For this challenge, I thought I’d better put some thought into the market. Who might use fabric with tools? It is a pretty broad topic, I suppose, but it seemed like any fabric which would end up with a very specific set of tools, for just one job, would need to be of a common enough interest (like gardening) to appeal to many people. Or it would need to be uncommon or weird (like astrolabes!), but fall within a popular genre, like steampunk. Or I figured I’d just have to abstract it enough to make it look like something else (I tried to make a floral out of drafting tools and totally failed). After failing, I reassessed. If I were to make a fabric featuring tools, who would enjoy it? 1. Quilters who have other hobbies/interests and want to make a quilt featuring them. 2. Loved ones of quilters who get quilts made up of their hobbies. 3. Children! So I went with children. I don’t doubt I missed some other available markets there, but whatever. I wanted to use small animals, and thought raccoons would be perfect with their little hands. I asked my husband what they should be doing. “Breaking into a safe,” he said. “Naa, try again,” I said. “How about doing the dishes, then?” he said. Bingo! I know it’s kind of random, but it made me pretty happy to think about so I thought maybe it’d make other people pretty happy to use it.
Anyway, to create it, I drew everything out in pencil and pieced it together in photoshop. I then created a couple of new brushes to make the soap bubbles. I also wanted to add some more texture to the background (not too much empty space for the quilters! Also I really like texture), so I created a few simple repeats out of kitchen gloves, bottle brushes, and soap bottles and droplets. I was going to use them all, but it was just too busy, so I only used the bottle brushes. They’re in the background, kind of like a subtle wallpaper.
I went with a neutral, hopefully modern color scheme. I should point out the tools in the design: gloves, dishcloths, towels, soap, and bottle brushes. I hope you like it!
p.s. Here it is in full repeat: