Tag Archives: Designer

Dashwood Designer: Jilly P

It’s always exciting when a new collection leaves the studio and goes into production, especially when we’ve had such an overwhelming response to the sneak peaks we’ve been sharing on Instagram and Facebook. Our upcoming Mori Girls collection is one such collection which has captured the hearts of our fabric loving fans.

Mori Girls

Mori Girls is the debut collection from illustrator Jillian Phillips. Inspired by her love of Yoyogi Park in Tokyo and featuring her little dachshund Bertie, there are a mix of florals, conversationals and sweet repeats.

Jilly P Mori Girls

This week on the blog, we’re chatting with Mori Girls designer Jilly P and discovering how the collection came to life, her influences and a behind – the – scenes of creating it:

How did you start working with Dashwood?

Dashwood Studio got in touch last year after seeing my website and work online. I had been looking for a fabric company to work with for a while so I was delighted to be offered the chance to collaborate on a collection!

Mori Girls Dashwood Studio

What patterns or ideas in mind already before starting the process?

I had a vast collection of prints which I getting ready to show my clients, so I passed these on to David (our creative director) to see if there was anything he liked as a starting point. He chose a girl print which had other elements like trees, cats, dogs and flowers, and it just flowed from there really.

Bertie Jilly P Mori Girls

What was the inspiration for the collection?

I love to draw inspiration from my annual trip to Japan, and also from my own little dog Bertie. I tend to draw a lot of girl characters and florals when I doodle, definitely my favourite subject.

MORI 1147

MORI 1147

Do you have a design process you follow?

I spend some time doodling and playing around with very rough ideas. Then I move on to working on the computer, adding textures and detail where I think it’s needed. It can take about 2-3 hours to get the characters right, but some designs take a bit longer. This year is the first time in ages I’ve started using sketchbooks as a way of storing ideas. They are a lovely record of all the great things that I see and can spark an idea month’s after drawing/finding them.

MORI 1149

MORI 1149

Where do you design?

I work from home in my spare room, it’s a tiny room, I’d love to have a big studio space one day, but for now it’s the spare room for me.

MORI 1148

MORI 1148

Do you have company whilst working?

Bertie sits close by each day, we have 6music on the radio.

MORI 1151

MORI 1151

What’s a typical working day like for you?

I start work between 8 and 8.45am, depending on when I’ve come back from the morning dog walk. I have to have a cup of tea while I sit and read emails, then it’s a case of starting the first design job for the day. I try not to work too many late nights these days- I used to do 12 hour days but I don’t like doing that anymore if I can help it. If I do work late these days, I’m usually doing something like sketching ideas for new prints- away from the computer!

MORI 1146

MORI 1146

What would you like to see made with the fabric?

Childrens’ quilts, bedding and little dresses.

Will you be making anything?

I’m going to attempt(!) to make some dresses and bedding for samples to show clients… My sewing skills are a bit rusty!

MORI 1152

MORI 1152

What are you working on next?

I’m just about to start on a spring summer range for Dashwood, so I’m really looking forward to that. It’s always fun.

MORI 1150

MORI 1150

Quick Fire Questions

Who or what inspires you?

I love beautiful photography, Japanese craft and design books and scandinavian home ware.

What blogs do you love?

Fine little day and Hello Sandwich

What’s your favourite instagram account?

Too many to choose from! But check out emilymisabella, mirdinara, aikofukawa, choidecoco

Which print from Mori Girls is your fave?

Has to be the bertie print – the sausage dogs!

Tea or coffee?

TEA, all day long :)

Favourite afternoon snack?

ooh, on special occasions a chocolate biscuit is perfect.


Jilly’s website: http://jillyp.co.uk/

Find Jilly on Instagram: https://instagram.com/jillyp_studio/

Dashwood Designer: Rachel Cave on her collection Bloom

On the blog today, we’re talking to Rachel Cave – the designer of our latest collection ‘Bloom’ which features a myriad of graphic flowers in contemporary muted colours. Whether you like your florals in straight lines or scattered, there’s a piece of nature for everyone in this collection and we’re excited for Rachel to share a little sneak peak into the process of creating it:

Rachel Cave

How did working with Dashwood Studio come about?

