Be Mine!

Valentine's Day is coming soon, so I  thought it would be fun to illustrate my own set of  Valentine printables inspired by some vintage valentine's I saw on Pinterest.  (scroll to the bottom if you want to download a copy to share with your valentine's)

As a kid I always looked forward to Valentine's Day,  I would painstakingly stamp, glue and glitter 30 or so cards for each of my classmates! Probably because this was one of the few occasions I was allowed to break out the glitter.

Unfortunately, I don't have as much time to throw glitter around these days...  (I'm just finishing up knitting Christmas gifts) However, I still love sending out mail to my friends and family to let them know I'm thinking of them.

Isn't Valentine's about all the people you love? Your sister, parents, grandma, bff, oldest camp friend, aunt, new sister-in-law, coworker and your husfriend?

I like to think so!

I hope you'll also enjoy sending these in the mail to your favorite people.

valentines_printable_2014

Here is how to do it:

click on the link above

It will open in a new window.

Right click on the image and select "save as".

Open up the image and PRINT.

Croquetas Recipe Illo

Last, but not least...  I wanted to share one of my all time favorite custom recipes, for  Croquetas de la Abuela!  I was absolutely thrilled to illustrate Anna's Grandma's recipe for her family.

Although I speak no Spanish (I took high school French and a little Japanese post college)  I had an English translation and the Spanish version of the recipe to guide me.

I tried to find some examples of Spanish packaging and also looked at ceramics, and embroidery for pattern ideas.  Packaging in other languages is always fun to look at. Sometimes its really obvious what food you're getting and other times it's a complete mystery!  Quite a few times in Japan I thought I was getting something with cheese and really it was mayo.. yuck!

I wanted to bring a lot of bold color to this piece so it felt really festive.  I imagine frying up a bunch of croquetas to share with family at a party since they are bite size.

Here's a similar recipe I found for Ham Croquettes !  I'd like to try making them at home next tim we have a bunch of people over to eat them.  Valentine's Day is fast approaching,  Tomorrow is the last day to order a Custom Recipe Illustration for your honey, in time for Valentine's Day!

2014- Year of the Lumberjack!

 

Here it is my 2014 Lumberjack tea towel calendar!!  As soon as I got my fabric in the mail I threw it in the wash and stitched it right up.

If you also have a huge crush on lumberjacks, this towel might be for you...

Here's some close ups of the animals; goats wearing hats (inspired by the Sound of Music puppets!), gitty hedgehogs, sneaky raccoons and guitar playing birds.

Seriously can you tell how much fun I had working on this?

This may be my favorite tea towel calendar yet!

Check it out in my Etsy shop!

Happy Friday and have an awesome weekend!

 

Lumberjack

Happy Friday!  I just finished up my new tea towel calendar for 2014.  The last two years they've sold really well, so I'll have the 2014 one up in my Etsy shop as soon as I can.  This year I took inspiration from...

Lumberjacks and decorative elements on vintage Soviet postcards!

I found some really great reference for both on pinterest!

Here's a little sneak peek of my lumberjacks.

 I can't wait to receive my proof back from Spoonflower!

If you want to see the calendar early you can go vote for my calendar in the 2014 Tea Towel Calendar at Spoonflower. 

October Calendar

Happy October!!  I couldn't resist making a jack o' lantern and ghost themed calendar... I love Halloween and all of the cheesy pumpkin carving, face painting and candy binging that goes with it.  Hope you enjoy this calendar, even if it's very late.

Click on the little one to download and save as a wallpaper for the rest of the month!

September Calendar

Today definitely feels like the beginning of autumn.  It's already a little chillier at night and I'm definitely craving some soup!  Between work, moving and planning a wedding... I let July and August get away from me. But I'm getting hitched at the end of the month and after that I'll look forward to things getting back to normal.

Click on the mini calendar to download it for free!  Happy Friday!

Lilla Roger's Global Talent Search

My submission for the Lilla Roger's Global Talent Search!  The assignment involved creating a journal for Paperchase with a vintage playground theme.

At first I was a little stumped by the theme... and then I thought about the kind of journal I would want to buy and characters I would enjoy drawing.  Whats more fun then a bunch of monkeys jumping rope? I worked on this piece during the recent heat wave, which also inspired my decision to draw ice cream...  The layout was loosely based on vintage circus posters and type.  Tomorrow the top 50 will be announced... fingers crossed!

