Sunday, December 2, 2012

Sewing Project: B&W Jacket

So, here's the long promised jacket post. I used Simplicity pattern 2452 for this jacket, which is unfortunately out of print, but can still be found and bought here. It is a Threads Magazine pattern, and includes three different jacket options and a straight skirt. I chose to make the view A jacket, which has a stand collar, princess seams, and bracelet length sleeves. The jackets are all unlined, but the pattern suggests using bias tape to cover the seam edges.

Needed supplies. Not pictured are the pattern and black thread.

I rummaged through my fabric and trim stash to find a lightweight black twill fabric and white buttons. (Woohoo for not having to buy anything!) The black fabric was going to be used for a different jacket that never got made and the buttons were actually going to be used for this jacket, but with a different fabric. I also had double fold bias tape in both black and white. The white thread was used for topstitching, because I love it and felt it would look great on this jacket.

Unlike the pattern, I didn't use shoulder pads for my jacket. I thought it would be odd to have shoulder pads in a twill jacket. To compensate for the lack of shoulder pads, I slightly modified the pattern. I did this once the jacket base was sewn, and fitted the final fabric on myself. For me, I really just had to take in the sleeve allowance on the front and back pieces, which I would have had to do anyway since I have narrow shoulders.

Also unlike the pattern, I only used three packages of double fold bias tape rather than the four they suggested. If I remember correctly (it's been a few months since I made this!), I didn't even use all of the three packages of bias tape.

Jacket front, buttoned.

This jacket was simple to sew, and didn't take much time to sew. It did take time to do the topstitching and bias tape, though. It has become one of my favorite jackets, and I have worn it so much since finishing it. It gives a polished look to any outfit, and was also on trend for this fall. (I haven't really been keeping up with the fashion trends lately, but was super excited to see that black and white clothing was a major trend). For the buttonholes, I actually sewed them using black thread rather than white, so they wouldn't compete with the buttons.

Jacket back.

My favorite part of the jacket is the seaming in the back. The center bottom piece gives a slight peplum effect, which is very flattering. I also love how the topstitching really highlights the seaming on the jacket back. It is hard to tell from these pictures, but I did topstitching on the side seams as well.

Jacket inside with bias tape.

My second favorite thing about this jacket is the inside where I mostly used white bias tape. It is a nice contrast and hidden detail, and makes me happy for some strange reason. I only used black bias tape on the side seams and armhole seams.

I'm currently decorating for the holidays, and will be working on a few related projects. I do not have a Spoonflower contest entry this week, but will be posting more sewing projects, and maybe some holiday related ones.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Fabric Recap: Creepy Crawlies to Flights of Fancy

I've been working on some new fabric designs lately, with some recent contest entries. I'm working on some more new fabric designs, and some sewing projects that need to be finished and photographed. I'll do a fabric recap in this post, and will post a sewing project this weekend. Onto the fabric designs!

My entry for the "Creepy Crawlies" Spoonflower Fabric of the Week Contest was "Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron":

Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron
Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron placed 31st out of 224 entries. Both it and the Leather (brown) colorways are available for sale.

My next entry was also a new kit. For the "2013 Tea Towel Calendar" contest, I entered "Geometric Citrus 2013 Calendar":

Geometric Citrus 2013 Calendar
Geometric Citrus 2013 Calendar, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click to see its fabric page.
This was my first calendar design. I wanted something bright, fun, and modern. I also wanted to keep it geometric and not cutesy. Geometric Citrus 2013 Calendar placed 177th out of 186 entries. Eh.

I created several different arrow themed designs for the "Arrows" Fabric of the Week Contest before settling on my entry. "Bias Arrows" was my entry for that contest:

Bias Arrows
Bias Arrows, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

This design got me started on a bit of a diagonal design kick. These arrows are rotated on the true bias, and the arrow head colors form a zigzag pattern. I think this design would be great to use both on the straight grain and bias. "Bias Arrows" placed 149th out of 221 entries.

The other arrow designs I created are "Geo Arrows" and "Arrow Grid", both shown below. I may do some variations on these designs, and upload them later.

Geo Arrows
Geo Arrows, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

Arrow Grid
Arrow Grid, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

For the "Flights of Fancy" Fabric of the Week Contest, I went with a whimsical (ahem, whimsicle) entry that was a bit odd. The contest called for fabrics with a bird or flight theme. I chose to go with a flight theme for a few designs. I couldn't get my first idea for the contest to look right, so I went with my second idea. My entry was "Peculiar Fancy Flights":

Peculiar Fancy Flights
Peculiar Fancy Flights, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

Various accessories have taken flight to the next party in unconventional methods. A top hat air balloon, mask with pretty wings, blimp carrying a monocle, and wings attached to a handbag float and fly against a sky background. This contest required a limited palette of the colors shown. "Peculiar Fancy Flights" placed 216th out of 323 entries.

I also created a brown colorway of this design, shown below:

Peculiar Steamy Fancy Flights
Peculiar Steamy Fancy Flights, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

I really like how this colorway looks. It fits perfectly with the accessories and modes of transport.

I have another contest entry ready to go, but will wait to post it until the contest. I am working on several coordinating prints for it too. I will work on a sewing post for this weekend. Maybe I'll be able to catch up before decorating for the holidays. And yes, there will be posts for the decorations too. Hmm, I need to get out my Cookie Advent Calendar.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Squiggle Stripe Design

I meant to write more blog posts for recent designs and projects, but was so busy with life (moving and work) that I forgot. Oops. This post will be on my current Spoonflower entry, and the next post will be a catch up of new designs. I plan on finally photographing a few sewing projects this week and will have posts for at least one later this week.

The current Spoonflower Fabric of the Week contest is something right up my alley. Spoonflower partnered with The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University to hold a limited palette contest for fabric designs that would fit in a Matisse painting. The contest theme is for an upcoming exhibit at The Nasher Museum, and the Top Ten designs will be featured at an event there.

Matisse happens to be one of my favorite artists, so this contest was a must for me. I like both his earlier paintings with the bold use of color and design and his later paper cutouts that still have the bold designs. I drew inspiration from both his early and later works for my entry, Squiggle Stripe:

Squiggle Stripe
Squiggle Stripe, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

I've been on a bit of a diagonal kick lately, which is good considering there are diagonal elements in several Matisse works. Creating shapes and lines that weren't perfect was a bit hard for me, but was also fun. Getting the repeat right was much easier after messing with several other diagonal repeats, even if this one wasn't a typical diagonal.

While the contest brief led to the impression of the designs working well for home decor purposes, I think my design would also be great for a summer outfit. I am imagining a full skirt or even a dress made from this fabric. A fashion scarf would also look great with this fabric.

You can vote for your favorite entries for the Matisse/Nasher contest at Spoonflower here. The contest ends Wednesday. There are lots of fantastic entries in a wide variety of styles, so be sure to check out the contest.

*Up next: a catch up post with new designs and recent contest entries.*

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pretty Creepy Crawlies?

Halloween is the time for costumes, candy, decorations, spooky movies, and things that go bump in the night. Oh, and those sometimes terrifying things that crawl and slither. Creepy crawlies find their way into spooky decor, food, costumes, attractions, films, and even fabric. The current Fabric of the Week contest at Spoonflower is for Creepy Crawlies themed fabrics, just in time for Halloween. I went a slightly pretty route, and created a pattern inspired by scrollwork designs found in wrought iron. My entry for the Creepy Crawlies contest is Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron:

Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron
Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Iron, shown at fat quarter 21"x18" view. Click image to see pattern in yardage.

I hand drew stylized versions of spiders, scorpions, snakes, beetles, worms, and centipedes in a scrollwork style. Hearts, squiggly lines, and spirals fill in the print. I outlined the design with a black marker, then scanned it into my computer where the repeat was slightly corrected. This black and grey version was done with the contest in mind, and for a slightly creepy feel. I think it would be wonderful as a flocked fabric, or even just a flocked design on paper. I also think it would make a fun print for a frilly dress costume.

Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies is also available in a brown and tan colorway, shown below:

Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Leather
Scrollwork Creepy Crawlies Leather, shown at test swatch 8"x8" view. Click image to see pattern in yardage.

The brown colorway was created as a not so creepy alternative to the black colorway. It also has an aged feel, which would also make this colorway great for costumes. I actually had steampunk fashions in mind for this colorway too, as I had recently looked at mechanical versions of animals (some of which are included in this print).

You can vote for your favorite creepy crawlies fabrics here until Wednesday evening. In addition to designs perfect for Halloween, there are also plenty of cute and pretty non-holiday designs in the contest. There are also a fair number that have candy and creepies in the design. (The most popular candy included is of course, candy corn). You may have to put aside some fears for voting, but some of the designs may win you over. Or, may just scare you even more.

I still need to photograph my cupcake zombie sewn up and its sweets. Photoshoot! (And then I'll have some sweets!) Remember to check out the creepy crawly fabrics at Spoonflower, and check back for the cupcake zombie project post.

*Past Contest Result*
-Zombie Plush Toy: Cupcake Zombie! 17/88

Sunday, October 7, 2012

AHHH! Attack of the Cupcake Zombie!

I have been busy lately, and slacked off on blog posts. I do have my jacket sewing project completed, but need to photograph it and then can do a blog post for it. In the meantime, I have a new cut and sew kit in a contest and for sale. The current Fabric of the Week contest at Spoonflower is for a Zombie Plush Toy cut and sew kit. I personally am not a fan of zombies or gore, but like to make cut and sew kits. For this contest, I decided to go to the dark side and create a kawaii style cupcake zombie. (While I love lots of Japanese things, I can only handle so much kawaii stuff before I go crazy). Here is my entry, Cupcake Zombie!:

Cupcake Zombie!
Cupcake Zombie!, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to go to fabric page.

The contest guidelines called for the pattern to fit on a fat quarter of fabric sized 21"x18". My fun kit includes the pieces, instructions, and list of needed supplies to make this slightly crazy looking cupcake zombie. Also included in the kit are three flat zombie cupcakes that can be used as appliques or turned into patches.

The cupcake zombie eats sweets instead of brains. As such, any candy should be hidden from this cute and clumsy zombie. It had a horrible accident with a lollipop stick and lost an eye. Luckily, it found a peppermint. Though it can't see with the peppermint, it appears more normal. Its frosting is a great way to store candy under further use. (The candy gets sewn to the frosting wherever desired).

You can vote for your favorite Zombie Plush Toy kits here until Wednesday. There are a lot of traditionally gory zombies, but there are also cute gore free kits in the contest. There are also a wide variety of zombie types and some humorous entries.

I do have the cupcake base sewn up, but need to find felt pieces for the lollipop sticks. Once I find the felt, the candy pieces will be sewn up and attached to the cupcake's frosting. Then I'll post pictures probably in a new blog post. (Oh, and take pictures of my finished jacket for a future post). Until then, vote for your favorite zombie cut and sew kits and watch some spooky films!

*Past Contest Results*
-Typewriter: Keys & Ribbons Plaid 112/169
-Earth Science: Sun & Storm Stripes 130/160

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Typewriter Fabric

I remember thinking I was so cool typing papers and stuff for elementary school on my mom's old typewriter. (We didn't have a computer yet, so a typewriter to me was beyond awesome). I didn't care if it didn't have a screen like a computer. I loved the sounds the keys made, and especially the sound made hitting the return key. Needless to say, I was really excited to see that Spoonflower chose typewriters as the theme for one of their Fabric of the Week contests. Even better was that the fabric designs had to be in black and white. I may have went a little crazy, as I ended up with several designs to choose from for the contest. Here is my entry for the current Fabric of the Week contest, Keys & Ribbons Plaid:

Keys & Ribbons Plaid
Keys & Ribbons Plaid, test swatch 8"x8" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.

Keys & Ribbons Plaid is made up of circular typewriter keys on vertical lines with letters, numbers, and symbols from vintage and modern machines. Used and unused typewriter ribbons are woven into the vertical lines. This print wasn't my first idea for the theme, but ended up being the one I liked the best for the contest.

Geometric Letter Keys was actually my first idea for the theme, and is probably my favorite.

Geometric Letter Keys Large
Geometric Letter Keys Large, shown at fat quarter 21"x18" view. Click image to see it in yardage.

This print has the circular typewriter keys on a mod inspired pattern. It's different and fun, but isn't as obviously typewriter inspired as the plaid print. You can view the rest of my typewriter themed prints here. I'm sure I'll be adding more, eventually. (I do have more designs, but do not have them uploaded yet).

Voting for the Typewriters Black and White contest ends Wednesday. You can vote for your favorite fabrics here until then. There are lots of fantastic entries to see in this week's contest. Seeing all the typewriter fabrics just makes me want a vintage typewriter even more.

I'm currently working on a fabric design involving some creepy critters. I also have my sewing project (jacket) to finish. Holidays and storms kind of interrupted my sewing time. I have a new cut and sew kit that I will be ordering soon, along with lots of swatches. There will be several fun and spooky designs posted soon!

