Innovation That Matters

More design-your-own fabric


Consumers have already shown that they’re interested in designing their own dresses, T-shirts and duvets–to name just a few–so it’s not surprising to see the trend spread from finished goods to the raw materials that underlie them. Last month we featured Finnish Bon Bon Kakku and its contest-based crowdsourcing approach to fabric design, and recently one of our spotters alerted us to another design-your-own fabric opportunity in the United States. North Carolina-based Spoonflower lets users design and print their own fabrics for just USD 18 per yard with no minimum order; custom swatches cost USD 5. After a closed beta launch in May, the Spoonflower community now boasts more than 10,000 crafters around the world who upload their own designs and use fabric to make quilts, clothes, pillows, dolls, blankets, handbags, framed textile art and more. When Spoonflower comes out of beta, it plans to allow fabric designers to sell their fabrics on the site, it says. In the meantime, users are selling their creations on Etsy, as well as participating in Spoonflower’s Fabric-of-the-Week contest, the winners of which are chosen through community voting. Winning fabrics are offered for sale for exactly one week through Spoonflower’s own Etsy shop, and their designers are rewarded with five yards of free fabric. It’s not yet clear how Spoonflower’s marketplace feature will work, but allowing users to earn cash for their creations is critical, as we noted in our story about Bon Bon Kakku. If there’s anything Generation C(ontent) consumers love more than the ability to design it themselves, it’s the ability to be compensated for their output. Long live Generation C(ash)! 😉 Spotted by: Emma Crameri



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