Whatever the weather, there's nothing quite like the vastness of the sea to inspire awe and restore perspective. Dive into your week headfirst with these ocean themed designs, and check out even more beautiful ocean fabrics in the Spoonflower Marketplace!
In the wise, ocean-inspired words of Jon Kabat-Zinn,"you can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf," and I hope these lovely prints will float you through your Monday!
Here's to a lovely week ahead,
Siblings Together is a UK-based charity that promotes positive contact between siblings who are otherwise separated by the foster care system. They organize summer camps and monthly activities throughout the year to allow siblings to catch up and enjoy some quality time together--there's even time for scrapbooking so the kids can remember their experiences.
Siblings Together activities allow brothers and sisters to catch up and have fun!
The work that this organization puts into creating these meaningful experiences and helping children develop and nurture these bonds with their families is nothing short of amazing. When Lynne Goldsworthy of the blog Lily's Quilts learned about Siblings Together, she realized that a homemade quilt, warm and stitched with love, could act as a constant reminder of time spent with loved ones for these campers. Kicking off an effort to collect quilts for each and every camper, Lynne created a Flickr group and put a call out on her blog for donations. Two years into this effort, the response has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic.
A camper receives her very own quilt after Siblings Together summer camp.
Quilters from all over the world have sent beautifully made blankets to support this rolling effort, and this year's drive is in full swing. If you're interested in contributing, please head over to Lily's Quilts to find out how you can help send some love to Siblings Together. You can also visit the Flickr group to see the beautiful quilt donations as they're finsihed.
Each quilt is finished with love and a label to make the gifts extra special.
The generosity of the makers in the Spoonflower community to create handmade expressions of love and support for those in need has warmed our hearts time and again. We are inspired by the work of Siblings Together and the Siblings Together Quilt Group, and we are so thankful that they have allowed us to be a part of this amazing effort by printing up custom labels for each lovingly stitched quilt.
*If you'd like to learn how to design your own custom quilt label, check out this tutorial by Spoonflower team member Caitlin of the Salty Oat blog.
The last two decades have been quite the ride for quilter, artist, and author Sherri Lynn Wood, who we were delighted to host last weekend in the Greenhouse, and we just had to get the full story! From selling quilts at a farmer's market less than 20 miles from Spoonflower's Durham HQ to putting the finshing touches on the manuscript for her first book, The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters, Sherri shares her inspiration, creative process, and some of the steps along the way to her brilliant quilting career in this brief interview.
Sherri Lynn Wood is busy these days, to say the least! After a marathon writing session to finish a draft of her first book, The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters, due out next spring through STC Craft, she jetted from her current home in Oakland, CA, all the way to Durham, NC, for an east coast "tour" of teaching gigs that kicked off with an amazing lecture and workshop set right here in the Spoonflower Greenhouse. We were beyond excited to host Sherri Lynn Wood back in the area where her quilting journey began, and we couldn't help asking a few questions--7 to be exact--about the inspiring steps (and quilts) along the way!
Spoonflower co-founder Stephen Fraser and Sherri show off her Mod-Mood Quilt after a tour of our offices.
Read on for the full interview with Sherri Lynn Wood!
Today's project inspiration post comes to us from our guests Pam and Melissa of the whimsical clothing brand Girls from Savoy. They're visiting the Spoonflower blog to share their Spring collection photo shoot backdrops featuring some fabulous and fashion-worthy wallpapers designed by the Spoonflower community!
Pam and Melissa: We didn’t set out to create Girls From Savoy. Instead, it found us. We both had day jobs in the fashion industry, but as soon as we met we spent all our free time together, scouring vintage shows for clothing, prowling mid-century furniture stores, or seeking out esoteric fabrics for our apartments.
Over time, we realized that in all those hours together we had developed a really clear shared aesthetic, particularly in clothing: we wanted pieces that were girlish without being immature, looked great on, and above all, didn't take themselves too seriously. We were having a lot of fun together, taking in a lot of different influences, and we wanted to express ourselves through clothing reflecting that.
So we started a clothing line together, and were lucky enough to sell it through Anthropologie. Here's our first piece/bestseller/favorite from that era:
Fast forward a few years. We've expanded, with a brand new site and additional labels, and we are pulling together our own photo shoot for the first time. Naturally, we weren't going to use just anything for the background. And so a frantic internet hunt began, ending with the discovery of our friends at Spoonflower. We were so excited to find not only the means to realize our own designs, but also a community of talented artists creating all sorts of elaborate patterns. Then the really hard part started--choosing which wallpapers to use for our photo backdrops.
It was really an embarrassment of riches. We'll spare you the shots of our office buried in samples, but ultimately we realized-- we can use a whole bunch of them! The vibrant nature of the mishmash of patterns really worked with our sensibility, and made the clothes and models shine. Here's a picture of the rolls awaiting deployment:
We managed to get them all hung while the models and stylists got prepped. Our spring collection is heavy on nautical themes and unexpected prints such as whimsical arrows and bows, and we found that the prints we'd assembled from various designers in the Spoonflower community were just the thing. See for yourself here:
Here's another one, below. The mix of patterns gives a real sense of fun:
In some ways, our collaboration with Spoonflower for our first shoot has brought us full circle. We're back where we started, poring over patterns and delighting in discovering far-flung influences. Another constant is the delight we take in self-expression, whether through fabulous clothes or fantastic wallpaper, and in finding a like-minded community online. We're already looking forward to seeing what comes next.
Cheers and happy hunting,
See wallpaper picks and inspiration for the shoot on the Girls From Savoy's Pinterest board!
About our Guest Authors
Girls From Savoy is a destination featuring a hand selected group of contemporary designers along with their own label, Mender. Their looks favor unique patterns, textiles and vintage inspired aesthetics and their quirky expression of fashion to differentiate their brand. The company is a colloboration between Pamela Berick and Melissa Charatz, who met as buyers for women’s wear at Barneys New York and Anthropolgie. Shop the collection.
'Tis the season for the Queen's Official Birthday, and these five crown fabric designs have us ready for a royal celebration!
Here's to you, Queen Elizabeth II, with wishes for a very happy birthday celebration!
A great pair of sunglasses is hard to beat! Enjoy these fabric designs and DIY projects that celebrate the most essential of accessories.
Quilted Sunglasses Pouch tutorial on The Haby Goddess
Hidden message sunglasses on The cheekiest monkey of them all
Decorate Your Sunglasses tips from A Little Birdy Blog
Sk8shades, sunglasses made from recycled skateboard decks, on Handsome Things
Here's to hoping your weekend is made in the shade!
The maker community is quite an inspiring bunch. We love visiting our local craft fairs to see what creatives in the area are printing and stitching up. Check out a handful of handmade markets happening this summer around the world!
Urban Craft Uprising | Seattle, WA | June 12th & 13th
Renegade Craft Fair | New York: May 18th | Chicago: June 21-22 | LA: July 26-27 | San Francisco: July 19-20
Firefly Handmade | Boulder, CO | July 26 & 27
Handmade Canberra | Canberra ACT | June 7th & 8th
Porter Flea | Nashville, TN | June 7th
Indie Craft Parade | Greenville, SC | September 12-14
Re:Make | San Francisco, CA | September 12 & 13
The Finders Keepers | Sydney: June 6th & 7th | Brisbane: July 5th & 6th | Melbourne: July 25th & 26th
What handmade markets will you be attending this summer?
The Spoonflower Emerging Designer Grant awards students studying textiles, design, and fashion with credit to create garments or installations using digitally printed fabrics. This past year we have worked with a number of talented up-and-coming designers and couldn't wait to share some of their work with our community! Take a look at the innovative and exciting garments created by a handful of this year's grant recipients.
Laura Piccirillo-- Buffalo State College
Megan Knape-- Dominican University
Megan Knape-- Dominican University
Collection created using recycled sails + digitally printed fabrics
Rachel Ciavarella-- Carnegie Melon University
Rachel Ciavarella-- Carnegie Melon University
Symantha Perrera-- The Art Institute of Chicago
Symantha Perrera-- The Art Institute of Chicago
Sera Ghadaki-- Ontario College of Art & Design
Find our more about our Emerging Designer Grant and how to enter HERE!
The Spoonflower community is bursting at the seams with creative ways to use our fabrics. Here are just a handful of things you've been making this week.
Photographic prints. Michelle is starting something new with this gorgeous tree fabric.
Fabric wall hanging. Cool project from designer Dayna Ellen.
Infinity scarf. A happy spring scarf by Anna.
Gift tags. Designed by Dutch Designer Maaike, aka Zandloopster on Spoonflower.