*Past Contest Results*
-Zig-zag Cheater Quilt: Sleepytime zzz Cheater Quilt 209/216

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Nyan Cat Cross Stitch Pattern

A little over a year ago, I first saw the Nyan Cat video and immediately loved its silliness. It may annoy some, but it makes me smile. I decided to make a cross stitch of the strange and cute toaster pastry cat. Here is my recently finished project that still needs to be framed:

Creating a pattern for the Nyan Cat wasn't bad, but I spent a while coming up with a border design. And since I had not left a lot of extra fabric around the Nyan Cat (oops!), I had to work with the space I had left. I created the border with "nyan" in rainbow colors and pixelated star shapes similar to those in the Nyan Cat video.

I stitched the pattern on 16 count Aida cloth and the finished pattern with border is 9.0625 (9 1/16)  inches wide and 4.875 (4 7/8) inches tall. At first, I used 3 strands of floss for the Nyan Cat, but then used 2 strands of floss for the rest of the pattern. (I hadn't done a cross stitch in years, so wasn't sure how many strands to use). I used what colors I already had, and chose to use the same pink for the cat's cheeks as the toaster pastry frosting. For the most part, the colors I had were good matches to the colors in the video.

Here is the pattern for this project, with the colors I used listed:

Click image to view it larger. For personal use only.

If I did this project again, I would probably stitch it on a dark blue cloth and use glow in the dark floss for the stars. I do have another Nyan Cat I want to stitch. It's the Missing Nyan Cat. The background music is the Lavender Town music from Pokemon games. This Nyan Cat will be stitched with glow in the dark floss (for the white sections) on lavender linen fabric when I do the project.

If you use my pattern, please do not sell the pattern. (Because of the abundance of Nyan Cat inspired products, I'm sure it would be fine to sell the completed projects). Feel free to make lots of fun Nyan Cat cross stitch projects, though! Also feel free to use different colors if desired. Have fun stitching!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mod School Supplies

It's back to school time for students of all ages, or will be very soon. I was a strange kid, and always liked getting new school supplies each year. There's something about sharpening new sets of pencils and picking out a fun binder. Oh, and arranging items by color. To celebrate school starting again, Spoonflower's current Fabric of the Week contest is for school supplies themed fabrics. My entry is Mod School Supplies:

Mod School Supplies
Mod School Supplies, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Rulers, pencils, markers, marker caps, erasers, and construction paper make up this fun school supplies themed print. I used primary and secondary colors for the print to keep it bright and a tool for learning colors. The black and white keeps it from being too bright. The design was inspired by Mondrian art and uses actual sized rulers (with correct markings), pencils, and erasers. The markers and marker caps are approximate dimensions, as I didn't have any basic markers to use as a guide. This large scaled repeat would be especially great for art smocks, but would also work for backpacks and art supply/portfolio cases.

The last day of voting for this contest is Wednesday. You can check out the rest of the fabulous school supplies themed fabrics and vote for your favorites here. Many of them would make fantastic pencil cases or backpacks, and there are even a few kits amongst the entries.

I have another cross stitch pattern and project to post, and am also working on a sewing project. The cross stitch pattern and project will be posted soon. The sewing project (a jacket) will be posted once it is finished and photographed.

*Past Contest Result*
- Camping: Neverending S'mores 87/162

Sunday, August 19, 2012

S'more Fabric

I couldn't resist that pun, as this post will be about fabric with a s'mores inspired print. Nom nom nom! (S'mores print fabric is probably not safe for eating, but would be fine for your waistline). This week's Fabric of the Week contest at Spoonflower is camping themed fabrics. At first, I wanted to enter a fabric with several camping elements and stars. I did create that print (and will have it in this post), but decided to go with an essential camping treat: s'mores. Eating s'mores around a campfire is an awesome ending to a fun-filled day of exploring nature. Here is my Camping contest entry, Neverending S'mores:

Neverending S
Neverending S'mores, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see detail and repeat in yardage.

I used s'mores components to make a fun checkerboard type print. Graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate bars repeat in their proper order. I think this print would work wonderfully for a camping themed quilt, as well as crafts and even clothing. Though I think a s'mores fabric skirt would just make me want an actual s'more to eat.

