I’m still standing – Reflective Statement

I have enjoyed this project, and though it’s duration I have realised that I’m not interested in just one area of textiles, say stationery or fashion, but I’m more interested in surface design, and how that can then be used. For this project, I very much worked with design first, and then thinking about how I could use and manipulate these into the surfaces as needed, and I’ve loved it.

Not only was I able to carry on using and developing my confidence and skills with screen printing throughout this project, but I also experimented with other hand printing techniques, such a woodcut and collagraph, which I haven’t used very often. I like the time it takes, with screen printing and woodcut, to be able to ready and create my designs. The long process of coating and exposing a screen, and the even longer time of carving a woodcut is something that’s unavailable through digital processes, and is one I enjoy. I’m able to work through every step of the creating process with these hand printing techniques, and that’s something that I always want to be able to do.

I’ve been doing something new this year, and I can’t quite pinpoint it, but I’ve enjoyed this whole project. I think it’s a combination of the theme I chose, the client, the colours, the techniques and materials; which have all resulted in a collection that I’ve found easy to be inspired by. Last year I thought that I was inspired by nature, that was nothing compare to how much I enjoyed this very urban and modern collection. I’m a city girl, why I thought I would get more inspiration from nature than the city I don’t know, but I’m just glad that I’ve found what I’m actually inspired by at the beginning of third year. My presentation skills have definitely improved, and I feel that I’m much more confident in speaking about my own work, and I think that this project has helped with that.

This project has prepared me for the degree show, its shown me the style I like to work in, what things I find influential to my designing, and given me the freedom to think in term of surface pattern design which can then be taken into any field. I like the thought of working in whatever discipline your inspired to by a certain brief or idea, and not trying to force an idea onto a certain product, for example I doubt my collection would have been as successful if I’d been making an interior collection.

I have really liked working on a live brief, it’s a sort of introduction into what a designing career would be like, and while this wasn’t a collaborative collection, I still like that I’d been able to speak with others near me, brainstorm and help each other. It makes me think that this is what a team dynamic would be like, helping each other to be better, and to encourage. I’ve also loved seeing what other have created and how different everyone is, it’s inspiring.

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Things Can Only Get Better

My presentation with Marie and Keireine went really well. From what I can remember (post-presentation mind fog had descended). I spoke clearly about my collection and used up the whole five minutes (though I was glad when it ended). I would have said more, but when that timer goes off, all thoughts of what I was about to say next vanished, its the strangest thing.

My display was set out really well, even if I do say so myself, I made sure that entering I used that was part of my collection, matched well, like the mesh memo board I used to click all my products too.

Keriene has mentioned before that I didn’t experiment enough to begin with, mainly because I kept having a lot of happy accidents, but I’ve tried to think about, and show, different ways I add colour into my wrapping paper, or on my sheet wrap how I could add another layer of designs; all of which are laid out in my sketchbook. I just have to make sure during the next project, I experiment as much as I can (which doesn’t seem like a difficult thought at the moment because I have barley an idea).

One thing that was pretty clear from my feedback was that I still need to work on my gift bow. That blasted thing just doesn’t have the same feeling as the rest of my collection, its too pretty, or as Paige would say ‘its too hipster’.

So how do I make a bow that’s not pretty, or hipster, matches with my collection really well and isn’t something I want to throw at the wall?

At the moment, literally as I’m typing, I’m in the process of making metal bows. I’ve made a few bow ties with metal or out of metal, now I’m doing something thats not a bow tie at all, but is metal and well it’ll stop me from going crazy (which is why I’ve taken a break from the bows to blog).

I have a good feeling about the bow I’m making, maybe because its not actually a bow, just something a bit unusual. And maybe its because I get to play with metal and superglue in the hopes of making mesh. Thats always fun. It also involves a weaving, kind of, which is also fun, and relaxing, but more to come on the bows later.

Back to my feedback; I was really pleased with the overall comments; both Marie and Keireine liked my collection, and where really positive about what I’ve made, which was just really amazing to hear. I’ve really enjoyed this project so it hasn’t really felt like work work (except the bow), its been enjoyable work and I’m glad to see that is not all be for nothing. *happy dance*


The Tag In Blue

One of the suggestions that Keireine give me to think about was the fact that my tag was black, and that not everyone had white pens, meaning the tag isn’t really that practical.

With this in mind, I then started to think about how I could bring this practice element into my tag. My swing tag has two layers already, the black front with the laser cut design, and a separate film-work layer all held to other by black and blue foil ribbon.

What I needed was another layer that I could insert between these two, which would work really well with the rest of the tag, and also have a surface which is a much more practical writing area.

I tried a grey insert which I didn’t think worked very well; I also tried white but that was a bit too plain; I then experimented with a insert that was white on one side and blue foil on the other. There was just too much blue for it to be classed as a coloured pop, I think.

I left one tag with the blue foil insert, and started to experiment with another insert, a white one that had blue foil strips on it. I felt like this insert could be the one, but when I attached it to the rest of the tag, there was just still too much white. It looked really lovely on its own, but I don’t think it added anything to the tag itself.

So I was looking at these two tags with their different inserts and decide that the fully blue foiled insert was better, but when I added it onto the other tag, I noticed that when the holes lined up, the blue was hanging over the edge of the black tag, thanks to my terrible cutting/hole-punching skills. However, I actually really liked this mistake!

(I feel like half of this project has come about from mistakes and happy accidents!)

What I was left with was a thin sliver of blue foil above the top and right hand side of the black tag, and I love it. There not too much blue; it makes the black look blacker and it helps to accentuate the blue in the ribbon; it also, gives me suitable writing surface because the reverse side of the blue foil is white card!

So I glued the foil insert to the back of the black tag, making sure I had those slivers of silver and that white backing, which really just bring the tag onto another level. It also mirrors the small slivers of purple foil that I added into my roll wrapping paper. I love having small elements that are repeated in more than one project, it just helps to knit the whole collection together more.