Snippets

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Textile Designer Katy Dee of Shiztastic – Series 3, Snippet 6

Snippets. Chats with Creatives.

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are talking to Katy Dee, the textile designer behind the colourful print based brand: Shiztastic.

All of her designs begin as paintings and collages before she digitally edits them and creates repeat and placement prints that she turns into fabric with us then they are made locally or by her into a range of fashion accessories and most recently homewares!

You can find her products online here or you will find her at a local market, she has previously be seen at Makers and Shakers, Finders Keepers,  and The Slow Fashion Market which is coming up again in Sydney in September!

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_1Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_4Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

Hello, I am Katy Dee. The creative lady behind ‘Shiztastic’, a fun print based label focused on creating cheerful textiles for you and your home. I consider Shiztastic to be part of the slow fashion movement and like to think that when someone purchases from me they have a treasured item that will last them a long time and be loved. Everything is proudly printed and made in Sydney.

I have been making things since I can remember, over my time I have studied glass, jewellery, ceramics, and found sewing about ten years ago. I started off using vintage fabrics and making softies and would sell these in London at the Spitalfields markets. When I moved to Sydney I studied Digital Textile Design at night at Tafe and became obsessed with print and pattern!

Then life took me and my husband to Malaysia for a year where I learnt to screen print and was so inspired by the colourful surroundings, which on our return led me back to textiles and I began working here at Digital Fabrics! Since then my product range has developed and changed and currently focuses on fashion accessories and homewares which I sell online, in stores and at markets around NSW.

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_13Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live? 

I have called the Eastern suburbs of Sydney home for the last ten years and I do love being near the beaches, you can’t beat a swim & a picnic at Bronte on a Sunday afternoon. I also love being so near Centennial Park, I find nature to be a big inspiration to me and every time I go I find a new nook or cranny to explore. My latest discovery was the Wild Play Park area which practically has a Jungle inside!

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Bright, playful and bold. A cheerful riot of colour!

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_14What led you to Textile design and what is your favourite thing about working with fabrics and/or print?

I have always loved fabrics and surface design, it took me a while to figure out that the two were linked though! I studied all sorts of things before screen printing and then Digital Textile design at Tafe before getting a job at here Digital Fabrics which I recently left to focus on shiztastic. I worked here for 3 years and gained so much knowledge and experience within Digital Printing, I still find the process fascinating and the quality amazing.

I love fabrics because their possibilities are quite endless and you can create almost anything! I love coming up with new ideas and thinking about what I can make next, to be able to use my own illustrations and artwork to create prints is so fun and the colours you can achieve with digital printing are so vibrant which obviously I love.

Tell us a bit about what kind of studio, space or practice you run? Do you sell online or license your prints, do you do commissions or lots of freelance and what do you like doing the most?

Currently Shiztastic is mainly product based, I design all the prints and then I make collections of products including fashion accessories such as scrunchies, headscarves and hair ties and I recently launched a homewares collection which has really fun cushions, pot pants and tea towels in it. I would like to start licensing my prints and doing more freelance work and am working towards this so watch this space…

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_10Tell us about your creative space, what are your tips for keeping a creative studio space organised? What would your dream space look like? 

I have always had a craft ‘space’ of sorts, first it was a table in our dining room, then a craft corner and it has slowly evolved into a studio space in our spare room. I wish I could say it was organised, sometimes it is but mainly it is piles of colourful stuff and things! My dream space would actually be a shop one day with a creative studio/showroom out the back.. I imagine lots of wood, plants, baskets and somewhere I can make a lot of mess.

Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process? Do you have a source of inspiration you want to share with us?

I have always been inspired by almost anything, it could be a fruit sticker on a lemon or a walk in the park. Botanicals and abstract versions of them feature heavily in my work and often they are nothing like their reality but that’s ok with me! My process can be a bit random, I might get an idea for an overall feel and look and work backwards or I will be inspired by a road trip or an evoked memory.

In terms of inspiration, as corny as it sounds I think there is beauty everywhere, sometimes you just need to look a bit harder. We can all get a bit bogged down and obsessed with Instagram [which I love and hate!] and sometimes it is good to step away from it all and remember why you love what you do.

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_11Do you have a favourite medium and/or method to work with, if so what is it and why?

Paint, with ink as a close runner up! It is messy, unruly and fun. Most of my designs begin as paintings and drawings which I then either collage by hand or digitally edit before turning them into repeats of various scales. There are just so many options with a painting, and once it is scanned those options just grow. I love still seeing the brushstrokes and marks in a design and feel it gives it a handcrafted look which is important to me.

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Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_3How do you think somebody else would describe your style? 

Loud, bright and quirky. Always wearing colourful earrings!

What would your dream creative project or collaboration look like? Tell us why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work?

I would love to collaborate with Gorman or Mister Zimi because their prints are fabulous, daring and always so colourful and celebratory of life. There is also a UK brand called Lucy and Yak that make the most amazing Dungarees and I would love to do something with them so maybe the universe will help me out. A girl can dream..

Where would you like to see your work featured?

Ooh, well, on all sorts of things… weirdly I would like to see it on a bus, on glassware, and on a recyclable cup but I am very open to ideas and could imagine my designs on a wide range of things in the future. It will be fun and bright and made to make people smile.

Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_5Shiztastic_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_15Read about what Katy is up to: Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Textile Design Studio ‘Skye St Studio’ – Series 3, Snippet 5

Snippets. Chats with Creatives.

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are chatting to Crystal Kruger from Sydney based Textile studio ‘Skye St Studio‘ who offer a range of services such as textile design, colour matching, pattern grading and mood board creation. They have a range of fun, bright and often hand painted prints that you can license or buy exclusively for all sorts of projects and needs as well as offering custom illustrations and design work.

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_3Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

My name is Crystal Kruger and I am the designer behind Skye St. Studio. I am a textile and surface pattern designer and also a design educator. My career began straight out of school, studying fashion and textile design and technology education at the Whitehouse Institute of Design in Sydney. I have spent the last decade both teaching textiles and design subjects to students, as well as starting my own business as a textile designer. For me it has always been textiles or fashion in some form or another that fill my heart and fuel my inspiration. It took me a bit longer to realise the textile design was the right fit.

Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live?

I live in Sydney, Australia which is such an exciting, vibrant and inspiring place to be. Everything is fast paced but there is a wonderful balance between the urban and natural landscapes. I love being able to explore the ocean, the rivers and the mountains which surround Sydney but then also experience the wonderful, eclectic mix of cultures (and foods!) that inhabit this place. Culture, travel and nature are some of my biggest inspirations.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Colourful, painterly and fun! Trend-driven designs with soul.

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_1

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_9Tell us a bit about what kind of studio, space or practice you run? Do you sell online or license your prints, do you do commissions or lots of freelance and what do you like doing the most?

Skye St. Studio is a very flexible design studio. Because it is so small I can be agile and accommodating to the needs of different clients. I sell the copyright to textile and surface pattern designs outright, as well as licensing prints through the catalogue on my website. At Skye St. Studio, I often work with local makers and other small businesses, but also larger companies and I love the variety that comes from working with different creative businesses. I do commission based pattern design and have worked with clients to design a range of other products including logos, tote bags layouts, soft toys and bespoke wall art for giftware. Skye St. Studio offers freelance design services as well and I would love to build that side of my business further. I also have an exclusive collection of designs available through Pattern Observer Studio. These are shown at trade shows such as Premiere Vision and Surtex but are also available for viewing at any time through Pattern Observer.

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_6Do you have a favourite medium and/or method to work with, if so what is it and why?

My favourite way to design Skye St. Studio prints is to paint. I love to put some music on, something like The National and let the creativity flow. Sometimes I will just paint freehand, other times I will sketch first. I love to use gouache paints mostly, but also ink and watercolours. Not all Skye St. Studio prints are painted, but all are hand-illustrated before they are digitised. Colour is quite intuitive for me and so I tend to pick my palette right at the start of a project. I usually work with inspiration images in front of me, such as a Pinterest board I have created, a mood board I put together, or reference images from a client brief. I love the subtle variations of colour and texture that paint allows me to capture in my prints. I really feel this adds life and soul to my prints.

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Which part of the creative process is your favourite and why?

Well, I love all of the creative process! But I must say, there is nothing like getting your hands on a new design brief or a new idea. I love that inspiration and idea development phase, putting together a mood board and sourcing amazing imagery. In that moment I love the sense of purpose, drive and that excited feeling in my stomach. I love the potential of that stage and the intuitiveness of being inspired. I feel that this is a real strength of mine as a designer, I am very good at synthesising the mood of a brief and bringing ideas together.

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_10What would you say is the biggest challenge when running your own business, what is your favourite and least favourite part?

The biggest challenge is the potential for isolation. As a designer we can get some absorbed in our thoughts and be in our heads too much. But also as a small business, it is easy to forget that other designers just like us are struggling with the same business challenges. It is really important to try and build a network of people that you can chat with and share your journey with. Often you are working from home or in a studio on your own and it can be a bit lonely at times. I love having someone else around to just ask, ‘what do you think of this?’ Otherwise it is so easy to overthink things! Finding the right clients can sometimes be a challenge as well, being a small business.

The best part is the creative freedom and the satisfaction I get from fulfilling my creative goals. When you have a win, it is amazing! I love it when a client gives me great feedback and I see them getting excited like I am about a print I am working on. That validation is amazing as a designer. It is wonderful working for myself, because I can choose what and who I want to work with as well. After the restrictions of working in schools for many years, I love the flexibility of being able to work from my studio or a cafe, to set my own schedule and to dress like me!

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What would your dream creative project or collaboration look like? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.

My dream project would be to have my own print-driven, body positive clothing range. My background is in fashion and I have always approached clothing as a form of expression. Prints say so much about the wearer, which I love! Yes, trends come and go, but if you can find pieces for your wardrobe that really sing and show the world who you are, then that is a wonderful thing. I feel it is especially hard to find fashion like this for women size 14 and up. Your options become so limited and I think everyone deserves to be able to buy clothes they love, no matter your size.

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Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_4What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up over this year that you would like to plug!

I have a brand new collab which is launching right now and I am super excited about it. I recently worked with fashion designer Kathryn Shaw of Rattamatatt on her new spring collection called Jungle Fever, which is available for preorders on Etsy from 5th August. She has featured Skye St. Studio hand painted patterns from my Jungle Snakes print collection on her garments and it all looks so amazing! Kathryn has been a dream to work with and I am so proud of what we have created – we hope you all love it too!

All of Rattamatatt’s designs are classic and vintage cuts with a focus on fit and they all feature gorgeous, fun, modern prints with personality. Kathryn is all about slow fashion and ethical clothing production, making everything herself. I love this design philosophy and she has made my prints look absolutely fantastic on her garments! With Rattamatatt’s silhouettes and Skye St. Studio prints, the Jungle Fever collection is fun, bright and whimsical – check it out online! Stay tuned to our social media accounts also, as there may just be a fun little giveaway in the works, where you can score yourself some original Ratamatatt x Skye St. Studio goodness! Jungle Fever Collection available for preorder on 5th August 2019 at Rattamatatt’s Etsy store.

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Where would you like to see your work featured?

One day I would love to see my work adorning some amazing dress in Vogue or for sale in Gorman! I am obsessed with their artist collabs haha.

Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_11Skye_St_Studio_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_12You can find what Crystal is upto here: Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Textile Designer Audrey Gachet – Series 3, Snippet 4

Snippets. Chats with Creatives.

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are chatting to Audrey Gachet a Sydney based textile designer and illustrator who’s love of the beach and nature is reflected in her hand painted watercolour designs. Her work is elegant, classic and contemporary as well as being proudly printed and made in Sydney. She works mainly with fabrics and creates gorgeous textile pieces for the home as well as creating art prints, we love it all and can’t wait to share her inspirations and story below.

