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

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Sarah Fleming Designs - 2013 review

So, 2013 is almost over and what a year it has been!
I have achieved so many things I never thought possible and I could not be more proud.

Taking the plunge and finally launching 'Sarah Fleming Designs' was probably one of the most scary yet exciting things of my life nevermind of this year! I am overwhelmed with how well my design work and products have been received, and I cannot thank you all enough for your support.
Drawing and designing is something I have always had a passion for and aspired to do as a career, and with your help it has slowly started to come true in 2013.
So my first 'Thank You' goes to YOU - my family, my friends, my fellow designers, and all the supporters of my work! I could not do this without you.

I also did my first craft fairs this year. 
These were a great success and I loved every minute!
As I previously blogged about, it was a very intimidating experience at first putting my products out there for the public to see but I couldn't have wished for it to have gone better. 
So another 'Thank You' has to go to all of my wonderful customers and fellow stall holders - I can't explain how much I appreciate your custom and support!

This leads me quite nicely to my next 'Thank You' - to those who have commissioned me to create special bespoke pieces of artwork just for them.
Here are a few examples from 2013:

Alex and Mike Williams - wedding stationary

My brother - a drawing of his dog, Roxy

Claire Jennings - a portait of her son, Lucas

Michelle Ford and Paul Marshall - a portrait of their son, Joshua

Thank you so much for the opportunity to create these pieces! I thoroughly enjoyed each project and I am so pleased that you love the finished pieces :)

I think I have saved my biggest achievement until last... 

My internship with Visual Imprint in Australia during February and March.
I can't describe what an amazing experience this was and I will be forever thankful to Suzi and Denis for the opportunity! 
I would never have thought in a million years that I would have travelled to the other side of the world to stay and work with a family whom I had never previously met...but I did! Haha.
And boy am I glad I did!

Designing a new collection for Visual Imprint was a pretty daunting task for me as a designer just starting out, but Suzi's faith in my skills was amazing and I am super proud of the outcome we have produced!
The collection of designs is being received amazingly well in Australia and Visual Imprint is going from strength to strength. 
I would like to wish them and all of the other wonderful designers that I had the privilege of meeting during my stay all of the luck and success for 2014! You are such a great group of people and deserve it!

As for 2014, I hope to continue developing 'Sarah Fleming Designs' hopefully launching more designs and products in the new year.
With hard work, passion, determination and your support I am sure 2014 will be a great success!

Thank you and Happy New Year!

Sarah x

Monday, 23 December 2013

Craft Fairs - experience and advice

During November and early December, I exhibited at 6 different craft fairs. These were all Christmas fairs so my patterned products were competing against the usual novelty festive things found at fairs - lots of hand made decorations, hand made Christmas cards and other bits'n'bobs which immediately made me nervous. I was already anxious as to whether or not people would like my products/designs without having to compete with other stalls that may be seen as more relevant to the time of year. 

Pocket mirrors - £2.50 each or 4 for £8.00

I know that a lot of my fellow SPD friends are also taking the plunge into exhibiting/selling their work so I wanted to write about my experiences to hopefully help, offer advice and give confidence! 

So, I decided to test the waters and do my first fair at home. I opened my (parents') house to family and friends to come over and see what stocking fillers I had. I post on facebook about new designs, illustrations and products quite a lot, and so the people invited had an idea of what I had to offer but I wanted to give them a sort of 'try before you buy' opportunity. Mum and I set everything up and between 2-8pm that day we had endless amounts of people through the door! It was amazing! I couldn't believe the response, feedback I received about my work and products, and how successfully the whole day was. I had lots of sales, with people buying across all of the products I have - tote bags, pocket mirrors, notebooks, greetings cards and Christmas card sets. 
This definitely built my confidence up for the public fairs that I had to come! So, that would be my first bit of advice - if you can, have a few people over to test the waters with your products. It's your family and friends who are going to be your biggest fans and tell their family and friends about what you're doing so it's definitely worth trying. I even had people show an interest in buying wallpapers as I had my design portfolio on display and lots of people flicked through and loved my designs! So even if you don't get many sales on the day, it could bring in business from other avenues!

