Tag Archives: illustration

Handmade Packaging: DIY Laundry Instruction Tags for Hand-painted Textile Products

20 Oct

I have a little project to share with you, it basically brings together two of the things I love: Illustration and packaging. If you are making hand-painted fabric totes, scarves, tablecloths, etc, using fabric paints, then I hope you will like this idea.

A while back  I started painting on fabric, using permanent fabric paints and colors. If you have experience with fabric paint, then you must know that to fix the colors you mostly need to iron your finished product on”cotton setting” to make the artwork permanent. But there are products that only need to be air-dried for at least 72 hours before going to the washing machine on a gentle-cycle, and on a certain, usually low, temperature.

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As I mixed brands and worked with more than one “instructions booklet,” I felt the need to merge the instructions from the different fabric-paint brands in a way to make all the products I worked with laundry-friendly. I decided to choose the instructions that recommended the lowest heat-setting, the lowest washing-machine temperature, and I decided maybe it was best if I recommended all pieces be ironed on reverse, since that was the safest method for some fabric-paint labels, and no tumble dry.

This is the basic illustration I came up with for most of my products. There are items though, that required to be washed by hand. This meant the washing-machine illustration had to go, and another symbol was sketched instead. I did play with this photo (above) a bit and added the colors with Photoshop, but one can achieve a clean colorful illustration by applying acrylic paint with a thin brush.

This is the colorless illustration. I basically used cards that are about the size of a regular business card. The paper has a lot of grain and the color is off-white and very nice to work with.

Here’s a label using old markers. I embellished the tag’s borders a bit, but I decided later on that this wasn’t necessary. You can punch a hole at the side of the tag, insert a nice thread or twine, and use a pin or tape to attach it to the product itself, or to the packaging.

An envelope can also be used if you wanna further spruce up your packaging.

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DIY Illustrations: My Botanical Garden | Recycling Old Book Pages

19 Oct

The most soothing after-noon activity is to engage in something new… and botanical. One day, not far ago, I decided it was time for me to experiment with making botanical shapes. This is what happened…

I’m not the watercolor kind of person. All my previous attempts ended up in the trash bin.

But, after spending hours and days… and weeks… collecting botanical illustrations, inspirations, and images over at Pinterest, I started to understand the flow of the botanical shape. What I gathered is that in making watercolor images you didn’t have to be specific – like in doodling shapes with a Sharpie.
On the contrary, watercolor was a very interesting medium where “water” had a big role in the way you applied the color. A brush pregnant with a big dollop of water, and color, and applied with quick watery strokes to create stems and leaves, can actually leave you with an amused smile.

I continued to make botanical shapes – over old book pages and fabric – after I finished these {below} a few months ago.

There is beauty in the  way watercolor bleeds into the paper and settles at the borders it feels comfortable with. Each kind of paper, heavy or light, grained or smooth, has a different communication with watercolor.

The best kind of paper I found I, and my watercolors, were comfortable with, is old book pages. They’re not so old. These are books collected during the nineties whilst I was in the midst of searching for answers. Many are full of gibberish and useless techniques to tame anger, heal hearts, and lose weight. I am an adamant believer that if you find a book useless it is insincere to give it away. Some went to the trash bin, but others stayed with me until the time was ripe for them to become watercolor canvases.

Watercolor has a good understanding with ink. They actually like each other. In some cases, I used bottled ink and applied it after I created the primary watercolor shape. They blend and dance perfectly together. There’s also a bit of acrylic paint in some places, and a dilute-able wooden pencil for sketching quick lines.

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Buy my indie pillows at UK-based Ohh Deer’s online shop

9 Oct

I have great news to share with you today…

My pillows are being sold at Ohh Deer up until October 29. So grab your Paypals and come shop for some botanical pillow love!

Check these two links to take you directly to the pillows:

The image on the pillows is originally hand-painted. I used water-colour, acrylic, and ink over old book pages to create the look.

The pillows are Vegan and made with a super soft faux suede and come complete with the fibre insert. They’re completely machine washable at 30°c and hand made In UK. The cushion has a stone coloured back cover – and zip fastening. They measure 43 x 43cm a smashing size! They cost £25 each.

This is my first online sale ever. I have been active in craft shows, but kept on postponing taking the online plunge. So, I’m really excited about this! The pillows are a limited edition and are being sold for a limited time: 3 weeks starting yesterday. So, don’t miss out on this special sale!