You will find her products online here or look out for her at a market, she has previously exhibited at Life Instyle, Makers & Shakers and Finders Keepers.

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_2Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_11

Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

I’m Audrey Gachet, I’m a designer and Illustrator based in Sydney.

Growing up in the south west of France, my creative journey started from a very young age, when I used to hang around my mother’s atelier. Being an artist herself, I was influenced by my mother’s art and you would often find me painting and creating all sorts of things in her studio.

After studying Graphic Design & Illustration in Bordeaux and London, my career as a designer really took off when I moved to Australia and worked with Australian brands, creating lifestyle products. I learnt a great deal from them and it allowed me to understand and appreciate the hard work that goes into creating products and developing them.

I created my label in 2018 and launched my first collection of luxurious homewares and fashion accessories, which I now sell online and in various boutiques across Australia.

Like many designers, sustainability is important to me. I wanted to make sure that I created designs that don’t impact negatively on the environment and I also wanted to choose natural fibres that don’t require much energy to produce and that are renewable.

The other important point to me was working with local businesses to bring my product to life, so all of my designs are hand-made by artisans in Sydney. I work with a local digital printer and maker to ensure the heart and soul of my work is translated in every product.

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_3Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live?

Sydney is now my home. Living close to Sydney’s magnificent beaches and botanical beauties, I feel deeply inspired by the Australian lifestyle – nature informs a big part of my work. Having grown up in the French countryside, I’ve always been drawn to the simple and authentic aesthetic, so there is always a bit of France injected into my work.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Raw, Organic, Delicate

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_9What led you to Textile design and what is your favourite thing about working with fabrics and/or print? 

I have been interested in textile design from a very young age. I learnt to sew and started designing my own clothing, bags and homewares such as cushions for my student apartment.

As a designer now, working with fabric and prints allows me to continue to indulge that love for colour and texture. Being able to create a tactile experience, for example by pairing interesting fabrics together, is something I really enjoy doing. It’s very important to me to generate a sense of visual envy and of wanting to touch and feel the final product.

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_8Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process? Do you have a source of inspiration you want to share with us?

The creative process – giving life to an idea – really excites me more than anything. Taking inspiration from my everyday life, I am quite drawn to colour combinations and texture. Whether it’s from what I see in the streets, from books, in exhibitions, on social media, or along my travels – everywhere you look there is inspiration! As a creative it is important to observe everything around you and be open to all forms of art, not just your own niche.

Do you have a favourite medium and/or method to work with, if so what is it and why?

I enjoy working with watercolour to build up delicate shades and layers of fine details and to manipulate white space and light which amplifies the surrounding colours.

I also really love the freedom that working with watercolour gives you – it is a technique that is not easily mastered but you learn to play with it and truly appreciate the unpredictability it brings. It allows me to have a free gesture which sometimes leads to aesthetic ‘imperfections’, but these possess their own unique beauty.

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_12Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_7When designing a new collection or set of work what is your process and how long might you spend on this?

Gathering inspiration from a multitude of sources – be it colours, textures or shapes – always kick-starts the process. The next step is to organise my materials and plan what I would like to focus on and what I want to communicate through a collection. Then comes my favourite part of the process – I start painting. The process continues on through printing and production, with a full project taking from six months to a year, from initial inspiration to final product.

What would you say is the biggest challenge when running your own business, what is your favourite and least favourite part?

Having a business is a challenge on its own; you are constantly multitasking and working on all the facets of the business – sales, marketing, web designing, production coordination etc. Although, staying focused on what you are good at is the biggest challenge. You have to make sure you make time for what you love doing, which for me, is the creation process.

What advice would you give an aspiring textile designer in today’s challenging and competitive environment? Are there any resources you would recommend or websites that you couldn’t live without? 

Persistence and consistency in your work is important. That’s why being passionate about what you do keeps you going. Make the things you wish someone else would make for you – I keep repeating this to myself and stepping back from my design, thinking would I love having this? If it’s a yes then I will go ahead. Sometimes you get stuck with creating your own designs. But being surrounded by other creative helps as well and make sure you keep meeting new people and network.

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_1What would your dream creative project or collaboration look like? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.

I would love to collaborate with Anthropologie. I have been a big admirer of their colourful and textural designs and it is quite an institution for homewares and fashion lovers and designer.

What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up over this year that you would like to plug!

I am currently in collaboration with the Australian clothing brand The Ark. It’s an exciting project which should come to life this summer 2019!

Audrey_Gachet_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_10Read about what Audrey is upto: Website, Facebook, Instagram.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Illustrator & Pattern Designer Amber Davenport – Series 3, Snippet 3

Snippets. Chats with Creatives.

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are chatting to Amber Davenport, a British illustrator and surface pattern designer with a flair for hand painting bright and colourful artworks inspired by travel, botanicals and her surroundings.

She aims to make people happy with her artwork and accessories and we have to agree that she does! Her style is unique and she captures scenes in such a wonderful way with brushstrokes, patterns and colours used and details captured.

She has worked with Urban Outfitters, Birchbox, Target and OhhDeer and been featured in some great publications including Mollie Makes, Brownpaperbag and Artistic Moods. Her work is aesthetically pleasing and works in a variety of spaces and we had fun asking her the snippets questions:

Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_5
Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

I’m Amber, I’m an Illustrator and Surface Pattern Designer from England. I sell my Illustrations as prints via my website and through companies such as Urban Outfitters, Target and Paperchase. I also create surface patterns for a range of different products including Cushions, Tote Bags and Wall Hangings. My business started in my bedroom in 2016 whilst I was studying Textiles at University in Manchester. Fast forward 3 years and my hobby and passion project has turned into a full time dream as a shop owner and Freelance Illustrator! Since graduating University last year I work from my studio at home where I’m kept company by my three cats and endless potted plants.

Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_10Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_12Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live?

I live in a Warrington in the North West of England, it’s great because it sits between two great cities; Manchester and Liverpool.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Botanical, Naïve and Colourful.

Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_7Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_4Tell us about your creative space, what are your tips for keeping a creative studio space organised? What would your dream space look like?

My studio is currently packed into the spare room of my home. It has very good natural light and is filled with plants as continuous inspiration. It’s great because I always have my cats to keep me company although sometimes I do get a bit of cabin fever, its so important to leave the house at least once a day! I’d love a bigger studio as I’m currently surrounded by boxes of stock with limited space to spread out. My dream studio would be a large white room, a blank canvas, filled with lots of desk space. Id love a designated area for packing stock and another area where I could paint and be messy!

Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_2What does a typical creative day look like for you? Do you follow a routine or are you project led? 

Typically, in the morning I focus on replying to emails, updating my website, sorting content for social media and heading to the post office with lots of prints! These areas are the parts of my business I enjoy the least so I try to get these things done first so I can enjoy the rest of my day. After lunch I sit down at my desk and paint, whether it be for personal projects or client led projects. I love this part of my job and I get totally lost in it, sometimes I don’t leave my desk until the early hours of the morning.

Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process? Do you have a source of inspiration you want to share with us?

I love to travel, I recently got home from a four-month trip to Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Hong Kong and Thailand. So at the moment I’m definitely ready to burst with ideas! Obviously I cant afford to travel all the time, so when I’m not travelling I like to visit Botanical Gardens and watch lots of David Attenborough documentary’s, on repeat!

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Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_11Do you have a favourite medium and/or method to work with, if so what is it and why?

Acrylic and Gouache paints. I also like to collage with painted bits of paper, screenprint and sometimes like to papercut too! I’m a very hands on designer, I’ve never really been interested in digital design as the process isn’t as fun for me.

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What would you say is the biggest challenge when running your own business, what is your favourite and least favourite part?

Time management! Its difficult juggling marketing, accounts, post office trips and replying to emails when all you really want to do is create. These things don’t come naturally to me so I have a habit of pushing them aside. My favourite part is completing personal projects. I consider myself so lucky that I get to create the art that I want the majority of the time. Some days I get to paint whatever I feel like in that moment, I find that sometimes these pieces become my best sellers and that’s just the best feeling ever. My least favourite part is the uncertainty of running your own business, my monthly income varies and this is quite daunting. I suppose organization and self motivation is key to feeling like you’re keeping on top of everything.

Where would you like to see your work featured?

Id love my surface pattern to be featured in Anthropology, it would just be a dream. Aside from that I would love to grow my brand enough so that I could start selling wholesale to high street stores. I’m currently working on expanding my product range to include more of my Surface Pattern Designs so if I could pull that off id be so happy.

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Amber_Davenport_Digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_8You can read more about what Amber is upto Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Textile Designer Molly Fitzpatrick– Series 3, Snippet 2

Snippets. Chats with Creatives

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are chatting to Molly Fitzpatrick, a USA based textile designer who has designed for a wide variety of clients and products including major airlines, home furnishings, and baby accessories. She also works as a textile design consultant assisting with manufacturing and production needs as well as being the Founder and Creative Director of DittoHouse – modern, bold textiles for the happy modern house.

Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_12

Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_9Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

My name is Molly and I own DittoHouse, a textile and surface design company based in Cleveland, Ohio, USA. My company got its start when we welcomed an adorable baby boy into our family four (almost five!) years ago. I quickly learned that comfy cozy blankets are an essential part of every happy house; blankets for the baby to play on, for our visitors to snuggle under, to throw an impromptu picnic in the back yard! Not only is it essential that our blankets be so cozy, but they must look at home in our happy modern house.

Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live?

My hometown is Cleveland, Ohio. I live with my husband and kids in our bungalow that we’ve redesigned together. We made the inside open and bright, with clean and modern lines. Will (my husband) has done all the work himself! My favourite part is my office/studio space, which is on the second floor. He created a walkway with a balcony to make it into a loft. It’s got lots of fun design details to facilitate creativity (built-in bulletin boards, lots of storage space, and a fun hiding spot for our kids to play in, too).

Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_3Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_2What 3 words best describe your creative style.
Rhythm, bold, colourful

Tell us a bit about what kind of studio, space or practice you run? Do you sell online or license your prints, do you do commissions or lots of freelance and what do you like doing the most?

I have three facets to my business: I work as a textile design consultant where I give creative direction to manufacturers on their textile products, I license my textile designs to companies, like CB2, and I have a product line of home textiles called DittoHouse.

Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_8Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_7Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process? Do you have a source of inspiration you want to share with us?

I love looking at my favorite textile designers and optical artists of the ’50s and ’60s for inspiration. Anni Albers and Gunta Stolz are two of my favorite textile designers. I love the optical art of Julian Stanczak and Richard Anuszkiewicz.

When designing a new collection or set of work what is your process and how long might you spend on this?

I like to work late at night when my kids are asleep – distraction free! When I’m working on a new collection, I usually focus on a specific idea that I want to put energy and love into, and something I feel is important to share with my audience. My most recent collection is inspired by one of my heroes, Malala Yousafzai, and her calling to empower girls through education. I hope to illustrate hope, power and light through my current designs.

Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_13 Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_1What has been your proudest creative business achievement to date?

Generally speaking, I’m so proud that I am able to do the work I love to do, and am able to support my family with that work. Specifically, I still get really excited every time I see my designs in publications!

What advice would you give an aspiring textile designer in today’s challenging and competitive environment? Are there any resources you would recommend or websites that you couldn’t live without?

Do things you love! Give yourself challenges to keep yourself creating, and making new designs as often as possible (daily or even more). Make the things you wish someone else would make – fill the space and the need for things that only you can create, with your own special vision!

What would your dream creative project or collaboration look like? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.

I would looooooooove to create designs for Ikea! I really respect that Ikea has a intentional sustainability component to their company mission, and they are a retailer that I use and enjoy in my own home.

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Molly_fitzpatrick_digitalfabrics_textiledesign_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_15You can follow what Molly is upto: Dittohouse Website, Molly Fitzpatrick Studio Website, Dittohouse Instagram, Molly Fitzpatrick Studio Instagram.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Textile Designer Beck Ng – Series 3, Snippet 1

Snippets. Chats with Creatives.

Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes print designers tick.

This series we are focusing on textile designers as our creatives to get into the nitty gritty of the thing we love the most, textiles and surface design! We have asked a different set of questions relative to this and as always we hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories.

Today we are chatting to Beck Ng from Fabric Drawer, a Melbourne based surface designer and maker who has a passion for pattern! She creates prints often inspired by nature and the things she has seen and done throughout her life, these are available for license or purchase. She also makes things from her printed fabrics and sells them at markets and online here

We love her style, whimsical and folk like florals that look great on our favourite thing, fabric! Her work has been featured in lots of awesome places including the Print and Pattern website, the latest Flow Calendar and she is currently a finalist in the Frankie Good Stuff Awards so you can vote for her here!

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_4Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

I’m a designer, maker, mum and pattern lover from Melbourne. My creative journey started in graphic design, but took a side step into patterns when I started a textiles course. I created the label Fabric Drawer (in 2012) to showcase my love of patterns, for licensing and also for use on my own range of products. I started out designing patterns and didn’t begin making my own products until a few years later.

Having my own business allows me to create my own style of work and turn it into a product that people can purchase and take home (or gift!). So far, I make each and every product myself and have been committed to sourcing materials locally where possible. I also enjoy the process of licensing my work, which means I work with clients to have my designs on their products. I really enjoy being involved in all facets off my creative business; it’s a never ending learning process!

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_11Where do you call home and what is your favourite thing about where you live?

I live in Melbourne, close to the city and I enjoy the convenience of being able to walk, bike or tram to most places.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Inspired by nature

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_9Tell us a bit about what kind of studio, space or practice you run? Do you sell online or license your prints, do you do commissions or lots of freelance and what do you like doing the most?

My creative business does a little bit of everything. I license my designs, make products from my work and sell at markets around Melbourne.

I started out in art licensing through an art agent in America. They represented me for almost 3 years and I was fortunate to have my work sold/licensed on products such as greeting cards, party ware, gift bags and wall art. I have learned a lot about the art licensing industry and am finding it an area I’d like to get more and more into. It’s still a big learning curve for me and it’s certainly challenging finding my own licensing opportunities without an agent.

Outside of the licensing, I have made my own collection of products from my patterns. I’ve been doing this for about three years now, starting out very small by sewing a few products and selling them at markets. Initially I didn’t sell very much, but as I kept going, I started to sell a bit more at each market and have now been able to be part of some of the larger design markets in Melbourne. I sew everything myself, which is a very time consuming process, but has been the best way to make small quantities and keep things local for now.

I find licensing and making products both a rewarding process and I think that having my own range of products has helped the licensing side of the business.

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_10Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_5Tell us about your creative space, what are your tips for keeping a creative studio space organised? What would your dream space look like?

To be honest I don’t have much of a creative space. I have seen pictures of other creative studios, and I love the idea of a light filled space, with your computer on bare desk and pieces of your work and work that inspires you decorated around the wall and studio. In reality, I work in my bedroom, lounge room, dining room (I have a laptop) and small nook in a room (for sewing). It’s not very glamorous, but I guess I wanted to share that so people realise you don’t need the perfect set-up to get started and be creative. Sometimes constraints are needed so you can focus on creating. That said, I wouldn’t mind the type of studio space I described above!

When designing a new surface design collection or set of work what is your process and how long might you spend on this?

I keep it pretty simple and start out my patterns by drawing on regular plain white paper with a pen or pencil. It’s good to have a bit of a story or theme in mind, but I don’t always start that way. When I feel like I have sketched up enough motifs, I photograph them and bring them into my computer to start tracing them in Illustrator. I love using Illustrator because of the flexibility it allows to scale and change colours. From there I start working on the hero print, then build out the secondary and simple coordinates. I try to have a minimum of 5 patterns per collection. I have been known to put together a collection within a couple of weeks when I’m under a bit of a deadline, but it could take a month or months if I take my time.

Which part of the creative process is your favourite and why?

I really enjoy the process of piecing a surface pattern together. It’s feels a bit like a jigsaw puzzle; fitting each motif into the right space and then working on the right colour palette.

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_3What would you say is the biggest challenge when running your own creative business, what is your favourite and least favourite part?

Time! There is never enough time. I don’t work on my business full-time and never have. I have a part-time job as a graphic designer, sometimes I freelance too and have two young girls to look after. Usually I would have to work on my creative stuff when the kids are in bed, or if I have any small snippets of time throughout the day. I would love to focus on my creative business more, but the reality is I still need some bread and butter income.

My favourite thing about having my own business is that I can create whatever I like. As a graphic designer, you’re bound by what the client wants, so having my own work gives me the freedom to express myself creatively.

My least favourite part is social media. I feel like it’s a bit of a time suck, and am spending more time on it then I’d like. I do try to post regularly to share my work (because opportunities can come out of social media) and build my brand, but I kinda wish I didn’t have to.

What advice would you give an aspiring textile designer in today’s challenging and competitive environment? Are there any resources you would recommend or websites that you couldn’t live without?

I feel like being a creative is a bit of a labour of love, so you need to be passionate about what you do, because it’s not a huge money maker for most. Persistence and consistency is important. Keep creating consistently and by the end of the year you’ll have a good body of work. With licensing and collaborations, it can be a disheartening process, because it’s not that easy to sell or license your work, especially when you are starting out. Often you’ll contact companies and they don’t even respond! But keep persisting and asking around, while continuing to build up a stronger folio of work and through this hard work, things can start to happen.

Facebook groups can be immensely helpful connecting with other surface designers. I’m in a few surface pattern / licensing groups and it’s great way to get some advice. I’m part of a meet-up group of other designers who are specifically interested in licensing their art. Skillshare is a great resource for doing some short courses at a reasonable price. I did the Make It In Design Module 3 course, and I felt that was helpful to get me started. There are quite a few online courses, but they can be costly. I’d probably recommend starting with free or low cost options first and see where that takes you, before investing in an expensive course.

