In this post, I share my process for designing a new product. For the current fall/winter season, I knew I wanted to create a new cotton jacquard pattern.
I began my design process by establishing a few basic parameters. I wanted to:
- Riff on Art Deco or Wiener Werkstätte motifs
- (Maybe) name the pattern FRANK, if I could invent a hybrid that owed equal inspiration to FRANK Lloyd Wright and Josef FRANK
- Work within a BLUE palette.
From there, I started to sketch, first in pencil and later in black ink, keeping my brushstrokes loose and fluid.
Initially, I divided my sketches into typical geometric repeats, striving to arrive at a pattern more ornamented and intricate than is my norm. This effort was short lived, however, as I quickly found myself gravitating away from my original aim — back towards the simpler, bolder shapes where I am most at home.
From that point onward, it was just a question of drawing and drawing — a designer's trial and error! — until I felt good about this pared-down, simple oval shape with a bit of weave intermixing.
OVAL, in the end, takes more of its cues from the geometric clarity and simplicity of fabrics by Josef Hoffmann, cofounder of the Wiener Werkstätte movement, than from the work of either FRANK. Maybe FRANK can happen another time.
I work closely with the factory where my designs are carefully translated to fabric. In these photos, you can see the design on the loom.
You can purchase our newest design on our website.