Behind The Howes Collection: Spring 2017

Posted by: Rebecca Atwood

Rebecca Atwood | Spring 2017 Mood Board | Woven Fabric Collection

Beginning a new collection is one of my favorite things to do.  When you start it's blue-sky dreaming and it all begins with pulling inspiration images, old sketches, colors, scraps of paper with ideas written down, and samples of textures I want to explore. I always have countless ideas running around my mind, and this is the time where I get to visualize what will be next and see the connections between different ideas. Once the ideas start to formulate, working with our production partners is a big part of the process. Seeing how the product is made and understanding a factory or mill's capabilities is further inspiration to my process.  Our first wovens collection opened the door for more and I'm thrilled to introduce these new designs.

Marble Geode 

The Marble Geode design started when I experimented with marbling papers using India ink in the suminagashi technique. The irregular marbled designs reference coastal and geological elements.  Hand dyed yarns add texture that allude to the ever-shifting landscape of the coast. I love how the final fabric turned out but this one actually took quite a bit of sampling to get right. My original design shown below was too complicated and looked like a strange tapestry when I received the first sample. It was then back to the drawing board, and I created a more simplified design at a larger scale. When the next sample came in I had gone a bit too far, and so then we added a feathering to the edges and more texture. I learned a lot about the weaving process here, and this may be one of my favorite fabrics.

Rebecca Atwood WovenRebecca Atwood | Creative Process

Sashiko Stitch

Sashiko is an ancient Japanese stitching technique, which translates to “little stabs”, and was once used to reinforce cloth. This functional embroidery inspired me to create a woven fabric covered in little marks. Print alone wouldn't have done this concept justice, and I love that with different yarn qualities we were able to achieve something that looks stitched while remaining quite sturdy. It's perfect for upholstery.

Rebecca Atwood Sashiko Stich Fabric Development

Sashiko Wave

I love the concept of sashiko so much I wanted to explore it two ways. This fabric has a very textural feel with what seems like an embroidered running stitch, but is actually woven, across the surface. This textural yarn lays over a graphic interpretation of a wave.

Rebecca Atwood Sashiko Wave FabricRebecca Atwood | Creative Process | Sashiko Wave

Cut Up Dot

This design began as a cut paper collage. I painted an ink wash ground over circular stickers before peeling them off to reveal a polka-dot pattern. I then cut the pattern into strips and put it back together in a new layout inspired by the sun setting and moon rising. The reversible nature of the fabric plays on this idea.

Rebecca Atwood Cut Up Dot Fabric

Quilted Circles

The ocean is a constant source of inspiration for me, and the moon is primarily responsible for the rising and falling of oceans tides. This matelassé design was inspired by moon phases and the ridges of a seashell glinting in the sun. There's a hint of metallic that comes through and I love that it adds subtle shimmer.

Rebecca Atwood Quilter Circles Fabric

Tidal Wave

This design began as a simple wavy mark in my sketchbook. The subtle shifting tones come to life with the woven texture. The woven quality we chose for this design is really able to capture the variations of the original artwork which I love.

 Rebecca Atwood Tidal Wave


This fabric is woven from linen and metallic threads so that the shimmer comes from within. This fabric will add a subtle luster to any room. I've wanted to develop our own metallic for quite a while now--but more on that later.

Rebecca Atwood Metallic GoldRebecca Atwood | Creative Process

Photography by Lydia Hudgens.


  • Hi Rebecca! So nice of you that you show us the preparation before the final product comes to life! It is very interesting!

    Keep up the good work!

    Joanna Korre on
  • I think this may be my favorite collection of yours to date. Love the inspiration behind each fabric. Can’t wait to see how to incorporate some of these into my home.

    Jean on
  • love this blog post, so much variety yet a continuity for combining texture, color, shapes, you are so talented Becca!

    Denise on

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