Our first design challenge- to adventure to a new environment- came in the middle of a massive snowstorm and my escapist, winter-addled brain jumped at the opportunity to take off to someplace far, far away. Someplace warm and beachy where I could be swimming through a coral reef! I have always wanted to try scuba diving- it looks so magical and beautiful. The coral reef beckoned as a whole new world of colours and forms to explore…
So I bundled up the family and we headed over to our local museum to check out the miniature coral reef. I did some sketches and took some pictures and I wasn’t the only one inspired by the reef that day!
What struck me as I watched the corals is how they move with the water currents, and how they twinkle in the water as they open and close, fronds flowing this way and that. I wanted to capture and convey this in my design. Also how corals are kind of like florals and yet nothing like florals at the same time. They’re botanical in an other-worldly way, and I love that!
I was reminded of Matisse’s paper cut-out works - so very coralesque and lively.
- I was also very taken with this pattern in the latest Liberty floral collection – it’s got that sparkle that is speaking to me in a big way right now.
I would say the most difficult part of this fun and fabulous challenge was choosing just one design to submit. I like to work in series- to explore many different aspects of a theme. I made lots of sketches in a range of styles, from representational to abstract.
I’m psyched because now I have the beginnings of a collection!
Here are the other two patterns I’ve been working on:
It was hard to decide which to submit. I polled quite a few friends and family members, who were super helpful. It was close, but in the end I chose Blooming Coral for its versatility and simplicity. And twinklability!
Once I had decided, I worked on a few colorways- playing with moods, and colour combinations (one of my all time fave activities!) Here are the two runners up for this pattern:
I was really drawn to the blues and greens of the sea and night sky. Here’s a mock up of a patchwork quilt made from my pattern and the three coordinating solids. I love the soothing, calm effect of this oceanic palette.