I still like the first camping print I created, but thought s'mores would be better for the contest. Here is the other camping inspired print, Under the Stars:

Under the Stars
Under the Stars, fat quarter 21"x18" view shown. Click image to see repeat in yardage.
Crescent moons, campfires, tents, trees, and lots of stars make up this print on a night sky background. One of my favorite parts of camping is sitting by the fire at night, under the stars, eating s'mores and telling spooky stories.

You can vote for you favorite camping themed fabrics here at Spoonflower until Wednesday. There are lots of great fabrics perfect for the camping enthusiast, as well as several more s'mores inspired fabrics in the contest.

*Past Contest Result*
-Craft Party: Rainbow Rings Craft Party Kit 91/107

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Craft Party!

The current Fabric of the Week contest at Spoonflower is for cut and sew kits that fit on a fat quarter of fabric and would be perfect to make at a craft party. I wanted to create a kit that would have projects for multiple people and be something that could easily be hand sewn. My entry is the Rainbow Rings Craft Party Kit, shown below.
Rainbow Rings Craft Party Kit
Rainbow Rings Craft Party Kit, shown at fat quarter 21" x 18". Click image to go to fabric page.
This fun and colorful craft party kit includes pieces and instructions to make 16-24 rings on a fat quarter, depending on the fabric width. Party goers can mix and match shapes and patterns and layer them to create unique rings. They can also add beads, sequins, buttons, and other craft supplies to dress up their rings.The finished size of the ring bands is a maximum of 77.4 mm, or a US ring size 16. If wanted, one could even make bracelets using the ring bands by not folding them in half.

Voting for this contest ends Wednesday. You can vote for your favorite craft party kits here until then. There are a variety of fantastic kits in this contest, with soft toys, accessories, and more.

*Past Contest Result*
-Aviation: Runway Lights at Night 93/202

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Runway Lights at Night

Aviation is the theme for the current Fabric of the Week contest at Spoonflower. I went in a very different direction (as usual), but created a print inspired by one of my favorite things: lights. For this contest, I researched airport runway lights and their colors and placement. Here is my contest entry, Runway Lights at Night:

Runway Lights at Night (Click to see detail)
Runway Lights at Night, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

The light placements and quantity are not exact, as I wanted the repeat to fit on a fat quarter of fabric. The taxiway lighting placements are stylized for the print, and are not true to how they are on runways. (I was going to do a taxiway placement similar to actual ones, but realized how large the repeat was going to be if I went that direction). The "lights" are not circles; they are star shapes based on how real lights photograph. (I did use circles in a different color to mimic the lighter part of the lights).

Detail of a section of the print.

 I like how the final print turned out, especially in yardage with the "lights" zoomed out. You can vote for your favorite Aviation themed fabrics here until Wednesday. There are many fantastic takes on the theme, with something for pilots as well as kids.

*Past Contest Results*
- Olympics Contest: Modern Labyrinth 58/127

Friday, August 3, 2012

Boo! Spooky Cross Stitch Patterns

One of my favorite video games is Super Mario World, and my favorite levels are the Ghost Houses. The boos are funny, and add a challenge as they chase you throughout the levels. I also love all the hidden rooms, doors, and exits. I wanted a quick cross stitch project to do while taking a break from a larger cross stitch project. I had also just bought some glow in the dark embroidery floss, so I decided to use it for some Boo cross stitch projects.

I've dubbed the Boo face on the left "Silly Boo" and the face on the right "Chasing Boo".

The Boo face on the left is my favorite, and appears only when you (as Mario or Luigi) do not move your character for a while, with the character facing the Boo. A Boo will change to that expression just for a moment, and go back to its normal expression. The Boo face on the right occurs when your character's back is facing the Boo (i.e., when you're walking or running from it) and it (the Boo) is chasing you.

I used two small (2.25 in opening) cross stitch frames that I found at a thrift store. They were a shiny gold color, which wouldn't work with the Boos. A coat of white paint, several coats of glow in the dark paint, and a couple coats of clear sealer gave the frames a fun makeover. I used 14 count black Aida cloth for them, because I wanted them to stand out more than on white cloth. Once finished, I added backstitching around the Boos so the black outline stitching would show up against the black cloth.

Here is a closer picture of one, with a U.S. quarter for size comparison.

The patterns were a fun and quick project to do. I think painting the frames took longer than the stitching! I've made a digital pattern of each Boo, and each is posted below. I used the darker grey in the pattern, but I mixed some glow in the dark thread with the pearl grey for those stitches. I didn't have any lighter grey thread, so I just used the same grey for the lighter sections, but used less grey and more glow in the dark thread for the light grey sections.

