Tag Archives: artist

Bird and Flowers Cushion Design

I was asked to make a colourful cushion featuring a bird and flowers with this drawing from a lovely customer:

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I thought about whether I might seek such a fabric design, but I didn’t have the desire to go hunting for a fabric, so I designed my own.

Having found painted designs that the dye colours can mush together I decided to try a collage technique, as developed in some of my favourite work, my paper cut pictures.

I firstly prepared papers by  carefully painting them with transfer dyes then cut and assembled pieces to build a design. I liked the composition on a cute practice design (above), but felt that the colours lacked texture and depth. So I tried wax relief frottage techniques learned at UAL Chelsea and also hand-painted my favourite flowers inspired by our own garden and a visit to the wonderful tulip gardens of Keukenhof and the Botanical Garden in Leiden earlier this year. I challenged myself to limit colours to the wine red, golden yellow and turquoise Colourcraft Transfer Dyes.

I cut shapes and enjoyed assembling these to form the design for the main panel of the cushion.

See the design process in this one minute video…

Earlier posts that relate to this:

Paper-cut Pictures

Inspired Bags

Blackpool Icons Cushion

Life in Paper

I’m creating new things all the time, which I post on my Facebook Page and Instagram. Hope to see you there.

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Instagram Highlights

April was a bright and creative month, here are the highlights from my Instagram feed. Enjoy!

Better late than never!

First up was a cupcake themed cushion that I made for a close relation.

Lush pink, grey and teal design. It was a huge pattern repeat so I made a booster cushion with different parts of the design front and back. As I know I’ll be asked the question, the fabric was from Direct Knit and Sew in Sheffield.

Ta da! Here’s the finished cushion. It really was a work of love as it was for someone I love and I love the outcome. The pink ribbon edging the cushion really makes the colours pop.

I started work on a second hand sewn dog portrait. This time featuring Sam, who has been in many of my papercut paperart collage artworks and was the protagonist I’m my illustrated storybook.

I made pretty bunting for my sewing space. Dyeing the fabric using sublimation inks and then stitching into and embellishing the panels. The satin ribbon feels gorgeous.

I used trational machine stitch, love the clear acrylic foot – it’s an essential tool for me, and also used free machine embroidery.

The little boat and clouds are from fabric that I dyed at a workshop last summer at Stitched Up And Fleeced textile studio in Sheffield.

I tried something a little different with my Paperart on one of my favourite icons for a happy day, Ice-cream.

I repainted my Maison du Monde Smile sign to make it more me, white emulsion the flicked my favourite paint colours.

This large canvas happened out of a study for another piece. As it was drying we decided we quite liked it so this is how it is completed, for now. 😊

The above canvas artwork was created using a drag method I had been playing with.

The final make of the month was a peg bag using bright screen printed fabric, printed by a fellow student.

Here are stories that relate to these artworks. Enjoy seeing the backstories.

Sam’s storybook

Cute Dog – portrait

Paperart Pictures

Thanks for being here. Better late than never on this post. Hope you’ve enjoyed it.

Love, and peace to you, Kim xx

Ladies’ Loungewear Design Concepts

As part of my design project I explored options for placing my design on looking bye and sleepwear items.

I mocked up in Pixelmator app how the designs might look on a sweatshirt cotton or satin fabric.

The design itself was created using dry point printing in single colours, then layering the three colours digitally. 

My dry point printed and digital design
I love how ththe design looks on this off the shoulder sweatshirt. Comfy and uplifting.
The design would look and feel great for a satin gown/ cover up
My design on a slipper
A lovely design for an eye mask – so the wearer can rest and recharge.
I realised that scaling of a design is important – would love this two set in the design on a light catching satin fabric
I love the design as the colours really resonate with me because of their sunny day associations. I used the design to make covered buttons and a beauty/ tablet bag. 


My online study with Pattern Camp and Make Art That Sells really complemented the practical learning on my UAL Foundation Studies course, which this work was part of. 

