Thursday, 12 July 2018

How To Create A Seamless Pattern Repeat Workshop

Last month I was invited to host a repeat pattern design workshop with Spoonflower at the gorgeous fabric store Sew Over It in London founded by the lovely Lisa Comfort.
I teach regular workshops and love to share my skills to inspire more creativity. I always start my print design process with a drawing and from there turn my drawings into repeat patterns to create a finished surface pattern design. I was joined by eight lovely ladies who were keen to learn a bit more about pattern design, drawing and repeat pattern making.

Almost everyone will have owned a printed garment, piece of fabric, scarf among others in their lifetimes as it’s one of the oldest and more traditional fabric printing techniques so it was great to be able to show the group the differences in the types of patterns designs across the Sew Over It fabric collections in store. There were simpler block pattern repeats where shapes are repeated in a regimented fashion as well as more organic all over pattern designs. The focus of today’s class was the latter an all over print design and how to create one from scratch.


I started by demonstrating the repeat pattern making technique using some very simple drawings using textured pencils, pens and crayons to create interesting marks onto paper. They were all surprised at how simple the technique actually is and so I set them off with the challenge to create their own collection of repeat pattern designs by the end of the class.

We had a variety of art materials to work with from pencils and pens to watercolours and crayons so the breadth of mark making was lovely. The class were inspired by their favourite things, nature and the Spoonflower catalogue. It was wonderful to see their designs take shape as they grew in confidence throughout the session. Lisa Comfort herself even popped in to say hi and see how everyone was getting on.

It was so lovely to meet such a great group of ladies and be able to inspire and encourage their creativity. They all left with a brightly coloured bundle of pattern designs that they were ready to scan and upload to Spoonflower to turn into future projects. I can’t wait to see what they do with them!

To find out more about creating print designs for fabric check out my book How To Print Fabric for simple tips and techniques to start printmaking at home.

Zeena X

PS. You can make my jumpsuit, find the fabric over on Spoonflower here and the free in the folds pattern here.


Sunday, 8 July 2018

5 Perfect White Summer Dresses You Need Right Now

Hey guys,

Double whammy this evening as i've had a lot of lovely comments on some of my recent summer outfits - thank you! - it's prompted me to share a bit more about my wardrobe choices and style finds in my Sunday evening browse at the shops online. 

I for one LOVE online shopping. Do you love or loathe it? I always get mixed reviews from friends and family but I absolutely love it as i'm sure you can tell from my insta stories... I have to say my current returns pile is a crime to living a plastic free life so it's not sustainable for certain and I promise to try harder. I think the key to nailing online shopping is knowing what size will fit you from each different store. For example I know i'm always an XS in Zara and an 8 in Topshop so once you have the right formula it's at least 80% more accurate and your more likely to be onto some winners. That said the returns pile is a definite thing so if you're prepared to be at the post office regularly then it's definitely for you.

An embroidered white dress is a completely timeless summer piece that will never fall out of fashion and something you must all have at least one of in your wardrobes. You can always dress them up or down, team with red lipstick or a flat sandal and you have a multitude of looks. 
So here are my top 5 dreamy white embroidered summer dresses that you need this invest in this summer. I promise you won't regret it. 

First up is this scallop edge pretty from Other Stories £85

Love the Broderie panels on this Topshop one £55

I've just added this one to my basket also from Other Stories £85

Loved the simplicity of this one H&M £49.99

Lastly there's this incredible one from Valentino £2480 - because a girl can dream right

Happy Shopping!

Zeena X


Blognic is back for 2018

Hey guys,

Hope you're all having a glorious weekend. Is it just me but is anyone else finding it increasingly difficult to stay in and work when the weather is so good? I think it's a general UK weather FOMO (fear of missing out)?! As it's so rare if I don't go and enjoy it it might not be good ever again..haha! Enjoy it while it lasts I say and try to combine work and sunshine...

That said i'm super excited to share i'm doing just that. Blognic is back for 2018! If you've been following me for a while you'll remember it from last year when I joined forces with Lynne from Papermash to bring some lovely creatives together on a very rainy Saturday. 

This year we've teamed up with the lovely Emma Block to create an even bigger Blognic for 2018 and she's even created this cute illustration for us to share.

If you haven't heard of the Blognic before it's a very relaxed afternoon meet up in Regent's Park and a place for creative conversation and a picnic. Plus it's totally free! All we ask it that you bring a blanket and some picnic food to share.

Blognic 2018 is on the 4th of August from noon in the lovely Regent's Park rose garden.

To find out more details and sign up for a free ticket head to our event page here.

Hope to see you there and meet some of you guys in real life this summer.

Zeena X


Tuesday, 8 May 2018

How to Print your own Fabric with Spoonflower

It's been a while since i've sewn anything for myself, i'm always sewing for clients or friends so there was no better excuse than the Spoonflower Spring round up. I was honoured to be asked to be a part of. I also have to admit as a screen printer and hand print addict it was my first EVER Spoonflower order (GASP!). So I was very keen to see the difference between my hand printed fabrics and their digitally printed ones.

If you've never heard of Spoonflower they are a platform from which you can create print on demand fabric, wallpaper, gift wrap, home decor and printed patterns. You simply upload a pattern of your choice or choose from one of their many and off you go. As a print designer I of course had to design my own print despite being very tempted by the incredible selection they offer. Inspired by my love of traditional mark making I went for a simple all over brush marks print i'd designed a number of years ago. 

