Artist Collaboration: Turning her Hollyhock Watercolor Painting into a Beautiful Floral Textile

by Louise Wannier June 29, 2016

What happens when a watercolorist and a textile designer collaborate? Custom designed upholstery fabric and a newly reupholstered sofa, naturally. 

Hilary Warren Simmons, a dear friend of mine, is the talented artist who painted the beautiful hollyhocks featured on this sofa. We began with my taking a photograph with my trusty Sony Alpha Nex Digital camera of Hilary's watercolour painting neatly framed and hanging in the hall.  From there, the next step was to develop a design repeat (got out the textbook and reminded myself how to make a half-drop repeat from FIDM class days); did up a few examples with some color options and sent them off to Diana to do test prints which I then mailed to Hilary who loved the same one I did.  We tweaked/adjusted the details of the print in the repeat to make it what Hilary was happy with and the scale of the bloom to the scale of the sofa and while she checked with her upholsterer local to where she lives, I went shopping for a fabric that would be suitable for recovering her sofa.  Found one at one of the best places for upholstery fabrics in LA - Diamond Foam on La Brea in Hollywood - they had to special order it from Europe and it felt a bit strange having it shipped from the UK to the US just to be printed here by the wonderful textile art printer, DianaBallardDesigns, as a special order.

Take a look below to see the transformation of this Hollyhocks Sofa! 

And here is Hilary's original watercolor painting of the hollyhocks...

A little glimpse into the process...

Hilary (watercolorist) and Louise (textile designer) below.



Louise Wannier
Louise Wannier


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