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_1

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_2What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up over this year that you would like to plug!

I loved being involved in some of the bigger design markets, such as Markit, Finders Keepers and Makers and Shakers market last year. It’s great to be amongst other creatives and interact with customers directly, even though I’m quite an introverted person. It’s a lot of work though, preparing for markets when you make everything yourself, so I haven’t planned any markets for this year so far.

I also really enjoyed working with Apiary Made on their range of beeswax wrap designs. It’s been great to work with a local business whose values sustainability and ethically made products. I have collaborated with another couple of brands, but I will share the details when the product comes out as I’m not sure when this will be happening. Licensing can be a bit of a tough road, but I’m hoping I get to work with more clients in the future.

Where would you like to see your work featured?

I would love to have my own range of fabric one day. I love the idea of seeing what people would make with my own fabric.

Fabric_drawer_digitalfabrics_textile_design_surfacedesign_fabricprinting_8 You can find out what Beck from Fabric Drawer is upto: Website, Facebook, Instagram

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, You Are Brave – Series 2, Snippet 7

Snippets’. Chats with Creatives. We are back with series two! Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes designers tick. This second series is all about asking some fun and different questions and learning about the inspirations and ideas behind the artist and their work. We hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories. We gave the artists and designers featured a varied and different set from series one list of questions to choose from so we will learn something new from everyone involved, should be fun!

Today we are chatting to Michelle from You are Brave, a textile brand that creates hand printed apparel, tableware and interior decor pieces inspired by nature in all it’s glorious forms. Her work has earthy tones and emulates a relaxed Australian vibe. She worked as a commercial textile graphic designer for years before stepping out on her own, inspired by the words of her Aunt Mabel ”You are Brave” her products are hand printed and made locally, an important part of the brands ethos.

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Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

YOU ARE BRAVE textiles is known for it’s hand screen printed fabrics (although I’ve also produced digital prints in the past). I think my style of print design is simple, relaxed + has a coastal and tropical Australian feel.

My prints tend to focus on single aspects of natural forms. I’m trying to isolate “the one thing” or essence of natural things that can seem complex + mind blowing at the outset. This is how I gather my inspiration + it becomes like a meditation for me.

Uplifting everyday practicalities is also central to the ethos at YOU ARE BRAVE as are the benefits of natural + sustainable fibres … the offering is of printed meterage, hand made interior décor and most recently, women’s apparel which is all locally produced.

My leap of faith into YOU ARE BRAVE textiles came in 2014 when I left a long career in commercial textile design. It was a brave move at the time. But I knew I had to do something more meaningful with my creative energy + my time on earth.

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You are brave image 5Where do you call home?

Sydney’s Inner West is now firmly my home although I grew up in & still have close family ties in Cape Town, South Africa.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Relaxed. Natural. Australian

What would your dream creative project look like? Who or what is your dream project, client or job? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.
I love travelling. And there’s something about the tropics that not only appeals to me but more than that, tropical places make me feel alive. So I would love to work with a boutique resort on updating or designing their textile furnishings.

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What would you say is the biggest challenge when working for yourself ?

As a person with many ideas + interests,  I would say staying focused + motivated has been my biggest challenge. I think being creatively self employed requires not only a commitment to yourself but a large amount of self belief. These are things that constantly ebb + flow for me so it’s something I’m always working on.

What/who inspired you to take the leap in to your creative venture, how did you get started?

My Great Aunt Mabel has always been inspirational to me but as most people who ask about the origin of my label’s name know, she was also the reason why YOU ARE BRAVE has it’s name. The story behind it is posted on my website but in a nutshell, my Aunty Mabel believed in me when I didn’t, she showed me that with a little self confidence, I could do anything.

Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process?

Two things here … I respond to being immersed in nature. Line, colour, pattern, shapes + smells in nature are powerful stimuli both visually + spiritually.

But I’ve recently learned that I respond creatively when I take on a big challenge, see it through + do a good job of it. It energises me + it seems to provide more motivation to explore future endeavours.

You are brave image 9What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up this year that you would like to plug!

I worked in fashion for a long time but after 14 years in the industry, I felt I needed to work with my hands again + produce things that were meaningful as well as beautiful, so I returned to my roots in interior decor when I started YOU ARE BRAVE in 2014. Recently I’ve produced some prints that were just calling out to be made into apparel, so I guess I’ve come full circle. I now offer printed meterage for all those talented makers out there as well as decor + a small range of apparel.

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You are brave image 1You can follow what Michelle from You are Brave is upto Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives, Carmen Hui Illustration – Series 2, Snippet 6

Snippets’. Chats with Creatives. We are back with series two! Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes designers tick. This second series is all about asking some fun and different questions and learning about the inspirations and ideas behind the artist and their work. We hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories. We gave the artists and designers featured a varied and different set from series one list of questions to choose from so we will learn something new from everyone involved, should be fun!

Today on snippets we are talking to Carmen Hui from Carmen Hui Illustrations, her drawings are detailed with a playful and fun Australiana theme and often feature botanicals and animals. Each drawing is a labour of love using layers of coloured pencil strokes and her style is unique and very distinguishable. Her designs can be seen across a variety of mediums including paper, jewellery, textiles and ceramics to name just a few and she also teaches workshops so she has lots of advice and knowledge to share with us!

Honey-Im-Home-03Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

Hello, my name is Carmen and I am an illustrator focusing on animal and botanical pencil drawings. I started Carmen Hui Art & Illustration about 4 years ago after wanting a sea change from my job as a designer. I didn’t have a set plan when I started my business, I just participated in a few group art shows, a couple of local markets and then opened an online Etsy shop. It was a slow process but each little step gave me the confidence to keep going. Nowadays, my days are split between running my online shop, doing commissioned works, teaching drawing classes and attending design markets.

Profile Picture_Carmen_HuiWhere do you call home?