"Silly Boo" Pattern:

Please do not sell pattern. For personal use only.

"Chasing Boo" Pattern:

Please do not sell pattern. For personal use only.

Now I just need to figure out where to hang these Boos. I may need to make more Super Mario cross stitch projects. Or maybe play some Super Mario World. Hmm.

Up next: an aviation themed fabric design post.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

It's Olympics (Fabric) Time!

I love watching the Olympics, especially the Winter Games. I look forward to the Games every two years, for the opening ceremony, the athletes' inspirational stories, and the idea of the Olympics. This week, Spoonflower chose to make the Olympics the theme of their Fabric of the Week contest.

My first idea was to do a sort of retro looking print using a stripe resembling a heartbeat line. Stars and circles were added to the stripe print, but I just didn't feel it for the contest. You can view that print here.

For my final contest entry, I went with a maze-like design. I used two basic blocks with lines and rectangles, and rotated them to create the print. Originally, I was going to have the background be a single color, but thought the checkerboard design was more dynamic. It also makes the print seem a bit smaller and adds optical illusion. Here is my entry, "Modern Labyrinth".

Modern Labyrinth
Modern Labyrinth, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

The design represents the twists, turns, and dead ends one meets before they reach their goal. I used colors similar to those of the Olympic rings and the checkerboard background to give it a sporty feel. But I think it is also appealing to non-athletes. I think it would be great for duffel bags, backpacks, tote bags, and similar items.

Voting for this contest ends Wednesday, and you can vote for your favorite fabrics here. This contest has a smaller number of entries than the past few contests, but there are still a lot of great fabrics that capture the Olympic spirit. Be sure to vote for your favorites, perhaps while watching the Olympics.

*Past Contest Results*
*Paper Collage Cakes: I Want Sprinkles Plaid Large 118/143
*Mid-Century Cocktail Dress: Click Clang Crash! Purple 127/367

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Games and Cocktail Dresses

Mid-Century (as in 20th century) fashions and textile prints covered a range of different styles and colors, reflective of the times. Those fashions and prints have become very popular again, for their timeless and still modern styles. This week's Spoonflower Fabric of the Week contest was for prints fit for a Mid-Century cocktail dress. The contest prints will also have a possible use: fabric for a vintage cocktail dress pattern for a production of How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying. I am not big on floral patterns, so I decided to go a different route for my entry.

I knew I wanted to do either an abstract or geometric pattern, but wasn't sure what to exactly do. I instantly thought of classic board games, some of which I loved to play (and still play). My entry, Click Clang Crash! Purple, was inspired by Kerplunk!, but works for many games that involve sticks, discs, or marbles.

Click Clang Crash! Purple
Click Clang Crash! Purple, swatch 8" x 8" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

This print is also in another colorway. Each colorway has the print on two different backgrounds. The other colorway is a bit softer, but still has some bright colors.

Click Clang Crash! Dark Grey
Click Clang Crash! Dark Grey, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

I decided to do a couple more prints inspired by games. One is a larger print made up of circles and forms a sort of woven look pattern. I used the circle shapes from Parcheesi as inspiration for Game Circles.

Game Circles Purple
Game Circles Purple, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Game Circles Dark Grey
Game Circles Dark Grey, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Game Dots uses Connect Four as an inspiration. I used more than two colors for the print, to give more interest. There is one "winner" in the repeat, hidden amongst the dots.

Game Dots Salmon
Game Dots Salmon, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Game Dots Silver
Game Dots Silver, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Voting for the Mid-Century Cocktail Dress Print contest ends tomorrow, Wednesday, evening. You can vote for your favorite entries here until then. Be sure to check out all the fantastic entries in this week's contest.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Extinct Animal Crackers

For the recent Extinct Animals contest at Spoonflower, I decided to create two collections. It was good that I did both ideas, as I changed my entry at the last minute. My original contest entry was a print inspired by the Bogota Sunangel hummingbird. I swapped out my pretty (but sad) hummingbird print for something a bit more fun.

Extinct Animal Crackers Scatter Large
Extinct Animal Crackers, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

I somehow got the idea to do a print of various extinct animals in animal cracker and cookie form. (It may have been due to my love for animal crackers, especially the chocolate ones). I did some research to figure out which animals I wanted for the print. Represented in cookie form are Tyrannosaurus Rex, Quagga (half zebra, half horse), Steller's Sea Cow, Irish Elk (one of the largest deer that ever lived), Dodo, Great Auk, Eurphinodelphis (dolphin with a swordfish like jaw), Archaeopteryx (feathered dinosaur), Saber-Tooted Cat, Plesiosaur (aquatic reptile), Hallucigenia (strange looking arthropod), and Woolly Mammoth.

