24 Jun 2011

Gift Items, in 'Teatime at Three' range

As well as gift-wrap, tags and greeting cards, I also developed the 'Teatime at Three' range even further by developing and creating a range of kitchenware items. 

Below, I have included some photos of the different items, and have given brief explanations about each product. 

The three photos above show my napkins that I designed; in total, I created eight different designs, which would then be sold in sets of 4. Each set followed a different theme, one 'drinking tea' and one 'traditional british tea-party and food' with 4 individually stitched and embellished vintage linen napkins.

After the napkins, I then created these tea-towels, on plain white cotton towels from Cargo; I produced two twin-sets - teacups and cake slices - each following the same design concept. On one tea-towel, I simply stitched an image straight onto the towel, whereas on the other I used plain white cotton, stitched onto patterned, co-ordinated fabric, to create a band across the tea-towel with the stitched image on. 

I was really happy with the results of the towels and napkins, and had a lot of positive feedback about them at my private view; unfortunately, I had only produced one set of each for hand-in, so couldn't sell any even though people wanted them. But, at the moment, I am looking into costing of bulk tea-towels and napkins, so watch this space for products to buy!!!!!

Also, in the gift-range, I produced this one-off apron, which I love :)

I am really happy with the final product; my mum actually made the 'pinny', and I then stitched the imagery and text onto the front and created the packaging label. I feel that the shape, and style of the apron has a very vintage feel, and therefore ties in well with the rest of the range. 

Degree Results!

Well, the day finally arrived on Wednesday when I had to go to find out the results of my degree. I don't think I have ever been so nervous, and so shocked with the result; on going into the room, I was determined I was getting a 2:1, and managed to wait about 25 minutes before actually opening my results envelope. 

But, as the photos show below, I got a First Class Degree with Honours in Visual Communication (Illustration)!!!!

I am so happy, and feel like all the hard work has paid off, and am now preparing to move into the 'big wide world' of work!!!

UNFORTUNATELY, I did also have some very bad news on Wednesday as my portfolio had been taken from the exhibition room, and still has not been found. At the moment, I am still not sure whether it was stolen or taken by mistake, so am awaiting news from tutors and fellow students. But if anyone is reading this, and knows anything about the whereabouts of it, or has seen examples of my work somewhere else, please please let me know!!!!

22 Jun 2011

Gift Wrap Designs

Just thought I'd include a quick post showing my gift-wrap designs and gift-tag designs, which were included in gift-tag packs (3 gift-tags in different designs for each theme- cake, cups, and saucers), and the wrap packs (2 sheets of wrap, and 2 gift-tags). 

Was really happy with these designs, even though it took a lot of time to get the designs printed to the standard that I wanted, I feel the designs work very effectively with the gift-tags I have produced. Unfortunately, the designs could only be printed at A4 size, as it was much too high a cost to the get them printed any bigger, and had to get a minimum of 1000 prints to get them at a smaller cost. 

 These are just a few of the designs for my gift-tags - I produced 9 different tags in the end, 3 of each for each theme. They were then included in different wrap and tag packs, as seen below.

Finished Degree!!!


I have been into Uni today to collect my results for the course, and I am now the proud owner of a:

First Class with Honours Degree in Visual Communication (Illustration)

Am so happy, and finally feel like all the hard work has paid off. Now going to start looking for work in the design industry, specialising in greeting card design; I am also looking at local vintage and craft fairs at which I can sell my designs, and different greeting and gift products.

BUT, unfortunately, my portfolio has gone missing from the exhibition room so at the moment I am anxiously waiting for a phone call/email to let me know someone has accidentally taken it, or it has been found. I am hoping it hasn't been stolen, but I'm coming to terms with the fact I may not get it back, and thinking about the positives in that I still have all my sketchbooks, and original work for my latest project. I also have photos of everything, so therefore can easily put together another portfolio, and can even reproduce some of the work that was in the folder.

I am hoping to soon get all posts finished on my final project, as still have the gift projects and gift-wrap/tag products to write about and show you photos of.

15 Jun 2011

Final Exhibition

Just got back from the private view of my exhibition at Uni - went much better than I expected as was really nervous about people's reaction to my work. All of my business cards have been taken in the past two days so shows a positive reaction to my work!

Also, managed to sell all of the necklaces I made, and several greeting cards and postcards. 

The exhibition is still open up until 4 o'clock on Saturday, so pop along to see a variety of brilliant illustrators, graphic designers and photographers!

