Thursday, 1 November 2012

Presenting the new Finch Five Website and blog!

I have finally made the Finch Five website live!!! This is a major achievement for me as it was such a steep learning curve. I had never used Wordpress or the Headway theme before, not to mention messing about with bits of code! It was a lot of fun to do from designing my new logo to creating all the graphics to making my portfolio and finally putting the site together. The site will continue to grow as I add to my portfolio too.
I have a new blog on the website where I intend to write regularly about the things I have previously written about here with patterns and illustrations thrown in to the mix. I hope to do features with my favourite designers and illustrators too and show where my inspiration comes from.
Please do come over and have a look around and don’t forget to bookmark my new Finch Five blog!
I won’t be posting here at bird ahoy anymore. Thank you to everyone who has ever taken the time to read my posts here and an extra special thanks to those who have left comments. Please join me on my onward journey!

Friday, 26 October 2012

Launching soon!

If I've been quiet recently it's because I have been feverishly working away on a brand new website! I am creating a brand for my patterns and other illustration. After much deliberation and checking to see whether domain names were taken I have settled on the name 'Finch Five'. Here is a sneak peek of my new logo...

It has been a massive learning curve learning how to use Wordpress and the Headway theme but I am almost there! I am looking forward to getting stuck into blogging again and can't wait to launch my new site.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

passion 4 pattern bloghop


I’m so pleased to be part of the talented Claire Smillie’s bloghop today, celebrating all things pattern! There are 51 international designers taking part and if you follow the chain you will see lots of fabulous surface pattern work. Claire’s blog is at the start of the bloghop if you’d like to go to the beginning.

If you’re already hopping then a special welcome to you, you will have arrived here via the lovely Miranda Mol who has recently designed a collection for Indigo Paris.

So, on with the show! I’d like to share with you two of my recent pattern collections, Birdville and Starburst.








Please visit the next blog on the hop which belongs to a fellow northern gal and pattern addict, Gill Eggleston. Go and see her wonderful patterns!

Friday, 14 September 2012

this coming sunday…


I will be taking part in the ‘Passion 4 Pattern’ bloghop this Sunday, 16th September.

What is a bloghop? Well all the ‘Passion 4 Pattern’ bloggers are creating posts that will inspire and immerse you in a world of fabulous patterns. Each designer will link to the next blog in the chain which will take you on a wonderful journey through 51 blogs! I am so looking forward to this and have my post lined up ready to go live at 8am on Sunday!

I hope you will join us for our pattern extravaganza!

Friday, 24 August 2012

cream or jam first?

cream tea

I had a cream tea yesterday in Chagford to celebrate one of my patterns being featured in the new MOYO, a magazine about surface pattern design. We had our usual discussion about whether the cream or jam should go on first. Whichever it tastes just as good!


Sprigmug  © Lesley Todd 2012

Lots of fab work from my fellow students is also on show in the magazine so if you’re interested in joining the new round of the Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design (ABSPD) courses that are about to begin why not take a look… Congrats to everyone who got featured!

moyo magazine

A screenshot of the magazine… my pattern is 2nd row, 2nd down.

“MOYO, the world’s first online magazine dedicated to surface pattern design! Packed with interviews, design briefs, colour challenges, art reviews, student showcases, design tips, inspiration, trends and more.”

I had a lovely few hours exploring Chagford which is on the edge of Dartmoor in Devon. It’s a fabulous place, full of quirky shops, galleries, teashops and pubs. People are very friendly here and there is a great arty vibe. It is unusual for a small place to have so many independently owned shops selling everything you could think of or need. It would be an amazing place to live surrounded by lush countryside, maybe one day…


We found this Swedish mid century tray by Konga Princesse in one of the shops and decided to take it home.


We also visited Stone Lane Gardens where there are sculptures to be found hiding in the trees. I fell in love with the work of Tati Dennehy, nature had added it’s own flourish to her work and it couldn’t be more perfect in this woodland garden.


tati dennehy 2

Sculpture by Tati Dennehy


I also fell for this beautiful owl sculpture, I’m afraid I don’t know the artist’s name. Please leave a comment if you know.


Gorgeous patterns to be found in nature… will definitely be using this as inspiration!

Bye for now and if you’re in the UK have a wonderful bank holiday weekend!

Thursday, 16 August 2012


rachael taylor blog screenshot birdville

Excited to say that my Birdville pattern is featured today on Rachael Taylor’s blog in a showcase of student work from module 2 of the course I am doing. So pleased to be included! Take a look at some of the lovely work done by my fellow students. I really enjoyed the course and have signed up for another module.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

competition entry

scarf mock up we are all made of stars

I’ve entered my first competition with some of my pattern designs! The competition theme is ‘Heaven’s Door’ with an emphasise on skulls and the winners get their designs printed onto silk scarves which will be sold at Topshop. It’s possibly not a subject I would have ever chosen to explore if it wasn’t for the competition but I had a lot of fun with it. I’ve noticed there are a lot of skull patterns appearing in the new Autumn collections on the high street. Above is a photoshop mock up of one of my 3 designs.

we are all made of stars web-1

This is the full square above and details below. I called the design ‘We are all made of stars”, you can see it here and vote if you like although the winners are decided tomorrow I think.

we are all made of stars web-700x700-detail-2  we are all made of stars web-700x700-detail-8 

we are all made of stars web-700x700-detail-7  we are all made of stars web-700x700-detail-4

I went a bit crazy and entered 3 designs because once I started I just had so many ideas.


‘Memento Mori’ – this one might be a bit macabre for the mainstream, here’s the full design. I was inspired by tattoo culture and also the saying ‘memento mori’ meaning don’t forget your mortality, make the most of life, see the beauty in everyday things and don’t waste time on things that don’t matter.


This is my last design called ‘Sweet skulls’ based on Mexican sugar skulls. I wanted to do something a bit more uplifting. See more of this one here.

scarf mock up sweet skulls2[

scarf mock up sweet skulls


I did get a bit carried away! I would really love to win this but the other entries really are amazing and there are quite a few that I would love to buy if they get printed so we shall see tomorrow who wins! Can’t wait!

Which one do you like the best?