Eileen McKenna Art & Design

Watercolor Art | Creative Inspiration to help you be creative on a regular basis


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My growing collection of pattern designs

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The other day a swatch of my Christmas Elves pattern arrived. It’s so exciting to see my designs off the sketchbook page, off the computer screen, and printed. And even more exciting…last week someone ordered my gardening fabric. I wish I could see what they make with it! I’m so proud of my growing collection.

See all my designs here.


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With Digital Design the Possibilities are Endless

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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.
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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:
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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.

 


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Dreaming of Christmas gift wrap designs

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Last year I achieved a personal goal of mine by designing holiday gift wrap. Through Spoonflower I was able to have the designs printed and also made available to anyone else who might be interested in purchasing them. It was really cool to wrap gifts for the kids and family in wrapping paper I designed! Some of my supportive family bought the gift wrap and I saw presents wrapped with them at two family parties!

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The gift wrap at Spoonflower isn’t cheap, but the quality of the paper is beautiful! And it’s reusable for wrapping other gifts or for crafts. Spoonflower also prints on fabric (their main business). I wish I sewed so I could make Christmas pillows to decorate the house. Maybe some day.

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I’ve been going through the sketchbooks I filled last December for inspiration for a new holiday design. The elves caught my eye! They’ll probably make it into this year’s holiday gift wrap design.