Your Breath Fuels my Heart (Steam-punk Valentine Fabric Design)

I finally designed something for a weekly Spoonflower contest. How could I not, this one was perfect for me, since it was organized in cooperation with Urban threads, who I adore so so much. Them, digitizing something I designed, would be a dream come true (but I won’t waste my time dreaming of that. Instead, I went ahead and started digitizing the angel one, but we’ll talk about that some other time).

I was also really exited about the theme they chose, Steam-punk Valentine. I always loved the visual side of the steam-punk movement: the warm copper and brown colour pallets, the Victorian elements, hot air balloons, the corsets… I also find the quirky background story pretty cool, I used to love Jules Verne as a child. The movement just never got any attention in my actual surroundings, so I never got into it … I sure would love to try and make some costumes, I just have no clue where I could wear them …

Anyway, it didn’t really take me long to get the idea that I’ll make some Victorianesque Valentine card designs, for which I had to first come up with some verses that would be equally cheesy and steam-punky. That took even less, I guess there’s some part of my brain that really really craves writing poetry so the short steam punk love verse was born in 5 minutes:

You turn the gears of my world,

your breath fuels my heart.

See what I did there, see? Like there’s gears, and the breath is steam and the heart is a machine and the whole thing it’s so sweet you almost get diabetes reading it. It’s perfect, in short.

With the verses ready, it was just a question of illustrating the verses with collages of visual elements that you might find in Victorian era Valentine days cards (the flowers and the angels) and in Steam punk imagery (the anatomical heart and gears and brown and top hats).

fabric design beta

I was extremely pleased with the result, so pleased indeed, that I actually ordered a fq of the fabric. It’s lovely.

However, a small problem became evident when I went through the instructions for the design again: It has to be relatively simple and there shouldn’t be any cliparts and similar. Ooops, I guess the free to use images I found on http://thegraphicsfairy.com/ kind of fall in this category…

I promptly deleted the design on Spoonflower (I uploaded it again, it’s too pretty:)) and didn’t really know what to do. In the end, I decided I’ll vectorize the thing, and I hope that’s enough to avoid the whole “no clipart” rule. The result is still pretty awesome, although not as steampunky as I would have hoped it would be (and as the original was).

the final design

I did put the original designs on society 6, on the off chance that anyone might like them:) So, in the end, If you like the vector version of the design, I would be eternally grateful if you could vote for it here 🙂