Once you go through the preliminary steps of gathering inspiration and picking a theme for your design, it’s time to focus on what could be considered the most important element of design: color. With colors, you can set a mood, attract attention, or make a statement. You can use color to energize, or to cool down. By selecting the right color scheme, you can create an ambiance of elegance, warmth or tranquility, or you can convey an image of playful youthfulness. Color can be your most powerful design element if you learn to use it effectively.
It’s day two of our 12 Days of Design Challenge! Yesterday you gathered inspiration and today you’ll pick a theme. With the help of Pinterest and a little guidance, we’ll learn how to organize our inspiration and begin to illustrate a theme. Mood boards are the secret to helping your creative mind stay focused once you’ve sifted through your inspiration to find what you want to develop into a final theme.
Today kicks off the first day of our 12 Days of Design! Have you signed up to get daily emails outlining the steps to create your first, or newest, textile design? [Read more…] about 12 Days of Design: Day 1 Finding Inspiration
So you’re creative. You like to doodle, draw, paint, print, or photograph. Maybe your New Year’s resolution is to finally take your art and learn how to turn it into surface prints that sell. If this description sounds eerily like you, then come spend the next 12 days with us learning how to take the glimmer of an idea to a finished fabric design. We’ll go through how to take the first steps of finding inspiration, sketch initial ideas and choose a color palette, all the way through to how to market yourself and properly tag your designs so they show up easily in search engines. Join us for 12 Days of Design!
WHAT? We’re kicking off 2017 with 12 days devoted to learning how to create a textile design from start to finish. Challenge yourself to get inspired and get serious about turning your art into marketable surface designs. We will walk you through each step in creating a design ready to upload to Spoonflower and sell in the marketplace. Follow along as we provide daily tips on finding inspiration, creating a design element, working in Spoonflower and marketing yourself.
HOW? The best part is that all you have to do is check your inbox each day. Sign up to receive each day’s step via email starting January 1, 2017, to guide you through the fabric design process. If you’d like, snap a photo of your progress and use the #12DaysofDesign hashtag each day to share your process. You can use this hashtag on your social media outlet of choice. We’ll be re-sharing our favorite posts throughout the series.
So tell us, will you accept the challenge and get started designing surface patterns that sell?
Whether you created something magical during the #SFDesignADay SpoonChallenge or are just joining the party, dive into the watercolor SpoonChallenge contest entries and vote for your favorites!
You did it! For the past 15 days (many of you) in our crafty community have designed to our themes each day for another successful #SFDesignADay challenge. Our favorite part of these challenges is always seeing the support artists in the community give each other. We've so enjoyed watching you cheer each other on and learn from one another, too. We hope you've had fun! Below we've rounded up a few of our favorite #SFDesignADay Instagram posts from the last half of the challenge (be sure to check out our mid-way progress round up here with our favorites from days 1 – 9).
As you may have heard, we're wrapping up our SpoonChallenge with a friendly competition! If you want to put your new skills to the test and participate in the SpoonChallenge Contest, you'll find the theme along with more details here. You'll have to act fast because deadline for submissions is 03/17 at 9 am!
Day 10: Steampunk
(from left) Steampunk designs submitted by @micklyn, @michellenilson, and @lidiebugdesign on Instagram
Day 11: Dyed
(from left) Dyed designs submitted by @vierigirl, @lfntextiels, and @martashtrausa on Instagram
Day 12: Typographic
(from left) Typographical designs submitted by @linz_wins, @lettercrazy.cecelia, and @slumbermonkey on Instagram
Designers, YOU DID IT! For 15 days we've seen many of you set aside at least 15 minutes of your day to devote to creativity. With the guidance of designers from the Spoonflower community, you've sketched in pencil, you've learned block printing and traditional Japanese shibori, you tackled steampunk and kawaii styles, and, hopefully, you've gained the confidence of knowing there's no medium you can't take on. If you haven't yet, be sure to scroll through the #SFDesignADay hashtag on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Flickr – I know you will be as inspired as we are by the incredible talent of this community. We are so proud!
Our prompt for today is Designer's Choice! Take a moment today to dig into your favorite prompt from the series or to dust off an old favorite. It's the perfect day to let the creativity you've cultivated during the challenge run wild!
