Sweet Annie again

Whoot Whoot!

The fabrics I designed for Kersenpitje have arrived. One in jersey, so perfect for T-shirts and dresses, and one in 100% cotton. That one has a sweet girl surrounded by birds at the bottom. It will be lovely as a skirt or dress. The quality and colors are so great!

Hope you like them too!

Sweet Annie fabric collection, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje

Sweet Annie fabric collection, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje

100% cotton fabric

Sweet Annie fabric collection, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje

jersey fabric

Sweet Annie fabric collection, by Els Vlieger for KersenpitjeSweet Annie fabric collection, dress mockup, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje

Sweet Annie Fabric collection just in time for spring!

I’ve been working on a new fabric collection the past few months and I’m so happy to finally reveal the results of the first small collection for Kersenpitje! The collection is called “Sweet Annie” and shows a little happy girl surrounded by funny birds in a cherry blossom garden. It’s got a bit of a nostalgic, retro touch with a campy twist.

It’s very suitable for skirts and dresses for both mums and their daughters.

Last year I designed the first Sweet Annie with a zipper pouch in mind. I redid an assignment for my MATS class for the gift market, so not exactly bolt fabric. And also I had her printed on postcards. When I met Isabelle from Kersenpitje she fell in love with the image of Annie and licensed her for her first fabric collection.

One is 100 % cotton and measures 155 cm. The second is in jersey and measures 165 cm. They’re digitally printed in Europe and available early March 2015.

The second collection will be announced in a few more weeks.

Sweet Annie, cotton, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje Sweet Annie, jersey, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje Sweet Annie, detail, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje Sweet Annie, detail hummingbird, by Els Vlieger for Kersenpitje Sweet Annie, detail girl, by Els Vlieger for KersenpitjeSweet Annie, zipper pouch design, by Els Vlieger Sweet Annie, cards design, by Els Vlieger

Wall Art on a tree slice

This is my contribution to the February Bootcamp assignment. We had to paint a scene on a piece of wood for wall art.

Firstly I drew a few flowery scenes in my sketchbook and ended up with my all-time favorite flowers: tulips!

Hop over to the Bootcamp gallery to view all the gorgeous pieces of my class mates! My submission is on the first page.

Tulips on wood slice, wall art by Els Vlieger Work in progress, tulips painting gouache, by Els Vlieger Tulips on wood, detail, wall art by Els Vlieger Tulips wall art, by Els Vlieger Tulips wall art, by Els Vlieger Gouache Tulips wall art, by Els Vlieger Study of flowers, by Els Vlieger Study of Tulips, by Els Vlieger Study of flowers, by Els Vlieger Study of flowers, by Els Vlieger Work in Progress, by Els Vlieger Work in Progress, by Els Vlieger

Bootcamp experience: Edwardian Brooches


Last year I participated in Lilla Rogers’ e-course Make Art that Sells, which turned out to be a brilliant investment in my very early professional art career that I only started that same month. Lilla Rogers -a well known American agent- also offers a less intense e-course: Bootcamp. She gets you “professional level assignments to stretch you to create fresh signature pieces that are ready to sell in multiple markets. Each assignment will be in two stages – firstly a ‘mini’ (on the first Monday of the month) to ease you in, and then a main assignment (on the second Monday of the month) to help you turn your sketches and initial ideas into a full blown piece that is ready to sell. Each month you will have three weeks to complete the assignment.” The January assignment was Edwardian brooches for a journal cover. Firstly I collected some examples at Pinterest and sketched them in Japanese ink. For this I use a small brush and try to be as spontaneous as possible, so no drawing in pencil first. I like the thickness of this type of ink, it dries quite slowly though. Edwardian broochEdwardian broochSome fierce lady with brooch and bearPeacock lady I wasn’t sure which direction to go and made a pattern in Illustrator in basic black and white. Edwardian jewelry pattern When you think of a journal cover a pattern is always a good idea, but I didn’t like this particular one very much, I thought it was somewhat uninspired and I wanted to make an illustration instead. The icons, or little drawings in black and white, will go in an archive: I’ll use them some other time (that’s something I’ve learned and used since my first Lilla Rogers’ course). A few years back I did a few paintings using gouache and one of them is a painting of a crow wearing a top hat. Lord Crow I thought it would be nice to make a piece that would go together with that one. When I walked the dog in the park and encountered some corvids I made up a little story about a magpie collecting her Edwardian brooches and other shiny jewelry. Back home I collected some Downton Abbey references (a few years post-Edwardian era, but Hey-who-cares?). The hats these women wear are great and I wanted to include one for my magpie. Downton Abbey These are some sketches. I like simple and bold compositions with nice details. preliminary sketch #1 preliminary sketch #2 preliminary sketch #3 For inspiration as well as reference I used some photo clippings of animals wearing jewelry. Volkskrant clippings This fabulous bird book, that has come in handy several times already, had a perfect magpie to sketch.

Great Bog Book on Birds

This book about the still life paintings of 17th century Dutch painter Jan Davidsz. De Heem (something from my past as an art historian) gave me good examples of abundant flowers, shiny objects and shells, but no jewelry. the Book on de Heem I used Beautiful flower still-life painting by de Heem So I also got myself some life reference by using this necklace that I hate to wear -since it’s so heavy with stones- but lovely to paint. Jewelry reference Work in progress: Magpie painting: work in progress This is the end result (I got a spontaneous kiss of my youngest son when he saw it, haha):


And the mock-up: Lady Magpie journal mock-up

Aussies’ Heaven

So this is how my painting turned out. I started it in acrylic but finished it in gouache.

Fender is seated in a comfy chair in the best landscape imaginable for an Australian Shepherd. A lot of  space to run and to herd sheep.

Fender, the Australian Shepherd sitting in a chair in a British landscape

Fender’s heaven