December 12, 2012
December 10, 2012
Running through the grass on a windy day, arms stretched out-wide pretending you’re a bird soaring in the sky. This trend story is all about freedom and movement using space with smaller detailed images. The colour palette is simple and muted with a pop of colour used sparingly to add diversity.
December 7, 2012
This flurry of patterned eye candy comes from Cynthia Robledo, head designer at Harapos Decyng. ”Harapos” is a nice way of saying rags in spanish and “decyng” is from “design by Cyn.” Cynthia specializes in screen printing fabrics, and experiments with other surfaces, such as wood. “The design of the prints arises from my own need to express ideas and images and to communicate something. This is how these decorated patterns are born, “expressive fabrics” loaded with emotion, color and images that convey stories.”
There were way too many beautiful products to post them all, so please go check out her site (don’t miss the amazing baskets!). She also has some cute FREE wallpaper downloads in the download section. Have a fabulous weekend! – Michelle
December 5, 2012
Hello there! I was overwhelmed by the response to last week’s Sellable Sketch giveaway. Thanks to all those who entered, retweeted and shared their 2013 goals. I was so blown away that I cannot help but give away two spots, it is the holiday season after all!! The winners are….. Yael Korotich and Lisa Rivas. Congrats you two!
December 3, 2012
*post by The Pattern Observer team, images via: Cacharel Spring ’13 via style.com, “Shattered” by Eljay, Aquilano.Rimondi Spring ’13 via style.com, “Shattered 4” by Philip Bitnar, Giles Spring ’13 via style.com, “Safety glass” by Martin Sutherland, Tibi Spring ’13 via style.com, “Radiate” by ~My aim is true~, Miu Miu Spring ’13 via style.com
Welcome to the week! I hope you enjoy this shattered trend that we found really interesting. There are so many different ways to interpret this trend: clean, vector fragments, abstract photoshoped prints, collaged pieces or charcoal sketches, the possibilities are endless. There is officially one more day to enter the Sellable Sketch giveaway so hop on over and check it out here. Have a fabulous week!
November 30, 2012
Happy Friday!!! I am delighted to wrap up this week with these textural pieces from today’s featured designer, Marina Molares. Marina graduated from the University of Leeds in 2005 and is currently creating something everyday: painting, drawing, collaging, taking photos and working as a freelance graphic and surface designer. I was really drawn to the raw, organic pieces in her collection, but she also is one amazing collage artist! To see more of Marina’s work please check out her website or Spoonflower shop.
It has been such a fun week here and thanks for all your positive feedback and sharing your goals and dreams for 2013. Don’t forget to enter to The Sellable Sketch giveaway and again, if anyone is interested in working through Daniella Laporte’s new program, The Desire Map with me, consider registering for her 3-day launch event which starts December 5th. I think it will be fun to work through it as a small group and relate her information to our little industry through the hashtag #textiledesigngoals.
Have a great weekend!!!! – Michelle
November 29, 2012
Sometimes it is difficult to know how you want to grow your business. You know that you want to be out in the market, selling your work and earning a living, but what is the best direction for you to take? You may be asking yourself, “Should I sell through an agent, work as a consultant or represent my own artwork at prints shows?”
If you aren’t quite sure where to turn, your confidence level, the time you have to commit to your business, the amount of customer interaction that you want to have on a daily basis and the amount of money that you have to invest, may point you in the right direction.
*image via: Louis Vuitton Spring ’13 via vogue.com
The ability to sell your work confidently is important to gaining customer trust and loyalty. Put yourself in the buyers’ shoes, they are buying prints one to two years in advance of the market, which can be risky! They are taking a gamble that your prints are going to sell well and need to feel confident in your ability to track and forecast trends, as well as create desirable prints. Yes, they should know what prints their customer is going to buy, but who doesn’t like a little support when making investments in the future?
This is why if you are still crafting your artistic style, or feel less than confident in your work, it may be beneficial to work “behind the scenes” for a while, through a print studio or agent. Selling your work through an agent gives you time to focus on growing as a designer, while still earning a living and getting your work out into the world.
How much time do you have to invest in your business? Representing your work takes a great deal of time and energy. Along with designing amazing products, you will be responsible for managing day-to-day operations, responding to clients, planning for the big day, marketing, financial planning and more. If you struggle finding enough time to design, how are you going to make sure that these tasks are covered as well?
