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  1. I'm currently taking the Designing Your Way course which is the first module of the Make it in Design courses and we're just getting to the end of week three.

    The first time I took these courses back in 2015 I was a total newbie to surface pattern design, I hadn't really drawn properly for years and I had never used Photoshop before. I learned lots, but there was quite a bit of information I hadn't absorbed as I was starting from scratch. I knew as soon as I finished Module One that I wanted to be a Surface Pattern Designer. I took the next two modules and loved every minute, I was planning to re-take Modules 1-3 again with the new skills I'd learned as I knew I'd get even more out of them second time around I also wanted to take the Ultimate Portfolio Builder course which had so far been out of my budget, so when I won the "Designer in a Year" course bundle in a giveaway at the end of 2017 I pretty much fell out of my chair. I chose to take it as a sign from the universe that I was on the right track (it may sound a bit woo-woo but it works for me).

    I'm loving the course even more second time around, not only am I getting a healthy refresher on some of the points and tips that I'd forgotten or had slipped off my radar, but I'm really enjoying seeing how much my work has improved over the last couple of  years.

    Over the last 3 weeks we've been looking at patterns around us, shapes in patterns, sketching, motifs and colours, it's been so much fun to just go right back to the basics.

    I started rummaging around for circular objects, here are some of the ones I decided to use:

    Lego borrowed from H's room, different sizes, different colours, different textures, I was pleasantly surprised to realise how much inspiration you can find in 5 bits of Lego.

    SHAPES CIRCULAR LEGO PIECES

    I used a large selection of blue buttons to create a cascade type pattern, at first I was just using a mixture of all sizes and colours of buttons but I switched to just using blue to see how it would look and I liked the tonal effect.

    SHAPES BLUE BUTTONS

    Still on the theme of circles I grabbed a few rolls of Washi Tape

    SHAPES - ROLLS OF WASHI TAPE

    I made a quick stripey pattern on a postcard with Washi Tape, a black pen, a glittery button with no middle and a white heart brad (one of those split pin thingys).

    PATTERNS - WASHI TAPE POSTCARD

     and finally some very rough and experimental circle creation using various pens and circular objects.

    SHAPES - SKETCHES

    I have got so many ideas for patterns, designs and collections bouncing around in my head right now that I'm going to be clearing a few weeks of time in my schedule so that I can develop these further before Module Two starts in May.

    signature - saturday rock

  2. Here is the final group of surface patterns I created during Make it in Design Winter School 2018, from the Advanced Track creative briefs.

    This was definitely my favourite track out of all 3, I loved the first creative brief so much that I'm creating a whole collection from it and I got totally carried away with the second brief and different colourways, I have plans for those designs too.

    The first creative brief was titled American Prarie, which, after reading the brief I thought I might struggle with this one but once I got going with it everything just fell into place.

    Dusty Floral Surface Pattern Winter School 2018 Advanced

    I think I may make a pinafore dress out of this Dusty Floral fabric.

    The second brief was called Fauna Cyanotype and was based on the Cyanotype process. I experimented with a few floral motifs but in the end I settled on using the one simple leaf motif layered in various colours.

    Fauna Cyanotype Winter School 2018

    But then I started tweaking colours, I tried using grey for one of the leaves instead of black,

    Fauna Cyanotype Winter School 2018

    Then I went off on a dusky pink tangent, I really like how this turned out.

    Fauna Cyanotype Winter School 2018

    I then switched in a dark charcoal background, I do love dark backgrounds,

    Fauna Cyanotype Winter School 2018

    I could only submit one of these designs to the Winter School Gallery so in the end I chose this one...

    Fauna Cyanotype Winter School 2018

    One of the things I love most though is receiving a parcel containing fabric samples of my latest designs!

    fabric bundle winter school

    I can't wait to get the sewing machine out!

    Love Claire