About Me

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Delicate designs with an illustrative edge - highly detailed surface pattern and illustration, inspired by life and created with love. Sarah Fleming is a graduate of Cleveland College of Art & Design, where she studied Textiles and Surface Design, specialising in design for the home furnishings and greetings market. Inspired by the detail and beautiful patterns found in nature and her surroundings, Sarah is motivated to achieve beautiful, highly informative observational drawings. She showed an interest in Art from a very early age and has developed a great passion for Textiles and Surface Design. This huge passion spurs her on to work extremely hard, full of enthusiasm to create new and exciting design ideas. Sarah has developed a detailed, tight drawing style which helps her to achieve her beautiful observational drawings. However, she is also able to work in a very sketchy, illustrative style too - showing her as a very versatile designer, capable of adapting where relevant to confidently produce designs for both the commercial and more niche markets. For work enquiries please contact Sarah at sarahfleming11@hotmail.com

Monday, 12 December 2011

Trade Shows and Exhibitions in 2012

During 2012 I am hoping to attend both the New Design Britain Awards in Birmingham at the end of January and Print Source trade show in New York at the beginning of April.
Some students that graduated from CCAD are showing at the New Design Britain Awards so it will be really exciting to see their work and get inspiration from all of the other brilliant Interiors companies/designers that will be exhibiting!
I am keen to attend both as they provide a great opportunity to see the high standard and quality of work needed to succeed in the industry and begin to network with professionals in the area I hope to enter after my degree.

for more info:

Tuesday, 6 December 2011


Having been looking at artwork by Mondrian and Picasso, and art movements like Cubism, Surrealism and Bauhaus, I have decided to add an abstract twist to my work. I will be drawing florals and foliage in a distorted, experimental way; cutting them up and putting them back together, using spots/lines/squares, rearranging and also leaving them unfinished to create abstract, geometric patterns.

The following images are amongst wide range of imagery that will be informing my project:

Abstract floral pattern by Jo Pierce, made up from crosses and dots

Surrealism drawing from ‘Surrealism’ book by RenĂ© Passeron

Fish to Fly’ wallpaper design by Johanna Basford, 2006

Colour Palette

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Final Major Project

I am in shock that I am researching and drawing for my final major project?! I can't believe that this is it, the biggy! I am determined to put to the test everything I have learnt over the past few years at CCAD and produce some work I can be extremely proud of!
My passion lies with Interiors and I particularly enjoy designing for wallpapers so this is what I will be doing for my FMP.
The title is 'Rejuvenation' - I aim to create floral wallpaper designs with an abstract, distorted twist so I am going to be really creative and experimental with my drawings and design development.
Below are a few drawings I have been busy working on this weekend.


Sunday, 27 November 2011

Tis the season!...

Image copyright to Sarah Fleming

Last week I went home for some much needed time with my family which was lovely! Whilst I was there I finished off my Christmas shopping and the lights in the village were switched on so I have got well into the Christmas spirit now.
I can't believe this will be my last Christmas with the girls at CCAD and my housemates in Hartlepool, it is crazy how quickly the time has passed.
So, I decided to make two chocolate logs - one for my housemates and one for some of the girls at Uni, as a thank you for being fabulous and to say Merry Christmas!

Baking is something I love to do, I find it relaxing and love being creative.
I am really pleased with how it has turned out - fingers crossed it tastes as good as it looks!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

It's the taking part that counts...

I am really keen to enter competitions during my final year at CCAD and thereafter. I think it is a great way of getting your name and work out there in the industry and getting noticed!
I am looking to enter The Bradford Textile Society competition again this year with designs from my minor project but for now I have created a digital design for a competition created by The Pink Pig company. I have used imagery that I did not get to use during my minor project create a design a sketchbook front cover. I have kept the pattern fairly simple and gone for a cute, ditsy floral design which I think will appeal to a wide range of girls and women.
Hope you like it!

Competition details available at - http://www.yourpiglet.co.uk/win-300-free-entry/

Monday, 21 November 2011

Product Board

I have been working hard the past few months to develop my CAD skills as I know what an important skill it is to have for the industry now, and I am really proud of the room setting I managed to create for my product board to show off my furnishing fabrics!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Minor Project Hand-In

My Minor project deadline is tomorrow so I have been busy tying up loose ends today ready to hand everything in. I am nervous because I have worked extremely hard these past weeks and I am proud of what I have achieved, really pushing myself and my skills to create some interesting, eye-catching designs. But I am excited to move on to my Final Major project now I have more of an idea what it is I want to do, however if that passes as quickly as this project has I'll blink and be graduating!!

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Nothing is perfect

This weekend I have been working really hard to further develop one of my original designs. I was not happy with it because I felt it did not compliment the rest of my fabric collection and so I have gone back to Photoshop to continue playing around to create something more successful.
Below are images of a variety of colour ways that I experimented with.

This is the final idea that I think I will be using a final. I am going to do some test digital prints to make sure that the colours and design compliment those in my other finals to make sure I have the best collection of designs I can.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Minor project deadline is looming...

The 8weeks of my Minor project are nearly up, and although I still have one more design to play around with I have started to think about creating room setting ideas to display my prints as the furnishing fabrics they are intended to be. I wanted something that would give me a variety of products to work with like cushions, curtains and blinds so I went to the library and flicked through a few Elle Decorations, World of Interiors and Mix journals to see what I could find.
The images below are of the photocopied images I found with my prints added on in areas. I have done these by hand as I found it quicker and easier to see how they would look, but if I can get my head around doing it on Photoshop/Illustrator then I will do it digitally for a more professional finish.

Let me know what you think!

