February 20, 2012

A Field Guide to Fabric Design: review! giveaway!

The book A Field Guide to Fabric Design by Kimberly Kight was recently released by Stash books.
I was thrilled to receive a copy to review, and now I'm doubly thrilled to tell you about it.


I had one reason to want this book: I wanted to know how you design a repeating pattern. Not knowing was very perplexing for me. As far as I could tell, the only way I could design a repeating pattern would be to wrap a piece of paper around a tube and draw on it. That sounded borderline ridiculous so I needed this book.

Kim's book satisfied my curiosity, (no tubes!) but it did so much more as well.


First of all, a week after I read it I ended up designing my first fabric. Coincidence? Absolutely not. This book gave me the lift I needed to go from a good idea to an actual design. It helped me understand some important concepts that I could apply to the tools I had available. In my case, an iPad with a simple illustration program, but whatever your supplies are, even if they are just pencil and paper, there are instructions for you too. Do you want to do screen printing or block printing? Do you want to design with Photoshop or Illustrator for digital printing? All the steps are explained for whichever way you'd like to design.


The book also prepared me for dealing with color variation between my computer screen and online printers. Information on printing processes, types of fabric, and color theory are in there as well. There is a lot in the book I didn't expect. Some of it may not be useful to me right now (for instance, things to consider if licensing your designs) but I have to say I'm impressed at how thorough the book is. I can see that whether I just want to create an occasional fabric design, or if I get bitten by the bug and decide to pursue it as a serious venture, I will refer to A Field Guide to Fabric Design over and over in the coming years.

So now, indeed, Stash books has generously, enthusiastically, offered a copy of the book to giveaway to a reader. And as an expression of the incredible appreciation I have for this book, I'd like to send the winner a fat quarter of my first ever fabric as well. To enter the random giveaway, please leave a comment on this post, having something to do with this book and why it interests you. I'll draw a random winner Friday. Oh, and if I can't contact you, you can't win, so make sure you leave an email address if it's not available on your profile. I'm ruthless. I'll just draw another number if I can't contact you. And you'll never know how close you came.

FYI, my contact at Stash let me know they have an email newsletter. I signed up for it last week, and they immediately emailed me a coupon for 20% off at the C&T publishing site. And that's all I've heard from them so far, so I can tell you they're not spammers. You can sign up here (over on the right side of the page) to stay up to date too. Thanks for keeping it classy, Stash, and thanks for the never-ending stream of fabulous books!

78 comments:

Brittany said...

Christina, I am so happy that you thought this book was an utter success. I have been looking at it for a while, but unable to get my hands on a physical copy, I haven't picked it up yet. What I really want to know is the differences between the color on a computer screen and physical print. There are so many different variables. Thanks for the chance at the great giveaway, a fantastic book and your coveted selvedge dots ... better than Christmas ... regardless I shall have to track this book down!

Gill said...

This book is on my Amazon wishlist! I've wanted to learn screen printing for ages and now I've signed up for a course with Ineke Berlyn next month!
I can't wait!

Michelle said...

I've never really thought of designing fabrics, but I'd love to find out how it's done (especially those repeating patterns).

Andrea R said...

Oh this book looks amazing! How do I figure out what colors look good together and manage repeats and all-over patterns?

Gene Black said...

This book interests me greatly. I have designed a lot of fabric and had two of them printed successfully (at more than I wanted to pay.) However, I had another one printed and was totally dismayed at the color that it came in.

I need to know HOW to fix that AND I want with all my heart to be a fabric designer for a company.

Jamie Lee said...

I would love to win a fat quarter of the fabric you designed--I have loved it since you first shared it on your blog.

I am interested in reading the book. It has a really long wait list at my local library, but my name is on there. I'm not sure I would design fabric, but I might if my daughters wanted something specific. Come to think of it, my oldest is really interested in art, so that would be kind of cool if she wanted me to help her design her own fabric!

Molly said...

