<![CDATA[MERRY MAKEWELL DESIGNS - Blog]]>Wed, 10 Feb 2021 23:32:03 +0000Weebly<![CDATA[Quick and Easy Fabric Bows]]>Wed, 10 Feb 2021 16:28:57 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/quick-and-easy-fabric-bowsTowards the end of last year I designed a series of Cut and Sew fat quarters on Spoonflower for creating fabric bows.  The fat quarters consist of five pairs of patterns that can be cut out and sewn together to create cute bows that can then be attached to hair clips or brooch backs, or used as accessories on clothing and bags.  Instructions for putting the bows together are included on the fat quarter panel.   
The beauty of the panels is that you only need one fat quarter to create 5 different bows as opposed to having to use 5 different fat quarters in each of the designs.

This would be an ideal project for a young sewist or a beginner, but would be a quick and easy make for the more experienced sewist.  And if you don't sew, the bows can still be made using fabric glue instead.
Watch this short video to see how easy it is to put the bows together then head over to my Spoonflower shop to get the fat quarter panels.
<![CDATA[Lockdown Lowdown]]>Thu, 21 Jan 2021 11:43:17 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/lockdown-lowdown
So here we are, back in lockdown.  I honestly didn't think that we'd be here at this point.   As I work from home and don't really go out much, for the most part living in lockdown hasn't really affected my day-to-day life and I actually really enjoyed it last year.

One thing that does seem to be a symptom of having everyone around all the time though is that my creative mojo seems to have up and left me!  I just don't have the drive to design or make or create anything.  The same happened last year.  I'm pretty sure that part of it is a time issue; homeschooling the kids does take a chunk out of my day, but thankfully they're smart kids and don't need too much intervention so it's not completely immersive.  Maybe part of it is my introverted nature - I do like to spend time on my own and with everyone around I don't get the chance to just sit with myself and recharge as much as I normally would.  

So I'm getting through the days, but I don't feel like I'm making much progress.  In the past when I've felt lost and directionless making a good plan and daily schedule has really helped to get me back on track.  You can't exactly schedule creativity, but it seems like a good place to start.  
<![CDATA[Tea Towel Calendars]]>Fri, 04 Dec 2020 00:00:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/tea-towel-calendarsTea towel calendars are now available to buy in my Spoonflower shop.  Choose from 4 designs - including a couple of variations on the theme of Birth Month Flowers featuring some gorgeous watercolour illustrations of the various flowers.  

For the Birth Month calendar designs I created a more traditional, ordered layout, and a more organic, contemporary layout. 
The designs were made to fit a fat quarter of Linen Cotton Canvas, but also fit onto a fat quarter of Lightweight Cotton Twill in case you prefer a lighter-weight material for your tea towels.  And if you don't want to sew them up yourself, you can also buy the ready-made tea towels.  
<![CDATA[Impossible Jigsaw Puzzles]]>Tue, 10 Nov 2020 00:00:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/impossible-jigsaw-puzzlesRedbubble now do jigsaw puzzles!  They've been live for a couple of months and I'm slowly but surely enabling jigsaws for as many of my designs as possible.  As many of them are repeating surface patterns, they make really difficult puzzles!  You can see a few below with many more available in my shop.  So if you enjoy a challenge head over to the shop and take a look.  The jigsaws are available with 30, 110, 252, 500 and 1000 pieces (252 piece puzzles shown). 
<![CDATA[Geo Wheels Surface Pattern]]>Sat, 08 Aug 2020 12:29:29 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/geo-wheels-surface-pattern
As I mentioned in an earlier post I opened a shop with Woven Monkey and so I am slowly uploading my existing designs to the platform.  It's an interesting process because it has made me revisit some designs that I'd sort of forgotten about.  Geo Wheels is one of the first surface pattern designs that I created, originally with white, aqua/mint and red backgrounds.  I couldn't resist playing around with more colours and loved the results with lilac, mustard and teal backgrounds so these are now available at Woven Monkey and also in my Redbubble shop.
<![CDATA[Face Masks on Redbubble]]>Thu, 23 Jul 2020 13:21:12 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/face-masks-on-redbubbleFace masks are now live on Redbubble.  There are three size options: kids, small and standard.  Here are just a few of the available designs.  Head over to my store and take a look at all the options.
<![CDATA[Merry Makewell Designs x Woven Monkey]]>Thu, 09 Jul 2020 17:12:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/merry-makewell-designs-x-woven-monkeyI've opened a store with Woven Monkey!  They are a UK-based supplier of print-on-demand fabric.  You can upload your own designs or buy from independent designers like me.  They have 20 different fabric options - from a range of different cottons to velvet and scuba stretch (lycra).

I didn't realise how many designs I actually had in my portfolio so it will take a while to upload them all, but head over to the store to see what's available.
<![CDATA[Orange Blossom Pop]]>Sun, 05 Apr 2020 23:00:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/orange-blossom-pop
One of the Spoonflower Design Challenges last year was "Pop Art Citrus".  I created a repeat pattern that I called "Orange Blossom Pop" featuring groups of oranges with orange blossoms and leaves on a polka dot background.  The original background was a shade of royal blue.  I didn't really love it so I went back and made some adjustments and, as always, tried a few different colourways.  One of those was the green background shown above.  I really liked the bold motif so I took away the other elements to create a piece of wall art.  Get the art print in my Redbubble shop and see the design on lots of other products here.
<![CDATA[Spoonflower Challenge - Papercut Napkins]]>Sun, 29 Mar 2020 23:00:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/spoonflower-challenge-papercut-napkinsThe challenge over at Spoonflower this week is to create a design featuring a composition of paper cut-outs to be displayed on table napkins. 

Instead of creating a brand new design I decided to tweak the teacup design that I created for the Chintz challenge back in November last year where I digitally cut chintzy patterned swatches with a teacup punch.  To adapt it for the current brief I removed the foliage from the background and reverted to a solid pattern on the teacups instead of the white heart cut-outs seen in the original design.  I also decided to go with a light blue background because I liked how it looked on the napkins.
Head over to Spoonflower to vote! Voting closes on 7th April at 3pm EST.
<![CDATA[Spoonflower Challenge - Faux Textured Wallpaper]]>Mon, 16 Mar 2020 00:00:00 GMThttp://merrymakewell.design/blog/spoonflower-challenge-faux-textured-wallpaperThe latest Spoonflower Design Challenge is Faux Textured Wallpaper.  The brief was to "create a repeating design that you can’t help but touch".  I had lots of ideas for this, but not necessarily the time or the skill to make them happen.  In hindsight I should have saved my Mirror Ball design that I used for the Roller Rink Nostalgia challenge for this challenge.  But I didn't, so I had to come up with something else.  

I really like my collection of designs inspired by Spanish Tiles.  Originally in teal and white, I have tried one or two coloured variations of the Entwined design.  A while ago, while learning how to use mask layers in my graphics program, I played around with using textures with that design, so I decided to revisit those experiments for this challenge.

I was originally going to go with a blue and gold colour scheme, featuring blue glitter and gold foil.
But I wasn't completely feeling it, so in the end I opted for this pink and gold version.
The textures that I used here are glitter and gold foil. Did I make the right choice for my challenge entry?  Voting is open until 3pm EST / 8pm GMT on 17th March, so if you like what you see, please vote for me.