Retro Camper Print


Logo for the Happy Camper Fabric and Wallpaper Collection

This retro camper print for fabric and wallpaper was my answer to Spoonflower’s “Time Machine” challenge. The directive was to create a surface design that reflects your favorite time period. While I’m not sure I have an affinity for any specific time period, the idea for a playful “happy camper” design had been bouncing around in my brain for a while. I decided now was a good time to bring it to life.

I’m honestly a little fuzzy on what era my design represents. Maybe the 50’s is the closest? The motif has most likely crossed a couple time periods and I’m not even remotely accurate. That’s what my mom always calls “artistic license.”

I toyed with a few colorways, but ultimately settled on a couple of my retro favorites – turquoise and pink. While I fully plan to expand on the color offering, this seemed a good place to start.

First versions of the design incorporated a few kitschy mid-century modern elements, such as atomic stars and diamonds. However, the geometric shapes were a bit at odds with the sketched camper elements. I ultimately decided to remove them to provide space for the eye to rest.

Pared down to just the retro campers, the design now seemed to lack depth. So the addition of classic charcoal grills and picnic tables with traditional checked tablecloths filled the void nicely.

My final Happy Camper design was displayed on fabric fat quarters for the purpose of the contest, but I love it as a table runner or outdoor throw pillows, as I’ve shown here.

Spoonflower’s contest seemed to be less popular for entrants, as there were about 500 less contenders than in the previous challenge. Still, a bit of time was needed to scroll through the 1000 plus fabric patterns. It’s fun seeing how other designers interpret the theme. Thank you for supporting independent artists by casting your vote in the challenge!

The Happy Campers print on a pillow
Outdoor throw pillows with retro campers? Yes, please!
Happy Campers print
The final Happy Campers print
Happy camper collection fat quarters
Happy Camper Collection Fat Quarters