I had spotted fellow designs had ranges produced and so I contacted Dashwood as I was after having my own range produced. Luckily David was aware of my work and it was great collaboration!

Bloom Fabric Collection Rachel Cave

Did you have the collection designed already or did you create it for Dashwood from scratch?

I designed the collection from scratch exclusively for Dashwood after sending some ideas through that I had.


BLOO 1140

What inspired the collection?

 A floral theme, influenced by Scandinavian prints.

Where do you start with designing and how does it grow and develop?

I start off with drawing floral elements that I want to include and it grows from there. It’s quite an organic process. When designing a collection I try and create them all together so that they all sit well and there’s enough variation within the collection. Then I pull out my favourite ones and get them looking just right.

BLOO 1138

BLOO 1138

Were there any challenges or moments of pure joy whilst designing Bloom?

Getting the right balance of prints can be tricky, but I found this collection came really easy and flowed from the moment I started creating it. Deciding on colours can sometimes take a while, but I had my ideas from the start and It only needed a few tweeks to get it looking right.

BLOO 1139

BLOO 1139

Where do you design? Do you have your own office/studio space? What’s it like?

I design from my desk in my living room. It looks out the window into the garden so perfect for plant inspiration. It’s quite tidy as I need a clear head when designing!

Do you have company whilst working?

My husband also works from home so there’s always someone popping in and out. Plus there’s my house rabbit Alfie who sits at my feet most days.

BLOO 1143

BLOO 1143

What’s a typical working day look like for you?

Depending on my work schedule a typical day I’ll be at my desk by 10, and work through till the evening. Some briefs can be quite tight so I’ll be very busy. But other days the work calms down and I can get out the house and head to the beach, the joy of being freelance!

BLOO 1141

BLOO 1141

How did you get into design? Did you have specific training?

I studied Fashion/ Textiles at Wiltshire College and went on to do a Degree in Surface Design at London College of Communication. A great course, that was mainly screen printing, but it helped me gain the skills to design full time once I left.

What advice would you give to someone who would like to follow in your footsteps?

The key for me has always been a great website that really showcases your best work.

BLOO 1144. blue

BLOO 1144 blue

What would you like to see made with your fabric?

Kids clothes, cushions, toys..the list is endless.

Do you sew? If so, will you be making anything using the collection? 

Even though I sewed alot during my college course, I was never that good and have since sold my sewing machine. I’ll leave it to the professionals!

BLOO 1142

BLOO 1142

What are you working on now? What’s coming up project-wise for you?

I’ve got a few briefs in the pipe line creating food packaging, a really exciting venture that I’m getting involved with more and more. As well as creating patterns for my agent who sells internationally.

BLOO 1144. gold

BLOO 1144 gold

If you could design another collection for Dashwood, what would it be like?

I’d love to create another collection, maybe a geometric to balance out all the florals.

Bloom hits the shops later this summer. You can check out the full Bloom collection here, and head on over to Rachel’s website to nosey at her beautiful portfolio.

Dashwood Designer: Susan Driscoll

Name: Susan Driscoll
Collection: September Blue
Website: http://theprinttree.com/

Susan Lloyd

How did you come about working with Dashwood Studio?

David contacted me right at the beginning to say that he was starting a UK fabric company and that he would like to work on a collection together. It took a while to get here because of other design projects but I am so pleased September Blue is ready to launch.

September Blue Dashwood Studio

What inspired the collection September Blue? 

I wanted my first collection with Dashwood to be fun and pretty. Flowers and butterflies are subject matter that I get asked to design a lot so it seemed natural to have them as inspiration for the collection.

SBLU 1067

SBLU 1067

Did either the colours or patterns come to mind first? 

