Kid Art— to Custom Bedding with Spoonflower

Have you heard the latest and greatest? Spoonflower— the company that lets anyone become a fabric designer (like me!)– now let’s you design your own bedding!! What?!?! I have about 1,001 ideas for my own bedding, but for this (sponsored) collaboration with them, I am going to show you how I took my son’s drawings and made him the bed of his quirky little dreams.

The Backstory:

My son was supposed to be sharing a room with his little brother who is 2. It wasn’t working out because the older kids like to stay up later reading in bed, and they also get up earlier to go to school. So my 6 year old son had been sleeping on a camping mat on the floor of his sisters’ room for months. We recently moved his bed out of the “boy” room and brought it in to the new “big kid” room.

Now about the bedding:

First off let me say— I had an idea of how this was going to go, but it didn’t go according to my plan (does it ever when there are kids involved?!).

A few weeks ago I sat my son down and told him he was going to design his own bedding, and wasn’t that exciting? He said “yes,” but and then told me he wanted his bed to be a fort. No, no, that is not what we’re doing here buddy, I just want you to do some drawings that I can put on your blanket! I handed him some sharpies and white paper (to make it easy for scanning and switching colors) and after he sat in his chair for 20 min he came to me and said “but I just don’t understand how my drawings will stick to the bed. They’re just going to fall off!!!” I tried to explain again, showing him my painting on the wall and the dress I’d made with that fabric (Spoonflower Fabric). After a lot of back and forth (like an hour, I swear) this is what he drew for me:

That would be a drawing of the downstairs, the stairs, and his room with lots of beds in it. Ummmmm he still hadn’t understood.

So this is where I changed the plan. I said “thank you!” took the drawing and told him it would be incorporated with other previous drawings he’d done on his own.

Plan B: use drawings we already had.

Here are the drawings I used from his sketchbooks:

Here is my suggestion for letting your kid design their own bedding:

Either start with a black and white design that you can convert to a color profile that coordinates with the rest of their bedroom, OR give them a limited palette of colors to work with.

If you don’t want pink and orange bedding in a room that has mostly blues and greens, then you have to give your child limits. Only hand them blue and green paint, oil pastels, colored pencils, markers or whatever art supplies they’re going to use. During “Plan A” I had given my son different sized black sharpies because I knew I was going to convert the color to chartreuse to match his sister’s beds (and black and white is the easiest for selecting color in photoshop).

Now before I tell you what I did to manipulate them and create the repeat, I’m going to give you a few specs about the bedding:

  • It’s made of 100% Natural cotton sateen duvet cover
  • Available in Twin, Full/Queen, and King
  • The design is printed on the front and back
  • Hidden zipper closure (I was happily surprised with this one see photo below!)
  • Comforter ties (not sure what those are but the website says this..)

Let me tell you, that Italian cotton sateen is incredible. It looks and feels so good and the color comes out very vibrant!

When you are creating your bedding, you want to think about the size of your bed in relationship to the elements that repeat. I made the duvet with large elements (around 12-18″) and the sheets with smaller (about 6″), because I think that is the most visually appealing.

**Because you are making something large, you will need the image to have a high resolution (so it doesn’t end up pixelated when printed). Scan it as big as you can, or if you don’t have a flatbed scanner like me, use a DSLR camera. Take the photos in good lighting so you can use a lower ISO and have a less-grainy image.

Here is the sheet set with his black and white drawings at a smaller scale. I like how some of his drawings were darker than others. (I didn’t actually manipulate that, it was just how he drew them.)

How to change the color on a line drawing:

Okay, so now I want to show you how I changed the color of the drawings in Photoshop before using the “Textile Designer” Extension to make the seamless repeat.

First I made a blank 24″x 24″ file so that the repeat pattern I created would be large (a twin duvet is 68″x86″ .

In order to get just the drawings into the blank document I selected a “color range” and clicked the grey lines of the drawings (see above). Then I dragged the selected image into the new doc ( you do this because you want the drawing but not the background image of the paper).

Once it’s in there and you have moved everything around where you want it, Double click the layer (in the box on the right). A box that says “Layer Style” comes up. Check the box next to “color overlay” and click the + sign.

Now you want to click the little square on the right that has a color in it (mine is chartreuse in that photo above). A box called “Color Picker” will pop up (photo above). Here is where you can pick your color or add a hex code for a specific color. I used my Spoonflower Color Map to find a color that was similar to my daughter’s bedding.

Even though my girls’ bedding is more yellow than green, I wanted his bedding to be a little greener so I found a hexcode for something similar but darker. I used BBB020 but EFCC00 would’ve been almost exact. (I wanted more contrast with the white.)

Here is where I played with the layer style again. You see this drop-down menu over on the right? Clicking on those words changes how the color overlay looks (I don’t totally understand them all but just click and see what they do!). To achieve this look I clicked “lighter.”

And there you go! I changed his drawings from black/grey to green! woohoo! Thank goodness I have graphic designer friends who can show me this stuff.

That is the quilt I made for him when I was pregnant. I made them for each of my babies. Except my second child. Oops.

He is currently out of town at his grandparent’s house and I can’t wait for him to come home and see his new bed with his “bad guys and good guys” all over it! (And also that it’s not just pieces of paper that I taped to a blanket like he’d envisioned. Hahahaha!!!!) Thank you Spoonflower!

…….And do you want to see what my designs look like on beds? You can now see what each design on spoonflower will look like on a bed with a simple click!

So fun right? Go here to check out all my designs on bedding!

6 thoughts on “Kid Art— to Custom Bedding with Spoonflower

  1. Kaz Hauser says:

    What a great project. Brava! I love duvet covers with ties—they’re on the inside, in the corners & sometimes in the middle of the seam too, for tying-in the comforter to keep it in place. Down comforters often come with fabric loops on the corners, and if not, I’ve been known to add them.

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