Design Development: Mushrooms

An insight into how I combine a variety of techniques to create my designs. This mushroom design uses hand illustration and watercolour effects.

Design Development: How I created my quirky mushrooms...

When out shopping I noticed a gorgeous mushroom design on bedding utilising block colour and offering a potato print effect. Needless to say it inspired me and I was left pondering the idea of a mushroom repeat until I got back into my studio. 

Once home I picked up my trusty sketchbook and a pencil to begin creating line drawings of a variety of different mushrooms. From these line drawings I created blocked out silhouettes using a marker pen.

With my mushroom silhouettes and case lines ready I began thinking about a variety of ways to bring something innovative to the way I coloured the design.

I’d recently treated myself to a big wooden board for stretching paper so I thought I’d put that to the test by experimenting with high pigment inks and water to create the psychosis effect caused by some mushrooms. 

After an afternoon of experimenting I had an A1 sheet full of unique textures in a variety of colours to play with. I scanned this into the computer, along with my pencil and marker motifs and began the digital process of creating my mushroom print.

I put all of my artwork into specialist software and used the silhouettes to work on a well balanced layout that would work for both wallpapers and fabrics. Once I had a layout I was happy with I added the case lines over the top then the watercolour effect textures underneath to add movement. 

Next I separated the watercolour textures (under the case lines) to create a variety of layers which fell into different places on top of each other to allow me plenty of variation when colouring.

The multiple layers of separations allows me full colour control meaning I can achieve full vibrant colour as well as offering tonal colourings using greens and blues with hints of neutral to balance out the design.

This design is available on home interior products via Spoonflower.

Do you want to work together to elevate your designs to the next level? Contact me here, or email

If you’re interested in working together on your next design project, or you would like to talk further about the content in this post, then you can contact me on