Colour Clash

Pinks and reds have been my favourite pairings as of recent. I have been getting a lot of wear out of this red vinyl skirt I found in Zara a few weeks ago along with a dusty pink long-sleeve (my essential for the cold season). Of course I can't go anywhere without my teddy coat and a pair of chelsea boots to keep warm.  I love keeping bright colours in my wardrobe even when it gets to winter; and this combination is the perfect way to subtly colour while still looking season appropriate and a little festive. 

Jacket // Debenhams  Top // Zara  Skirt// Zara   Boots // Clarks


Rococo Inspiration

Rococo architecture and colour palettes has been a huge influence to me lately. I love the soft shapes and pastel shades with a hint of sparkle. Maybe it's the festive spirit in me starting to emerge, but this sense of opulence, sparkle and femininity has been something I've been trying to emulate into my work and lifestyle more and more lately. Sadly, I can't afford any diamonds as of yet, but using luxurious velvets, rich jewel tones and touches of gold can uphold a similar effect in your wardrobe and home. 


Finding Your Perfect Colour Palette

Colour is a fundamental part of design and particularly in textile design, colour can really make or break a collection. Finding sophisticated colour palettes is something I'm continuously working on but I thought I would share a few of my tips with you to finding your perfect colour palette. 

What Mood Are you Portraying?

Colour palettes can be as open or as restrictive as you like but ultimately their purpose is to portray a certain mood within a piece.  Would you like to convey a clean freshness, something a little more warm and homely or more of a dark and mysterious atmosphere? How do different colours play into this mood, do some fit in more than others? A sharp pastel may be more suited to a fresh mood than a dark burgundy would. Play with different variations of tone and opacity within each colour and experiment with how they can be paired together. 

Finding Inspiration

I find inspiration for my work in so many places; books, magazines, artwork, a random piece of clothing in a charity shop; and inspiration for my colour palettes are no different. Try looking for resources related to your brief or project as a starting point and then expand on this by taking your own photos of project sources or conducting some first hand drawing. Sophisticated colour palettes can be hard to come by so always look for new inspiration and keep a note, even if it's not related to a current project. I like to keep a colour diary where I record new colour combinations that I find so that I always have a point of call if I'm struggling for inspiration at any moment. 

Honing In

So you now have a large array of inspirational research, photos and drawings but honing in can be equally as difficult as finding inspiration in the first place. Whenever I find a new colour I like to make a new colour swatch in my sketchbook so when I get to the development stage of the design process I can lay all of the swatches out and mix and match until I create the perfect combination for the project. As I mentioned previously, a colour palette can be as small or as large as you would like as long as the colours used within creating a certain mood cohere together across the collection.  

Applying Into Action 

Colour is something that is always at the forefront of my mind although I try not to let it control my drawing too much. As most of my prints are created digitally, I am have the advantage that Photoshop can always help altering a colour or tone slightly. It also opens a lot of doors in terms of experimenting with different effects such as the saturation, hue, and opacity of a motif. If you are screen printing onto fabric it's a little harder to play with different effects without it being too costly, so securing a firm colour palette may be more crucial. But ultimately, just have fun playing with colours, colour is fun!


The New Look

If you clicked on my blog today you may notice something a little different; we have a new logo! This is the first part of a few different changes that will be taking place on the blog over the next few months as I rebrand from Rachel's Fashion Patch into the new "Rachel Sanders." 

I have been working on the rebrand in collaboration with my friend and designer Frances Lucas; a fab graphic designer living in Bournemouth with a chic portfolio full of editorial and hand drawn work. Being a creative myself, I'm used to starting a project not quite knowing how the end result will turn out, which is great when tackling your own projects but not so great when you're working with someone else and wanting to experiment with different ideas,  so I definitely have to thank Frances for her patience and persistency on creating the right logo with me. 

I wanted to create a brand that was sophisticated but still approachable and had a hint of something new and different, likewise to my textiles work. I think these characteristics come through in the logo by using a timeless-looking font with a hint of originality of a backwards 'S' making up the 'R.' 

The process shots illustrate the journey of the logo design from start to finish; from our Pinterest inspiration and mood-boarding to developing through different ideas until arriving at the final product. There is still a little way to go in terms of fine-tuning business cards and label details, but I couldn't hold my excitement in for any longer, and I can't wait to hear all of your thoughts!


Creating Marks

I've always loved mark making and understood the importance of using marks when creating printed patterns, but recently this has also been one of my biggest challenges. I am starting to redefine marks and what they mean. It's easy enough to add a spotty overlay to a motif but where are those spots really coming from in the first place, have you really been looking closely? 

Lately I've been focusing a lot on surface texture for my marks, especially on surfaces that at first glance don't look like they have much texture at all. Petals for example, at a first look the surface is quite smooth, maybe with a few veins but not much else. But look even closer and micro-sized bumps start to emerge, maybe some scratches on the surface or faintly frayed edges... You get my point, when you look closely, really closely, things start to appear that you never noticed before; and this is what I want to exploit.  

I've included some examples above of paintings where I have put surface texture at the core. Pansies are a great flower to use as a starting point because they have so much colour and pattern to them, plus they are one of my favourite species to draw. I'm starting  to realise how much texture adds to the character of a drawing which is something I may not have considered before; but I am really inspired to see how far I can push this idea.