Susan Bates - Designing the “All is Calm” Patterns for StitchableCards
Posted on November 15 2022,
Above designs and sketches by Susan Bates, apart from top left wintery landscape artwork by Lucy Grossmith and top centre, fox artwork by Mikki Butterley.
Having previously created a couple of sets of stitchables Christmas designs in traditional bright reds and greens I wanted to move away from this colour palette and go with something much softer. So for the ‘all is calm’ designs I’ve incorporated icy blues, powder blues, minty greens and of course white for the snow. There are a few shades of brown in here too, and some rich reds and oranges, to add depth, detail and variety to the designs.
For the imagery of this set of designs I was inspired by snowy landscapes and the flora and fauna of winter. The design that started off this whole set was the hare.
Hares are common in Britain but they are hard to see as they often hide in the long grass. It’s only when they make a sprint across farmland that we sometimes see them!
They are often depicted in British folk art and are interpreted as having a magical, mystical quality. They are often thought to represent fertility and new beginnings in pagan art.
My hare is full of boundless energy; leaping across the snowy fields. The plants in the foreground and the bare branches of the distant trees add a bit of detail to the design and place him in a perfect wintery setting!
After creating the hare design I wanted to depict a friendly snowman in a warm red hat and scarf. We don’t get much snow here in the UK, where I live, but when we do the first thing children do is to go out and build a snowman. My little snowman is peering through the pine trees – hopefully you think he looks nice and friendly!
After a walk in the snow it’s nice it is to get back into the warm, sip some hot chocolate - and if you’re lucky enough - sit next to an open fire!
My next design shows a cozy house set in a snowy landscape, with smoke curling up from the chimney.
A curving path through the snow leads you to the cheerful red front door. Some simple foliage and flowers in the foreground are fun to stitch and add a bit of bright colour to the scene.
This design is fairly simple to stitch, as it’s made up of the rectangular shapes of the house itself, the windows and the door.
The path, flowers and foliage add some organic shapes to the design. I think that all of these elements combine to make a pleasing picture!
As a designer I always love a floral design, so this was no exception, for this set of designs!
I’d seen lots of really lovely folk style floral designs around and I wanted to create my own – so I decided to sketch up a symmetrical floral design for the heart-shaped stitchable template.
I used the red and orange shades for the flowers and I thought that the leaves and stems of them would be really pretty in emerald greens. I decided to put these colours on a powder blue background, as this looked like a really nice colour combination to me. The little white dots represent flakes of snow and tie in with the wintery theme.
Of all of my designs in this set, my favorite has to be the hare. I love his energy; he looks so full of life and vitality, as he leaps across the fields! Do you have a favorite design from this set, and if so, which one?