14 Jun 2011

Final Design Decisions

After producing the imagery for the front of my greeting cards, I then produced this stitched doily, to act as the logo for myself and my illustrations/products. 

At first I tried stitching my name into the doily on the sewing machine, however the fabric is quite thin and therefore the sewing machine pulled it out of shape, and it was hard to read my name. Therefore, I unpicked the stitching and instead hand-stitched the lettering of my name; I feel it is really effective in both providing a logo for myself, and helping to represent the vintage theme I hope to produce within my greetings. 

From this piece, I then decided to further the hand-stitched logo element, by creating a "Teatime at Three" stitched doily, which again is used on the back of my greetings.  

 I have included some images of my finished greetings, which have been enhanced with stitched text captions reflecting the nature of the images; in order to add more interest and highlight areas of the illustration, I have also added a maximum of 5 beads to different areas of the images. I feel by adding these small details, and creating a layout for the back of the greeting card, it has not only made them look more professional but has also made them more interesting and unique. 

Final Images for Greeting Cards

After carrying out several different tests using different fabrics, textures and processes I created the above illustrations, on dissolvable material; by layering up different pieces of fabric, lace, and stitching into the dissolvable material I managed to create successful images relating to the tea-party theme. 

After making the images, dissolving the material in water, and leaving the illustrations to dry, I have then laid them on top of different doilies, and pieces of linen/lace to photograph and form the basis for the front of my greeting cards. 

I am very happy with these illustrations, and feel that they are completely different to anything else seen on the greetings market at the moment; even though it is something new, I feel it will be successful as a product as vintage is becoming ever so much more popular in society, and my greetings help to reflect this trend. 

13 Jun 2011

Final Major Project Development

After working on illustrations using just machine stitch and dissolvable material, I then started to experiment with collage of pieces of patterned, vintage fabric on top of the dissolvable material in order to create better images. 

I also started to experiment with different imagery, still inspired by traditional Britain and tea-parties, but not the stereo-typical tea-pot and teacups; instead I thought about traditional British foods such as strawberries and cream, and scones and jam. 

I feel that these images are more successful and interesting, as it is easier to see what they actually are meant to be; also, by adding more fabric to the images to add structure, it also enables the images to become more playful and creative. 

As well as food items, and tea-party objects, I also looked at designing greeting cards with patterned doilies and saucers on, to add more interest to the range and stop all of the cards becoming too alike. Below, I have included two very basic photographs of testing the stitch and collage of different images to help represent the saucers/doilies; I feel that with more development, the images could definitely be successful as part of the greetings range. 

Final Major Project

All previous posts on this blog have shown work I produced in the year before completing my Final Major Project at Uni; I feel all of the pieces of work, no matter how different they have been have helped me to develop my style and passion for working with fabric, and stitch in my illustrations.

For my final project, I decided to create a range of greeting cards, with co-ordinated giftwrap and tags as well as some gift products that could be sold alongside the greetings, in an outlet such as Paperchase or small vintage boutiques in towns in the local area. I have found a growing interest in vintage items, and absolutely love lace and linen doilies so had to incorporate these into my work somehow...

...this gave me the theme for my project - the British tradition of drinking tea, and holding tea parties where the doilies would have been most commonly used. I started to produce imagery and test stitch on different materials, and using different techniques...

Moving on from these illustration tests, I started to test using dissolvable material to create my tea-party inspired imagery; it was much harder to control when producing my illustrations, as I had to learn how much stitch and fabric needed to used to ensure the image remained together, and possible to see what it is intended to show. 

Below, I have included some of my image tests using dissolvable material; I was not very happy with these images, however felt that they helped me to move on with my work, and develop stronger and more interesting illustrations. 

'Vintage Inspirations' Greeting Cards

After all other testing and development featured below this post, this post shows images of my final greeting cards for my self-intitiated brief looking at 'Vintage Inspirations'. 

In total, I produced 8 greeting cards in the range, which all featured a floral image, whether it be an actual flower, a patterned necklace or a perfume bottle; I produced the cards by painting the imagery on canvas (which had some areas of texture). After painting the illustrations, I then stitched into areas of the images and added beads for detail; the canvases were then photographed and printed onto the greeting cards. Using a stencil, I then added the vintage style patterns around the illustrations, and added the lace and greeting labels. 

I was very happy with this range, however felt that I had preferred the tactile nature of the fabrics and stitched elements of the illustrations; therefore, this pushed me into using more stitch in my final major project.