Check out more projects by using the #Spoonflowered hashtag on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.
One of our favorite parts of having the Greenhouse, our classroom and community space here at our Durahm, NC headquarters, is being able to host sewing events in support of great causes. We are delighted to announce a sew-in date to make pillowcases for ConKerr Cancer, a national organization that brightens the days of seriously ill children facing extended stays in the hospital by providing them with their own beautifully handmade pillowcases.
Please join us in the Greenhouse on Saturday, April 5, from 10am-1pm to sew pillowcases for children in local hospitals! Head over to our event page for full details and to RSVP today! We'll provide fabric and notions for folks to create fun pillowcases to donate to our local chapter of ConKerr Cancer!
If you'd like to make some pillowcases ahead of time, or if you'd like to organize your own pillowcase sew-in to support local hospitals, you can follow this quick and easy tutorial provided by ConKerr Cancer. Information about supporting ConKerr Cancer in your area can be found here, along with great resources and instructions for all of the ways you can contribute. If you're planning an event to support ConKerr Cancer in another area, please do let us know in the comments below. We love sharing fun sewing events with our community!
We look forward to seeing you here (or there!) to sew for a great cause!
Hello! Brett Bara here from Brooklyn Craft Company. I’m so excited to drop by the Spoonflower blog today to share a peek at the amazing custom Spoonflower wallpaper we recently installed in our DIY studio!
To back up, Brooklyn Craft Company is a new space in Brooklyn that offers modern craft and DIY classes for adults. We do a little bit of everything, from sewing and knitting to glass etching, terrariums, jewelry, and special crafting events like Brooklyn Craft Camp.
Our pillowcase dress sew-in and collection drive for a new orphanage in the Philippines was a huge success! With donations rolling in from afar and 47 dresses completed at February's sew-in right here in the Greenhouse, our classroom and community space, we filled two giant boxes with 124 beautifully handmade dresses to send to our friends in charge of building this new orphanage! Carmen Baugh, the organizer of our drive and sew-in, created this excellent tutorial & template to create these dresses if you'd like to make some for any special little girls in your life or an organization close to your heart.
Thank you, Carmen!
Thank you so very much to everyone who contributed to this amazing effort! And a very special thank you to Carmen for organizing, and for those of you who took time to sew and send even more dresses on your own outside of our sew-in. We have never seen so many precious dresses in one place, and we are so happy to know that some little girls in the Philippines will have bright, beautiful, and lovingly-sewn dresses to wear.
With so much gratitude for the generosity of our community,
This past weekend, we were delighted to be a part of the annual Make A Blanket Day put on by our local chapter of Project Linus in Raleigh, NC. Project Linus is an organization devoted to comforting kids and teens facing serious illness and trauma with a gift of their own handmade security blanket. Since our local chapter was founded by Susie Holmes in 1996, area "blanketeers" have donated over 27,000 blankets to local agencies and hospitals. Their recent Make A Blanket Day was a huge success, and we were so excited to present our finished quilting bee blanket created by members of our Greenhouse community!
Local Project Linus coordinator Susie Holmes accepts our Greenhouse blanket.
**Voting for the Staff Challenge starts this Thursday, March 13th!**
It is a Spoonflower employee's most eagerly awaited time of year -- the Staff Challenge! Yes, it's the time of year when the tables turn and Spoonies create their own surface designs for the world to judge. Take a peek at what happened behind the scenes last week:
Kelly reacts to this year's challenge.
In previous years we asked team members to create entire projects made from fabric they designed, the outcomes of which included 2012's LED-lit world map and last year's fully quilted Map of Spoonlandia. But we decided that this year we'd try something a little different to both simplify the competition a little and to up the ante.
Janet gets an update on her time remaining!
You don't have to dig too deep to find treasures on the Spoonflower site, but this week's top ten is especially rich. If you like all things shiny and bright, don't miss the gorgeous jewel tones and bling in our lineup of winning fabric designs.
