Spoonflower's hosted a couple of fabric design contests lately that were right up my alley. First up, designs inspired by a love of books.
Assuming there'd be a ton of bookshelf designs, book stacks, etc., I looked back over my history with books, a history that begins with a story my mom tells about tiny little me, in my crib, quietly looking at picture books. Now, I worked through most of my twenties (and the beginning of my thirties) in bookstores (and the past several years designing book covers), but as a kid, I was a pretty constant library patron.
When I got old enough to walk the eight or so blocks after school, we used to spend a couple of hours a day at the public library until our dad could pick us up. Hours we spent spinning the globe, looking up swear words in the dictionary, and, of course, reading. And during that time, I encountered thousands of these library checkout slips. And probably thousands more at the school library, too.
Click here for the full design, featuring four different YA library slips created in Illustrator and Photoshop, without the aid of scans. In fact, created without the aid of my drawing tablet, too, since I couldn't find the pen. Each of the kids' signatures were done using different Photoshop brushes and my mouse. And I think I used either three or four open typewriter-style fonts.
I placed 22nd out of 143, which is cool with me.
Next up was the "Sewing Celebration" contest. Again, I mined my happiest childhood memories. My kindergarten teacher had a shelf full of fun kits that kids could take home to make a little project or do a little activity. Among the dozens I must have taken home, I remember best a little felt bean bag I stitched together with red yarn.
The kit included chartreuse green felt, red yarn, pins, needles, and beans. And my stitches were so huge that the beans would sometimes slip out from between them. I've become a better sewist over the years (luckily, 'cause I was losing a whole lot of beans), and my five-year-old self could never have imagined something as fabulous as Spoonflower, but she would have loved it. And so would my kindergarten teacher.
Click here for the full design. I think you can even still vote, if you're interested, for a couple more hours. Contest results tba!
(p.s. you can make these photos bigger by clicking on them . . . but you probably knew that!)