I also did this same print in a smaller scale, better suited for clothing and smaller craft items.

Extinct Animal Crackers Ditsy Small
Extinct Animal Crackers Ditsy, swatch 8" x 8" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

I wanted to do a sort of scene with the animal crackers, as if someone was playing with them and imagining them in their settings. The end result isn't exactly how I pictured it, but I think it's still fun.

Extinct Animal Crackers
Extinct Animal Crackers Scene, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

I also created coordinating fabrics of dots, stripes, and a sort of geometric print. I love the rainbow effect created in the Cookie Squares print below.

Cookie Squares
Cookie Squares, swatch 8" x 8" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Sprinkle Dots
Sprinkle Dots, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Sprinkle Stripe Pink
Sprinkle Stripe Pink, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Sprinkle Stripe Cookie
Sprinkle Stripe Cookie, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

Sprinkle Stripe Blue
Sprinkle Stripe Blue, fat quarter 21" x 18" view shown. Click image to see print in yardage.

I had fun learning about several extinct animals and creating this collection. The collection is available for sale, and fabric can be purchased of these prints by clicking on their image or by going here to see the entire collection.

My next post will be about my entry in the current Mid-Century Cocktail Dress contest. That entry is another fun one, as it was inspired by a board game.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Retro Kitchen to Pomegranates

I have done several new prints (and a couple collections) since the rainbow hat pattern. I have the hat completed, but one of the colors didn't print correctly (it does now under the new color profile), so I am holding off on a post for it until I can do a new version of it. I may end up making a doll size version as a test. Here are my recent contest entries and their results.

* Retro Rainbow Hat: 35/42

* Range Cubes: 78/281

Range Cubes
Fat quarter, 21" x 18" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

This contest was for fabrics with a kitchen theme, in a retro style, and in a restricted color palette. Range Cubes is made up of stylized range coils and knobs, making a fun retro design. I really like how this print turned out, and think it would be perfect for potholders, oven mitts, aprons, and the like.

* Garden of Magic: 146/500

Garden of Magic
Fat quarter, 21" x 18" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

This print was for the Hand Drawn contest, which drew a huge number of entries. Garden of Magic was inspired by one of my favorite childhood books, The Secret Garden. I drew flowers described as being in the garden, and colored them with oil pastels. I drew the pattern with a half drop, so minimal digital work was done (I did have to touch up the repeat a bit after scanning, but I did not digitally create the repeat).

* Parallelogram Trapezoid Stripe: 164/375

Parallelogram Trapezoid Stripe
Fat quarter, 21" x 18" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

Parallelogram Trapezoid Stripe was for the Geometric contest, which had a restricted color palette. I like the optical illusion this print creates. I also have it in other colors, but they are not available for purchase yet.

* Extinct Animal Crackers: 91/226

Extinct Animal Crackers Scatter Large
Fat quarter, 21" x 18" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

This print is part of a collection that will receive its own post soon. Extinct Animal Crackers was for the Extinct Animals contest. This wasn't my first choice for the contest, but switched to this print to add some fun to the sad contest. I digitally drew several extinct animals in cookie form, and topped some cookies with icing and sprinkles. More details will be in the post for this collection.

* Starry Starry Stripes Grey: 108/328

Starry Starry Stripes Grey
Swatch 8" x 8" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

Starry Starry Stripes Grey was for the Stars and Stripes contest theme. I also did this print in a red, white, and blue colorway, but decided to enter this greyscale version for the contest since I knew there would be a lot of red, white, and blue designs. I like how this print has an almost dainty feel in yardage. It's simple, but extremely useable.

* Hot Air Pomegranates: 148/290

Hot Air Pomegranates
Fat quarter, 21" x 18" view shown. Click on image to see print in yardage.

I went in a whimsical direction for the Pomegranates contest. I was looking at a sketch of a pomegranate and thought how much it looked like a hot air balloon. I decided to use the idea for this print, and love how it turned out.

All these fabric prints are available for purchase by clicking on their image (though not all their colorways are available for sale, if they have other colorways). The Retro Rainbow Hat is not available for sale yet, as I still have to fix it.