My evolution/progression of trying to bring all my ideas together into one cohesive design collection has been both exciting and extremely stressful. I have had little resistance to constructing new and exciting visuals for my floral designs, but have absolutely hated the digital side…..I still am unable to proficiently translate my ideas into the fantastic world of Photoshop and Illustrator.


This was done by hand…..and with a lot of patience too!!!!! Lots of printing out an image and manipulating it vertically and horizontally to create a mirror effect. I love the interplay between colour and monotone, but feel the design is a little to graphic. Helen and Sian raised the fact that the floral motifs didn’t sit quite correctly with the stylised rose motifs; floating heads I believe they called it. What could I do to remedy this? Could I permeate the colour outwards into the monotone floral motifs? Would this create a softer and less graphic aesthetic? This is something I will definitely explore.


Continuing on from my previous design I wanted to create a softer and more fluid description of the greenery of flowers and plants. Believe it or not this design was a mistake!! I was trying to use Brusho to create a pattern from a Vellum Tracing Paper Stencil, which didn’t turn out as successfully as I had hoped. However, ¬†every cloud has a silver lining; a direct transfer of the excess crystal pigment and water from the Vellum Stencil onto paper created the most beautiful pattern, which instantly reminded me of the leaves/greenery of my chosen flowers. Again, I manipulated the design and printed it out flipped horizontally and vertically to create a mirror repeat. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!!! I could imagine seeing this printed on fabric and embellished with a digital stitch replica of my linear observational drawing of a Rose.


Seeing my Rose drawing made me remember something that Helen had said in one of my PT’s; looking at the linear qualities within my work to see how I could manipulate them to create a range of new surface pattern designs. I thought I could fuse one of my favourite techniques…….COLLAGE…..to create something textural and visually exciting.


Printed out numerous copies of my Rose drawing, ripping into varying different sizes and adhering to paper with Pritt-Stick. I am so happy with the resulting design idea and think it would look fantastic as a BLENDER design within my collection. Could I manipulate it in photoshop to create it as a new colour? This is another avenue to explore when I finalise my colour palette.

As Paul Klee once said ‘DRAWING IS TAKING A LINE FOR A WALK’. The linear kineticism of this design is intense…..I LOVE IT.


I wanted to progress my initial design into something more descriptive of a Secondary pattern, so decided to utilise some of my chosen colours within an existing monotone design. Taking inspiration from KAROLINA YORK PRINT STUDIOS I wanted to fuse the hand-drawn element with bold and on trend colour, specifically only choosing to colour the alternate diagonals. Where could i take this further? I would like to see what colour background would work with the chosen colours and monotone hand-drawn element. Watch this space.


This design was created with the remnants of a previous design idea, but me being me decided to incorporate the knowledge gained from researching COLOUR THEORY @ THE BAUHAUS, specifically looking at Johannes Itten, Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee and Josef Albers. Could an element of my design be utilised in both geometric and organic way? It is reminiscent of a design by GP & J BAKER…..’BARCELONA’ in Indigo.


I adore how each floral interpretation has been framed to create an almost gallery like quality of fabric. Motifs both separate and fuse together all the design ideas.


Arranging my Daffodil observational drawing into a mirror repeat. Yes I know that there is no colour in the flower, but I was actually toying with the idea to utilise the colour as a background. Could I toy around with mixing a range of yellows to create depth? Could I utilise coloured green stencil cutouts to create a motif around the daffodils too?


I chose to create this leaf motif on a separate page to see if I actually liked the design, but as it turns out I do!!!! I need to cut out more of this colour/pattern/design, but am looking forward to exploring how to create a repeat in Photoshop too. I have thoroughly enjoyed this avenue of exploration and now feel far more confident of what to include within my final collection.


I thought that before I tackle my 50ft wall (a.k.a Photoshop) I would try to create some repeat ideas for a Hero and Secondary design using the old school paper, cut, reposition and rejoin technique.


This was the natural progression of this repeat pattern design; firstly using my hand to eye coordination to arrange an aesthetically pleasing repeat of one of my Rose drawings (photocopying the same image over and over and ‘ripping’ the image by hand and juxtaposing it onto the paper) within my sketchbook.


