[ Inspiration ]

A Year Inspired by William Morris – January


I am so excited to start this year long stitch a long and cannot believe how many people are joining in!

Why William Morris?

For me, his work is simply stunning and incredibly inspiring with his use of design and colour. Its fabulous how the designs are still so present today and I never tire of seeing them. I wasn’t sure if anyone else would be as enthusiastic as me about the subject but it seems there are a lot of you that are – which is fantastic – I can’t wait to see all the stitching being done with this design.

Do you even know who William Morris is?

This seemed like a silly question to me as I assumed he was so well known given his role in the Arts and Crafts movement of the 19th century. That is until I mentioned to my 18 year old son what the ‘Year of’ design was all about and his first words were – who’s William Morris! What!!!! All the books I have and he can’t have looked at any of them!

A brief Overview

I’ll keep this short but, if you are someone who is not familiar with William Morris then all you need to do is google the name and a wealth of information as well as patterns and designs can be found associated with him.

William Morris was a well known Victorian Designer and craftsman as well as writer and activist. He was one of the founders of the Arts and Crafts Movement which sought to return to a more fulfilling way of ‘handmade’ production rather than focussing on the industrial progress which was paramount with the Industrial Revolution at the time.

His work can be found in a whole manner of items from wallpaper, textiles, furniture and architecture to name a few and the designs he produced throughout his life that are used in so many areas are incredibly distinctive and beautiful.

A True Inspiration

Designs by William Morris and his contemporaries have inspired so many designers and artists throughout the generations.

I have so many books on this era of designers and see something new everytime I delve into one of my many books…

A Year Inspired by… creating the design

This design was so much fun to create. I poured over all my books and looked closely at the different designs that drew me in and then was able to play around and see what worked! I wasn’t worried about the designs complementing one another or concerned with colour harmony – just decided to incorporate what took my fancy and work the rest out from there!


For January I incorporated a very small element from the ‘Strawberry Thief’ design. This was a printed cotton designed by Morris himself and registered in May 1883.

I chose the little flowers and those beautiful leaves to fill the space…

If you want to find out which stitches and colours are used then you will need to join in with the SAL!

Here’s a sneak peak of the design process from drawing to colouring in…

As you can see, there is quite a bit of work to do before any stitching starts to happen! Luckily I love this part of the process as much as stitching! It’s only when I get to the very end I get so excited to see it on the fabric and start experimenting with threads!

I will be posting more updates on the different months on the blog and make sure you keep showing all your fabulous progress with #stitchdoodlesdesign as well as on the Happy Stitching FB Group.

Happy Stitching!

Would you like to Join in?

‘A Year Inspired by William Morris’ will be stitched throughout 2023. You can find out all about how you can join in here… A Year Inspired by William Morris

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