I had an idea of the patterns I wanted to create for the collection, but I did come up with the palette first, I do that a lot with design projects.

Have you designed a fabric collection before?

I have designed for fabric before but never my own collection it’s so exciting to see my name on the selvedge. Scouring the fabric shops has always been one of my favourite things to do, my mum would always take me with her she has always been a keen crafter and taught me to sew when I was very young.

SBLU 1064

SBLU 1064

Do you have a favourite print from the collection?

I really like the main floral, because I love that powdery pink ground, but I think my favourite is the trees and birds.

SBLU 1065

SBLU 1065

 What would you like to see made with your fabric?

Ooh I don’t know, maybe some cushions or home products but the fabrics would also look really pretty on girls clothing.

Will you or anyone you know be making anything with it?

I do love to sew when I have the time so I will definitely have to make plans to make something pretty from the collection.

SL workspace

What’s your workspace like?

I work from a studio at home, we converted a room in the house. It’s painted white and I like to pin up projects and designs I am working on. I have shelves and shelves of design books for inspiration and probably an obsessive amount of notebooks (I Love stationery)


Do you have any rituals when designing?

I am kind of a creature of habit, I do the same thing every morning. I make a huge pot of fresh coffee, sit down check my emails, have a read of Print and Pattern Blog, have a nose on Pinterest then start my design work, if it’s a new project I usually have a colour morning just playing about with colour palettes until something works – it’s my favourite bit.

Wendy Kendall Retro Orchard Dashwood Studio Dotty Wren Studio

The Dotty Wren Studio Girls

Do you have any company whilst working?

I work in my studio alone with music on, I do have a few natters in the day with my Dotty Wren girls though.

How did you get in to surface pattern design? 

I studied Printed Textile Design at Loughborough University. Afterwards I worked for studios both in the UK and America. I have been freelancing for myself for several years now.


Do you have any advice for budding designers?

My advice to budding designers is to find your style, make it yours don’t copy or imitate other designers. Continue to learn and grow and Draw! Draw! Draw! Nothing can replace those core skills especially in Surface Pattern.

What’s next on your project list? 

I have a few projects going on at the minute. I am just finishing a licensed nursery range, starting work on new stationery ranges and have just been asked to illustrate some artwork for a school, so very varied but I like it that way.


What would an ideal day look like to you?

I would have two perfect days, one would be to have a lovely day with my children starting with a family breakfast together and a having fun and watching them play with each other. The other day would be doing the things I love drinking too much coffee followed by shopping and browsing all my favourite shops like Liberty, Designers Guild and Anthropolgie, then meeting up with friends for drinks and good food.

Quick Fire Round!

Favourite magazine? Flow or Uppercase

Favourite Blog? Print and Pattern and Loveprintstudio both for gorgeous inspiration

Favourite exhibition/event? New Designers,  a graduate show of the best UK universities I go every year.

How do you take your coffee? Black strong Coffee, no Sugar

Thanks Susan! It was lovely to have a sneak peek into your life as a designer – we are really looking forward to September Blue‘s launch in July!

Keep your eyes peeled for September Blue hitting the shops very soon – and as ever we’ll be sharing what people are making with the fabric with you here on the blog, as well as on our Facebook and Pinterest pages.

Dashwood Designer: Rebecca Stoner

Name: Rebecca Stoner
Collection: Prairie
Website: http://rebeccastoner.co.uk/
Blog: http://rebeccastoner.co.uk/blog/

Today on the blog we are treating you to an interview with Dashwood designer Rebecca Stoner! Rebecca has designed our latest fabric collection Prairie, and we talk to her about her career, designing the collection and where she gets her inspiration…

Rebecca Stoner_York Hospital Vinyl Design_Dashwood Studio

How did you get into surface pattern design?

After working in admin and accounts for a few years after leaving school and feeling very unfulfilled, I decided to pursue my dream of having a creative career. I went to University and studied a degree in Art & Design, specialising in Textile and Surface Pattern Design, followed by an MSc in CAD (Computer Aided Design) for Textile Designers.

