Spoonflower Watercolour Competition Entry

I finished my second Watercolour design inspired by the Spoonflower Design a Day Challenge, and have entered it into their current competition of the same theme. I’m really pleased with the outcome of this one and will be making it available in my Spoonflower shop for sure. What do you think?!

Watercolour-Feathers-2

If you’re feeling generous, pop over to the competition page, have a scour through the entries (sorry I can’t post a direct link to mine as they jumble up the order each time someone visits to make it fairer) and vote for mine 😀
If anyone would like to commission a fabric design or purchase a licence to print one of the designs in my Spoonflower library then please feel free to get in touch x

Productivity Central

I’m being rather productive at the moment which is lovely. It means that I now have another set of block patterns to offer – a trouser block/sloper set for ages 2 to 14. These are for an easy fitting non-stretch trouser:

Age 2-14 Years Easy Fitting Trouser Blocks

Next I plan to do the block patterns for children’s leggings and stretch fabric trousers, and then I’ll move onto ladies trousers.

I’ve also, alongside moving our belongings out of our flooded house, been trying to take part in the Spoonflower Design-a-Day Challenge. Spoonflower is a site where you can upload your own designs for fabric and have them printed. They quite often run competitions, and I do like to enter them every now and then for a little creative challenge.

On Day 1 of the Design-a-Day challenge, the theme was ‘pencil drawing’. Little Loop was at forest school that particular day, so I took inspiration from that and started sketching out some bugs:

IMG_20160309_165200

I then tidied up the illustrations themselves by tracing over the best lines in pen:

Bugs-Illustration

I scanned them in, and began arranging the different elements into a pattern design. I coloured the design in photoshop, and this is the final outcome:

Forest-School-Pencil-Illustration.png

I was super pleased with this design and really happy I had taken part in this challenge as I probably wouldn’t have come up with something like this had I not had that little push to do something I don’t usually (but totally should!) do – work on PAPER first! I know from my graphic design uni course that this is always the best plan of action, but you just get so sucked into working on-screen that it falls out of habit. I shall give myself a talking to and make sure working on paper is at least a weekly occurrence from now on.

The next Design-a-Day challenge theme was watercolour. Handily, I had spotted the watercolour set Mr Loop had bought last year (and not used!) whilst packing our things up and kept it to one side. One evening, I popped out the watercolours and began painting some random things:

IMG_20160304_081458

I scanned these in, and took just one of the elements and a bit of Photoshop editing to make this design:

Watercolour-Feathers-1

which I’m also super happy with! I do have a lot more watercolour paintings I did to play with so I’ll be doing more on this theme for sure.

Now, by this point we were over a week into the daily challenge and I had only managed to do Day 1 and 2. I’m still to start:

Day 3 – Abstract
Day 4 – Block prints
Day 5 – Pen & ink
Day 6 – Geometric
Day 7 – Vector
Day 8 – Photographic
Day 9 – Open source
Day 10 – Steampunk
Day 11 – Dyed
Day 12 – Typographical
Day 13 – Kawaii
Day 14 – Found objects

so yeah, a LOT to do! I did actually make a start on the steampunk theme as it was something I felt drawn to, and did these little sketches:

Steampunk-Sketches

I’m thinking of maybe combining these with the ‘pen & ink’ theme to make a nice looking design. I’m sure I’ll get something done on all the other themes eventually… it’s nice to have them there as inspiration for a little playing around.

The final contest (the challenge wasn’t a contest in itself) theme to come out of the Spoonflower Design-a-Day is ‘Watercolour’ from Day 2, so I’ll be spending the afternoon playing with and refining some of my watercolour pieces to hopefully make a winning-worthy entry! Wish me luck!

 

DIY Fabric Sling Bookcase Tutorial

For ages now I have been meaning to get around to making Baby Loop some bookshelves for her room (I couldn’t afford the ones I wanted!). I wanted a bookcase that would allow her to see the fronts of her books. I saw tutorials for making them yourself in various ways, but everything involved either woodwork (for which I have no space), and/or attaching them to a wall, which is great, but we live in a rented property and the less holes I have to fill in when we leave, the better.