I live in sunny Marrickville with my partner Mat and my cat Miso.

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Delicate, emotive and Australiana

What does a typical creative day look like for you? How do you stay on plan and organised?

Everyday is different and consists of juggling many hats. I start the week by prioritising what’s important and allocating time in the week to complete each task. I usually start the day by doing the less fun stuff such as admin, accounts and packaging orders. Then I will do more involved work such as planning and commissioned work.

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What would your dream creative project look like? Who or what is your dream project, client or job? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.

I am in love with surface design at the moment and would love to see my designs on clothing and accessories. This is something that I have started dabbling in, but would love to collaborate with an experienced clothing brand and adapt my drawings into a small range of clothing.

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What would you say is the biggest challenge when working for yourself ?

Being kind to oneself. Being your own boss can have many advantages and disadvantages. You are constantly thinking about your business and what more you could be doing, It is important to give yourself a break every once in a while and be happy with what you’ve achieved. I burnt out really quickly after the first couple of years working for myself, so this year I’m trying to slow down a little. It’s not easy, but I think I’m getting there.

What’s the best thing about being in the creative industry in Australia today? And on the other hand, what do you find most frustrating?

I think right now is the best time to be in the creative industry in Australia. People have a deeper appreciation of craft and great designs and are very supportive in helping small businesses to grow and develop. The growth of social media is also extremely helpful as it helps us reach people far and wide, something that is near impossible in the past unless you have a large marketing budget.

Brucey-the-Cocatoo-02What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up this year that you would like to plug!

The project I’m most proud of this year is my Everyday Bag designs. This was a passion project of mine and am so happy that it came to fruition. I’m hoping to slowly build on this and release more designs in the new year. In terms of collaborations, I have an illustrated plant pot design with Plernters, a range of Christmas cards and accessories that are about to be launched with La La Land, as well as some soon to be available wallpaper designs with Milton & King which I’m super excited about.

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Budgie-Pin-Pal-03You can follow what Carmen is upto: Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets: Chats With Creatives – Series 2, Snippet 3

Snippets’. Chats with Creatives. We are back with series two! Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes designers tick. This second series is all about asking some fun and different questions and learning about the inspirations and ideas behind the artist and their work. We hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories. We gave the artists and designers featured a varied and different set from series one list of questions to choose from so we will learn something new from everyone involved, should be fun!

Today on Snippets we are talking to Stephanie and Amy, Sydney based couple behind Outer Island. A design label that prides themselves on creating products inspired by nature such as ornaments and textiles, all made from natural or recyclable materials in Australia with a colourful and fun vibe as well as being educational and respectful to the environment.

Outer_Island_snippets_series2_image9Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

Outer Island is the collaboration of Sydney based couple Stephanie Chambers (artist) and Amy Ranck (graphic designer). We love traveling, collecting and being in nature. I’m from New York and Amy is from Australia so we joke that we’re both from islands, which is where the name Outer Island comes from, but really what connects us is our love for collecting and making things. Two years ago we moved to Sydney from Brooklyn and had our first Aussie Christmas together. Inspired by our endless birding and bushwalking, we wanted to bring the magic of Australian nature to our own Christmas tree. We moved here with our beloved ornament collection, but found it hard to find unique, colourful, well designed Aussie ornaments, so we started there. After making ornaments we expanded to fabric items. Everything produced by Outer Island is made in Australia using only natural or recyclable materials. Sustainability is a big part of our mission statement and we work with ethically minded vendors and manufacturers. We work out of our sunny studio in Darlinghurst and our business is a year and a half old.

Outer_Island_snippets_series2_image1Where do you call home?

Sydney, NSW

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Magical, Colourful, Purposeful

Which part of the creative process is your favourite and why?

The beginning is always the most fun. When we’re working on a new design, we work together to decide what we want it to look like, then I do the drafting and Amy does the art directing. Running a business, we try to divide and conquer to make the best use of our time, so this beginning part is always the most fun because we get to work together.

Outer_Island_snippets_series2_image6Outer_Island_snippets_series2_image2.jpgWhat does a typical creative day look like for you? How do you stay on plan and organised?

Each day varies, but after about 10 months in business, we sat down to create a schedule that we felt would keep our business on track. We scheduled weekly meetings and also started calling Mondays ‘Marketing Mondays’ to force us to step away from painting and designing and to focus on getting our product out into the world. We use google drive to organise our documents and really started treating our business like a business around 10 months as well. Think: BINDERS. We also use spreadsheets to track our productivity and a free online project management tool called Kanban-chi. I use an old school paper and pen planner to stay on track and each month we have different larger projects that we try to get done so we can make sure to stay out of the weeds. I love to paint and Amy loves to design so it’s important for us to have easy tools and systems to work with to keep our productivity on track and to also move the vision for Outer Island forward. We try to think ahead and put systems in place now that will make it easier for us to scale.

If you could spend a day in another artist’s studio shoes who would that artist be?

[Stephanie] I’d actually love to see how it worked in large workshops during the 1600’s in Northern Europe. I’m obsessed with Dutch still life paintings and would very much like to be a fly on the wall to understand how it all came together. I’m a big Northern Renaissance nerd. I love how their paintings represented nature better than nature could have through their compositions and richness which then really emphasised for the viewer how beautiful nature truly was.

Tell us about your creative space, what are your tips for keeping a creative studio space organised?

Buy a label maker! Every now and again we have a big strategy meeting and in our last one we realised our studio was a mess. So we went out and got proper storage things and a label-maker and went to town. It’s been so much easier for us to work efficiently since we did that. We also regularly clean the studio because it makes us feel crazy if it’s a mess, especially if it’s during a busy time.

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If you could go back and tell yourself one hot tip or piece of advice when you started out what would it be?

Don’t rush.

What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up this year that you would like to plug!

We’re expanding our line of ornaments with lots of new ones and will also be expanding our Christmas crackers this year. We really want to be able to give people items to enjoy that will bring the magic of Australian nature into their homes and create special memories. Nature needs all the help it can get and we believe if people have reminders in their homes then they’ll feel more connected to nature and if they feel more connected to it then they can begin to protect it.