I seem to be drawn to yellows and citrines ๐Ÿ’›at the moment so went for that colour way right away plus it being a Spring round up it was the perfect palette. I also worked it up in navy because you just can't go wrong with navy. FACT.  

If you're wondering how to turn a drawing into a repeat pattern that you can then print on demand like this one there's a great tutorial here i'd really recommend. It's much easier than it looks too.

Spoonflower have so many lovely fabrics to choose from it can seem an impossible task to know which to go for. I'd recommend ordering a sample pack so you can check out the look and feel of their selection before you buy. The print colour density also varies acorss the different types of fabric so it you have a particular look in mind then do get the samples. I did this and went for the linen cotton canvas ultra a gorgeous natural fabric with a bit of weight and nice texture. When it arrived I found it to be really lovely when printed and it washed well too. I love the more natural fabrics personally but have to say they have a great selection of velvets and more too that i'd love to try in the future.

It took me forever to decide what to make with my fabric when it arrived (I couldn't get over how good it looked and that it hadn't turned out to be a total disaster). I've always been more drawn to interiors projects like cushion making so I decided to mix it up and go for some dressmaking instead. I have been in love with independent sewing brand In The Folds patterns for a long time now and haven't had an excuse to make one until now. Even better this pattern is FREE over on Peppermint magazine. It's an advanced beginner so perfect for my rusty sewing skills.

It was a dream to sew, super simple and straight forward instructions meant I had it done in no time at all. I will say the pattern comes up on the bigger side so you might want to size down unless you like the oversized look. It's also quite long as it's designed for someone much taller than me so I ended up being lazy and rolling up the bottoms which looks great and saved me turning up the hems (total cheat!) but if you'd rather a cleaner finish then i'd suggest shortening on the pattern. 

As I was time poor (as usual) I also skipped adding any pockets which I totally regret as I love pockets in clothing, they're so handy. I mean where do you put your phone? So i'll be doing some unpicking this weekend and adding them in. 

So here it is my finished jumpsuit with some sunshine to go with it, I hope you like it. Thank you Spoonflower for sending me this dreamy fabric, it's already had lots of lovely comments on it's first wear today. If you'd like to order some of my brush marks print for a sewing project or have a go at uploading your own design you can do here.

Happy making!

Zeena X


Monday, 9 April 2018

The dungarees you'll be wearing all year round

Hey guys, 

It's been a really really really long time since i've posted here... and when I think about it I can't quite believe how quickly time has flown by. Running your own business and juggling everyday life seem to make time fly by and writing blog posts gets pushed further and further down the to do list. Well i'm pleased to announce i've finally made time to sit down and write a new post, one of my new year's resolutions for 2018 is to write more so here goes!

I wanted to share some exciting news, if you're a fan of sewing and dress making then you will love the brand new dreamy Mila Dungarees sewing pattern from the fabulous Tilly and the Buttons. I was honoured to be asked by Tilly to model for her newest pattern and I can tell you they are as comfy as they look and much easier to sew than you would think too. If you're new to dressmaking or really want to give making your own clothes a try then check out Tilly's clothing patterns and give it a try.

Here are some snaps of the designs taken by the talented Fanni Williams Photography.

Zeena X


Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Exciting news - My First Book is arriving soon!

I can't believe how long it's been since i've blogged... it's one of those things that when you run your own business like I do always it ends up at the bottom of a very long to-do list - sadly!

So to get back into blogging I have some very exciting news to share and this will also explain why I have been ever so busy over the last year! I am very pleased to announce the soon arrival of my debut book 'How to Print Fabric - Kitchen-table techniques for over 20 hand printed home accessories'If you're following me on Twitter or Instagram you'll already know all about this as i've been sharing lots of sneaky peeks. 

So to share a bit more about the book and my inspirations... I wanted to share my skills, ideas and the techniques I use to create my print designs for fabrics but also for those of you that wanted to do it at home. I have so many lovely people come to my printing workshops that would like to continue using the skills they have learnt at home but worry they might need lots of space or expensive equipment. The answer is no and in my book I show you how to use everyday household objects such as a lint roller to print with. I also use elastic bands for printing with, cardboard tubes and the end of a pencil! 

I've collaborated with the wonderful team at Stitch, Craft, Create to film some HOW TO video snippets of projects in my new book. Have a watch here

You can pre-order your copy of my new book on AMAZON or via my website for a signed copy that will arrive with a special gift!

To celebrate the arrival of the book we'll also be running a Blog Hop together, so i'm kicking this off here! Keep your eyes peeled for where we go next!

I hope you enjoy reading it & happy printing!

Zeena x


Friday, 10 January 2014

Visit us at HOME 2014.

Make sure you stop by our stand at A42 
to see some new treats for 2014. 
Click for more info about the show.
See you there!

New Year, New You, New Skill...


Monday, 19 August 2013


Thank you Craft Makes! 


Sunday, 18 August 2013

The Apprentice

Did you spot Zeena on the recent series of The Apprentice?!

You can still watch online on Youtube, Series nine, episode ten!


How To Create A Seamless Pattern Repeat Workshop

Last month I was invited to host a repeat pattern design workshop with Spoonflower at the gorgeous fabric store Sew Over It in London f...

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