'the life of a textile and surface pattern designer'

Posts tagged “fabric

Inspiration Board

Busy, busy, busy here but thought I’d just show you a peek of the inspiration board behind my current Fashion Textiles project…


A little ‘darker’ than my usual design projects, but so much fun!


See the light

Urban Line was inspired by London and from that it evolved into a project with many focuses including collage, cutout and lighting. This was a lampshade I created as a proto-type using a selection of fabrics which i created for this collection. (The spotty vase is merely for the photo and not as part of the design).


I really love the texture of the crumpled fabrics used here and I think the fabrics with a white background really standout in this collection.

Spot the deer!

Another recent final design which can lend itself to a variety of color schemes. Love the newspaper and the ‘stamped’ floral morif.

Sublimation Printing

On that bus again, but so fricking happy with this little sample of fabric. It is one of my designs….funnily enough not one of my final six, but an experiment which I printed onto fabric this afternoon using the sublimation process. Love, love, love…


Moving forward…

Okay, wow….did I really last post on the 1st October…just about three weeks ago?!! Jeez, time for a BIG catchup as that ended up as a pretty monumental day and since then my feet really haven’t touched the ground.

So, let’s rewind back to the meeting I was off to….well it went well….really really well¬†and let’s be honest it was a pretty life changing meeting.

The meeting had been planned for a good couple of weeks or so, but the day before, I faltered, so worried my design work wouldn’t be what they were looking for….so worried I would walk in and they would laugh at me….

but yet, in my heart of hearts I knew it was what I wanted so bad and that was why I was so worried about making the ‘perfect’ pitch.

Thank God for Leon….the day before…that Sunday when i was so worried to the core, he pushed and pushed for me to go to it and show them my ‘stuff’.

I was worried my sketchbook’s were too messy…..he was adamant it showed my passion

I was worried my drawings weren’t technically perfect…..he was adamant it was my style

I was worried I was self-taught…..he was adamant it showed my determination

So I went….

And I waited….

In the ‘White Space’…

Clutching sketchbooks and cushions, drawings and paintings, doodles and portfolios…..

My whole ‘art life’ in my arms….

Waiting for a lady named Katie….

Watching the clock…

worrying I was going to be in the wrong place at the right time….

or maybe the right place at the wrong time…

And then…

She arrived.

We walked to her office….

I remembered how minimilistic and professional it looked against how scatty I must have appeared balancing all my work below my chin and under my arms, hands full to the brim…

“So, tell me about yourself” was the first question

I thought for just a moment…..

and all of a sudden….

the heavens opened…

I literally flooded the next 30mins jumping up and down….

Inviting Katie right into my world…laying myself bare for her to see my design process…

flinging sketches, portfolios, products, fabrics, drawings and everything I had, in front of her like a crazy lady at a 100mph.

That was the only question she asked.

I never gave her chance to ask anymore.

She was so lovely and laughed, saying I’d answered all her questions in that first reply.

I promptly kicked myself for going off on one, at the speed of lightening….getting carried away wanting to show her everything.

Why could I have not been more professional….more reserved.

She said they’d get back to me in two or three days.

I drove the long drive home, wondering if perhaps I should have done things differently.

I got in the front door and there was a message…

A message from Katie….

asking if I could start tomorrow!

I didn’t even have to think about my reply…

my dream was coming true.

And then that evening, reality hit and I was worried…

Worried about my job…

Worried about the money….

Worried about childcare….

Worried about the travel…..

Worried I really wasn’t ‘good’ enough….

but you know what Leon wasn’t….

he knew, like he always does, it would be just fine….

everything works out how it’s meant to be….

and it did.

I have found my place, my home where I should be…

people who share my crazy passion for pretty paper,

paint, ink, collage, stitching and design.

Day’s spent designing,

creating art,

not necessarily worrying about commercial value,

but giving it soul….

I feel alive….

it’s all I wanna do….

I’ve been going to bed so damn late….

waking up so damn early…

and I LOVE it….

this is how life should be….

