My Spoonflower Review – Eco Prints on Fabric

Who would have thought?! Maybe you have heard about ‘Print on Demand’ (POD). You can have custom fabric printed of your own images. I love that idea and really wanted to give Spoonflower a test run with some very unique images – Eco printing of course! ‘Get comfy, here’s my Spoonflower review, prints on fabric…

What is Spoonflower?

These days thanks to some amazing technologies there are a few companies that will allow you to upload your own images to be printed on a wide variety of materials including fabric. Spoonflower is a major custom print house. As an artist and designer that excites me so much! I am so ‘old’ that I remember when colour photocopy machines were invented; so this technology boggles my mind!

POD or ‘Print-on-demand’ allows almost anyone to be a designer. There is the option of just ordering printed items for yourself or to allow anyone to buy your designs. Since that option exists there are many many designers who have created designs that may be what you are looking for. It opens the options for unique supplies 1000X. I remember fabric shopping and not seeing what I liked – now I can choose from thousands of designs OR make my own.

You do not even have to be able to sew as you can also buy finished products in your choice of surface pattern. The art of creating these designs has a name; Surface Pattern Design. It’s a great way to be creative and also make some income when your designs sell. (like the affiliate program of amazon) There are many who create designs of repeating patterns and have become a small business owner through Spoonflower. These technologies allow anyone anywhere to be able to offer their art to anyone – how amazing is that?

What does Spoonflower sell?

At first I only thought about fabric but soon realized that they also have wallpaper, bedding, curtains, dining ware, and even wall hangings. The fabric choices is also quite extensive with over 25 types. (crepe de chine, basic cotton, cotton poplin, linen cotton canvas, organic cotton sateen, petal signature cotton, and even stretch knits, to name a few) There is a sample pack that can be ordered. The pigment inks used in Spoonflower’s printing process sit on the surface of the fabric. This is a very eco-friendly process as it eliminates waste ink and uses very little water. I share my thoughts in this video:

I chose to upload some of my designs that are digital scans of actual Eco Prints made by printing maple leaves on paper. These prints are not something that I could draw or use software to create so I felt it was going to be a challenge for this printing process. I also thought that they are something that is not as common as the typical rainbow and llama fabric designs.

How is the Print Quality?

I am quite impressed with the accuracy of the colours printed on my Spoonflower fabrics. If you look closely you will see the texture of the weave in these Tea towels (linen cotton canvas 16″ x 24″) that I ordered during a half price sale. The soft details picked up quite well as did the very fine font of quotes that I added to accent the leaves.

Can you sell on Spoonflower?

I am now able to share eco prints more readily since I can offer my designs to anyone. Spoonflower allows you to earn a commission if you sell your own designs through Spoonflower. (you do need to order a test swatch of your design first) Currently I have these 2 Tea towels & Wall hangings in my Spoonflower shop. If you have some images or ideas for custom fabric this is a great way to be the most unique & creative.

Consider your scale and sizes when you design. I figured it out pretty quickly and there are many resources on the site. Imagine how unique gifts or home decor could be designed. This changes so many things in the world of creating.

How I created my Original Eco Prints.

I enjoy using Nature’s help to get these magical prints from the tannins in leaves and a bit of iron.

I use a variety of leaves, added teas or tannins, to get imprints on the stacked paper. My preferred heat processing is to use the microwave to save energy. There are many ways to adjust your elements and get great botanical prints.

Now that I know how to be able to produce really good replicas of my prints I can expand my creative ideas… oh, imagine how lovely these would be in quilts?!

What do you think? Would you like to see these designs on your clothes, or home products?

Spoonflower Tea Towels:

Thumbs up! I am very happy with my purchase, watch for Spoonflower discounts (often) and sign up for emails. ‘Endless creative tools through this platform.

I have washed the tea towels and the colour shows no fading at all.

If you would like your own Tea towels I will share… Who would have thought that someday independent artists could sell through Spoonflower Marketplace?!

They can also be made as a wall hanging. As soon as time permits I hope to have a collection available; what would you like to see?

Thanks for joining me.

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9 Comments

  1. I ordered poplin from Spoonflower several months ago, NEVER AGAIN. The fabric cost 20$ a yard, and it was absolutely the worst quality poplin I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been a seamstress for over 30 years. The only good thing about Spoonflower is they gave me a full refund and told me to not bother sending the fabric back. I used the fabric to cover my plants in the garden during a frost. I would never recommend buying fabric from Spoonfloower to anyone who works for their money.

    1. Oh dear. So it was not the quality/accuracy of the print that you did not like, rather the fabric quality? I will eventually order a sample pack of all the fabrics so I can get a ‘feel’ as that is how I like to shop in the fabric store; hands on. I really wanted to see how well the fine details could print. Thanks for your input.

      1. The print wasn’t as good as it looked in the photo, but sometimes that’s a tech issue, so I let that slide, but I was also shocked at the print quality too. Just all around a disappointment, but it might work well for someone else. Even after I washed the “poplin” it was still just a big “no”.

  2. Hi Barb,
    I finally got a moment to sit down and have a look at your Spoonflower review. Your eco-prints are delicious and the review looks interesting, but I can’t get the video to load. There is a large blank space after “I share my thoughts in this video.” I tested it on both my desktop and my mobile devices (all Apple). In my experience, integral connections and components of web pages sometimes fly away in the night for no apparent reason, so I thought I’d let you know in case you want to investigate.
    Cheers,
    Lin

    1. I just checked and it’s fine for me. I use chrome. That is strange. It is a fairly high resolution video so perhaps it’s the bandwidth requirements (‘love the internet)

  3. Dear Barb,
    I love your work, you are so inspiring. I’m always excited to see your emails pop up in my inbox! Thank you for sharing your creativity.
    Tonya