Friday, 31 August 2012


Welcome to Fridays installment of my ABSPD Surface Pattern Showcase. Such amazing work has been shared over the last few days. Im proud of each and every one of the ladies. 

Todays showcase is by none other than the lovely Laurie Baars:

Can you tell me a little bit about your background in Surface Pattern Design? 

I have always loved fabric, color, and patterns.  After getting a degree in marketing and working on the business side of publishing for 6 years, I went back to school for a degree in textiles, primarily focused on weaving and dyeing.  In that program, I was introduced to surface design and took classes in screenprinting, dyeing, etc.  I started using these techniques to create art quilts but all the while was longing for something that allowed me to sketch, play with color and see results more quickly.  When I began taking graphic design classes a few years ago, I realized that I loved designing digitally.  The ability to create so quickly and have access to an unlimited color palette really freed me up.  I found out about surface design as a career from a local illustrator I met who was selling her designs at Surtex.  I really wanted to get into it but wasn't sure that I had the design training or background necessary and there weren't any classes in it locally.

What made you apply for the ABSPD course and what have you gained from it so far?

I got laid off from my marketing job last year as my company was feeling the effects of the recession.  I've been using the time off to explore other career options and enhance my design skills.  I continued taking graphic design classes and when I saw the ABSPD class mentioned on a fabric design blog earlier this year I signed up right away.  It has far exceeded my expectations, giving me the confidence to start sketching and loosen up creatively.  I have been amazed at what has come out of me in the last 4 months.  The class has also given me an amazing creative support community of wonderful people from all over the world.  Feeling part of a community of designers all working toward the same goal has been invaluable.

Can you describe your style and what methods you use to create your designs?

Someone recently described something I was wearing as a combination of feminine, preppy and edgy.  I think that's also a pretty good description of my design style.  Although I'd replace preppy with "modern".  I am really drawn to a sophisticated, vivid color palette but am currently also playing a lot with black, white and neutrals. I take lots of photos for inspiration, hand sketch my designs, scan them in and then manipulate them digitally - sometimes I embellish with my Wacom tablet, add textures, etc.  I am still experimenting with new techniques and developing my style.  That's what I love about surface pattern design - the possibilities are endless.  

Where do you see your work progressing in the next few years, and what industry would you say you are aiming at? 

I'm going to continue to build my portfolio, develop my style, and work toward getting my designs licensed.  I'd like to find an agent and exhibit at Surtex or Printsource at some point.  I'd love to see my work used in interiors, on papergoods, and apparel.  

Please feel free to check out Lauries work here:

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