I'd love to learn about designing fabric. Although I don't foresee myself becoming a big time fabric producer I'd love to be able to make some to personalize my gifts for my family and closest friends. What a nice way to make a handmade gift even more thoughtful!

Gail said...

This book looks extremely appealing ~ have not seen it yet, but would love love love to have a copy. I keep thinking that I really want to try mt hand at designing some fabric ~ who knows could be a new direction! BTW... I love your new fabric!

Michelle said...

Thanks for hosting a giveaway! I'd love that book and will probably get it whether I win it or not. My whole family is interested in fabric design. I'm the quilter, my daughter also sews and is an art student and my husband loves to tie-dye and I think he'd like to go further into screen-printing and design. My daughter and I had a great idea for a quilt but we'd have to design most of our own fabrics since the theme is unusual. I'm glad there is this resource out there.

Elsa said...

Ooooh, this book looks really interesting to me. I really haven't thought about designing fabric but think I'd at least like to give it a try! I love some of the fabric out there that looks like it's hand printed like Echo and the new Summersville that's coming out this spring.
Thanks for the giveaway Christina!

Jeane said...

I am always curious about how things are done and would love to learn this process. I haven't ordered my (your) fabric yet so yes I want the FQ too.

Tut said...

You've inspired me to get off my butt and start learning how to create the fabric I want to make. Thanks.

Nicole said...

How cool that the book was the push you needed, I do love the selvedge fabric, they have become a very interesting part of the fabric, and having a fabric of them is so much faster than collecting them....(I am not convinced that makes sense but there you go...), I am not sure I am up to designing my own fabric yet, but I would love to see how the process works.

Nancy said...

I love reading and fabric...this book seems to make the most of both! I would love to know more about designing...

ms lottie said...

I've always wanted to have a go at designing my own fabric, but it's been in the too-hard basket or the 'one day I'll get a book on it' basket! Thanks for the chance to win both the book and your yummy fabric.

Jennie P. said...

I absolutely have been wanting this book ever since I first read about it! I'm crossing my fingers. I love fabric, I love design...I need it lol!

felicity said...

Very cool! Would love to win this. Thanks, Christina!

ربة منزل said...

This book has been on my Amazon wishlist for a while. The idea of working with a fabric I designed is so exciting.

Mama Pea said...

Oh, wow. I would love to read this book. I have admired you so much for going ahead and designing your own fabric (which, as you know, I love and ordered!). I would love to have this book to see if it would get me over the hurdle, too! Thanks for the chance!

carrie e. said...

I would love to learn more about fabric design. It's a secret fantasy of mine that I design my own fabric and maybe sell it--- well, not a secret any longer!

Irina said...

I'd love to enter this giveaway because lately I've been thinking giving fabric design a try and wouldn't know how to start... I'd love to be able to work with my own fabric! Thanks for the chance:-)

SueSmilesAlot said...

I've never heard of it, but now I want it!!! I bet there is so much wonderful information in there. Thanks for bringing the book to my attention.

Jamie Mueller @ SunFlower Seeds said...

I would love to win this book, I've been doodling a lot for fabric designs and this book sounds like it would be super helpful!

liniecat said...

Gosh that book sounds great, typing with my fingers crossed lol so here's hoping!

Rosa said...

It`s the first time I hear about that but and sound fabulous.I`d love win to learn more about choose fabrics.

Laura said...

I would love to get my hands on this book! It sounds really interesting and informative! I would love to try my hand at fabric design. :)

lynneUSA said...

Love to have that book, I have tried some designs using EQ7 and photoshop elements but would like to learn more

Regina said...

What, no tube? Inquiring minds MUST know - I was wondering about designing quilting pantos as well, and figure the two concepts must be somewhat related.

Bente-I like to QuiltBlog said...

I would love to win this book, I think after "reading" this book may gives us new views when we see fabrics...
Thanks for the chance to win ☺

hueisei said...

I never thought of designing a fabric bt myself, maybe the book will make me change my mind. I love to win it. Thanks!