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Outer_Island_snippets_series2_image7You can follow what Outer Island are upto: Website, Instagram, Facebook.

Snippets series 2 – Snippet 5 Kalaii Creations.

 Snippets’. Chats with Creatives. We are back with series two! Here at Digital Fabrics we love everything print, pattern and colour and we love to know what makes designers tick. This second series is all about asking some fun and different questions and learning about the inspirations and ideas behind the artist and their work. We hope to inspire others by sharing snippets of these creative stories. We gave the artists and designers featured a varied and different set from series one list of questions to choose from so we will learn something new from everyone involved, should be fun!

Today on snippets we are talking to Stacey from Kalaii Creations who is an artist and designer who loves working with watercolour, creating textile art, and helping creative brands with their surface pattern and design needs as well as teaching workshops! She has a flair for colour and a style that is elegant, playful and enchanting.

Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_5Tell us a bit about yourself, your brand/label name what your creative practice is, how and when you began:

My name is Stacey and I established Kalaii Creations in 2016 when I was on maternity leave with my second baby. I needed a little bit of me time, and participated in a creative workshop and from there I was hooked! My creative streak was reignited. I was always very interested in drawing in my school years, and did art through high school, but lost track of it all during my later years. I am so glad to have found it again! I started by making an Instagram page, and sharing some of my artwork, and soon had orders coming in for custom pieces and I just decided to explore it all, and it has opened up a lot of doors for me. Now I host creative workshops with Workshop Brisbane, The Craft Parlour on the Gold Coast, in shopping centres, and I am soon to help teach a textile design workshop, with you here at Digital Fabrics which I am very excited about! Currently I focus on watercolour art, graphic design, textile design and creative workshops ranging from knitting, watercolour art and textiles. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for the future.

Stacey_Biggs_Kalaii_CreationsWhere do you call home?

I have been based in South Brisbane, Queensland, for most of my life (I moved from NSW when I was just a baby).

What 3 words best describe your creative style.

Feminine, Boho inspired, Vibrant

Which part of the creative process is your favourite and why?

I love the initial stages of creating, when a client comes to you with their vision, and their inspiration, and you get a rush of exciting ideas and ways in which you can help them. I love being able to see what I will paint in my mind, and then how I can manipulate that in Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator and then still always be pleasantly surprised at the finished result.

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Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_10What does a typical creative day look like for you? How do you stay on plan and organised?

A typical day for me is a little bit of a hot mess actually! I have two kiddies under 5, and I also work at a Brisbane based university for 3 days a week and thus arrange my creative design work at varying stages around this. Mostly I work at night, once the kiddies are asleep and I host my creative workshops on the weekends. I stay on top of my workload by completing little bits every day, and stay organized by using a Passion Planner. I write down all my clients needs and deadlines, and I also write down all the personal designs, and tasks I want to achieve within my business, which keeps me focused!

What would your dream creative project look like? Who or what is your dream project, client or job? Tell us about why you would love to collaborate with them and what you find inspiring about their work.

I would love to further explore the possibilities of having my designs feature more on active wear and swimwear out in the market place. I would love to be custom creating designs for people left right and centre! I find it so exhilarating when you see your artwork making a product pop! I am so thankful to have been given the opportunity to work with Sarah from @saltysparrowbikini on her new line release coming later in the year. I would also love to work with @midoribikinis. I love their designs and aesthetics and feel my designs would fit well with this brand.

Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_3 Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_4Which other artists/ designers/ makers, artists or creative people are you enjoying at the moment?

I am currently in love with @jessswan_art I love the colours she uses, the shapes, tones everything! It is mesmerizing watching her work!

Tell us about your creative space, what are your tips for keeping a creative studio space organised?

It is my dream to soon create a creative space. Currently I work from my dining table (I know there are many of you out there just like me) and I also have a very small old fashioned house which does not leave a lot of room for arts and crafts and product storage. I use a combination of storage draws and desk space to stay on top of my organisation at home. I am hoping soon to extend our house for multiple reasons, and I may just sneak in a little studio while I am at it!

What has been your proudest creative business achievement to date?

My proudest creative business achievement to date and a dream come true is an upcoming swimwear design project I have been able to assist with. Sarah from Salty Sparrow Bikini (@saltysparrowbikini), has chosen my designs to feature on her first swimwear line which I am over the moon about! I am also super excited to be working with Jemma from Newymummyblogger on the designs for an upcoming project she will be releasing soon. But I will keep that hush hush for now :) Another major achievement for me is being able to work so closerly with Digital Fabrics to help teach textile design classes. I keep pinching myself about this amazing opportunity!

Tell us about how you get your creative juices flowing, what is your process?

I love speaking with new clients about their design ideas and inspirations, as often their ideas require me to push my artistic and creative boundaries each time. They make me think outside the box and think of ideas/combinations that I would not have ventured into, if it was not for their influence! This is my favourite part! Then I usually research their inspiration and competitors to get a vibe for the type of project I am working on and then I get to creating. I usually see the end product first, and then work towards creating the elements to bring this to reality.

Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_6What projects or collaborations from last year stuck out, good or bad and what is coming up this year that you would like to plug!

I have loved working with Workshop Brisbane, The Craft Parlour, Sarah and Jemma, and also Lauren from @cocokini_ (another bikini designer who has also featured my designs)

Kalaii_Creations_snippets_1_image_1I am super excited to further develop my relationship with Digital Fabrics and help by teaching textile design class for beginners, and I look forward to printing some more fabrics for some special pieces I have in mind. Watch this space! My next venture is the release of a cute little day clutch, great for the beach, where I have collaborated with Kate from  @blue_eyed_girl_creations who has helped to sew the clutches for me. I can’t wait to see what people think of them.

Stacey_Biggs_Kalaii_CreationsYou can follow what Stacey is upto: Website, Instagram, Facebook

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