For artists, designing collections can be a powerful way to share your work. Collections not only highlight how you can iterate on a common theme, they also show your customers how your designs work together visually. For all types of makers and interior designers, artist collections can be a one-stop shop for cohesively curated designs—perfect for using in a single well put-together room or throughout your home to create flow and continuity.
In this first post of a weekly 7-part series spotlighting how artists can curate and design bedding collections, Spoonflower artist Gargi Panwar shares tips you can use to ensure your collections are both cohesive and fun to create! Each post in this series will share a bedding collection selected for our Summer Lookbook, artist tips on creating those collections and commentary from Spoonflower’s Senior Manager of Merchandising Emerson Jones on what caught her eye about them.
Gargi’s Tips for Curating and Designing Bedding Collections
1. Go through the designs you already have in your Design Library.
Your Spoonflower Design Library is a playground and collections are your swings! I often participate in Spoonflower’s Design Challenges, as a result, I have a substantial library of stand-alone designs that I tapped for curating this bedding collection. Designing in collections is always preferred by artists but sometimes we don’t and that’s when you can harness your existing body of work that may be selling well already as stand-alone designs.
Figuring out your designs that might work in a collection requires some scoping and playing around with your Design Library. A good way to do that is by using your shop’s collection feature that you keep private while you are playing around with your designs. You can start by organising mock collections by colours. This will help you narrow down your colours for the collection and may even lead you to recolour some of your existing designs. It’s also helpful to keep all your standard blender prints such as checks, stripes, chevrons, diamonds, dots, etc., in a single collection for easy sifting, both for you and customers.
2. Don’t forget to play!
Productwise, play with theme, colour, scale, density and variety! It’s a good idea to keep the standard Spoonflower bedding collection in mind that comprises a duvet cover, sheet set, standard pillow shams and an extra long lumbar throw pillow. Before I started testing my designs on bedding products, I first finalised my theme (fantasy floral) and colour scheme (blue monochrome). With those things in mind, I found a hero design, which I selected from my high-placed challenge entries—I also thought it could really benefit with some coordinating designs.
Here’s how I paired each bedding product with each design.
I chose my hand-painted Fantasy Floral-Monochrome-Watercolor-Blue-Large Scale design as the hero. It’s a large-scale design and complex with some dense movement and watercolour texture for some variety. (Note: The lifestyle image above also includes Euro pillow shams in this same design.)
Standard pillow sham:
A dotted diamond print to break the complexity with simplicity by adding a clean flat geometric look using two colours.
As my hero design is on a light background, I decided to keep the sheets slightly dark, with a smaller-scale blue and single-motif design (Fantasy Floral-Monochrome-Coordinate-Blue-Small Scale) and a dense layout with a clean flat appearance. This design is also from one of my high-placed challenge entries, which I decided to recolour to complement my hero design.
Extra long lumbar throw pillow:
Here I went with a more spaced half-drop block print in a watercolour texture with some pink for variety and interest to break the monochrome look just a little bit. This pattern isn’t one of my design challenge entries but something I designed independently because I love floral block motifs. It’s beautiful how sometimes it all falls in place when you give it a little extra thought.
3. Manifest in mockups!
Once you’re done, you’ll need to see whether you have achieved a cohesive-looking collection. There are a few ways to visualise this depending on your time and money resources, such as:
• Create your own simple bedding mockup and play with your patterns there. This is a very effective way to get the right scale.
• Purchase high-quality mockups you can use for your portfolio and social media as well.
• Download your designs on Spoonflower’s bedding mockups (the product renders shown on Spoonflower.com when you choose a related product listing) and play around with them to curate your final collection board. I used this method to curate this collection, as it felt easier to do while I was curating from my Design Library.
How does your experience curating this collection affect how you’ll design collections moving forward?
Curating this collection helped my process in many ways. It has motivated me to design more in collections for bedding, dining and living for my Spoonflower shop. It also increased my use of Spoonflower’s collections feature. I’m gradually working towards creating more collections based on my colour chart. I also use Spoonflower design challenge prompts proactively to design in collections—it’s a great way to design on-trend collections and saves time on research.
Find Out Why This Collection Was Chosen for a Spoonflower Lookbook
“This collection is a bold monochromatic example of a trending summer color, Cobalt Blue. Blue color palettes are a perennial staple and have consistently been a top-search term on Spoonflower.com. Cobalt is a mid-tone blue that creates feelings of serenity and calm while still packing visual punch. Gargi’s use of traditional Indian block print motifs lend to a worldly, maximalist look on trend with what we are seeing from interior experts. I see this collection as the perfect option in an eclectic guest room featuring artistic pieces collected on travels.”
See the Rest of the Series
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