New fabric design: Butterfly Mail

butterfly stamps duvet.jpg

Here’s my entry to this week’s limited colour palette Spoonflower design challenge. The brief was to create a design using four specific colours - spearmint, forest green, rosé and bronze - and beyond that the theme was left open to interpretation.

The way I often approach these challenges is to go through my list of design ideas and see whether there’s one that would fit the brief. One of the design ideas that I had jotted down for inclusion in my “Gossamer and Petals” collection was oversized butterfly postage stamps. As a lifelong collector of ephemera and philately, the travel-themed novelty prints of the 1950s featuring stamps and luggage labels have always appealed to me. My aim was to create a design that would call back to those original 1950s prints.

butterfly stamps preview.jpg

Some of the vintage postage stamp and travel-themed fabrics I took my original inspiration from are shown below. To add authenticity to the stamps themselves I researched real vintage stamps from around the world, and traced typography and border art; the postmarks are also taken directly from original ephemera. To create the butterfly artwork I referred to a variety of vintage lepidopterological fabrics tand illustrations - I didn’t want them to be too realistic, but to be somewhat stylised and evocative of midcentury designs. For a little personalised touch, the countries and locations referenced in the stamps and postmarks include places that are special to me.

This design is intended to coordinate with other prints in the Gossamer & Petals collection.