With Digital Design the Possibilities are Endless

As I sat down at the computer to design a pattern around my elf sketches, I quickly realized the sketches were just the tip of the iceberg. What kind of background did I want? A snowy scene? Or maybe a plaid background? When working with pens, paper, watercolor – basically any tools not on the computer – we have choices and options but once we move forward with a decision, things can only be changed so much. On the computer anything can be undone, changed, resized, rotated, colors altered, layers overlayed, etc. It’s a bit overwhelming! And I work as a graphic designer for a living. It must be the blending of the two – the hand drawn and the computer – that has my head swimming!

I started with the elves from my sketchbook and added this snowy night background behind them. It was interesting, but the dark sky didn’t seem right for Christmas gift wrap. I tried the plaid background, but I didn’t like the computer drawn plaid behind the watercolor. But, I ordered a fabric swatch of the snowy night out of curiosity.
gingerbreadhousesrepeatw elvesplaidrepeatw

Another day I went back to the sketchbook and drew Christmas elements, and eventually added watercolor to them. I also painted stripes in red and green. Back at the computer (on another day), I scanned and played around with the different elements. I liked using the watercolor stripes much better than the computer plaid. Although it was a challenge to get the stripes to look right when I repeated the pattern. I’ve order a swatch of this pattern, so I’ll keep you posted!

Here’s the Christmas Watercolor Stripes design without the repeat:

I’m interested in your thoughts! Out of the 3 designs, which do you like the best?

  1. Christmas Watercolor Stripes
  2. Snowy night at the North Pole
  3. Elves on plaid

Leave me a comment and let me know. Thanks!! 🙂

If you’d like to see my other gift wrap and fabric designs, please click here.


7 thoughts on “With Digital Design the Possibilities are Endless

  1. The watercolor stripes one is my favorite 🙂
    I used to be a bit reluctant to use digital drawing tools because I love drawing on paper so much, but now I realize how powerful the combination of the two can be – it’s just hard to find a good balance!

  2. I toured Spoonflower last week and boy am I inspired to do some fabric!! I need to learn how to do repeats though, big hurdle. I like the first design best!! Good luck!

    1. That is awesome Beverly! I was just looking at the page on their site about tours. Wow.
      When I started trying to create patterns, I found helpful resources online and off course their are online classes, but good old trial and error helps a lot too. I’ve been thinking of a couple of those sites that I originally found helpful. I’ll try to track them down and do a post that includes them all. Good luck, I can’t wait to see!
      Thank you for your input on the Christmas patterns!

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