Some Spoonflower links and love

I have been doing some work for Spoonflower recently and I can honestly say that having a go at designing your own fabric is a pretty great way to spend a couple of evenings. When I was first asked to come up with some project ideas and write some guest posts for their blog I completely panicked! On one hand, how could I pass up the opportunity to work with such an amazing company who are really carving out a new and exciting direction for the textile and design industry. On the other hand, I am not a designer and have zero skills when it comes to using any of the fancy design software packages that I do not even own! Then I realized that they probably asked me because I'm no pro. They already have lots of fabulous professional designers selling their collections in the marketplace. A couple of my favorite designers are Holli Zollinger and Domesticate. Check them out - their designs are irresistible.

So anyway, since my preferred methods of photo editing basically boil down to Picasa and Paint and I can't draw a thing, I've really had to think about ways to use the skills I do have to create some fabric designs worth using. And so far so good. I'm always quite critical of my creations and tend to see the tiny stitch or two in the wrong place, a slightly uneven hem or a less-than-perfect pleat rather than the bigger, beautiful picture but I can honestly say that so far, I'm completely amazed at what I've managed to create with so few skills and a couple of good ideas. Of course, it helps that Spoonflower prints onto some great fabrics. So far, I have had designs printed onto their cotton/linen canvas, silk crepe de chine, knit and the cotton silk. All of them have been a pleasure and joy to work with. I also have a design printed onto their new cotton poplin and haven't sewn with it yet, but it looks lovely.

We went on an amazing trip of a lifetime earlier this year, to the Bahamas. I was born there but left as a baby and whilst I've grown up listening to stories about it and my family go on and on (and on and on and on) about how wonderful it was there, I had no memory of it at all and had never been back before this year. It was truly a magical experience flying into Nassau and immediately feeling a sense of belonging. I grew up in England and my whole family are English, but I've always felt a little weird about not having been born there. But for once, look, I could do this...


This was even before I had got off the plane! Filling out the immigration form and being able to tick your country of birth and actually having your country of birth listed! How many times in my life has my country of birth ever appeared at the top of a list of 4 countries? Just this once, actually. Like I say, I felt like I belonged.

I was also hoping for a similar welcome reaction from the nice immigration officials as we entered the country and lined up to have our passports stamped. At the very least a warm hug and a 'welcome home!' A shot of Bacardi would have gone down well too. I should have known better. I guess immigration officials are the same the world over :o)

But anyway, it was the most amazing holiday. I've yet to actually frame any of the photos I took, mainly because it's going to be so hard to decide which ones to display on our walls. But look! I am wearing one of the photos I took.


I edited one of my photos using Picasa and enlarged it. Then I had it printed onto Spoonflower's cotton silk.  If you'd like to have a go at doing something like this, you can read the specific instructions over at Spoonflower by clicking here. I can't tell you how nice it feels to be wearing such a special design. 

And last week, Spoonflower published a tutorial I wrote on how to make a maxi skirt. It's a very easy sew but has a huge impact on your style. I really love this skirt and it's elasticated waist makes it so comfortable to wear. I'm over not being comfy in my clothes. But that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice style, right?


The fabric I used was designed by the aforementioned Holli Zollinger and you can read my full tutorial for making the skirt here.

Ok, that was the longest post ever. I need a cup of tea.

10 comments:

  1. I saw your latest Spoonflower post and was so impressed! I think the thing I love most about your projects is they look awesome but you prove you don't need super computer design skills to use Spoonflower to fabulous effect. Paint? Isn't that the program I used on a PC to do uncoordinated drawings about 15 years ago?!
    I'm going to have to save my pennies and start thinking of images to use.
    Bahamas. Sounds dreamy....

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    1. Thanks Jane, yes Paint - that free drawing software you probably got on your computer. Told you I'm a novice!

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  2. Okay, that's just awesome! What a way to "wear" your memories!

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    1. Aw, thanks Carolyn! I remember you saying you'd used a Salme pattern recently. Do you have trouble making the facings lay flat or is it just me?

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  3. Oh my goodness, your Bahamas fabric and dress is STUNNING! That's gorgeous! I agree with Jane - you make fabric design seem like something do-able even for those of us less-computer-graphics inclined.

    Wow, I'm still tripping on the dress. It's just so beautiful and perfect!

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    1. Thank you!! I am definitely among the less-computer-graphics inclined masses.

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  4. Once again, I love your posts and projects - saw this one on Spponflower. This is a terrific dress and fabric - congrats!

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  5. Help! I am stumbling around trying to find your tutorial on taking a photo and printing it on fabric as you did on Spoonflower. I use a Mac and wonder if the "Paint" program is different than the one you use? Any help would be appreciated.

    Suzi Kallam
    woozisuds73@mac.com

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    1. Hi Suzi, I don't use a Mac so I'm not the best person to ask! In my version of Paint, there is a resize option and I just type in the number of pixels. I wonder if it would be under 'properties' or 'tools' for you? If not, there must be some software on there that enables you to increase the size. If I have been no help, I advise you to go to Spoonflower's FB page and perhaps ask the question there. There may be some other Mac users who can help. Good luck! Let me know how you get on, in case someone else asks me the same question AND I'd love to see your finished print! Emma

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