I’m so happy to share this new pattern with you: Matryoschka Russian Doll. I’ve wanted to make this pattern for a long time, but at one point it felt like everywhere you looked there was a Matryoschka lurking. Plates, bags, paper goods – you name it. So I was kinda tired of them, although I love them!
But now the world has moved on to other ‘it’ designs and I could look at Matryoschka with fresh eyes.
Once you have an idea you need to do a bit of research. Or atleast I do. It’s really important to me that designs like this has a feeling of.. I’m not sure, actually! I don’t want the designs to feel like a stock illustration, like a symbol of a Matryoschka.. that’s not showing respect for someone else’s cultural heritage.
Most of the research I do (usually on the interwebs) isn’t about the Matryoschka, for example. Instead I look at other types of design from that particular country. Fabrics, posters, historical textiles etc. To get a sense of what the visual language is like, what types of flowers are used again and again for example. The dominant colours and such. Basically absorbing the feeling of it…
Then I start sketching. Lots and lots of sketches. Of flowers, leaves and other elements. Not so much of the doll itself in this case, because it has such an iconic shape, so it was more a case of sketching to fit everything onto it. The elements surrounding the doll are inspired by some old Soviet postcards I came across. Inspiration can come from the least expected places!
Deciding on colours for a pattern is mainly something that happens as I stitch it. I will usually have a general idea of which colours I want to use, but it’s not until I’m actually stitching the pattern that I find out if they actually work together for that particular pattern.