Here are your voting results:
1. 422 votes for Geode Treasures by elramsay
2. 403 votes for Gemstones and Geodes colouring in by wiccked
3. 391 votes for Achat by fiaba_fabrics
4. 363 votes for Malachite by ravynka
5. 355 votes for Watercolor Gemstones by logan_spector
6. 348 votes for Mineralicious-Pink Agate by groovity
7. 283 votes for Treasure Island in Twilight by christinewitte
8. 282 votes for Drusy Refraction by vo_aka_virginiao
9. 265 votes for Be glossy by demigoutte
10. 264 votes for pastel geodes by kristinnohe
This past Saturday we invited friends from our local community to the Greenhouse, our classroom and community space here at Spoonflower's Durham HQ, for a Pillowcase Dress Sew-in to support an orphanage just getting started in the Philippines. At the end of the afternoon, we finished 47 beautifully handmade dresses!
We're so excited and inspired that folks from far and wide would like to contribute handmade dresses to this effort! If you'd like to participate remotely, we have all of the details you need here.
Please join us in the Spoonflower Greenhouse, our classroom and community space here in Durham, NC, to sew Pillowcase Dresses for the Philippines. We're inviting community members to come and sew with us on Saturday, February 8, from 1-4pm, to support the efforts of a friend who is currently working to open an orphanage in in Tacloban City, Leyte, one of the areas of the Philippines hardest hit by Typhoon Haiyan. We'll be sewing "pillowcase" sundresses to stock this emerging orphanage with lovingly sewn handmade clothes for little girls.
With hands-on instruction from expert seamstress (and friend to those working on establishing this new facility) Carmen Baugh and pre-cut dress kits, we'll provide everything you need to create a perfectly finished pillowcase dress for a little girl in the Philippines.
We'll be using the "sausage roll" technique for creating the perfect edge to a pillowcase with no exposed seams, so you'll even learn a new versatile sewing skill while constructing these precious dresses.
All ages and all skill levels are welcome to attend, so feel free to bring your kids and your friends! There is plenty of cutting, ironing and pinning to be done in addition to simple sewing, so you can help this effort in any way you like.
This is a floating event, so please come whenever you can, stay as long as you like, and bring along your sewing machine if you have one. We'll provide all materials needed to make these dresses, but feel free to bring any fabric you have that would make a cute dress, too! These come together very quickly, so you might have time to whip up several while you're here-- we'd love to send as many dresses as possible!
We can't wait to see you here to sew for a great cause!
Thanks so much--
Have you heard? The Spoonflower Greenhouse has its very own Facebook page! We're delighted to have another way to connect with our community and share the fun we're having at our classroom and community space here in Durham, NC.
Want to learn a new skill or connect with fellow crafters? Hoping to time your trip to visit the Spoonflower HQ with a little community crafting? Well then check out our new Spoonflower Greenhouse Facebook page for an up-to-date list of our upcoming classes and events, and join our community of movers, shakers, DIYers and crafters!
We're excited to have this space to connect and share proejcts, inspiration, and opportunties to get your craft on. In addition to having information about upcoming Greenhouse classes, we'll also be able to share opportunities to create, craft, and shop in other venues-- it's a big wide world out there, after all!
Feel free to drop us a line, share photos of works in progress, or just say hi. We'd love to hear from you, and we certainly hope to see you at a class or event soon!
Thanks so much--
Some terrific things happened this year in the craft and making-world. From world records broken to delightful feats of architecture, we love seeing what the world is accomplishing with their hands. We hope you enjoy this celebration of handcrafted projects and innovations that caught our eye in 2013 (and inspire us to create more in 2014)!
1. Bruno, a 76-year-old inventor, created an entirely handmade amusement park, and was featured in an overdue short film, Ai Pioppi about his 40-plus years of making.
2. David Babcock beat the record for the longest scarf knitted while running a marathon when he crossed the finish line at the Kansas City Marathon with an over 12 foot long scarf of blue, purple, red and orange.
3. The first phase of a new downtown park in Wilson, North Carolina opened this year, featuring the amazing whirligigs of Vollis Simpson.
4. Rotterdam-based Bauke Knottnerus created enormous knit art pieces as part of the Unravel, Knitwear in Fashion exhibition.
5. In São Paulo, Brazil, Studio Swine created Can City, a mobile foundry that turns a massive waste problem into art, and gives a creative outlet to the city's poor.
6. Pinterest added Place Pins, enabling users to map out pins and help turn travel inspirations into reality. We're using the new function to map out some of our favorite makers all over the world!
7. Etsy explored the economic impact of the community of micro-business entrepreneurs.
We were inspired by these amazing feats of handcrafting and innovative tools for makers.
What DIY news is spurring you on into a creative new year? Comment below!
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