I graduated in 2005 and was immediately accepted onto the Visual Enterprise Scheme which supported Arts Graduates in setting up their businesses within the Creative Industries. It was during this time that I set up my business and exhibited at my first Trade Shows:

BCTF and Top Drawer.

Initially I began designing my own fabrics and manufacturing products such as cushions, bags and home accessories from them but after a few years I began to focus purely on the Surface Pattern Design side of my work. Gradually I began doing more freelance work for companies and also carried out a lot of Public Art commissions.

In your words, what is your design style?

I would say my style is quite organic, detailed and often delicate. I use a combination of hand drawing and hand printing to create my designs. I love colour and I enjoy spending time experimenting with different colour palettes.

Prairie-Collection-©-Rebecca-Stoner Dashwood Studio

Is this your first fabric collection?

It is my first full fabric collection in my own name and I’m very excited about it! I have created designs for fabric before but they have usually been one-off designs and mainly for other studios or companies.

This is the first time I’ve had my own name on a collection and it feels great!

Inspiration Prairie - Flowers & Doilies

Where do you seek inspiration for your designs?

Everywhere! Since I began my degree at University and discovered the world of Surface Pattern Design, it’s as if it opened up a whole new way of looking at the world – through patterned glasses!

Inspiration Prairie - Doilies

I see pattern, colour and inspiration in all different places, some being more obvious than others. I love walking in the countryside and I’m always stopping to take photos of flowers, leaves, grasses and even shadows, much to the annoyance of my dog!

Inspiration Prairie Vintage lace

Did something in particular inspire ‘Prairie’?

Well I’m slightly addicted to Pinterest and love creating moodboards on there. I began pinning images of lace, crochet and doilies and the more I pinned, the more I wanted to create a collection inspired by some of the beautiful patterns found in the different techniques.

Prairie Drawings 2

I loved the idea of looking at traditional textile techniques such as crochet work and lace and developing a collection of contemporary designs that could be printed onto fabric and then used again in traditional techniques such as quilting and dressmaking.

Prairie Drawings 1

What was the process of designing the collection like?

I began by doing lots of detailed hand drawings inspired by the crochet and lace images I had found and then I scanned these in and began to create the actual designs from them on the computer.

Prairie Fabric Collection

By the time I submitted the designs to Dashwood the collection was more or less finished apart from a few tweaks that were needed. David helped me to make the collection even stronger by suggesting a couple of colourway changes and adjustment of scale on a couple of the designs but apart from that it was ready to go!

Rebecca Stoner Workspace

What’s your workspace like? 

I work from home and I’m fortunate in that I have a dedicated room as a studio space. I have 2 desks, one for my computer and clean work and then another desk that is my ‘messy’ desk where I get to have fun drawing and hand printing. I’ll often have BBC Radio 4 on or some music, depending what mood I’m in and whether I’m drawing or working on the computer.

Rebecca Stoner Studio

My rescue Lurcher dog, Bertie, keeps me company and ensures I take regular breaks by pestering me to go out for walks! Working from home all day can often mean long periods of time alone so he’s great company and forces me to get outside.

Rebecca Stoner Studio 2

Do you have a favourite design from the full collection?

This does change from time to time but at the moment it is the Scattered Flowers design which is the one with the organic/folky flowers dancing around on the blue background.

Prairie Dashwood Studio 1051

PRAI 1051

What are you looking forward for the rest of 2014?

To seeing my fabric in real life! I’m really excited to see what different things people are going to make using Prairie.

Prairie  Fabric Design

I’ve already had people contacting me, saying how much they love the collection and what they’d like to make with it.


Quick fire round!

(We ask all our designers these burning questions!)

What’s your favourite magazine?
I’ve recently discovered UPPERCASE Magazine which is full of great articles on design, illustration and all things creative. It has some beautiful images and photography in there and is a complete feast for the eyes!