Click here for related links and articles:

Inspired bags

Bag Shop Now Open

Inspire by Kim dress

Media Coverage 

I’m delighted that the Sheffield Star newspaper have covered my exhibition on page 12 of today’s paper.

Here’s the press release issued about the project:

Designed to Inspire – Art Exhibition 

Kimberley Kay, working as ‘Inspire by Kim’, has developed a range of ‘Everyday Inspiration’ products – exhibited at The Workstation Gallery in Sheffield this week. 

Kim explained, “I create to inspire and uplift people, with bright designs and delightful fabrics that add colour to everyday routines.” 

“At Sheffield College I’ve explored creative ways to communicate, studied textile techniques and developed pattern designs. I honed manufacturing skills to make a delightful product range of bags, clothing and accessories. The products come together in a catalogue to engage retailers and customers. 

“I share my work in progress through my website, Facebook page and Instagram feed, which provides feedback for the development of my products. The digital world means its possible to reach out to people globally, if people can feel a little happier from seeing my work that’s a wonderful thing.” 

“My goal is to have a successful art business of commissioned work, illustration, products, and inspiring, creative workshops for local people. I’m determined so it’s a matter of keeping going forwards, step by step.” 

Kim has been studying with Design & Visual Arts Department at the Hillsborough Campus of Sheffield College. The end of year exhibition covers Art & Design, Games Design, Graphic Design and Photography and takes place at The Workstation, until 8pm on Thursday 15th June. 

Kim’s cheesegrater Sheffield souvenir idea received acclaim from Sheffield Design Week in November 2016. 

***Ends***

Bye for now, thanks for being here. 

Kim x

Instagram Highlights 

Here are latest highlights from my Instagram feed. I like Instagram as I can send my work across the planet and people near and far can see it, maybe in far flung places that I can only imagine. From my life to theirs in an instant. Shared interests found. 


It’s been a busy time with my Foundation Studies final exhibition. My products exhibited for the first time after months of hard, but enjoyable, work at The Workstation in Sheffield City Centre. 

Sam – ebook page – Copyright Kim
Sam – ebook page – Copyright Kim
I remembered my intricate paintings of the white dog Sam, completed a year ago, on his journey as he hoped to fly. I shared a previously private video of the ebook. You can watch this, 55 seconds movie, here. 


Work In Progress – A rare sunny no breeze day meant I was able to work outside on my next intricate paper cut picture. This imagined scene is inspired by the Brighton’s seafront, with a tearoom, vintage style dress and ladies wear shop, and next a beach goods shop. This is the latest in my series of paper-cut pictures


For a family birthday for an avid French Alps skier I turned a microfibre glasses cloth into zipper bag on my wonderful Bernina sewing machine. 


I hand painted, printed and sewed a shower cap as my final exhibition product. Wipeable lining from my friend’s Sheffield haberdashery emporium Direct. Loved the pink satin binding – a beautiful find from Berwick Street, London


I made a video of my recent work to promote my exhibition. 

​And finally my dress design fabulously modelled by Lucy. 


That’s a snapshot for now – more at my Instagram and Facebook Page

Whatever you’re doing enjoy and bye until next time.

Kim x

Exhibition time

Delighted to be able to show my work after so many hours of intricate work and digging deep creatively. 

Proud to be exhibiting in Sheffield City Centre at The Workstation until 8pm tomorrow as part of Sheffield College’s Design and Visual Art’s end of year show. 

My Ice-cream themed products – beauty bag, shower cap, light-catcher, buttons and hairbands
My product’s displayed as they might be in a retailer

My dress and hand painted scarf
My product range catalogue
The Sheffield newspaper photographer
My project has been to design and create a range of products to inspire and uplift people. I’ll then speak to retailers about stocking my products and will offer bespoke items as unique gift ideas. 

My mascot – the Inspire by Kim bear

See the recent blog posts for related stories and my Folksy shop

Thanks for being here. 

Exhibition – Sheffield 13th – 15th June.

I’m delighted that in just a week from now I’ll be exhibiting my latest work at The Workstation in Sheffield, S1 2BX.