Cokie K said...

i would love to win the book. I haven't thought of designing my own fabric, but now I think I might give it a whirl. Thanks for the give away.

Betty Crocker Ass said...

I've always admired Kim and would love to read about what she knows! Being around fabric designers I'm curious as to what it takes! So ya, this would be rad to win!

Jezibels ~ sproutbabysprout.blogspot.com said...

As a Vintage Trailer enthusiast, I have noticed there are only a few fabrics out there pertaining to camping, campers and especially vintage campers. Ive always wanted to learn more about designing my own vintage camper fabrics to use creating picnic tablecloths, teepee tents and various camping/picnic quilts.

Marcia W. said...

Repeats are interesting to me too ever since I read about making custom reproduction wallpaper in Martha Stewart Living and symmetry on Wikipedia. This is one site that I enjoyed visiting: http://www.artlandia.com/
Specifically, I would like to make a quilt using the concepts of fabric repeats, color screening, etc. and would love to learn more. True-up has been one of my favorites since began reading blogs. It would be wonderful to win a copy of Kim's book. And, on pins and needles wanting to see your first design!

java diva said...

I am always intimidated by Spoonflower's contests. It blows me away how people come up with designs. I know that I want to create my own fabric using dyes & trying my hand at printing on it. I'm excited this book inspired you to try it right away. I just need to be pointed into the right direction & I'll go from there.

Jill said...

ooooo! Count me in! Thx for the great giveaway, I've been anxiously awaiting this books release. So cool that you got to preview it!

Mims said...

what a giveaway, thanks for including some of your awesome fabric!

SewLindaAnn said...

Well there's 2 reasons why I'm very interested in this book. The first being that her blog True Up is one of my favorites and her information has got to be at least as comprehensive. The 2nd is I'm really intimidated about the idea of creating my own fabric design. Don't know why, but I'd like to get over it.

Dora, the Quilter said...

I've thought about designing fabric for my quiltmaking off and on for the last 3 decades at least, and I'd love to win a copy of this book. Thank you for sharing.

Emily Day said...

I've always been intrigued looking through quilting books. A lot of inspiration can rise from them.

MissMary said...

Our guild is covering this topic at some point this year after having a visit from Ann Kelle this past fall. I'd love to get another take on the process!

KellyBlackwelly said...

I've been looking for this book in my library and even put in a request for it. I would love to design my own fabric and don't know where to start.

thegoose said...

This is on my wishlist. I'd love a chance to win it. Thanks. :)

Tracie M said...

I have been thinking about buying this book. I want to learn about designing my very own fabric.

Dawn said...

This book sounds so interesting! And I love the fabric you designed! I commented on it when you blogged about it. I would love to design my own fabric and/or just learn about it. Thanks for a chance at this great giveaway.

Kathie said...

this book is one I would love to have in my library. I love fabric and have thought about designing my own fabric the concern I always had would be making sure he colors would be right. I am sure this book would educate me in many ways!
thanks so much for the giveaway.
Kathie

angela said...

I've had this book on my list since I heard it was coming out. I would so love a copy! I don't know anything about designing fabric but it is an interest of mine.elmcreekquilts@yahoo.com

Lesley said...

Looks like an interesting book.

Renea said...

I have always wanted to try my hand at design, be it fabric or a quilt pattern. Thanks for the great giveaway.

patricia said...

Could I? Should I? Would I? Sure does give one pause.

Pikkis said...

I am studying Mixed Media Textiles at university and am focusing on weave and screen printing. I am interested in making and designing my own fabrics. Anything I can learn in addition is great; the way I do that is through research and books. This book looks great, just from what I can see of it. :)

Anonymous said...

I have always felt the design ON a fabric has a "texture" that does not come across when touched. And th feel of the fabric is added excitement! My name is Cherri and i am a abriholic!

Rhonda D. said...

This would be a wonderful book! Since I have
"retired", I have had lots of time while working
on my quilts & projects, and have been wanting
to go into graphic design. I am keeping my
fingers crossed!

Paulis said...

