Master 5 Complex Pattern Techniques in 2 weeks

Master 5 Complex Pattern Techniques in 2 weeks - student project


Here are all the patterns I designed in the last two weeks.It's been extremely challenging to fit so much in such a short space of time but the experience has been invaluable. I managed to use all the techniques Bonnie taught us and have used several techniques in the one pattern which has been great practice(although my laptop has crashed so many times I now know I need to find ways of working with big files in a more efficient way)

I'm really pleased with most of the designs and will work on trying to make them into a collection for my portfolio. I ended up with a palette of 18 colours which at this stage is probably too much choice for a beginner as I found it overwhelming.I feel this is obvious as the pieces I have presented don't sit together as comfortably as I would like. It's good to know that going forward as it is something I can bear in mind when working.

I really enjoyed Bonnie's live Q&A and her advice regarding using more neutrals and the importance of simple blender prints was fantastic and something I am going to focus on.I really struggle with creating simple prints and feel I should create a large banner over my work area reading LESS IS MORE!


Phase 3 - Make a Geometric Pattern

I'm running a bit behind but got carried away with trying out different colourways! I always wanted to make a geometric pattern using the buttons I had drawn however it was a lot trickier than I expected but I'm pleased with the end result.

Phase 1 - Intro

My name is Cassandra Riley and I live in Northamptonshire in the UK.

I'm a stay home mum to two lovely boys (who are two and nine) and am currently exploring my great interest in surface pattern design whilst I'm having a break from my usual occupation as a embroidery artist. Bonnie's classes are fantastic so thought taking a workshop with her would be a great idea to make me focus and force me to create more purposefully.

Phase 2 - Sketch,scan & vectorize

Not so long ago I visited Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery as they have a great collection of Pre-Raphaelite paintings (which I love) however it was their collection of 18th century buttons which caught my eye and I found myself taking a great many photos. Seeing them all lined up and so different to each other was delightful and made you examine their different designs and wonder how they had been used. 

Being a bit of a nostalgic soul I pondered on how the buttons reminded of Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens.I always found the passage describing Amy treasuring a button which fell off Arthur Clennam's jacket particularly moving and a reminder of how memories and feelings can be invoked by the simplest of things.

So with Little Dorrit and all the lost owners of the buttons in mind, I decided to try and create a pattern collection called Birmingham Buttons.

My key themes were - delicate,worn,buttons,lace,faded,memories,precious,gloves,ribbon,heritage,love tokens.


Using the photos I took and other materials I had previously collected (such as lace)I started sketching.I also scanned the lace in so I could create my own textures.

I then vectorised my sketches in various different ways such as Image trace and tracing over with pen tool.I'm quite pleased with them but will see how they fair when colouring!









Floral Layered Pattern

I was delighted to see Bonnie's newest class as I have loved and learnt a great deal from her previous classes. I've never posted a class project before due to shyness I guess but I really enjoy seeing how varied and amazing other students projects are.

I usually work on a clear theme when working on my usual illustration work but decided to just start sketching and see what happened. I decided to try a layered pattern as I've wondered how these patterns are formed for a while now and love how rich the end result can look.