Colour Me Bad

I’ve been teaching myself how to design textile patterns for 11 months now and have made great progress. I’m really inspired at the moment and have many sketches and shapes waiting to be turned into patterns. This latest triangle design created some problems as I’m trying to stop using white as a background and be more daring with colours. I keep referring to Tamasyn Gambell, Lotta Jansdotter and my print and pattern Pinterest board for ideas but keep coming up with the same palette again and again.

Here are my first little tests with and without a half-drop.

Thankfully I was told about Adobe Kuler, a colour scheme generator that is FREE! It looks pretty horrible with an ugly dark grey background but I tested it out by using the suggested Compound colour selection and as you can see here it worked out ok. It’s really useful as you can scroll around the colour wheel and it instantly gives you the HEX code which can be copied into your editing software.

I prefer my own colour designs for now but will use Adobe Kuler when I’m stuck for ideas.

If you are designing a pattern for textiles, the colours on your screen will look very different to the end result. This is why you should get a custom proof setup so you can see more accurately what your colours will look like when printed. I use the Spoonflower one at the moment which matches well with the company I printed my last design on.

Image with custom proof set up


Image without


You can see the difference is huge! The next challenge is to work out how to do a half-drop pattern in Photoshop. I’m currently having to do this manually which is fiddly, any advise would be most welcome.

One Yard Wonders!

Last September I discovered a website called Spoonflower that lets you upload your own textile patterns and print them onto fabric. The website is full of hints and tips on getting the best patterns and is perfect for any beginner who wants to teach themselves. The only downside is that it’s based in the U.S.A and I live in the UK. I would have to wait a month for my fabrics to arrive and then pay a hefty charge at the post office. I decided to look around at alternative digital printing companies based in the UK and came across BeFabBeCreative, who are based in Edinburgh. I ordered their fabric sample, uploaded my designs and chose to have it printed 100 x 140cm on plain cotton.

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It took about a week to arrive and now I’m super excited to get started on some sewing. I’m planning on making three tote bags out of the first run but my mind is already thinking about the next design to send them and all the other possibilities such as cushions, scarves (yes they do a nice silk and satin options too), purses, rucksacks, umbrellas, the list is endless.

I’ll let you know as soon as they’re made and photographed all beautifully. Thank you BeFabBeCreative, expect some more designs soon.

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