This is the coloring book that feels the most personal to me. My father was an automotive designer and manager and my mother was a craftsperson with many talents. An artistic family. Our house was a normal suburban tract house on the outside, but on the inside we had classic contemporary and midcentury modern furniture. It is an aesthetic that is comfortable and familiar to me and reminds me of family and growing up. I loved working on this book and I hope you love coloring in it!
This is the adorable bowl I use for my pins while I am working on projects. I got it at Anthropologie and I got one for me, one for my daughter. When she decided she was done with hers it found a permanent home in my studio. It is the perfect size for the pins I scatter upon the tabletop as I am sewing. I love the bright pop of colors and happy feeling it gives me.
But then Pincushion-Palooza (#ModaPinniePalooza) came along and I could not resist making a new pincushion to share the space with my striking bowl. I have noticed when working with my Poppy Mae fabrics that the inside of the poppy flower sometimes reminds me of a watermelon with seeds when it is cropped. I thought it would be super fun to do some fussy cutting and make a chunky watermelon slice for a pincushion. Being the novice quilter that I am, I experimented with making a template and sewing this curved wonder up. I'm not sure if it was the bias sewing and the stretching of the fabric or just my own lack of precision...but I ended up with a little bit of an off-kilter watermelon! Really...how many times is nature perfect and a watermelon is completely symmetrical? At least that is the story I am sticking with. I am fondly calling this first prototype my "Frankenstein Watermelon" because when you flip it over you can see where the imperfections happen and my experimental seam/mistake fix happens. This is the honest, and sometimes not pretty, process of learning and experimentation and I proudly will use my mistakes and redo till I get it right! Hopefully I will have a free watermelon pattern up on my site by the time my fabric ships in November.
I've filled this watermelon with ground up walnut shells that I purchased at a pet supply store. I have enough shell mix to make quite a few watermelons...so I'm sure I'll get it right eventually! In the meantime...happy summer and don't swallow the seeds! (A watermelon plant will grow in your tummy!)
Feeling rosy and happy red. This is the view of fabrics stacked up on the top of the bookcase in my office. Chalk board. Poppies. Fabrics. Mason jar. Next to these are many pieces of cut fabric for a variety of projects. Life. So very rosy and warm and busy.
This week's theme on spoonflower #SFWeeklyDesigns is CATS and DONUTS. Hmmmm. So the thing that kept popping in my head was decorating the sweet little delights to look like charming kitty faces. Chocolate chips for eyes? Licorice for whiskers? Coconut for fur? I can see it! But what I could really see was a frisky dog friend with a sweet tooth getting really excited by those donuts. I may or may not have been influenced by the dog we were dog-sitting this past weekend (it was a loud weekend around here!). I was definitely influenced by my dog Charlie who likes to eat anything he can get down from a counter.
This design exists as two repeats. The larger cat donuts alone and the smaller donuts with Otis the bad dog. Both are on spoonflower.
Click here for Cat Donuts or Bad Dog Otis!
These are some alternate color palettes for my Hawaiian Pineapple Tiki design. I know if I were wearing a Hawaiian shirt, I'd probably go for more of the teal colors mixed with warmer greens (than the original color palette that was specified by spoonflower.) Now for coordinates... Visit my spoonflower shop for more designs!
Today my experiment is with pinterest and a format that is good for pinning. With social media having different requirements in different places, I think it's a good idea to try out some tests. So excuse any duplication...I'm learning!
Another new thing I'm experimenting with is the spoonflower weekly design prompts. I loved the weekly contests they used to have. There was a wonderful sense of community, camaraderie and support with the comments people would leave on your designs for that week. It was great to see the variety of solutions people came up with for a theme. Often as I would go through the weekly voting, I'd be delighted by the unexpected perspectives and the gorgeous solutions the other designers had entered. It was a fun activity and a chance to experiment and push yourself to do new work or try new styles. I am sad that spoonflower is no longer doing the weekly challenges. They have larger, monthly ones with other sponsors, and although that is a good challenge as well, I miss the structure and the feeling that you didn't have to be too precious with the weekly one. Spoonflower has now started doing weekly design prompts that encourage people to share on social media. There is no "gathering place" to see all the entries on the spoonflower website at this point, but I am hopeful there will be at some point to replace the community that happened with the weekly contests. But I am also hoping the silver lining to this change is that I stretch myself in my social media and experiment and explore other avenues of sharing outside of spoonflower's site.