Me with some of my products at my house

Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd November, I had my first two public fairs. These were very slow and I only had a few sales - most of which were from other stallholders. I tend to be quite shy around people that I don't know and sometimes struggle to explain how I'm a surface pattern designer as some people can't quite grasp it. However, I pushed myself to talk to people and explain that everything had been drawn by hand and put into patterns on the computer, by me! So this would be my 2nd piece of advice - TALK TO EVERYONE! If someone comes by your stall, don't be afraid... just stand up and smile, say hi and explain a little about yourself. It makes them feel welcome, makes them see that what you're offering is exclusive to you and a lot of time and effort has gone into it! Also, talk to other stallholders. As I said, I had a few sales from people on other stalls and also found out about other fairs that may be of interest to me and the type of products I have. I even had invitations to exhibit at fairs from stallholders organising their own. So even if the sales aren't coming in thick and fast, use your time to network and make contacts!

Notebooks - available A5 £3.00 and A6 £2.50

The next 3 fairs that I did were in association with different charities - MacMillan Cancer Support, Kickstart (a local charity in memory of Emily, school friend of mine, and Teenage Cancer Trust). These were very well advertised locally and brought in a lot of people and sales. I like to support charities where I can, so these fairs were great! 

My final fair was 1st December at Driffield High School, with over 85 stalls it is the biggest fair in East Yorkshire so I couldn't wait to get set up and see what the day brought. There was a wide variety of products on offer. Once I had set up I went for a walk around while mum manned the stall and I could see that my stall was very different from everything else, as it had been at the previous fairs. This still, 5 fairs later, made me a little apprehensive but things went really well! I gained more great feedback and thoughts on other products I could maybe have on offer next year which was lovely. 

Overall, I have had a very positive experience with the fairs I have taken part in. I have made great contacts both with customers and other stallholders, got my name out into the local area more (and over to South Africa where one of my customers was taking her pocket mirrors to family!), and gained confidence as a person and in my abilities as a designer. I have been given that much needed boost to carry on doing what I'm doing and developing my 'Sarah Fleming Designs' brand - including my wallpaper collection!

I hope this post if helpful and interesting for you all, and I wish you all the luck with any fairs you are taking part in - go get 'em! :)

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Here's to big things for 2014!

Sarah x 

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

'Tis the Season!...

...to be super busy in amongst all of the festive crazyness! 
haha :)

I'm not complaining though...being busy is a good thing!

The Farm Shop where I work part time becomes a little winter wonderland over the Christmas season; Santa in his Grotto, Christmas trees and all the decorations and LIVE REINDEER! So as you can imagine, it is super busy with families coming to visit and do a spot of Christmas shopping.

When I have not been working there,  I have been exhibiting at 6 different Christmas Fairs across East Yorkshire, which were all a great success.
It was the first opportunity for me to really let people see my design work and get first hand reactions to what I am doing. This was quite daunting but feedback has been nothing but positive, which is amazing! 

As ever, requests for wallpaper and fabrics with my designs on are growing so in the new year my main priority is to find a manufacturer so I can get the ball rolling with having some designs printed.
Seeing my designs as wallpaper and fabrics would be a dream come true!

So, I had better go make the most of this day off and get to it but don't forget I have lots of fantastic stocking fillers available via my facebook page...

Notebooks, Pocket Mirrors, Tote Bags, Notelets and Christmas Cards

Sarah x 

Monday, 11 November 2013

Greetings cards/ Notelets

And here they are.... the new range of patterned greetings
cards/ notelets exclusive to Sarah Fleming Designs!

These lovely cards come with a white envelope and are beautifully packaged - all for just 80p each!

