There is one overarching goal that touches everything we do here at Spoonflower: inspire you, our design community and continue to challenge you to keep creating and growing. In April of 2016, we made a bold move, changing the format of our beloved Design Challenges which we had been doing consistently every week since 2009. This reimagining came as a result of waning interest and participation, so we decided to shake things up a bit, switching from weekly to a monthly format. Each month focused on creating designs for a specific application, determined by that month’s chosen brand partner. We loved seeing the Japanese Garden kimono designs you created for Sprout, the quirky “Double Take” designs you whipped up for Betabrand, the Ocean designs you made for Bucketfeet, and many others. We sincerely hope the experience of designing with a specific theme and application in mind for a real-market “client” helped you grow as an artist creating not just for the fun of it, but actually for the purpose of bringing that art to market for long-term success. Opening inspiration doors, promoting community connections, helping to elevate and cross-promote your brand are core competencies that we intentionally foster within our community and embody a mission that we value immensely.
Another goal of ours at Spoonflower and something that’s integral to who we are and what we stand for is listening to our community of artists, making you part of our internal conversation and present in the decision-making process. We know that many of you missed the varied and plentiful opportunities that the Weekly Design Challenges extended, such as the opportunity to win and be recognized more frequently, a surplus variety of themes to be inspired by at any given time, and the exposure that our weekly contests brought to your design portfolio that yielded more design-centric conversation and potentially more sales. While the Weekly Prompts inspired many of you, they lacked the competitive aspect and ability to vote.
With Autumn and the holiday crafting season upon us, we would like to announce the official return of a classic tradition: the Spoonflower Weekly Design Challenge, in its original format. With at least one month in advance, you’ll now have a handful of different weekly themes to choose from at any given time so there’s always something new to design, and a new challenge open for voting each week. While there may still be the occasional brand partner for a challenge, we will return to singular themes without a partner. Now that Spoonflower has welcomed two new sister companies into the fold, weekly prizes will now expand to include Spoonflower credit, and possible Sprout or Roostery goodies as well. Thanks for your patience with us and we continue to listen and learn to continue to evolve and nurture this amazing community we’ve built together.
The Spoonflower family
Stay tuned for an official announcement of October’s Design Challenge themes (which will all have a tea-towel twist!) timeline and prizes on our blog next Wednesday.
Give a big round of applause to Kelly aka Weavingmajor, whose Rainbow Crayon Waves design was chosen as this week’s Plum Print top pick. Kelly will receive a shower curtain custom printed with her winning design, courtesy of Plum Print. September’s prompts were just announced, so be sure to join in on Weekly Prompts to come and find out what great prizes you could win for participating! We’ve rounded up a few of our own favorites from last week’s tagged Crayon designs below. Check them out and see all of the submitted designs here.
How it works: To participate, you’ll simply upload your design to Spoonflower, make it “public” and add in that week’s specific tag. Each week will have its own special tag, which is how participating designs will be found on Spoonflower.
Congratulations are in order for Elishka aka Robyriker, whose So Many Colorful Books design was chosen as this week’s Plum Print top pick. Elishka will receive a pillow custom printed with her winning design, courtesy of Plum Print. Join in on Weekly Prompts to come and find out what each week’s prizes will be. We’ve rounded up a few of our own favorites from last week’s tagged designs. Check them out and see all of them here.
In the newest edition of our Meet the Designer series, today we introduce to you Patricia Donovan (Chickoteria), an artist who captures the vintage designs and color palettes from her home base of Nashville, Tennessee. Keep reading to see what inspires this Spoonflower designer!
Both majestic, mythological-beings gracing different realms of the universe, unicorns and mermaids might just be our favorite animals that aren’t really animals. So which side are you on? Whimsical creatures captivate and inspire us, so we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite from the Marketplace. Be sure to check out more goodies here.
Show your support for our design community by favoriting and commenting on the ones you love! See one you want to buy that’s not for sale yet? If you’re logged into your account, you should see the option to send the designer a message so you can let them know you’re interested in purchasing their design.
Move over, garden gnomes–the retro lawn ornament we’re loving right now is the classic pink plastic flamingo. Turns out, they look just as great on fabric as they do in a 1950s manicured lawn! We’ve rounded up a few of our favorites below, be sure to check out more from our Marketplace here.
We're teaming up with our friends at StoryPatches to bring you June's Design Challenge: Family Tree Coordinates! This Challenge seeks 4 coordinating designs that celebrate family, in all of its forms. No need to attach a story of any kind or create a quilt label, just submit four designs formatted in a one-yard sized file, that all go together and symbolize family to you. The winning coordinate designs will be licensed for an exclusive set of StoryPatches labels!
Not sure how your designs will look as StoryPatches labels? The possibilities are endless! The winning designer will work with the team at StoryPatches to create an exclusive set of quilt labels adapted from their Family Tree Coordinates – the perfect complement to any handmade project created with the winning designs!
Not sure how to design coordinates? Check out this blog post where our friend Bonnie Christine shows us just how easy it can be.
Need help with design layout? Download our coordinate template and instructions.
Still can't get your head around this challenge? Check out one of our previous "coordinate" design challenge winners.
Here's an example of four coordinating designs in the layout we're looking for for this Design Challenge:
An example of four coordinating designs, formatted to fit on one yard. All designs are by Bonnie Christine, and are not related to the theme of this Design Challenge
Prizes: Winner receives $300 cash prize from StoryPatches and a licensing contract to create a line of quilt labels, $300 Spoonflower credit + a press release. All remaining entrants in the top 10 to receive $100 in Spoonflower credit.
Click below to read more details about the Design Challenge timeline and official rules, as well as how you can be entered into a giveaway!
Here at Spoonflower HQ, we are lucky enough to live in an area surrounded by aspiring designers and astoundingly talented artists. Recently, North Carolina State University students put on their 15th annual Art2Wear Fashion Show, and Spoonflower was a sponsor of the event through our Emerging Designer Grant program. The theme of which was "The Virtue of Obsession." Today, we're getting to know some of the student designers, led by Assistant Professor of Art & Design, and Project Runway contestant Justin LeBlanc.
I'm Angèle Gray, an Art + Design student from North Carolina State University, currently pursuing my artistic dreams of fashion illustration and textile design. As a senior in the College of Art + Design, my self-identity has grown to encompass both my role as an artist and more importantly a designer. As a designer, I am interested in how The Formalist Art Theory can influence textile design. It suggests that the value of art is determined solely on the artist’s ability to use the formal design elements of color, line, composition, and texture. My design process starts by placing a hierarchy on the overall aesthetics I want to convey, I am then able to hone in on more detail-oriented works. I believe textiles should excite the viewer and open their senses. When creating, I strive to develop aesthetically refined designs that will intrigue and provoke a sense of connection to my work as well as an enthusiasm towards textile design.