What’s your favourite blog?
There are many but if I had to name a few it would be Print and Pattern (of course!), Pattern Observer and Love Print Studio Blog.

What’s your favourite exhibition or event?
I recently went to Angie Lewin’s “A Natural Line” exhibition at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and I was completely blown away. I love her work and have followed it for a long time but this was the first time I’d seen it up close and I left feeling totally inspired.

How do you take your tea?
Tea, quite strong, 1 sugar and probably too frequently!

What are you working on at the moment?
I’m currently working on a big project for York Hospital where I’ve created surface pattern designs that are going to be laser cut out of metal, powder coated and hung on the walls as decorative panels. I’m also working on some greetings cards designs. I love that my work is so diverse and that no one day is ever the same.

Thanks Rebecca for answering our questions and giving us a sneak peak into your life and work! 

You can click here view Rebecca’s Prairie Collection for Dashwood Studio and find all our stockists on our blog sidebar. If you get your hands on the Prairie collection and get crafty and make something with it, we’d love to see it – please send us an email and we’ll feature it on the blog!

Dashwood Designer: Bethan Janine

Name: Bethan Janine Westran
Collection: Wildwood
Website: www.bethanjanine.com


What does your career journey look like?

I studied fashion design at university where I discovered a love for printed textiles and illustration, after graduating I was lucky to get a job for a small company designing womenswear prints, which was a great learning experience.

A huge milestone for me was when I decided to go freelance in 2011. I moved back to my home town and spent a lot of time learning new things, taking courses and developing my own style as a designer.

What advice do you have for someone trying to break into this career?

Draw lots and lots! Find your own style and then don’t be afraid to put your work out there, I’ve made some great new contacts from having my work spotted on Pinterest.


How and where do you work best?

I have a light area with a large space for drawing and getting messy, keeping my computer area separate and a bit tidier! When I’m designing I like to get comfy and listen to retro tunes on the radio, anything I can sing along to!

I’m a bit of a night owl so I sometimes work quite late because this is when I feel the most creative, I even keep a sketch book by the bed for late night ideas.


In your words, what is your design style?

My style is fun and pretty, I like to combine delicate line work with bold shapes and colour to create something a little bit quirky.


Where do you seek inspiration?

I love nature and spend lots of time drawing in the garden and taking walks with my camera to gather inspiration. I’m also influenced by Japanese pattern, Scandinavian design, botanical drawings and children’s book illustrations.

Did something in particular inspire ‘Wildwood’?

We started with a couple of my existing patterns that were inspired by my surroundings of leafy Yorkshire, taking woodland walks and gathering leaves to draw in my sketchbook. I’ve grown up next to the woods so I often see foxes and birds in the garden which is why they feature quite a bit in my work.


Do you have a favourite design from the full collection?

The little mushrooms on red have turned out really cute but I just love it all! It’s so exciting to see my name printed on the selvage! And I can’t wait to see what other crafters make with the fabrics.

Will you be making anything with the fabric?

I was expecting the launch to be next year so I’m really happy it’s ready now! I might spend my Christmas holidays making a quilt!


If you could go back in time, what would you say to your 16 year old self?

Work hard and don’t give up on your dream career, It is possible to make a living from doing something you love!


 Quick fire questions!

What’s your favourite magazine and why? Mollie Makes – because I love crafting

What’s your favourite blog and why? Print and Pattern showcases some lovely work from the high street and independent designers, Decor 8 for the gorgeous interior ideas and Poppytalk for diy /craft inspiration.

What’s your favourite place for inspiration? I like to visit the Yorkshire Sculpture Park as it’s such an inspirational and relaxing place, but my favourite gallery is the V&A in London.

How do you take your tea? I’m a bit of a coffee addict!

What are you working on at the moment? I have lots of new work on the go for the studios I work for which will be shown at Indigo in Paris and Surtex in NYC and I’ve just finished a couple of exciting craft projects for a magazine which will be coming out soon.


View Bethan’s Wildwood Collection here.