Please feel free message Sarah for more details or to order at sarahfleming11@hotmail.com


Thursday, 31 October 2013

Christmas Shopping Event

I recently hosted my first Christmas Shopping Event at my home which was a huge success! Hurrah!
Just want to say a MASSIVE thank you to everyone who came today. Your support is so greatly appreciated! I am overwhelmed with how many of you came and the amazing feedback I have received.

Alongside selling my tote bags, pocket mirrors, notebooks and christmas cards I also had a little bake sale for Macmillan Cancer Support. This charity is very dear to me for a few personal reasons so I was overwhelmed when I found we raised over £60! 
Again, I can't thank my family and friends enough for their help and support - the money will mean a lot to the charity. 

I thoroughly enjoyed the day and I am eager to continue getting out and about showing my products to the public! 

For those interested, I will be at the following events with my tote bags, pocket mirrors, Christmas cards and notebooks.

10am-3pm Saturday 2nd November at SUTTON MASONIC LODGE, Sutton

12-4pm Sunday 3rd November at THE MEYERS on Chamberlain Road, Hull

10am-4pm Friday 15th November at St Mary's Church Hall, Beverley

7pm-10pm Thursday 21st November at Cottingham Parks Golf and Leisure Club, 

All designs exclusive to Sarah Fleming Designs

Pop along and grab some fantastic little stocking fillers for your loved ones for Christmas!
Look forward to seeing you 

For those who may not be able to attend these fairs but would like more information on my products, pop over to Sarah Fleming Designs or drop me an email - sarahfleming11@hotmail.com

Sarah x

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

New Products Available!

I have been a little quiet recently due to being super busy working on some new products... and here they are...

I am really pleased to finally reveal my tote bag and notebook collections with you! 


Little Woofer

£4.50 each



I am so proud of these products and have had nothing but great feedback from happy customers so far!
They make fantastic gifts for loved ones and cute little stocking fillers for...(dare I say it?!)....Christmas!!! 
The notebooks and tote bags are available alongside my pocket mirrors and christmas cards and can be ordered via email at sarahfleming11@hotmail.com

Would be fantastic to hear what you guys think :)

Now I'm off to organise myself for my first lot of christmas craft fairs that are coming up very soon!
It's all coming together and proves hard work, determination and a passion for what you do definitely pays off :)

Sarah x 

Monday, 2 September 2013


A couple of weeks ago I posted this Foxglove illustration over on my facebook and twitter pages.
I received some amazing feedback about it so I was eager to get to work using Photoshop to create a pattern with it.

Having done some research into past designs which use a similar Foxglove motif, they all seemed to be quite stylized and put into fairly simple repeats. So, I decided to take a similar route with this design and , as I do with most of my patterns, let the illustration do most of the work.
I love the detail I have managed to capture using the fineliner so I thought the design would benefit more from a simple layout and softer colour palette to allow the drawing itself to stand out.

During my time at university, I experimented with what I called an 'unfinished' look to my work.
It only came around by accident but is so effective! 
Usually discovered whilst playing around with design development pages where I experimented with colour and media or when I had left a drawing partially done and moved on to something else, it just adds that extra bit of interest to a design. Don't you think?...
Well, I wanted to bring a little touch of colour into the pattern above without overpowering the delicate lines of the flower so I set about trying to introduce this 'unfinished' look into the design, just adding spots of colour in the petals of the flowers.

Would love to hear what you think!

Sarah x 

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Pocket Mirrors now available!

Pocket Mirrors designed by Sarah Fleming Designs now available!

We have 5 different designs to choose from.
A- 'Hey you Beautiful'
B- Bubbles
C- Flowers
D- Butterfly
E- Scissors
Each mirror measures 58mm and comes beautifully packaged in a small gift bag.

£2.50 each
4 for £8.00

They make great little gifts for friends and family for birthdays, as thank yous and dare I say it....Christmas stocking fillers!!

If you fancy treating yourself or a loved one, all you need to do is email sarahfleming11@hotmail.com with the designs you would like and the quantity. 