If you are strapped for time, consider selling your work through an agent or working with clients as a consultant. Once you have more time to invest in your business, you can sell your work at print shows or through a password protected website in addition to these existing revenue streams.
*image via: Louis Vuitton Spring ’13 via vogue.com
Think about how much client interaction you would like to have on a daily basis. A great deal of my time is spent in meetings and answering emails and I love the constant interaction! I have longstanding relationships with my clients and I consider many of them to be close friends. As much as I love this business model, I know that it is not right for every designer. You may want as little client interaction as possible and if this is the case, selling through an agent is about as close as you can get! Other designers love to sell their prints through print shows because they have months of intense design time followed by a few fun-filled days networking, building relationships and making sales! It is up to you how much time you want to invest in your customers and how fast you want your business to grow.
Lastly, how much money do you have to invest in your business? If you are ready to jump into the market in a big way, and have the funds to do so, selling your work at print shows is a great direction! Print shows are one of the fastest ways to grow your customer list, network and establish your place in the industry. If you dream of attending a show, but your bank account is at zero, then make print shows a goal for the next year or two. In the meantime, there are still many options available, such as selling your work through an agent, online or consulting with clients.
Facts and figures aside, when choosing a business direction, passion is one of the most important components. Passion is what allows you to work late nights and inspires you to keep moving forward after a setback. Passion allows you to problem solve and find ways around budget, time and mindset obstacles.
- excerpted from Building Your Textile Design Business
November 28, 2012
*post by Victoria Snape, images via: (Top row right) Sally Nencini, (2nd row left) She tiger vintage, (2nd row right) Kilim’s, (3rd row right) Edna Earl Sewing, (Bottom row left) Fine and Dandy Vintage, (Bottom row right) Viral threads
* This includes a 3 month membership to the Pattern Observer membership site!
November 27, 2012
Today’s featured designer is Rachel Clore who recently graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. Rachel has lived all over the United States, from Charleston, SC to New York City, but it was a recent trip to New Delhi, India that changed the direction of her design inspiration and lead to the fantastic prints that you see here today.
During her time in New Delhi, she had the opportunity to explore bazaars, markets, temples, as well as India’s festival of color–Holi. She also traveled to other Indian/ world heritage sites such as the tantric temples at Khajuraho, the Ganges, and the Taj Mahal. During her last month in India, she traveled “to the desert of Kutch (West India) and the city of Jaipur (North India) to study bandhani (i.e. Indian tie and dye) with two Orthodox Muslim families. I studied bindi bandhani while in Kutch (the square dot) and lahariya and mothara (diagonal stripes and checks achieved from rolling fabric into a rope).”
“While living in India, I was inspired by everything–birds (most often the colorful kingfisher), mangoes, the chikoo (a type of fruit), gold jewelry, temple architecture, the electric colors, painted elephants, marigolds and other flowers, truck decoration, ornamentation and decoration in every sphere, and everyday people. When I returned to the US, the culture clash made me examine what I found most amazing about India. My memories, sketchbook pages, paper clippings, photographs, and writings then helped inform my digital repeats for fabric as well as my lithographic, relief, and screen printmaking projects. As I get further away from my time in India, my work has been turning to my most vivid memories of color, food, and visual clutter that I feel embodies India”
Rachel Clore is currently living and working in New York, and is always looking for new contacts, employment opportunities, and freelance work. To learn more about Rachel, please visit her website.
November 26, 2012
In last week’s newsletter I shared a few things that we are working on for 2013, including:
1. A Pattern Observer membership site. The site and forum are currently open to students-only and is growing into such a supportive, talented community of designers. Students are currently working through a series on learning how to critique their own work and December tutorials include: how to create more professional set layouts and what you should be doing to get ready for Surtex 2013. I can’t wait to share it with you all!
2. Another exciting development is the Pattern Observer scholarship fund, which will launch in early 2013. At this stage I am working with SCAD, but I hope to expand the program to surface design programs across the globe.
3. In addition to the self-study courses, I also plan on holding monthly workshops, which will be a more affordable way to grow as a designer and expand your business. These workshops will feature guest teachers and experts from a variety of industries and I am thrilled to be taking this new direction with our course offerings. My first virtual workshop will be taking place Dec. 8th and 9th and I’ll be sharing my method for working one-on-one with clients. Email us at info@paternobserver if you are interested!