My exhibited work is the culmination of 2 years experimenting, developing techniques, and evolving my art practice. I have designed fabrics, printed them and developed products, I then brought them together in a catalogue and began to market them online and seek retail opportunities. The products are designed to provide ‘everyday inspiration’ as part of my aim to inspire and uplift people.

My art journey started a little over two years ago when following acute knee injury and surgery there weren’t many things I could do. One thing I was able to do was art, I decided to indulge and focus on art.

Then faced with a winter of not being able to do the sports I loved, skiing and skating, I enrolled at the local college. Returning to education as a mature student is challenging and growing accustomed to asking for help and being beyond my comfort zone took some getting used to. But after a great year at Sheffield College and a Distinction in the course I was sad to leave. I felt I had more exploring to do, through the college learning and development structure, and in the great facilities of the Design & Visual Arts Department at the Hillsborough Campus. So I returned to study an Art Foundation course with the intention of giving myself a baseline offering for a successful art business of commissioned work, illustration projects, products and licensing.

With hard work, dedication and enthusiastic support I have achieved what I set out to do, and am pleased to have this opportunity to publicly show my work.

Sheffield College’s Design and Visual Arts Exhibition is at The Workstation, Paternoster Row, Sheffield from Tuesday 13th and Wednesday 14th June to 10am – 4pm and 15th June 10am – 8pm. The exhibition embraces the disciplines of Art and Design, Games Design, Graphic Design and Photography.

See my work at the exhibition or those living further afield can visit my Instagram and Facebook Page.

Open Night 15th June 2017

News – Shop Now Open

It has been a busy time lately – developing products and bringing them to market. I’m delighted that customisable beauty/ iPad bags are now available to be made to order at my new Folksy shop


For a unique, one off, no one else has gift the bags are bespoke, that way each one is different. The bags are created to inspire and uplift featuring original textile designs, intricately crafted with care.

Sample bags will be exhibited at The Workstation, Sheffield from 13th – 16th June.

Thanks for visiting my blog, stay a while and enjoy what you see. 

Exhibition Presence – June 2017

My latest work will be displayed at Sheffield College‘s Design & Visual Arts Exhibition at The Workstation.

All the work is from fine art to 3D and has not been exhibited previously.

I’m busy putting the final touches to my work as my Art Foundation Course reaches its deadline.


Here are links to my previous exhibitions.

First Solo Exhibition – April 2016

Group Exhibition – June 2016

If you’re local I highly recommend the exhibition. Best regards, Kim.

Highlights on Instagram

It’s one of those lovely experimental, colourful creative times when I’m exploring techniques and media.

Here are the latest highlights from my art exploring, from my Instagram gallery. Enjoy and I hope you are uplifted and/or inspired. 

Embellishing exoloration with textiles
Textiles Experimenting on the embellishing machine. Playing with lace, wool and felts to create some inspiring sample sections. 

#embellishment #textiles #textileart #janome #inspirebykim #colourful #felt #merinowool #colourful #sheffcol #textilestudent #artinspiration #arttotry #sheffieldartist #inspiringartist

Sunset Clouds And Sunrise Embroidery – Copyright Kim
Playing with the sewing machine. Being less literal with my sewing into the image. Head in the clouds.  

The wonderful ink hues. – Copyright Kim

Magic Day In The Print Room – Remembering this day 2016. 

Fabulous Winged Woman – Collograph Print ~ Copyright Kim
Magic Day In The Print Room – Remembering this day 2016. Collograph Winged Female

Art time out at my hairdressers.
Art session at the hairdressers. My hairdresser and I enjoyed a lovely painting session between cuts. 

Creating with colourful textiles

Work in progress. Loving these colours. Interested to see how this develops😊

Can you see the heart? Felt fun.

First time making felt. Sunny sea scene. The story in pictures and the full piece images are at this link http://bit.ly/2mYqVPX 

Open Studios
One week to go until my Open Studio. 12-6pm on 2nd April at Bloc Studios, Sheffield 

Thanks for visiting my blog. Have a great day. 😊