Monday, 7 November 2011

Amanda Lincoln

The beautiful wallpapers above are by the surface pattern & graphic designer Amanda Lincoln.
I love these designs, they are simple but so very effective and the colour palettes are fresh and appealing. I have only featured two from the collection but lots more fabulous designs can be seen on her blog at http://amandalincoln.blogspot.com/
Hope you all love it as much as I do!!

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Sneak Peek

Here's a few pics of some of the prints I have produced over the past week.
Let me know what you think!

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Amazing Opportunity!

Basso & Brooke are holding a workshop in London to share their knowledge and expertise of digital print.
This is so exciting!! I love the bold, eye-catching prints this fashion design duo produce and to work alongside them to create prints would be such a brilliant experience! Sadly, I don't think my student loan will stretch far enough to pay for me to go but have a look on their blog for more info...
Photos taken from http://www.bassoandbrooke.com/blogs/

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Print, print, print!

This past week has been very hectic - digitally printed two designs which look fab and a few others almost ready to be printed, drawn out 5 koda traces for 3 designs ready to experiment with screen print techniques, bought and dyed lots of fabric for backgrounds ready to print on.
I am really pleased with how everything is going so far and very much looking forward to getting into the print rooms and experimenting!

Thursday, 27 October 2011


Doing some research at Uni and happened to stumble across the lovely work of Nathalie! Her designs are so fresh and feminine, I love it!
Would definitely recommend a little peek at her website

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Brain is buzzing..

I have been up and awake for just two hours and already have another design!
This one is also a further development of an initial design that I played around with. The sketchy floral and foliage motif is taken from a simple stick & ink drawing which did not look very appealing in my sketchbook, but once scanned into Photoshop and manipulated it has come alive! I simply but together a block repeat and duplicated that layer four times, changing the colours, rotating and overlaying them. For such a simple linear pattern, I think the overall design looks really effective.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Such a busy bee!

Today has been super busy - full day at uni, digital print workshop getting ready to print some test samples, drawing out repeat layouts onto tracing paper ready to transfer onto koda trace to experiment with screen print, more photoshop designs! I think it is fair to say I am working really hard on this project and really enjoying it!

This design is a development of the sparrow repeat that I showed in an earlier post with the cream background. I wanted to create a placement print with the motifs instead and I am really pleased with this outcome. Similar to the other placement print that I showed yesterday I think that this design could be used on a variety of products including curtains, cushions and blinds. I think this colour scheme works better than the last and fits in well with my theme "The Secret Garden"; the dark background and flat floral/foliage pattern on the bottom are dark and mysterious but the birds pop out from the design in brighter colours.

I have taken out the branch on this design where the bird sat on top of and put it on top of the flowers instead. This is due to the branch being used in another one of my designs and repeating imagery would limit potential selling opportunities in the future. I have made the flowers a little brighter this time to add a touch more colour to attract the eye which I think works nicely.

What do you think?

Thursday, 13 October 2011

further experimentation...

I have been busy again this morning with more design development ideas.
After a brief tutorial yesterday, I have decided that my earlier designs may be too commercial, and although they are beautiful and I am very pleased with them, I need to take the opportunities that I have whilst still at University to be as experimental and creative as I can be.
I am very used to being quite tight and precise with everything that I design - be it drawing, designing repeat layouts, printing etc. but I also need to play around with being a little looser, more abstract with the way that I work to be as versatile a designer as I can.

The design above is taken from the earlier idea with the flowers and mirrored magpies.
I have taken the other motifs out as they created a design very similar to what is already on the market and I need to be innovative with my ideas. So I have created a background in a similar way to that on the previous design, but added further layers - mirroring, rotating and changing the opacity using Photoshop to create quite an abstract base to work on.
I then took a section of branch next to the magpie and repeated it over the design, rotating and mirroring to produce the look of intertwined branches.

This similarly is taken from the previous magpie design, but instead of creating a repeat pattern I decided to design a placement print. I see this perhaps being used as curtains, bedding or cushion covers - the floral pattern along the bottom creating a pretty trim running along the edge of the product with the bird sitting in the corner.

This design consists of one sketchy floral motif repeated in different sizes and orientations overlaid to produce an abstract, quirky pattern.

I am really looking forward to the next few weeks and experimenting with design development even further. I hope after attending digital print and laser/robo cutter workshops I will be filled with even more creative ideas to produce some very innovative designs.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Design Development - initial ideas

I have been playing around with some design ideas using Photoshop for the past few days and feel I have created some really interesting initial designs.
I wanted to create designs that have quite a dreamy, mysterious feel taken from my visit to The Lost Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall - the grounds of a large country house, which was known as the “Sleeping Beauty” after being neglected for hundreds of years, overgrown with weeds but has now been revived, full of beautiful florals.

I love the colour scheme; I think it is dark and sophisticated with hints of brightness which attract the eye.
I am excited to continue working with design development and pushing these ideas even further to create a range of unique, creative furnishing fabrics.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Minor Project - selection of drawings

Third and Final year!

So I haven't posted for a while due to being massively busy with preparations for my final year at CCAD! - very scary, it's passing far too quickly!

I've been busy collecting research and imagery for my Minor project, for which I will be designing a range of furnishing fabrics using florals, foliage, butterflies, birds and insects as my theme.
Inspired by my time at Kate Usher and some of the beautiful designs I saw at this years New Designers show, I am hoping to play around with Photoshop and develop some really well executed digital designs, a technique I am yet to experiment with during my degree.

My collection of initial drawings is steadily growing, photos of which I will post soon, along with the concept boards I put together - showing inspirations, market research and colour, to give you all an idea of what I am working on!

Monday, 4 July 2011

Minor Project

First two drawings of my Minor Project, pretty pleased with how they have turned out :)
I hope you like them!