We're wrapping up our SpoonChallenge with a friendly competition! We've taken the 15 prompts and pulled one out of a proverbial hat to bring you the theme for a rapid-fire, first-of-its-kind design contest! If you want to put your new skills to the test and participate in the SpoonChallenge Contest, here's your theme!
We're in the home stretch of our Design-A-Day SpoonChallenge! Are you hanging in there? Today's #SFDesignADay comes to you from 2014 Spoonflower Staff Challenge Winner, Allie Tate, head of marketing at Spoonflower in Berlin. Allie knows better than most that you needn't look further than the contents of your junk drawer at home to create an award-winning surface pattern.
Allie: Surface design doesn't have to be complicated. It can be as simple as using everyday objects laying around your home to create a compelling textile design. Find inspiration in items you use every day or test your creativity by incorporating unusual items into your fabric design.
Inspired by her love of the super cute, today's Design-A-Day SpoonChallenge is brought to you by Heidi Kenney. Today Heidi gives us a run down of the history behind this fabulously fun design style along with pointers on the various ways you can make it your own. Ranging from her love of pizza to drawing nuns, she shows us just how versatile kawaii truly is. Be sure to check out more of Heidi's kawaii designs over in the Spoonflower Marketplace!
Heidi: Kawaii is a Japanese word that means the quality of being cute or items that are cute. Kawaii began in the 1970's in Japan, when teenage girls began using a cute informal style of writing. It included hearts, smiling faces, and doodles and was seen as a rise against traditional Japanese culture. Kawaii has grown from a small teenage rebellion into an huge part of Japanese culture. In Japan today, you can see the kawaii influence everywhere, from adorable items you might expect like toys and clothing to delightful mascots for police departments, national parks, and historical landmarks. The internet has made it easy for people outside Japan to share in kawaii culture and it has since spread worldwide.
I have always loved creating "cute" things. For me, that means a lot of the stuff I make gets a face, sometimes happy, sometimes very sad. You should never feel limited that things need to be happy to be cute. Never underestimate the charming power of a crying piece of burnt toast! Adding a face is an easy way to turn an everyday object like a radio into a cute little electronic device with personality. Your kawaii characters do not need to be something that already exists. Think about creating your own characters by combining a couple of animals or your favorite animal or food.
Take a look at kawaii characters that have already been created, so you can come up with something you've never seen before. Experiment with faces, moving the distance between facial features. Try the eyes close together, further apart. Creating something kawaii doesn't mean you have to work with inanimate objects. I created a fabric covered in nuns that have large round heads, smaller bodies, and simple faces. Personifying objects might be my go-to, but don't limit yourself. Think big eyes, simple expressions, a winking eye created with just a few lines, but don't feel trapped by hard and fast rules. Sometimes in kawaii design, the thing that matters the most is the question, "Is it cute?". If sweet characters are not your thing, there is also a version of kawaii called kimo-kawaii (gross-cute). Imagine a little zombie character, falling apart and gross, but still cute.
Whether you're feeling kawaii or kimo-kawaii today we're sure there's plenty to be inspired by. Have some fun with this design style and be sure to share it to Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest orTwitter with #SFDesignADay so you can share it with the entire Spoonflower Community!
Heidi Kenney is a self-taught artist who creates plush and 3D soft sculptures, happy (& sometimes very sad) plush everyday food & household items. Born in Washington DC, Heidi currently lives in Pennsylvania. She started her company and website, My Paper Crane, in 2001 so she would have a place to blog and showcase the plush toys she was making. Her work has been featured in the New York Times, The Boston Globe, and Print magazine. She has participated in group exhibitions across the globe including Tokyo, Australia, and The United Kingdom. She has worked with the company Kidrobot to create the Yummy line of sweet & savory vinyl keychains, clothing, and plush.
As we begin to come to the close of the Design-A-Day SpoonChallenge we can't leave out one of our most important techniques: Typographical! Amy Peppler Adams, better known as pennycandy in the Spoonflower Marketplace, shares with us why this technique is fabulous (and easy) for new Spoonflower users and veterans alike.
Amy: When I found Spoonflower about six years ago, I was coming from a graphic design background. The first several prints I uploaded were typography based, because it seemed like the easiest way to transition into what was, for me, the whole new world of surface design. To this day, I still use type in the majority of my work, and often try to include at least one text-based design in each collection. But you don't need an art degree to experiment with and enjoy using typography in your designs. Here are a few ways anyone can have fun with type.