Exotic Orchids

These designs are inspired by an appreciation of the exquisite and unusual form of orchids in bloom. Orchids are both wonderfully ornamental and excitingly exotic in nature and they are meant to symbolise innocence, purity and beauty. 

The colour palette, composed by Kidspattern, is a lush selection of warm browns that are then offset by a silver-grey and fern-green.

This project was a part of my ongo­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion with Kidspat­tern. If you’d like to learn more about them please vis­it their web­site HERE. Alter­na­tive­ly, view the archive of our pre­vi­ous projects HERE, in which I dis­cuss in detail the his­to­ry and nature of our work.

All cloth­ing-mock­ups pre­sent­ed here are pro­vid­ed cour­tesy of Kidspat­tern and are used for visu­al­i­sa­tion pur­pos­es only.

Pattern Design Development 

This pat­tern series uses a selec­tion of dif­fer­ent tech­niques, rang­ing from pho­to-based dig­i­tal prints, through mixed media, to also incor­po­rat­ing hand-drawn ele­ments and vec­tor-based, cost-effec­tive flat prints.

Dur­ing the design process I fre­quent­ly mar­velled at the beau­ty of orchid flow­ers. They have such an alien mys­tique about them, which real­ly dis­tin­guish­es them from oth­er flow­ers. I think the hand-drawn ele­ments with­in these pat­terns par­tic­u­lar­ly illus­trate this because they accen­tu­ate the love­ly detail­ing with­in these rare flow­ers, per­haps more so even than the com­pli­men­ta­ry pho­to­graph­ic elements.

Pattern 1

This ele­gant, white-on-white, flo­ral is a full dig­i­tal print. It  is based on detailed pho­tographs of del­i­cate, grace­ful orchids, whose stems inter­twine into a chain-like mesh. This option is par­tic­u­lar­ly light, airy and dreamy. 

Pattern 2

This dig­i­tal print ver­sion incor­po­rates some of my hand-draw­ing, along­side the pho­to­graph­ic ele­ments. These ele­ments are arranged more reg­u­lar­ly, with more space around each stem. The colour palette of this design con­tin­ues to be neu­tral and soaks up some gor­geous auburn tones with­in it.

Pattern 3

In order to pro­vide an alter­na­tive ver­sion that was sim­pler and cheap­er to print and thus poten­tial­ly more ver­sa­tile, I turned the draw­ing of the orchid into a flat, sin­gle-colour vec­tor illus­tra­tion. I scat­tered this ele­ment around in a pol­ka-dot, in a rel­a­tive­ly small size. The neu­tral colour palette used across all the ele­ments here blends nice­ly togeth­er, par­tic­u­lar­ly when posi­tioned atop the cream background.

Pattern 4

Last­ly, here is a ver­sion of the sim­pli­fied Orchid pat­tern, in which the flo­ral ele­ments are enlarged and clus­tered clos­er togeth­er and more con­trast­ing, dark­er colours are used. It brings in the euca­lyp­tus shade of green present with­in the colour palette and com­bines it well with a milk-choco­late brown back­ground. This more autum­nal colour­ing is par­tic­u­lar­ly fit­ting giv­en the con­text of the col­lec­tion it was com­mis­sioned for. 

An Orchid in a deep for­est sends out its fra­grance even if no one is around to appre­ci­ate it