Spoonflower Design Challenge Recap: Welcoming Walls and Peach Fuzz Plus New Challenges Announced
Jan 5, 2024

It’s a new year, and a new feature that I’ve decided to start doing on my blog is a regular recap and roundup post on Spoonflower challenges. Something new that Spoonflower is doing for 2024 is decreasing the number of challenges. They used to be every week, and will now be every other week, which makes this new plan of mine a little bit more doable.

The current Spoonflower challenge is “Welcoming Walls” with designers instructed to create their designs for entryway wallpaper. So, as challenges go it’s pretty broad and open for interpretation. What kind of wallpaper goes in an entryway? Well, it really depends on your own taste and style I suppose. Personally, I live in a house without a defined entryway. You simply walk into the living room, and I feel like a lot of the houses I’ve lived in have been that way. When I was younger we did have a couple of houses with entryways, we called them foyers, probably because this sounded fancy. Our foyers did not have any wallpaper.

‘So, I couldn’t really draw on my own experiences in coming up with a design for this challenge, and I actually struggled with what to create. It seems like with a broad category it should be easier, but I actually flounder around more trying to settle on a design. I started out working on a geometric pattern, that I was just not satisfied with. I eventually shelved that idea, and used something else that I had created, but didn’t really know what to do with, and turned it into a pattern for my “Sorta Statined Glass” design. The connection to entryways is tenuous at best, but my grandmother had her own sort of stained glass (clear bottles filled with colored water) in her entryway. So, I went with it.

Well, the joke was on me, because apparently my entry got eaten by a glitch. While going through this challenge’s entries and casting my votes, I noticed several gray boxes with the caption “design made private” and guess what? My entry must have been one of them because it wasn’t there. For the record, I did not make my design private, and it is available in my store. I filed a support ticket with Spoonflower to let them know. They said that as long as it was showing up in the My Design Challenge Entries section of my account (it is) then it is officially entered, and I guess some people have been able to see it since it has received a handful of favorites since the challenge opened yesterday.

I’m not that concerned, as I didn’t expect my design to do that well in the challenge, and with Spoonflower’s new introduction of digital proofing, the stakes are now a little lower. I don’t need to shoot for automatic printing by getting into the top 100 challenge entries since I can digitally proof my design and make it available for sale. In fact, I did this, but after I entered the challenge, so perhaps that’s what caused the glitch that meant my design didn’t show up in the challenge. Of course, the other change that Spoonflower recently implemented is designs being removed after two years if they have no sales or less than 50 favorites, so garnering favorites is definitely one benefit of entering the challenges, well, if your design is visible, anyway!

Anyway, enough about my entry, what about all the other entries in this challenge? Well, I went through 20 pages of entries to cast my votes. So, there were a LOT of entries, but I was kind of expecting that. I also expected the entries to be all over the map due to the broad category, and they definitely were. I did see a number of pineapples, which I expected since pineapples are a symbol of welcome. I considered doing something with pineapples myself, but I did a pineapple design not too long ago for the tropical fruit challenge, and just wasn’t in the mood to draw any more of them. There were also a handful of designs that decided to add different words of welcome to their design. I guess that’s a very literal way of welcoming guests, but I’m not especially keen on wordy wallpaper. Well, we each have our own tastes.

Beyond the pineapples and the welcoming words, I don’t know if there was any sort of general theme that emerged from the entries. There were lots of floral and botanical designs, of course since they are a popular choice for wallpaper, and plenty of designers went the geometric route which makes sense. I voted for the designs that I really liked whether or not they really were something I would wallpaper an entryway with, because truth be told I don’t see myself ever hanging wallpaper in my entryway.

This week winners were announced for the Peach Fuzz design challenge. This was a limited color palette challenge that was centered around the 2024 Pantone color of the year, Peach Fuzz. Congratulations to elana_amo whose peaches on branches design was the number one pick. This challenge was a little different than most Spoonflower challenges, in that the top finisher was actually selected out of the top voted entries by Pantone. They chose a pretty and realistic pattern whose subject matter obviously worked perfectly with their color of the year. Congratulations are also in order for all the top finishers in this design challenge who created some beautiful prints utilizing this limited color palette.

Finally, the next three Spoonflower design challenges have been announced. They are Court Sports, Forest Biome and Leap Year Frogs. So, those are some fun categories for sparking creativity. With the new Spoonflower challenge schedule that takes us into the middle of February. So here’s to having some fun creating some new patterns for these Spoonflower challenges. Best of luck to everyone!

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