Lilla Roger's Class

I wanted to share some work I've been doing in Lilla Roger's  Make Art That Sells class.  Lilla Roger's is one of the top illustration agents and represents some of my favorite artists, so I jumped at the chance to push my work and get some helpful advice from her!

Each week is focused on a different market and the first week was bolt fabric design.  We started the week off drawing mushrooms and vintage casseroles.  It was both intimidating and inspiring to see the level of talent among the group!  Throughout the course its been really fun to see the variety in medium everyone uses and how differently everyone interprets the same subject matter.  

Here's my final print, inspired by one of my favorite dishes; Springtime Soba with Miso Sauce. 

Since this is a market I'm really interested in I had a lot of fun working on this piece and also getting a fresh perspective from Lilla about what will be popular with quilters and crafters.

Here's my coordinating prints

I tried to use some new colors, ones I typically wouldn't use and really layer the images in  my main pattern so it would feel very dense.  Of course I still ended up with lots of greens and acid yellow...

Week two was Home Decor.  This was a market I hadn't previously thought about selling my work in.  Once I started looking at the examples I got really excited about creating work for plates, sheets, and kitchen goods.

Our assignment this week was to sketch pods, succulents and unusual flowers, which was right up my alley!  Above are some of my inked drawings.  We then used the drawings to create mock up plates!

Here's a Bee plate, its in progress but I wanted to share it anyways!  I'm sort of obsessed with fat bees and honeycomb pattern right now.

Here's my more finished plate, which I submitted for the assignment.  Despite the fact that we are in the middle of moving to our new place, I've been feeling really invigorated by this class and the assignments we are getting.  I'll share my work from week three soon!

April Calendar

A few days late... but here's this month's Calendar!  Inspired by all the beautiful photos I've been seeing of cherry blossoms in Kyoto... Here's one of the best places to view the cherry blossoms, Kiyomizudera.  

Here's an old image of Kiyomizudera from 1909 and not much has changed.  Kiyomizudera is probably the most famous Buddhist temple in Kyoto and has a fantastic view of the city!  Someday I will make it back to Japan just to see the cherry blossoms!

 Growing up in DC I loved seeing the cherry blossoms transform our street every year.  My birthday is in April so it always feels like an extra present!  Here's my dad, me and Ernie enjoying the blossoms.

Click on the small calendar to download it and use it as a wallpaper.

Quilt Market Recap

So I survived my first Quilt Market!! I went armed with postcards, swatches of my work and some portfolios on my ipad to show art directors.  The first day left me feeling completely overwhelmed... so much fabric to look at, so many people and everyone seemed too busy to talk.

Luckily I was not alone and was able to meet up with the ladies who ran The Printed Bolt's REPEAT contest as well as Michele (winner of REPEAT!)

Me, Ellen, Madeleine and Michele hanging out in Carolyn's booth!

After a rough day of walking the floor we hit up the Modern Quilt Guild's meet up that night.  This was the place to be!!! Michele and I immediately spotted a few of our favorite designers and decided to be brave and go talk to them.

Carolyn's block of the month quilt "Local" in her first fabric line; Architextures.  

 Through out the weekend we managed to talk to: Melody Miller,  Rashida Coleman-HaleCarolyn FriedlanderLizzy HouseAmy ButlerAnna Maria HornerTula Pink and Sarah Watson.

This is Michele and I chatting with Anna Maria Horner!!

Let me tell you... every single one of these ladies was even more fabulous in person!!!  Each of them took the time to speak to us about our experiences at our first quilt market, or their approach to design, what they think of the Modern Quilt movement, etc.  It made me so incredibly happy.....

I'm definitely encouraged to continue designing fabric and maybe even attend the spring quilt market in Portland, Oregon this year...

Quilt Market Prep

I've printed my postcards and cut fresh swatches of fabric! I'm on my way to the International Quilt Market in Houston, Texas to show my fabric designs. Anyways, I'm looking forward to meeting designers, fabric companies and some of the fabulous people involved in The Printed Bolt REPEAT contest! Wish me luck!

Chicken Calendar

I drew some chickens! Then turned them into a tea towel design for this week's Spoonflower contest... As if I didn't have enough on my plate. (Next weekend I'm flying down to Houston for Quilt Market) yikes!!  

