Category: printing

This is my second design to be printed by the speedy Spoonflower, and arrived today! It was originally designed for wallpaper and entered for the ideal home wallpaper exhibition, but i remember thinking at the time that i would have preferred to print it out onto fabric – so here it is! I have reduced the image size slightly, but am really pleased at how the design has printed out considering that a lot of the images were created with monoprinted materials.

‘Hearts and Squares’ – fabric design

These fabrics will be available to buy from Spoonflower when i have finished uploading and printing all the fabrics, so watch this space! The design company name i have chosen is called Jaminosh Designs.

Jaminosh business cards minus mobile number!

Well what a great day today, just as i was working on creating a 4 foot green witch for my graduate show, and was struggling to get the dimensions right, the doorbell rang and there was a Fed Ex guy at the door with a tiny little package…i was excited though as i knew this would be the first sample of my fabric design that i had sent off to ‘Spoonflower’, and i needed it to make things to show how i would use the fabric.

The design is called ‘Time for Tea’ and it is based on the ‘British afternoon tea’ which consists of bone china cups, silver tea pots, sugar cubes, cake, strawberries, coffee pots, and lovely old clocks. It is really designed as a kitchen design that could be used for T Towels (if anyone still uses them) aprons, serviettes, place mats etc, but then it would also look lovely on cake tins etc.

I am working on a black and white version for kitchen wallpaper too. I like the ‘illustrated look’ for wallpaper and also fabrics, and have some others that i need to try and get done before the show, but time is running out, so i may need to save some of it for ‘New Designers’ show in london at the beginning of July this year.

At the show i will be displaying the 2 books i have written – and also fabric and wallpaper designs, so please feel free to come along during that week to see. The trade and professional day is the wednesday 4th July, when i will be there along with my portfolio etc, the rest of the week is open to the general public.

Here is the finished fabric – shame to cut into it don’t you think?

‘Time for Tea’ – my fabric design, based on the British afternoon tea! 🙂

I entered the above competition at the Ideal homes exhibition, and went down to London to see who had won, and also to hear Lawrence Llewellyn Bowen speak.


LLB talked to us about wallpaper, which was very interesting. He told us that up until just recently pattern was classed as a bit of a dirty word, and he also joked by saying that unitl about 3 years he was also classed the same as he had been classed as being responsible for the demise of the wallpaper age. His response to this was that wallpaper stopped being fashionable when it stopped being patterned!

LLB said that  using wallpaper  is “an interesting symbol that we are starting to reclaim our homes for ourselves” and that using wallpaper is a key illustration that we are “falling in love with our living rooms again”.By this he means that we make a real commitment when we choose to put up wallpaper, and that we are also making a statement about our personality as well.

LLB said that in the past wallpaper was always connected with being ‘posh’ and was connected with being wealthy. It was about opulence, but now we take it for granted, and we use it to re create that appearance – like our superiors. It is a moment of “design democracy”

He then called up the managing director of WALLPAPERED.COM whose grandfather was one of the original makers of wallpapers (Gilbert Scott) – Robert Hoare, and he came to talk about what his company was now doing with wallpaper design.

WALLPAPERED.COM  is a ‘design community’ that involves designers from all over the world, and allows designers to showcase their designs.The designer is given an online shop so that they can sell their wallpapers and the paper is printed off by demand.There are no set up fees either

Robert also explained how wallpaper design is changing and that it is now possible for you to send them the measurements of a specific wall and they will print the design to fit exactly with it  precut so that it arrives ready to hang, This also allows for ‘themed walls’ which can be of a family photograph etc – there are no limits!


SALLY (sorry but i only remember the surname of a couple of them )–‘Contemporary Victoriana’


LLB Comments – he liked it because he thought it was very commercial, and had romantic colours, he thought it had the potential to be a very successful pattern.

EVE – ‘Poppy the Chicken’



He thought it was a very ‘surreal’ design and thought it would work well on other materials, particularly fabric.




LLB COMMENTS – he thought the design was ‘fascinating, but not a repeat’!!!! I had to say that I totally agreed and wondered how the hell she had got this into the competition when it stated it needed to be a repeat pattern in order to be reproduced as wallpaper – this in my opinion made the whole competition a farse!!




The winner of the ‘Ideal home wallpaper design 2012’ was LOLLIE DUNBAR – who had produced a design that LLB called’ hearts and rabbits’.


LLB said that he like the design as it was a very modern pattern, but also traditional, which made it very contemporary. He said that the design reminded him of the work of Cf voysey, who was an architect but also used images that were very similar in his other work – trees and rabbits etc – however Lollie said her inspiration came from Hollyoaks……

He said that because the image was so clean and graphic it didn’t need to necessarily be printed digitally but could also be reproduced in may other ways.

LLB said that sometimes designs are overwrought and over thought, but not this one!

Well i suppose i had better post something about ‘my’ work for a change instead of blogging all this academic stuff that is just pickling my head!!

So here are the stages of the book bag we were asked to design for the university. First of all i needed to look at the following:-

– was the bag for males and females, or would  i design 2 different types?

– is the bag design related to a particular department of the university, ie science, art, humanities – or will it appeal to all departments?

– is the design going to have a Welsh theme, with the university being in Wales?

– am i going to use one colour or two? – we were advised to try and just use one, because of cost and time to print them, but if we did use 2 we had to make sure that the colours were placed separately.

– i had to consider the thickness of the line in the design as it was to be printed on hessian and fine lines would not print well at all.

– how much of the logo was i going to incorporate? would it be the first letter ‘g’ or the full title ‘glyndwr’

– i needed to identify the font used in the logo as well to match it up

Ok, so i won’t put in all the different designs i came up with, as the post will just be way too long so i will just show you the final design i decided to choose and develop:-

Here is the first very very rough version of the design i chose. It is a pattern based design using the theme of the book, and focussing on the shapes that are made not just by the books but also by the pages and the edges of the pages as well:-

Initial design

I then inverted the colours which enabled me to see the ‘balance’ of the picture and the areas i need to resolve better :-

The design 'inverted'

I then re drew the design carefully and moved the images around, concentrating on how positive the negative shapes were, and how easy it was to read the image as a whole –

The new layout, ready to be coloured in Photoshop

I coloured the image in Photoshop because the design will be used for a screen print and so the colours need to be as solid as possible, and the best way to achieve this is on Photoshop. The design will then be printed out onto A3 acetate ready for a screen to be made. The next image is of the coloured in design-

The coloured in version, including typography

The font i used was ‘Georgia regular’ as this is the font used for the Glyndwr logo, i decided to use the same font for the words at the bottom as well to give some continuity.I then inverted the design again –

The inverted, coloured in design

On looking at the black and white areas, and knowing that the white areas would actually be transparent areas where the hessian bag would show through, i decided that the image needed a border to frame it properly –

The finished design - with border

And finally here is the finished design shown on the hessian book bag – as intended!!

The finished article!

I learned a lot from this exercise, particularly about composition and layout, and also about the use of positive and negative space. I feel that i played to my strengths – by using a pattern based design, and i feel that inverting the image was really beneficial and i may do that more in the future with other images.