Back to the design prompt. This week's theme was to create a pattern that could be used on a hawaiian shirt using a limited color palette that spoonflower provided. I think I will experiment with some other color palettes (with a more muted green) but I am happy with the pineapples and tropical feel. I mocked up this shirt using the Negroni shirt pattern on sproutpatterns.com. If you'd like to see more, see my shop page on spoonflower. #SFWeeklyDesign #pineapple #hawaiianshirt
This week's design prompt (hawaiian shirt) uses a limited color palette set by Spoonflower. This is not the pink or green I would have chosen...but that is why I like the design challenges...they stretch me to work on things I would not have done on my own. Feeling inspired to get the tiki bar going and fire up the grill, wearing your favorite hawaiian shirt? I've mocked it up onto the SproutPatterns.com Negroni shirt pattern. I'll have a Mai Tai please! #SFWeeklyDesign #HawaiianShirt
Feels so good to be entering a spoonflower challenge again! I have missed it! Things have just been too busy. But this is my fun play-time and the theme for the BucketFeet challenge is Oceans. Mmmmm, I'm dreaming of deep blue water and lovely, fancy shells...
Interestingly, around the same time as I was going through the Fabric8 process on spoonflower, I also started working with Fox Chapel Publishing (Design Originals) on coloring books for grownups, starting with a coloring book for Christmas. It was really exciting to be able to translate my art into linear form for such a current trend!
While at Quilt Market I walked by a booth for...wait! That's MY publisher!...and I got to meet people I work with over the wonderful world of internet, in person! Now I have a face for Peg AND I got to see my first coloring book in print! Yay!
Did I mention I had a good time at Quilt Market? And a giant thank you to my friend, Phyllis Dobbs, who so kindly made room for me in her Houston hotel room and who shares her knowledge of EQ7, quilting terminology and good laughter!
It has been awhile and I must admit, I am shocked when I see we are at the end of April already! My head is still in 2015 and I guess I will fill you in on what all has been happening, but I’m warning you, this will take a couple of posts…
I was thrilled, elated, joyous and so very very grateful to win the Fabric8 competition on spoonflower. I can’t say thank you enough to everyone who voted. I am especially honored because the other designers had fabulously beautiful collections and I know they are all deserving.
I flew to Houston in October to meet with people from Moda after winning Fabric8 and they could not have been nicer! First off, the whole experience of Quilt Market was new for me and talk about eye candy! I saw so many gorgeous, I mean GORGEOUS quilts and fabrics! The quilts on display were stunning and I can only marvel at the hours and hours of work that went into them.
I had a lovely meeting with the Moda’s Cheryl Freydberg and Jamie Chupik. We went over some of the other coordinates and options for my line and I left with a head full of new knowledge. I also met some other designers at Moda, like Sherri McConnell and Chelsi Stratton of A Quilting Life, Luke Haynes, Brigitte Heitland of Zen Chic, and Deb Strain. I am looking forward to the next quilt market when I have a section in the designer booths as well. Lots to think about and prepare for. After taking in as much as I could in a short visit, I returned home to work on coordinates, resizing, revisions…
And this all leaves me thinking about how I see Poppy Mae (my poppy-inspired collection) coming to life in quilts and other sewn goods. And knowing I needed to do more quilting research…which leads to my attending Quiltcon!
This is my homegrown modern life- crafting a colorful, inspiring and healthy life, and sharing my love for art with my love of healthy cooking and making a creative home. I'm fortunate to do work as an artist and share that with others.
© Robin Pickens Inc. All rights reserved. No images may be reproduced without permission.