January’s Doodle-a-Day challenge might be coming to an end but that doesn’t mean all the fabulous designs you’ve doodled this month have to get left behind! Using the free and beginner-friendly graphic-design tool Canva, we’ll show you how to turn your digital drawings into a fabric design, perfect for the base of a custom tablet or laptop case. If you’re looking for something to display your designs and keep you inspired to create all year long, this is the DIY project for you.
In celebration of our Doodle-a Day partnership, we’re featuring designs from the creator Rhianna Wurman’s August challenge. If you’re curious how Rhianna creates such a cohesive collection of designs, be sure to read her top tips for creating a color palette. It’s a must-read for any designer looking to up their color game.
How to Turn Your Digital Doodles into Fabric
1. Create Your Canvas
Login to your Canva account and select the Create a Design button and then choose the Custom Dimensions option. Change the dropdown menu to reflect inches, enter your canvas dimensions in the box and select Create Design. For this project we’ve set our canvas to be 27” x 27”.
Pro tip: If you want each image on your canvas to be the same sized square, we recommend setting your canvas so it is a square. This will help you create an even grid in step 2.
2. Create Your Photo Grid
To create an even layout of designs for your fabric, we recommend using the grid tool available on Canva. Select See All in the Grid option on the left side of your screen. Click on the grid layout you’d like to add to your canvas. I chose the 3 x 3 grid because I wanted each image to be a square but you could choose whichever layout you like best.
3. Upload Your Designs
Now that you’ve created your layout, it’s time to upload your doodles. Select the Uploads option on the left side of your screen and choose the digital designs/photos you’d like to include from your device.
4. Add Your Designs to the Canvas
Drag and drop one of your designs on the square you want it to fill. Continue to do this until you’ve filled all of the squares on your canvas.
5. Save Your Design
Once you’ve added all of your designs, save the file as a PNG to your device.
6. Upload Your Design to Spoonflower
Log-in to your Spoonflower account and upload the design you saved in step 5. You may notice the scale of your design has changed. When you download an image from Canva the default DPI is 96 but Spoonflower’s default DPI is 150. My original design was 27” x 27” on Canva and is now 17.28″ x 17.28″ on Spoonflower. To achieve the scale you’d like going from Canva to Spoonflower, we recommend doubling your Canva file dimensions in step 1. For example, if you want your image to repeat roughly 10″ x 10″ on Spoonflower, create a file on Canva that is 20″ x 20″.
7. Create a Fill-A-Yard Project (optional)
If you prefer to order the same design for your entire yard of fabric, you can skip this step and get right to ordering your fabric! To determine how much fabric you’ll need, please review the instructions for the Custom Laptop and Tablet Cover Tutorial.
Since I will be making a case for my iPad which is on the smaller side, I will only be using (4) 9” x 12” pieces of fabric. To make the most of my fabric I used the Recycled Canvas Vertical Split Fill-A-Yard® Template. This way, I could get two prints on one yard which allowed me to make two cases featuring different designs! For the Fleece lining of my fabric I chose to use the vertical template featuring two different designs from Rhianna’s Spoonflower shop.
Don’t stop at just doodles! Using the tutorial above, turn your favorite photos into the perfect keepsake.
Once you’ve ordered your fabric and it’s arrived, jump on over to the Custom Laptop and Tablet Cover Tutorial to finish up your project!