picked these two colors on my own.

To get started thinking beyond the basic circles and squares, I looked up Geometric Shapes in Wikipedia, and discovered a bunch of fun shapes, like the Bankoff Circle, the Arbelos and the Asteroid…if they covered these in my High School Geometry class, I must have been asleep that day.  Continue reading

Variations on a Fabric

A while ago, Spoonflower had a contest to create a Hawaiian ‘cheater’ quilt design, and I wrote about my design here and about the wall quilt I made from the fabric here.

Here’s the original design, using the turtles and flowers of Kauai.
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Painted Daisies, Take 2

I played around some more with my Painted Daisies design, done for the Fabric8 Contest at Spoonflower.  Here was the previous version.

While I like the colors, the design seems boring.  I decided to try adding lots more layers of daisies to fill in all the spaces.  I made this first attempt by duplicating the layer and moving it–just to see if the idea might work. Continue reading

Painted Daisies, Take 1

Another week, another fabric design challenge…  Spoonflower and Robert Kaufman Fabrics are sponsoring the Fabric8 contest.  The challenge is to create a modern fabric design that evokes the style of pen & ink drawings colored with watercolor paints.  This isn’t my usual style, so I thought it would be a good challenge to tackle to stretch myself.

When I think of modern fabrics, I think of bright colors and bold styles–again, not exactly what I’d picture for pen and ink drawings colored with watercolors.  So, anyway, here’s my interpretation of the theme. Continue reading

Urban Sunset Revisited

In a recent post I showed how I created “Urban Sunset”–a repeat design for a fabric design contest.  I really liked the design and thought I’d try to create a non-repeating design that I could print on fabric and then turn into a whole cloth quilt.  My plan is to create a design that’s about a yard wide so I can have it printed at Spoonflower on a full yard of fabric.

Here’s the ‘brick’ brush I created in Photoshop.  It’s slightly different from my earlier post in that I cleaned up the edges a bit. I used only this brush in all the designs.

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Houndstooth Seamless Repeat in Photoshop — Another Digital Fabric Weave

In a previous post I talked about simulating the look of a Tartan plaid using Photoshop Elements.  The same technique can be used to create a digital version of other weave patterns.  I won’t go through all the steps which were covered in the earlier post, but the basic steps are:

  • create one unit of the repeating pattern (I do this using the rectangle tool in Photoshop)
  • define it as a pattern in Photoshop (Edit ==> Define Pattern)
  • use the pattern to fill another object with the repeating pattern (Edit ==> Fill)
  • select and change the colors as desired

Houndstooth is a popular pattern lately, and easy enough to create digitally. Continue reading

Urban Sunset — Making a Seamless Repeat in Photoshop

Recently Spoonflower and the Textile Center in Minneapolis, MN sponsored a design contest called Urban Sightings.  The aim was to design a fabric using, as inspiration, photos taken of the neighborhood around the Textile Center .

There were six photos, and I used the five below as my inspiration.

I used the photo of bricks to create a brush in Photoshop. Continue reading

Easy Digital Batiks

Traditional batik designs are created by placing hot wax patterns on fabric, and then dyeing the fabric.   The wax resists the dye and keeps the fabric beneath the wax the original color.  Dharma Trading has a colorful and fun explanation of creating batiks here.

The batik effect is easy to simulate in Photoshop, and the resulting image can be printed on fabric or used anywhere you need a seamless repeating pattern. Continue reading

Fun Daisies Fabric Collection

I entered another of Spoonflower’s weekly fabric contests.  This one called for a one-yard image that included four distinct coordinating fabric designs, including at least one stripe pattern and one dot pattern. I’m not sure why I enter these contests…but it’s fun working on the designs and I’m learning a lot about Photoshop and Illustrator and repeat pattern design in the process.

I thought I’d try to use the ten colors in the Pantone Spring 2012 fashion color trends as my palette, since it’s trendy and these are not colors I’d normally pick (especially Sweet Lilac).  A floral theme seemed to fit well with the spring colors, so I started gathering some of my photos of daisy-like flowers.  Continue reading