I had this (I think) brilliant idea. She has an alcove in her room that would make the perfect area for a bookcase. I had seen some ‘rental safe’ DIY ideas on various websites, and a lot of people were swearing by tension rods/poles for a variety of uses. So I took the sling bookcase idea, and slightly changed it so the slings would hang from tension rods which would fit in the alcove space! Voila! No holes!

DIY-Fabroc-Bookcase-Finished

This is SUPER easy to make and I’d like to share my process with you. Now, first of all, the fat quarters of fabric I had bought were not wide enough to fit the rods with huge gaps at either end. So, I used a combination of complimentary fabrics to get the size I needed. Here is the combination I chose:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-1

The fox and tree fabric would be the outer fabrics, the stripy and the leaf fabric would be the inner fabrics. The plainer fabrics would go on either end and be used for both the inner and outer of the sling.

First, I stitched all the pieces of fabric together. Obviously if you have a piece of fabric that is wide enough for your space, you have less sewing to do. You would just need to sew the contrasting inner and outer fabrics together along top and bottom edges.

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-3

Next, I gave the edges a hem:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-4

Then, right sides together, I brought the bottom edge up to the top edge and stitched. This makes on big cylinder of fabric.

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-5

Turn right side out:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-6

Turn up that bottom edge so that your ‘outer’ fabric is visible:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-7

Insert rods:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-8

And install in the alcove:

DIY-Fabric-Bookcase-9

Now all it needs it some books!

DIY-Fabroc-Bookcase-Finished

I’m really happy with my finished result, I’ve just got to get around to making the second (maybe even third and fourth?!) one now. There’s another alcove, and Baby Loop has a LOT more books!

DIY-Fabroc-Bookcase-Finished-Room

You may notice that there are a couple of crochet toy hammocks there too – I made them a little while ago, they’re great for tidying away the billions of cuddly toys toddlers seem to acquire.

Fantastic Mr Fabric

A few weeks ago I had a bit of a splurge on fabric. It’s all arrived now so I thought I would take some pictures of my current stash to show you, perhaps you have some ideas for what each fabric would best suit being made into?! I have some thoughts, but I have to admit, I’m not entirely sure of a project for each fabric yet, so open to suggestions!

Bird Cage Fabric

I think this one might be my favourite, it's so bright and unusual!

Bright floral fabric

Another new fabric with such a brilliantly bright pattern featuring great detail and contrast

Circus fabric

This one, I think, might be best suited to something for little girls, or perhaps just the little girl in all ladies!

Bright floral detail fabric

I can see this one making a really great small purse, what do you think?

Green blue butterfly fabric

This one is perfect for Spring with all the lovely butterflies

Stripey green fabric

I think this one is the perfect compliment to the butterfly fabric above. Need to pair the two up somehow.

Silky pink fabric

This one feels amazing, it's got a really silky feel to it, quite luxurious!

Green Floral Fabric

This has quite a small pattern so I'm not entirely sure what it is best suited to (other than a bag, which I have already done with this fabric)

Vintage green orange fabric

I only have a very small piece of this left, I have made a skirt from it already, perhaps I should make a small clutch bag?

Orange vintage fabric

This is another vintage fabric, and another one I'm quite stuck with what to do with!

I’m looking for ideas that aren’t too complicated sewing projects – not because I’m looking for an easy project, but because a lot of this fabric was quite expensive, so I’m thinking the smaller the project, the more acceptable the sale price of the final item may be. I’m struggling to think of ideas that are good for summer too! Brain block! All I can think is bags, purses, cushions and skirts, but I’m reluctant to do those as they seem the obvious choice. Not making life easy for myself am I?!

What do you think of my new fabrics?! I love them all, can’t wait to get started on something, it’s just a matter of what?! I’m sure it’s a bad idea to just start buying fabric with no idea of what you’re going to make with it…oh well! Sometimes you just can’t help yourself can you?

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