Tuesday, September 21, 2010

… designing fabric

Gosh. . .  you know it's been a while since you've posted when blogger asks you to sign in again. . .  oops. It has been quite the busy little place around here, with getting ready for Market (in 5 weeks), & also getting ready for a little 'escape' trip to St. Louis & Minneapolis this weekend & next week. (I'm so excited! I promise to take you with me!)

As I've been working on new designs & on new projects with my new fabric line, 'Georgia Lou' - I have been thinking that it would be nice to let you see how this fabric line came about!. . .

'Georgia Lou' is my third line that I have been blessed to create with Lecien. I say blessed because that is truly how I feel about working with them. I have always loved the quality of Lecien's fabrics (& those wonderful Japanese textile mills!) & they are really wonderful to work with. . . I just love them!

Because the design department is located in Japan - I always work a bit more to be sure that I have communicated my ideas. They also have a wonderful lady (& dear friend!), Nireko, that also makes sure that my ideas are communicated (& that the translation of them into Japanese is as clear as possible!).

Often with my fabric lines - the inspiration comes from a vintage textile from my (ever growing) collection. I take my textile piece to an architectural printing company here in town - where they have an extra large scanner & can make a color scan for me of the entire piece (up to 36") - so that I can be sure to include the design's repeat & to really capture the design & it's inspiration. I think that I'm the only one that brings them vintage fabrics. . . but now they look forward to seeing what I bring in next! (I must be the one who gives them a little 'change-up' to their normal routine!) With the fabric scan (digital) - I am then able to 'play' with it in Photoshop - sometimes pulling elements out of the design for coordinating designs. 

Next, I will also put together secondary coordinating fabric ideas (checks, stripes, tonals. . .) that I would like to have to compliment the main & coordinating prints.

I also include photos of inspiration pieces. . . for the look & feeling I'd like the fabric line to also have.

One of the things I love with working with Lecien - is the fact that I can communicate the colors I am thinking of with their own floss colors - that incredible Cosmo embroidery floss that you have probably been hearing about. (. . . at least I hope you have!) As you can see from the photo of the flosses above & in the floral in my blog header (the main floral from 'Georgia Lou') - the colors in the fabric are reflected in the floss colors. This way I know that I can clearly communicate the colors & know that they are attainable in cotton. I actually specify what colors (with Cosmo embroidery floss numbers) I want for each colorway & design. Thankfully, it has worked beautifully!

Here's the color ideas (using the flosses) that I sent with the presentation for 'Georgia Lou'. We didn't use all the colors . . . but it gives a great starting point & provides a wonderful palette to work from. There's also one incredible perk (that I never thought of at first. . . ) with specifying the colors with the flosses.  I end up with a set of  embroidery flosses that perfectly coordinated with my fabric line! 
How great is that?!!!

Next post, I'll take you on the journey of the amazing process that I have with Lecien's incredible designers & artists. . .!



suz said...

Thank you for sharing this Brenda. Your fabric is so beautiful and I can't wait for your new line to come out. Lecien does produce amazing fabric and their floss is so wonderful to use!

suz said...

Thank you for sharing this Brenda. Your fabric is so beautiful and I can't wait for your new line to come out. Lecien does produce amazing fabric and their floss is so wonderful to use!

Anonymous said...

Thank you SO MUCH for sharing Bren! I love hearing how other designers work, become inspired, and communicate their ideas. Can't wait to see it - and you - at Market! :)

Samantha said...

Can't wait to see it! I also love to get a peek into the creative process of other designers. Love that palette!

luvtoquilt said...

Be still my heart -- your fabrics are SO beautiful. Thanks for sharing your creative process -- I just love the colors!

pdudgeon said...

yep, me too! i'm looking forward to seeing the fabrics. thanks for all that you do to bring us quilters such lovliness.

Sewn With Grace said...

I really appreciate the time you took to explain the process to us. I had no idea how any of it worked. You are blessed with such a wonderful eye for design, pattern and color and I'm so glad you are able to share that with all of us. Have a wonderful time traveling!

francisco said...

hola soy sandra de chile es hermoso tu trabajo y tu pais tambien donde yo vivo solo hay cerros secos y tristes es la zona del desierto de mi pais, eso me deprime por eso me distraigo con el patchwork y tus diseños son hermosos al igual que donde tienes tu casa es inspirador y esa foto de otoño me encanta. Saludos Sandra