Secondly I used Coloured Sharpie Felt-tip Pens to add colour to my initial observational study of a Rose. I specifically chose only 4-5 colours as incorporating too many for my theme would muddy the concept; a subtle gender neutral purple was used as a bridge between the masculine blues and feminine pink at the centre.


Finally I took my finished observational drawing and incorporated the old school paper cut and reposition repeat method. Photocopying over an dover again and repositioning allowed me to ascertain a deeper knowledge of how a pattern can be successful. There are pros and cons within this specific design….the pros being how descriptive and fluid the design of flower is and the cons being how the flower looks strange just floating in the air. The moral of this story? Motifs are an integral part of the overall design and need to be worked into said design, which in turn will create a cohesive and symbiotic pattern.


My study of leaves were chosen as a motif to include as part of the greater design.


Although I didn’t choose this surface pattern exactly within my next design, I included it’s essence; a background of leaves (described to look out of focus) was created by collage. This collage was created by the use of torn Mulberry Paper….again, choosing only 4-5 colours. Once the background collage was created I juxtaposed my Rose observational studies, both linear and coloured and then added the leaves to create a more fully realised floral design.


I really love the interplay between the Black & White and Colour, but think the collage background may be a little too busy. This is something I will endeavour to make work better on a high end design level.


I am usually pretty good at deconstructing a brief and then being able to reconstruct into my own individual way. However, due to the project taking me into unfamiliar territory, especially with Photoshop and Illustrator, not to mention the fact that I have never come across the hierarchy of pattern collections before, I have struggled with amalgamating my ideas and research into a cohesive whole.

Today, in the ‘Creating a Pattern Collection’ briefing, ran by Sian, I finally began to understand the complexities of creating a coordinating collection. I found it fascinating that there are 3 principle elements of a pattern collection:

HERO: The primary design. The showstopper. The core design. Engaging. Complexity of colour. The Story. Largest in scale.

SECONDARY: The supporting design. Enhances the Hero, but does not detract from it. Strong design. Simplified colour and pattern structure.

BLENDER: The collection glue. Simple style and colour palette. Smaller scale. Incorporates texture and mark-making.


Elisabeth Olwen, Skillshare, (2017), Available at: https://www.skillshare.com/classes/Pattern-Design-II-A-Creative-Look-At-A-Full-Pattern-Collection/1070740680, Accessed: 16 June 2018

380b65a9Elisabeth Olwen, Skillshare, (2017), Available at: https://www.skillshare.com/classes/Pattern-Design-II-A-Creative-Look-At-A-Full-Pattern-Collection/1070740680, Accessed: 16 June 2018


Karen Emelia, Skillshare, 2016, Paisley Gardens. Available at: https://www.skillshare.com/projects/Paisley-Garden/45696 (Accessed: 16 March 2018)

This was a little research I thought prudent to undertake before journeying through my explorative coordinating pattern collection studies. Having recently signed up to Skillshare, and finding such a wonderful treasure trove of tips, hints and professional tutorial from Surface Pattern Designer Elisabeth Olwyn, I would be stupid not to make the most out of this wondrous site.

JOHN DERIANScreen Shot 2018-03-16 at 10.08.04jd-half-1-SS18

Designers Guild & John Derian, S/S 2018, The Rose Swedish Blue. Available at: https://www.designersguild.com/uk/fabric/john-derian/the-rose-swedish-blue-fabric/p25751 (Accessed: 16 March 2018)

I have recently come across the designer John Derian, and can honestly say I am smitten!!!! The discovery came via his collaboration with Designers Guild, which strangely is one of my favourite design companies; a marriage made in heaven.

Looking over this collection, I am reminded of how important observational drawing is when conveying a rich and varied design. I absolutely love the full corollas in bloom (bang on trend with Common Ground/BUSY BLOOM), and adore how they are arranged; bold all-over print, allowing each rose to offset the next. Once far more proficient in Photoshop/Illustrator, I am going to experiment the hell out of my designs!!!!

I think one of the most important aspects I have overseen within this specific area of research has given me invaluable insight into which patterns, colours, textures and shapes look and feel good within the context of Floral/Busy Blooms. My Hero design could be completely observational like this design, but could be supported by a more stylised and linear interpretation of the same subject matter. The collection then can be amalgamated by stripes or mark making patterns. I am so excited to see what I can create/produce/make.


What makes this design so incredibly effective?


I think I would love to explore all these elements within my ongoing creative journey.