I really enjoyed making a tea towel calendar last year and people seemed to like the whole tea towel calendar things, so I'll probably put a couple up in the Ol'Etsy Shoppe.

It's a nice opportunity to design something that serves a functional purpose!  Even if it is chicken illustrations on a calendar...  Hope you guys like it!  If you do, go vote for my design on Spoonflower.   Voting is open till Tuesday and after that SF is having a 2 for 1 sale on fat quarters from the 25th- 31st!

Take a hike!

It's the final round of the REPEAT contest. I'm thrilled to have made it to the very end! Here are the final colorways for my collection; Take a hike.

It was quite a challenge to get all of these patterns and color ways done in under two weeks!

I'm leaving tomorrow for an exciting trip and I'm not sure how much internet access I will have.

but I wanted to share these patterns before I get back because I had a lot of fun working on them.

Here are two additional patterns I made, but did not submit for the contest; a stripe pattern and a chevron.

I'll be excited to see what the other finalists; Michele and Krissy come up with.

I think Ive learned a lot over the duration of this competition and I would love the opportunity to share my work at the quilt market!

Go check out the other finalists: http://theprintedbolt.com/ and vote for me for the Reader's choice award! Thanks guys!

"Up in the Air"

Our latest round of patterns for The Printed Bolt's REPEAT contest were due last night.  For this round I wanted to push myself by working a little more abstractly.  My dusk design is loosely inspired by feathers and also decorative henna drawings.   In the summer I'd use henna to tattoo designs on my hands and feet.  During the school year I would doodle similar designs on my hands with pen, which completely horrified most of the adults I knew.

The theme was "Up in the Air" so I tried to create patterns that were evocative of a warm summer night.  "Branch" is inspired by star gazing.  I also wanted to create a pattern with a funky, organic texture.  I struggled a lot on the colors...  I developed about 4 colorways.  Above is the one I ended up liking the best.  Here's some other patterns I was working on, but decided not to submit:

Fireflies!

And some bark inspired stripes.

Here's the other colorways I developed:

Aqua, pink, orange and lemon yellow

Olive green, sky blue and peach colorway

Red, Orange, pink colorway

Ultimately I went with the dusk one because I thought the colors were on trend and they best represented a summer vibe.  My fingers are crossed that I'll make it to 5th round!    The new designs are up and voting is open til Sunday, so go vote!

Sashiko

     For our third challenge of the REPEAT design competition we were asked to draw on our life experience to create two prints.  I wanted to create prints inspired by the time I spent living in Japan.

While studying at Kyoto Seika I would peruse the library for reference material and I loved checking out books filled with traditional patterns usually on Japanese textiles or paper.

     Often these books were written in Japanese, but I still loved looking at the images.  I thought it would be cool to incorporate designs from a traditional Japanese textile into my patterns this month.  I went back to the RISD library to see if they had any books with Sashiko stitched fabric in it and they did!  In fact they have a whole series of  books featuring traditional Japanese textiles!

     I checked out a few and was thrilled that the books had some captions in English!  It turns out that this type of stitching is often used on garments typically worn by workers such as fisherman, farmers and woman divers.  Sashiko is a very traditional stitching technique used to reinforce the fabric.  Some of the designs were also seen as a talisman to protect woman divers from danger.  How cool is that?

Anyways, I had no idea that this type of stitching had such a practical application, I just really loved the different patterns.  All of these images are scanned from the book I checked out called: "Kogin and Sashiko Stitch" it's book #13 in the series.  If you want to try sashiko yourself, there is an excellent tutorial over at The Purl Bee.

Here's some of the other color ways I thought about using for my Sashiko inspired print.  If you haven't already head over to The Printed Bolt to check out all of the patterns for this round and vote!

First round of REPEAT

Phew!  I got my "Tiny Dwelling" patterns done at the last minute.  All of the patterns are up and there are some amazing submissions!  Go check out the patterns and vote for mine now!  Here's a little glimpse into my process... A photo from one of my favorite books:  The Deep!  It's full of amazing photographs of deep sea life!
I also got a chance to use my handy dandy Spoonflower color swatch chart to match my digital colors to printed samples.
Inside my sketchbook some ink drawings for the Tulip Hill pattern.
Here's "Sleep with the Fishes"
 and "Tulip Hill"
I'm very happy with how they turned out!  Voting is open today-Sunday the 25th so please go vote for me!