Happy shopping, all :)

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My 2 cushions at Ohh Deer’s ‘Pillow Fight’ competition

15 Sep

I have two cushions taking part in a cool competition called Pillow Fight. The authors of this idea are none other than Ohh Deer, an absolutely inspiring & intelligent British online/offline shop that sells quirky illustrated gifts, from pillows to T-shirts, and, in between, gift cards and stationary.

First, I’ll talk about my cushions, then a little bit about Ohh Deer.

A personal cushion story

  • This cushion is called: Nature v.s. Psycho-analysis. You can click here to see the pillow and to read the brief I wrote about it.

Technique-wise, this pillow “carries a photographed image of one of my hand illustrations using watercolor and acrylic,” and I forgot to mention, ink. So… a bit of recycling went into this pillow’s original illustration.

I’m not going to copy-paste the full brief, but I will quote myself  with: “This year, I started making botanical illustrations over yellowed book pages from my large library of New Age books. This is to celebrate the triumph of simplicity, and the return to nature, over complexity…  In other words, this pillow carries an intentional twist, where the botanicals signify the triumph of nature over 21st century melancholy.”

  • This cushion, below, is called: Triumph of Nature over Psycho-analysis. You can click here to see the pillow on Ohh Deer, and to read the brief.

This pillow is basically about: “Return to nature and you’ll find happiness.” Love the way the paper grain is showing around the psychoanalysis type and the watercolor/acrylic/ink illustration.

About Ohh Deer

Ohh Deer is about “Quirky Illustrated Gifts,” illustration and photography that can be so cute at times and outright vulgar, at others. This is basically what stuck in my head from the brief I read on their About Us page.

Here’s a quirky example from their online store, a card dubbed Emotional Baggage by Gemma Correll, followed by 2 Pillow Fight competition entries; the first one is called: Audio Cassette – By Simon Pilkington… and… The pillow called: Huntress – by Sandra Dieckmann:

To view some of my favorite designs and pillows from Pillow Fight & Ohh Deer’s collection, visit my Pinterest boards:
  1. Artisan’s Scrapb◎◎k
  2. Pillows.Cushions

Ohh Deer Blog…  & Pillow Fight

If you visit Ohh Deer’s blog, you will find delightful surprises. My most favorite post, so far, is called “Something a Little Different.” It comes with images from a recent Ohh Deer booklet design that carries their concept, a concept of growing together and being a role model for others once we have matured ourselves. So beautiful!

This is exactly how Ohh Deer runs their endeavor, it takes care of you as an artist, and you take care of them, in the spirit of love. They offer you 25% of purchases from your artwork –  once you have won the competition and became part of their contributing team. But before that they do promote you on their website just by entering their competition.

As for Pillow Fight, the deadline is September 25, so if you are interested, please click here to read the specifications and to enter! Good luck!

I learnt about this competition through fellow WordPress blogger, “London Drawings.” Please visit this lovely illustrator’s post where you can find 4 pillow designs by merchesico. Here’s a lovely example:

Packaging & Paper DIY: Make your own handmade paper envelope

15 Dec

I almost titled this post, “the psychology of crafting.” I wanted to call it this way because I made the envelopes {above} following a tutorial I read on Poppytalk, a fabulous blog that I keep coming back to over & over, & over again.

Poppytalk’s tutorial, posted by Ruth Bleakley, a bookbinder and an Etsy seller, made it feel so easy to make. I’ve read so many paper-crafting tutorials, but non of them made me  jump from my place with enthusiasm the way this one did.

Image via Poppytalk

My DIY: Tiny Envelops for my Handmade Earrings

Poppytalk’s tutorial literally made me run over to make a replica of my favorite envelope. I soaked it in water, but the glue was really sticking to it and I almost ripped it apart. So, what I did is I re-imagined the template Poppytalk posted, got myself a rectangle chalk box, traced it, added margins for the flaps, cut a cardboard template, and then I had myself the nicest, coolest, cutest envelopes in the world!

This (left) is the template at Poppytalk.

And this (below) is what I whipped up using a chalk box to trace around (you can also use a crayon box or any object that has a  rectangular shape).

I used my craft scissors to add a bit of a lace-y feel to my envelopes. I cut the little wavy shapes outside the template lines that I traced unto the paper I used – to be on the safe side.

And I ended up with these two cute handmade envelopes. I am using them for carrying handmade earrings, as well as my new tag/gift-card illustrations… here is a glimpse.

Happy envelope-making!

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