Famous Contemporary Textile Designers

Instructor: Stephanie Przybylek

Stephanie has taught studio art and art history classes to audiences of all ages. She holds a master's degree in Art History.

Do you have a favorite kind of fabric design? Who created it? In this lesson, learn about three famous contemporary textile designers, the mediums they use to create their textile designs, and the motifs featured in their work.

What Is Textile Design?

Bold prints and delicate pastel stripes. Polka dots and florals. Who creates the colorful patterns on the clothes we wear and the sheets on our beds? That job falls to artists called textile designers.

Textile designers are people who create the look and feel of textiles. This includes what they might be made of, by what processes they are created, and the patterns and designs on their surfaces. Some textile designers create patterns for home goods and interior decoration, and others create textile designs used in fashion.

Textile designers create the look and feel of textiles
textiles with patterns

Just to clarify, textile designers are not the same as fashion designers, people who create clothing styles. But the two roles often work very closely together.

Today, many contemporary textile designers are making a name for themselves in places all over the world. They're inspired by many different things and market their work using a whole range of 21st-century media platforms. Let's learn more about several of them.

Famous Contemporary Textile Designers

Charlotte Linton

Charlotte Linton is a London-based textile designer and fashion writer who studied fashion before going on to study textile design at The Royal College of Art. She established her own scarf label in 2009.

Linton combines hand-drawing and digital printing techniques. Her patterns are inspired by a fictional character she created, Ermantrude, a zoologist who travels the world and documents her trips with notes and drawings. Linton uses this character as a muse to come up with bold, colorful textile patterns that combine elements of traditional crafts, nature, and geometry.

Linton has worked with fashion designers like Marc Jacobs and Paul Smith and has created textile designs for retailers like Anthropologie.

Julie White

Independent textile designer and Australian native Julie White lives and works in the city of Adelaide. Inspired by a honeymoon trip to Scotland, she studied printed textile design at The Glasgow School of Art. She then returned to Australia and opened her own textile design business. Her hand-drawn designs, often done in acrylic inks, gouache (an opaque watercolor), and markers, are bold, colorful, and inspired by Australia's unique flora and fauna. Animals, birds, and sea creatures twist playfully across a wide variety of clothing and what she calls 'art-fashion' accessories, including scarves and hosiery.

White specializes in digital printing on fabric and has a strong online presence, selling through multiple platforms including her own website.

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