I'd love to get this book! Im an artist/graphic artist and want to do textile designs.

Susie H. said...

I would love to be able to make projects using personalized fabrics for friends and family. I have ideas, but am clueless how to even start! Would love love love a copy of this book. And I also think your selvedge design is super fun!
susanmariedesigns(at)yahoo(dot)com

Carmen Bouchard aka CarmencitaB said...

I don't quilt, but I love a good print and I love true up so of course, I put it on my wish list, I would love to try it out.
And Kim is right, your very first fabric is an awesome one.

kelley said...

I would love to try designing something but I feel like I need a manual. It can't be as simple as just draw it, right? Would love to know how it is done for reals, and not just by the pants.

Aurora said...

I have followed True Up since she started her blog---and she interviewed me about the textile design school I was attending (California School of Professional Fabric Design)---but so far I haven't seen her book--would love to win a copy! since it is on my "want" list--thanks!

~Ruth said...

I've been experimenting with designing fabric on Spoonflower and would love to leanr more about how to go about it in a smarter way. Thanks so much for this opportunity!

knottygnome said...

that looks like a great book! i loved the fabric you designed as well.

Nathalie St-Pierre Roths said...

I am a new quilter. I have an illustration degree but haven't made the jump to put my talent into designing my own fabric yet. I guess I should take my courage with both hands and do it... like you did! :-) This book seems lovely and it would be a great tool to win! My email address is nsroths@employees.org

Lesa said...

I am a drapery designer/fabric hoarder and have a vintage collection that I would like to recreate in more hip colorways! This book would be a great road map! You can email me Friday at Lesa@berryhilldrapery.com ;-)

lindaroo said...

To tell you the truth, I want this book for my daughter. She's designing a wallpaper for her daughter's room, and I think her ideas would be awesome on fabric! Imagine unicorns in space, in a geometric grid...

Christine said...

it sounds like a great book...I want to learn more!

Megan said...

What a great looking book! It's something I've always wanted to do. I can't wait to get my hands on a copy and check it out. Thanks for the giveaway!

susan b. said...

I already have the book (yay!!) but just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your lovely review and how cool it is that it sparked the Selvages on Steroids awesomeness!

Anne Mai said...

I was so excited to see this book! Up to date and different than the country look so needed in this day of sewing for those who know what they want!

melissa q. at a happy stitch said...

Oh how fantastic. I love True Up and have wanted this book since I heard it was coming out. Much to my disappointment, it wasn't in my stocking Christmas morning. Santa....serious let down. Your review is fantastic. Great to know the book is thorough and a good reference.

Bonnie said...

I would love to win this book for my daughter-in -law. She is talented in so many areas and just a little while ago we were talking about fabric designing. Also love your fabric. Thanks for the chance to win.

Rachel Lynn said...

I would love to win this book! I've wanted to design my own fabric - I have also done a couple repeating patterns for website backgrounds, but I'd love to see if there is an easier way!

Paula said...

I've designed quilts, but there is always a fabric that I have to print on my computer to get it the way I want. This book will help me solve that problem by designing my own fabric - for REAL!
Thanks for the opportunity.

Dawn said...

I would love to know how to design fabric and I think this book will get me started. Thanks for the giveaway of the book and of course your fabric, so exciting.

Quilted Maple said...

My head is spinning with ideas for both the book and your fat quarter

Linda K said...

Even if I never designed my own fabric, this would be a wonderful book to own and read! Thanks for the chance to win. And your fabric is awesome, too!

Sarah said...

I am so impressed with your fabric design! What a cool idea. I don't know if I have any original ideas for designing, but I find the process so intriguing.

nanann said...

I signed up for spoonflower back when they were beta, but I still haven't worked up the nerve to design anything! Here's the hope that this book might inspire me to actually *do* something!

handmadehappiness said...

OOOOHHHHhhh what a fab giveaway.... The book is so up my street right now... And your first fabric design. ACE!!

Kate said...

I have always wanted to try fabric design! What fun!