With all this change and growth I know that it is important to stay on track with my vision and goals for Pattern Observer, so my husband and I decided to to work through Jennifer Lee’s, The Right-Brain Business Plan. We had a blast collaging our business vision and values, which you can see below.
The values that are important to me for Pattern Observer are: inspiration, openness and honesty, simplicity, resourcefulness, and high quality thoughtfulness. The book is wonderful if you already have some sort of idea of what you want your business to be about and I think it is a great companion to my BYTDB course! I’ll keep you updated with my progress through the book, I hope to finish it by the end of the year. Another tool that I am looking forward to is Danielle Laporte’s new program called The Desire Map.
The Desire Map is a “holistic approach to planning your life. It guides you to identify your core desired feelings, and to use those feelings as the drivers of what you want to do, have and experience in your life. It turns goal-setting inside out.” The course is a multimedia program and launches Dec. 5th. I am pretty clear on my goals and desires, but Ms. Laporte’s products are freakin’ awesome, and I am sure that I will leave the course ready to take on the world!
What are your plans for 2013? What do you hope to accomplish? If you want to work through any of these courses alongside me (or if you have your own method or program) just tweet your findings, questions, dreams, etc. with #textiledesigngoals.
Have a great week!!!!! – Michelle
November 21, 2012
Victoria spotted this collection of navy prints while shopping in stores and online. Are you using navy in your collections? I love navy and find it to be a much cheerier option to black.
It is a three day work week for most of us here in America, tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and I am looking forward to the first holiday with our new little girl, Ruth. With the year winding down I am doing a lot of reflecting on what I could do to improve this space, this community, of talented, driven designers. What posts would you like to see more of? What tutorials would help to grow your business? Please let me know, I would love to hear from you! We have lots of exciting news for 2013 so get ready for some major shifts in your business! Lots of love- Michelle
November 20, 2012
We have had maps on the brain since posting our map trend report back in August so I couldn’t wait to share these stunning pillow covers from Salt labs. Salt labs is a “small Detroit, Michigan-based design studio producing a variety of original products for the home but primarily focusing on digitally-printed textiles – handmade into pillows.” Their patterns are “often sourced from collected vintage illustrations, maps and nautical charts and reinterpreted for the contemporary home. Salt labs uses responsible environmental processes and local and US sourcing.”
The founder, Robbi, named the studio after her origins and interests. “Salt: it’s indigenous to Michigan and part of our local legacy in Detroit. The Detroit Salt Company still mines salt under the City of Detroit. We live with a virtual city of salt under our feet. Labs: to describe my “experimental” interest in combining, testing and trying all things new – or old, for that matter – just for the fun of it. No scientific stuff here.” Robbi’s enthusiasm for maps comes from her years of traveling and the tactile nature of paper maps. You can purchase these beautiful pillow covers on their website or their DIY kits on their etsy store.
November 19, 2012
*post by Claire Carey, images via: Images clock wise: Dandy Star, Sanna Annukka, Whip Cream from Kidstylesource, Dandy Star, Atsuyo et Akiko from Sweet William, Les Petits Bohemes, Vogue Enfants, ESP no.1, I Love Gorgeous from Babykins Magazine, Sweet William, Le Train Fantome
A traditional adventure with an urban edge. Tribal prints and folklore tales, create a narrative of imagery mixed with woven elements and textures. A colour palette inspired by the city and graphic lettering give the story an urban twist.
November 14, 2012
November 13, 2012
Sarah Stevenson is the textile and clothing designer behind Sarah Stevenson Design, a beautiful line of luxury womenswear based in Canada. Sarah creates everything from print to finished garment, and was gracious enough to share some insights into her design background and work process.
1. How did you get into textile design? Have you always been interested in fashion or did you ever have a different career path in mind?
I’ve always loved fashion but I didn’t consider it until quite recently. I studied Psychology & Fine Arts in university and afterwards, while I was studying to be a therapist I realized that it wasn’t the right choice. I did a lot of soul searching & asked myself what my wildest dream job would be and I discovered that I wanted to be a designer – so I went back to school to study fashion. While I was learning about clothing design I felt like something was missing & I wanted to add more to my pieces. That’s when I became really interested in Textile Design & sought out an internship with Canadian Textile Designer Virginia Johnson. After college I applied for a Masters in Fashion & Textile Design in Milan, Italy and got it! It was there that my passion for textile design really emerged & over that year I developed my skills immensely.
