Turning hand drawn artwork into a repeat pattern can be relatively easy and look quite professional using some simple steps in Photoshop. Patterns and textiles go together like peas and carrots, so we we thought we’d give you a little pattern know how to get going on making artwork for our new Duvet Covers! All you need for this tutorial is your original artwork, a scanner, and Photoshop. First we will cover how to do a simple block pattern and then a half drop pattern.
A block pattern is when the motif repeats itself side by side in a horizontal and vertical, grid-like arrangement.
A half drop pattern is basically a brick pattern turned on its side.
Taking your original artwork and turning it into a pattern is a great way to obtain the pixel requirement for the duvet covers without compromising the quality of your image. When uploading designs for our Duvet Covers we recommended file sizes that are 7,632 x 6,480 pixels:
Each specific Duvet size is as follows:
- Twin (including bleed) 70” x 90”
- Queen (including bleed) 90” x 90”
- King (including bleed) 106” x 90”
1. Create or select artwork
It is best to select artwork (or a motif in the pattern world) that will interact well with each repeated image, both vertically and horizontally. I used watercolors to create my motif. This technique prints nicely and using shapes is a simple way to create an all over pattern that interlocks with each repeated design.
2. Scan artwork
Now your are ready to bring your motif into the digital realm. If you want your repeated image to be the same size as your physical artwork you will want to scan it at 300 dpi. If you want to increase the size of your artwork I would suggest scanning at a larger dpi. For instance if you want to double the size of your artwork increase to 600 dpi.
3. Crop image to desired motif
Make any level or color adjustments if necessary after the scanning process. Be sure to save this image for when you go back to make the half drop version. Select the entire image and push Command+Shift+J to put artwork on its own layer.
4. Go to Image > Canvas Size and increase the width by 200 percent.
Be sure to click the box in the upper left corner where it says anchor, so the image stays to the left hand side of the canvas.
5. Hold Option+Command to make a duplicate image, dragging the image to the right slightly overlapping the first layer.
Merge all layers. Then use the blend tool to smooth out any line that may exist from the overlapping tiles. This step is import to making sure the repeat lines up perfectly and there isn’t any kind of slip up in the registration.
6. Use markers to define where the image repeats and crop.
It is important to make sure where you select to crop is in a new spot on the image then the original artwork. This is again so there won’t be a line in the registration.
8. Again, use Option+Command to duplicate the image and drag down to slightly overlap the first layer. Merge the two layers and blend where they overlap. Use markers to find repeat and crop.
Here you will want to save. This cropped image will be your motif, which you will use to fill any canvas size you heart desires.
10. Go to Image > Canvas Size and put in 13,500 pixels by 11,462 pixels.
You may want to increase pixel size slightly if you plan on playing with the pattern scale using the Redbubble uploader.
12. Here you can adjust scale to make the pattern motifs larger or smaller.
Click OK. Save file as a JPEG or PNG. This is your new duvet pattern!
13. Now you have artwork ready to upload for our new Duvet Covers. Don’t forget that this artwork translates well as a matching pillow, case, or print as well!
Fun Fact: When uploading your work onto the site you have the options of adjusting scale, centering the design, and adding a background color.
Half Drop Pattern: Ready to learn another trick?
Now,let’s go through the steps to make a half drop repeat (or the sideways brick pattern). I am going to be little more brief here in the hopes that you did the first tutorial, well…first.
1. Increase Canvas Width by 200 percent.
Use the original file. The one that I told you to save in the beginning. Bring the marker to the horizontal center. Make two duplicates using option+ command and drag over. Position so that the bottom of the top motif meets the top of the bottom motif. Again slightly overlap. Merge and blend.
2. Increase Canvas Width by 200 percent a second time. Make a duplicate, drag over horizontally, merge, and blend.
4. Increase Height by 200 percent. Duplicate and drag vertically. Find repeat and crop.
This will be a wider repeat image.
5. Select All, go to Edit > Define Pattern and click ok.
6. Go to Image > Canvas Size and put in 13,500 pixels by 11,462 pixels.
7. Layer > New Fill Layer > Pattern.
And look at you! Now you have a second pattern available. Half drop is one of my favorite repeats. It is an easy way to make some unique polka dot patterns. The possibilities are endless from here. Maybe add a border to your duvet. A little contrasting pattern that skims off the sides of the bed. Work out new ways to repeat your images. The pattern world is endless.