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JnK Clothing

Yesterday I, rather spontaneously, launched the clothing company I’ve been setting up with Keith Mountifield.

Junk has it’s very own fanpage here and is already taking orders for our very first two designs.

One is my own and you can see a picture of me wearing it to the right. This design called Sword And Fire and costs £21 for the t-shirt and can be ordered in colour of t-shirt and design of the buyers choice as well as male or female and all the normal sizes. Details of the colours and how to order can be found on the facebook photo for each t-shirt.

The other design we are taking orders for is Kez’s first design, Enjoying Time and can be seen below.

Hopefully new designs will keep coming and while they are the facebook page will be the first place updated with new designs and colours available. When we’ve got enough designs to warrant a website we’ll have one up and running with the same set up. The buyer will always be able to choose their t-shirt colour as well as design colour(s) from all available options.

Junk will also take requests to make a design to a specification as well as suggestions and requests for other items of clothing. Just email jess at and someone will respond within 24 hours.

Designing t-shirts: What not to do

While setting up the new t-shirt company I did my usual trick and dived into the world of designing without really thinking. As such I made quite a few mistakes early on that cost me quite a bit of time. I thought I’d share a few of those here, mostly because their funny (looking back on them) but also because there is a chance it will help someone else.

Mistake 1

I drew my design by hand to try and get a rough idea of what I was doing. Now this would seem like a really good idea except I didn’t have a scanner when I first started. Make sure if you are drawing designs by hand that either you or a lovely friend has a scanner.

Mistake 2

When I first started drawing my designs on the computer I hadn’t ever heard of drawing with vectors. Therefore I drew my design quite literally pixel by pixel (yes this was after I’d drawn it by hand and then not scanned it) and it wasn’t until I showed my husband that I found out there was a way to do it line by line and also have it scalable. Yup by drawing it with vectors.

Mistake 3

My next assumption was that any program would do as long as it drew with vectors so I pulled up my little pixel drawing in Paint shop Pro 9 and started layering my vector drawing over the top. I then emailed my first design to a friend. They couldn’t open it. Paint shop Pro wasn’t an industry standard just because my husband had it and it was on my computer. Make sure you pick a drawing program that supports a good vector format that’s relatively standard in the industry. Inkscape is a good free one apparently and probably what I’ll be using in future. At least until I can afford Adobe Illustrator.

Mistake 4

Jpgs are the format used for all pictures when you save them to send to people. No they are not, it turns out. Jpgs are for photos with lots of colour and only sometimes useful for those. For designs svg is best. It keeps those vectors nicely formatted, where as jpgs just turn it back into a pixel design and a lower quality one at that.

There are probably other mistakes I’ve made along the way but I feel I’ve embarrassed myself enough for one day. I can now safely say the best way to do my t-shirt designs though is to draw them by hand, get them scanned in, use adobe illustrator to vectorise the hand drawn scan in, (there’s a tool for that) tweak where necessary and save in svg format. It takes a few hours max as opposed to the 50-60 hours I spent trying to do my first design.


Corset design

I’ve been working hard with my very talented aunt-in-law, Anne Mountifield (she’s doing most of the hard work to be fair), on designing a costume for a period piece flight needs and I’m pleased to say we’ve almost finished one of the most important components; the corset.

Corsets are a hard part of historical design to get right, they changed very frequently through the ages and there are very few really good examples of them left from each era. Fortunately Anne has an old workwoman’s guide on making clothes from that era and I had one made for me for my wedding from a similar era to what we needed.

Here’s some photo’s of the work in progress:

Here’s me wearing the inside layer, each strip down the side is where we placed a steel spiral bone. The big seam down the front is where the hooks and eyes, to get in and out, will be sewn in.

There are 16 eyelets down each side of the back with thinner flat steel bones both sides of the eyelets for strength. A vanity panel will also be attached behind those to hide any skin that would otherwise show if the corset wasn’t laced to a close.

A top layer of black cotton will go over all this hiding all the bone lines beneath it and allowing us to print or embroider patterns on as we desire, though for historical accuracy the one used for Flight will just be plain. Corsets have only recently begun being worn on the outside of clothing rather than as underware so there did not need to be any patterns on them, with them being hidden at all times.

I’ll post some more photo’s when the whole thing is finished, with top layer and all the laces.