How to Design Your Own Fabric (in Gimp)

Picture of How to Design Your Own Fabric (in Gimp)
09242010 006.jpg
09022010 038.jpg
For my sister's upcoming baby shower, we have decided on a cupcake theme.  Unfortunately, all cupcake party supplies seem to have HAPPY BIRTHDAY written all over them.  So, it is a given that a lot of the decorations and what not will be handmade.  
To get the fabric I would need to make the things, like banners, napkins, tablecloths, etc. I am using my new favorite website, .  
You design your own fabric, they print it, you get it.  It is amazingly high quality, and somewhat fast.  The only downside is the cost (starting at $18 a yard) is more than I normally spend on fabric.
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Open File in Gimp

Picture of Open File in Gimp
09022010 039.jpg
I like to use Gimp for photo editing because it's easy, and FREE to download.

You can download it here:

Spoonflower wants uploads to be at 150 dpi.  So, under "FILE" at the top of the page, click on "NEW."  When the box comes up, you determine the size.  I want my image to be a 2 inch square.  Under advanced options, you need to change it to 150 dpi.  That means 2 inches on the computer will be 2 inches on the fabric.

Step 2: Background Color

Picture of Background Color
Using the Bucket Fill tool, select a color and click inside your square to change the color.

Step 3: Open the "Pattern" Image

Picture of Open the
09022010 042.jpg
09022010 043.jpg
Under "FILE" at the top, click on "OPEN AS LAYER."  For my pattern I am using a cupcake that I purchased in a pack at Peppermint Creative.  You can view their kits here:

The cupcake is much bigger than the 2 X 2 square, so I had to scale the layer.  When I first opened the layer, all I could see were the sprinkles on the cupcake.  On the top under the "LAYER" tag click on scale layer.  I know that by square is 2X2, so the biggest side can be no bigger than 2 inches.  As long as the little lock is closed it will stay in proportion.  Then click Scale.
It might be a bit late to help, but you can find novelty quilt fabrics with cupcakes on them that don't say Happy Birthday. Robert Kaufman has a line of very charming cupcake prints.

Get More Out of Instructables

Already have an Account?


PDF Downloads
As a Pro member, you will gain access to download any Instructable in the PDF format. You also have the ability to customize your PDF download.

Upgrade to Pro today!