We would go to see the beautifully decorated department stores. She also an artist and loves floral prints and when we'd find a dress with a print we'd analyze it and we were very particular about what we liked. So I think this is actually where my journey began looking back.
I photographed products and created catalogs but wound up designing packaging mostly. After about two years I felt I could do much more creative-wise. I always loved fashion and art and really wanted to pursue a job I where I wouldn't count the hours til end of day. So I said goodbye and took a half-day job at a children's center to shadow a special needs carer. And the other half of the day I dedicated to learning about fashion.
I loved that but I still wasn't sure about where I was headed. A year later I got a call from the CEO of a leading food distributor, who said he remembered my work from my previous design job and offered me a job as an in-house packaging designer.
I started working there and it was pretty nice to be back in the designing space as opposed to working at a children's center. I started cranking out design after design, collaborating with buyers, sales team and sometimes the CEO himself. It was pretty thrilling. Soon enough I started seeing my products on supermarkets shelves and that was a great feeling.
"I felt like telling people in the store, Hey do you know I designed that!"
Time went on and I couldn’t help it. I had these fashion and art ideas floating in my head all day and when I came home I was way too exhausted to do anything about it.
I wasn’t exactly sure what it was but my parents encouraged me to go. Maybe I would meet people or get an idea of the textile industry. I was a bit skeptical but it was just a train ride away, so I bravely went. As soon as I arrived I was quickly swarmed by crowds of people speaking all different languages and people bustling around, I took a map guide and went through the sections.
I maneuvered my way from fabric, leather and embroidery vendors then I reached the studios selling textile designs. At first I was confused, not realizing what the studios sold.
I was blown away at the idea! Once I arrived home I pulled out the map guide and went through the list of studios attended and started following them. This is how I discovered Longina Phillips Designs and The Print School courses. The first course I took is the illustration course and then I basically took all of them. Once I started taking them something in me lightened up! I was hooked it was the perfect combination of two things I love most fashion and art.
My favorite thing to paint is detailed and large florals. I love mixing digitally-painted roses with hand-illustrated pencil botanicals. I see myself selling my designs to exclusive women's wear markets. I think the thing I learned most from the The Print School, besides the techniques, is to follow a direction.
It's the foundation for a design for me. I have so many ideas that can go in so many directions it can get overwhelming. Knowing that I can have a trend board to rely on, as part of my Print Pattern Forecast subscription, keeps me on track.
I’m so happy I found Longina Phillips Designs and The Print School. It's a lovely team that keeps inspiring. I can't wait to see my designs out on party dresses giving people joy!
Hopefully one day I'll see them in the same stores I went to as a little girl. That would be a dream come true.
See more of Esti's work on Instagram.