Announcing The West Collection! A simple ode my most beloved part of the country both in shades and subject matter. I've designed this collection primarily with clothing and accessories in mind (more to come on that later) - with a second thought given to quilts and fiber art. This time around, I also opted for a simplistic two-color palette for each pattern - which caters towards my preference for prints I would consider wearing. As of today, the West Collection is now available for purchase on fabric as well as wallpaper and gift wrap through my Spoonflower shop!
As with just about everything I create, the inspiration for each and every pattern comes my travels. In the case of the West Collection, two trips in particular influenced the colors and designs - our summer road trip around the mountain west and our move across county.
The first spark for an idea usually begins with a picture, either a quick snap on my phone to save for a later or perhaps a purposefully composed photo I'll post on Instagram or take with our Instax camera. The next step, after I've compiled enough inspiration and thoughts to come together into a cohesive sort of collection of designs, is to start sketching. This part of the process is very repetitive. I'll sketch the same subject over and over on multiple pages until I work towards something I like. Oh and I should mention, at this point - I've only been sketching in pen. I prefer the permanence and the inability to change whats already been done.
From there, we go digital. All the sketches get scanned, as well as some of the Instax photos, and everything goes in a huge Adobe Illustrator file where I pull and tweak colors from my favorite photos and turn the sketches into infinitely resizable vectors. Then comes ordering test prints from Spoonflower - by far the longest part of the process given the usual 14+ day wait to get the design printed and shipped. Granted, it's all custom - so I can't complain that much. (All that being said, if you have the extra cash - Spoonflower offers a VIP program to get your designs printed and shipped sooner. I'd rather plan in the extra time and save the money.) For this collection, I went through three rounds of testing on Kona Cotton alone before I was happy with the sizing and colors for each pattern.
Something else different about this pattern collection is the number of color ways. I went all out with the number of designs, color ways, AND added a black and gray series based upon some very good feedback on one of my Instagram stories I posted during the development process. All the designs have at minimum two color ways and most all have either a black or gray version.
So what's next?
Well, I've come to think of this pattern collection in terms of acts. Specifically, three acts.
Instead of just launching these designs on Spoonflower (that's act one, if you're keeping track), I'm putting these designs to work in two other ways and that leads us into the second act. Starting today and moving forward one week at a time, I'll be launching these a new design based on this collection on a variety of products through my Society 6 Shop! As of today, both the California Poppy and Pacific Northwest Evergreen designs are available and here are a few of my favorite.