Huge thank you to those that have placed orders and the amazing feedback I have received so far :)

Sarah x 

Friday, 16 August 2013

Pocket Mirrors!

I am looking into having some pocket mirrors manufactured and 
would greatly appreciate your help!

All you need to do is comment below with the letters that correspond 
with the design(s) that you like the most or would be most interested 
in buying for friends/family.

Thanks for your time and help! 

Sarah x

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

New designs!

Above is the start of a new collection I have been busy working on since my little summer break.

When I came back, I must admit it took me a little while to get out of holiday mode and get my design mojo back but I am really proud of these designs and how the collection is starting to develop.

I spent some time writing lists, collecting inspiration (which is plastered all over my studio walls), putting colour boards together and brainstorming ideas as a way of working out what it was that I really wanted to achieve when going back into drawing and designing.
From doing this I have found that I am looking to develop a collection of designs that really describe me as a designer both in pattern and colour. Since graduating, I have been making a conscious effort to keep my hand in with drawing and designing as it is the one thing I would really like to pursue as a career. And although I have an ever growing portfolio of a huge variety of designs, I don't feel that I have a specific collection of designs that really describe my design style.

I like pretty designs but with a bit of an edge. 
I tend to create designs that allow my drawing style to speak for itself within the pattern as I feel that my illustrative drawing skills are quite strong so I like to keep the repeats themselves quite simple. 

Any feedback would be fantastic as this is a collection I would perhaps like to (at some point in the future) launch as wallpaper/fabric/products.

Sarah x 

Monday, 12 August 2013

Visual Imprint - rebrand!

The company that I interned with in Australia have gone through a bit of re-branding.

Formerly known as Belladonna Digital Imaging, the digital print company now trade as Visual Imprint
They are a home-grown Australian business who offer an exclusive and unique custom print service on a comprehensive range of Interior surfaces including wall coverings, soft furnishing fabrics, upholstery leather and vinyl, canvas, glass, ceramic tiles and much more!

As part of their re-launch, they recently exhibited at the Design + Decoration Expo in Melbourne, Australia.
I was super excited to hear that some of the designs I created for them during my internship would be displayed on their stand on various different products.

This has always been one of my favourite patterns that I created for Visual Imprint, so I was ecstatic to find out that it would be used to reupholster this super cool chair especially for the stand 

Then after what felt like eternity, the update came through whilst I was on holiday....

The chair at the show!!!
How fantastic does it look?!
The whole stand looked amazing, really showing the vast design and print capabilities of this amazing company. 

And let's not forget the beautiful cushions on display!
A few of my designs are in there and I even get a mention, which I cant thank Suzi & Denis enough for. I really appreciate all of the recognition they give me.

If you are looking for a custom digital print service, I can't recommend this company highly enough!

So there you have it.
What do you think of the designs and products?
Did you go to the Design + Decoration Expo yourself? What did you think?

Sarah x

Friday, 9 August 2013


My latest design 'Mystical' is now available via Society6 on a variety of products, including greetings cards, cushions, canvases, iphone cases and ipad cases!

Summer break

I have been a little quiet on here for a few weeks due to taking a little summer break from the studio.

I took a trip to the beautiful Albufeira, Portugal, which was delightful!
It was my first holiday in Portugal and I loved it; it is such a beautiful place and I had the best time.

I am back home now feeling relaxed and refreshed, eager to get back into the studio and get back into designing! So, keep a look out for teasers and updates on the very exciting, new project I have planned!

Sarah x

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Lampshade designs

Here are the designs I submitted to Quincy Lampshades for their new range.

The brief had a specific colour palette but Ruth was looking for a range of patterns from geometric to floral to quirky designs.
I found this a really fun project to do; the colour palette is fresh and attractive, and the freedom that came with the trends/themes meant I could really experiment and be quite playful with my ideas. 

Would love to hear what you think!

There were so many brilliant submissions and I'd like to congratulate those that were chosen! 
I am excited to see the final collection :) 

Sarah x