Leon was right……

Push your dreams forward because it’s pretty damn perfect X

Claire Smillie – First Year Student ‘BA Hons Design’, University of Plymouth (Somerset College) <<<<<< yes you read it right….that’s me….thats what the meeting was about…I’m a ‘mature’ student, with the most supportive husband, two GORGEOUS kids, ((my big ass Mac)) and the bestest job ever. Someone really must be looking down on me right now, because I can’t stop smiling to myself…. I ¬†feel like the luckiest girly alive X

Oh, what a lovely morning!

Good morning everyone!

I am up bright and early today as I have a day off work and I really really wanted to catch up on the ‘Art of Wild Abandonment‘ videos. This workshop, is slightly out of my confort zone as I am more of a slap- dash-see-what-happen-kinda girl….not much planning just straight to the project, whilst here we are sketching ideas in our sketchbook before creating our art.

My workdesk….lounge carpet….dining table….sofa…bed….alllll clear of crafting stuff today (only after a mad panic last night as I remembered friends were popping over!) So any picture of my workdesk would be rather boring today, although actually come to think of it, it would make a rare photo that hubby would probably treasure for many years!!! I do however, have a little picture of that finished tag from last week. Thankyou for all your lovely comments last week on the half finished tag, I hope you still like the final tag! I even made a little collection of them!

It is a fabric canvas tag created for part of a swap I was member of on UKScrappers.I think, my swappee tags have arrived in the shop, but as its half term and hubby has the car today I gotta wait until tomorrow to see them, I can’t wait!

But my BIG project this weekend has been this canvas board inspired by the PanPastel workshop I took with Donna Downey when she was in the UK last week. Here is Donna’s workshop sample :

The canvas board I created based on this workshop :


My follow up canvas board created this week :

Isn’t it funny how a picture can totally change your opinion of an Art Piece?!! In real life I would say the Follow Up Board looks better, but in the picture boy am I loving the Purple one and I hated, hated, hated it to start with! I was cursing at myself for not following Donna’s and trying to take mine completely away from the look of hers, but this morning jeez that one is making me happy! Always loved my pan pastels and pretty addicted to them right now, I have all the core colors as they are so easy to mix with the white, grade and black to created the shades and tones that they sell. The only problem with that is the consistancy, but for now they are totally rocking my world.

Another thing I’m loving right now are my watercolors, I have my Windsor Newton’s out and have loaded myself up with watercolor books from the Library! I am a girl on a mission to get mastering those watercolors….and for that I blame the beautiful work of Junelle Jacobson! Although, I must say I have just discovered Gouche paints and brought a cheap selection to experiment with, so exciting…..love new supplies! Hopefully I might get time to crack those open today if I’m lucky!

Just look at the gorgeous illustration in that Library book!! Beautiful!

Wow! Look at all my writing today, can’t shut me up! I’m sure all you WOYWW’ers wanna head onto the next blog so I’ll let you go…lovely snooping at your workdesks last week, apologies I didn’t make it round to all…each week there seems to be more and more of us! If I didn’t get to you last week, watch out as it will probably be you this week! (and if you’re wondering how to what WOYWW is or how to become one, head on over to the Stamping Ground…but pretty sure just about every papercrafter/scrapbooker/stamper/mixed media blogger knows alll about Julia’s great idea by now)

Oooh, one last thing….we actually had a couple of lurvely sunny days last week and as we live just about 30mins from the coast we headed straight to the beach after work. Chips on the seafront on a sunny evening, it was bliss, so nice and the kids LOVED it. I never really blog family things, but here we are….. and even though it chopped our heads off and the face of my little boy I can’t wait to scrap this picture….love it…. it has headed straight to the top of the pile!

Just having a play….


Half way through a little tag project….here’s a sneak peak at the half way mark….can’t wait to show you the finished tag!

To see what’s on other workdesks this Wednesday be sure to pop by the Stamping Ground.