It was a big risk to take and it definitely is not the most stable career but I followed my heart & it led me to where I am today.
2. Can you tell us a little about your design process? What is the most challenging part of the process for you? How about the most fun part?
I am an artist first and foremost so I always start working by hand – it feels the most organic to me. Sometimes I have an idea that I work towards & other times I just start drawing or painting and then build on it. From there I work in Photoshop and Illustrator to get my images ready to print onto fabric. The most fun part is seeing my art transferred onto the fabric – it is like Christmas morning!
3. What would you consider to be your most proud achievement so far?
Receiving the full scholarship to study my Masters in Fashion & Textile Design at the Istituto Europeo di Design & having my work recognized & appreciated by international fashion editors & celebrities.
4. What is the atmosphere/energy like in your studio? Frantic? Zen? Is your workspace messy or does it stay neat and organized?
When I’m painting it can get messy – but thats part of the process. You have to allow yourself to let your guard down & run away with your ideas. It is the only way I know how to work & I can’t imagine being creative without getting my hands dirty! The atmosphere is pretty relaxed – I always listen to great music while I work which really helps me to get in the mood.
(A few shots taken around Sarah’s studio–design books, a calendar, fabric swatches and some of her dresses.)
5. What music is usually playing in your studio?
I have a very eclectic taste in music & I’m always updating my playlists with new artists. Lately I’ve been listening a lot to The Lumineers, Vampire Weekend, The XX, The Drums, Of Monsters & Men & Patrick Kelly.
6. What are your favorite sources for design inspiration? Favorite print & pattern trends?
Sources come from literally everywhere! Nature never has a shortage of inspiration to draw from but I take inspiration from anything that moves me! For Spring/Summer 2013 I was really inspired my Moroccan culture & I wanted to reinterpret their ceramics. I think when you look at it you can see a nod to that culture but I took it apart & reconstructed it in a way that is completely my own.
7. Do you have any advice for aspiring designers hoping to break into the textile field?
Put yourself into your work – change it up and do something different! Have your own point of view – its great to take inspiration from other textile designers but find a way to then reinterpret it and make it your own!
I was so inspired by Sarah’s answers and her decision to take a risk and follow her true passion! She is currently working on building up her freelance textile design business and seeking representation for her prints. You can see more of Sarah’s fabulous work at her website.
November 12, 2012
*post by The Pattern Observer team, images via: “Untitled” by Daniel Oines, Hermes Spring ’13 via style.com, “Untitled” by Daniel Oines, Versus Spring ’13 via style.com, Jonathan Saunders Spring ’13 via style.com
Here in Pattern Observer land we are loving all the retro geometrics recently featured on the Spring ’13 runway. When used in bright, bold colors like you see here, they exude a sense of whimsy which is perfect for the spring and summer seasons. Try playing with scale and you’ll begin to see hints of the color blocking trend which has been popular for the past few seasons.
We have lots of great posts scheduled for this week including pictures from little Ruth’s first art/ craft show, a really fun Street Pattern post and more! I want to send out a big welcome message to all those who recently joined The Sellable Sketch and the Building Your Textile Design Business courses. There have been some great discussions on the course forums and look forward to seeing more of your prints and customer boards. If you are stuck in a rut try some of these retro geometrics and explore the color relationships that you can create.
Have an awesome week!!! – Michelle
November 9, 2012
I couldn’t think of a better way to wrap up this week than with these dream-like beauties from ANONA studio. I love that they brought the geometric trend to a customer that may not normally be drawn to harsh geometrics by using vibrant colors and soft textures. ANONA, which was founded in 2011 by Sarah Leaman and Renée Shortell, calls themselves a “boutique” studio because they cater to each client in a very personal way. “In addition to offering a curated collection of original prints and vintage items specific to the needs of each brand, we will find that perfect vintage piece on request, and also create original artwork for clients that need just the right piece to round out their season.” To find out more about ANONA please visit their website. Have a fantastic weekend!