Design Process: The Making of the Fairy Chimney & Stone Symbol Prints

The next post in the making of our Kapadokya collection focuses on the design and print process of our whimsical Fairy Chimney and Stone Symbol prints. 

Inspired by the Landscape of Cappadocia

The collection is inspired by our travels in Cappadocia, Turkey. The Fairy Chimney print was inspired by Cappadocia’s unique, surreal landscape of rock formations. Millions of years ago a volcanic eruption covered the area in ash, which hardened to tuff with a layer of basalt on top. Over millions of years wind and water eroded the softer basalt, leaving conical pillars known as ‘fairy chimneys’.

These rock formations became a refuge for Christians who built homes, churches and Monasteries in the caves. In the iconoclastic period of 725-842 these were painted with simplistic geometric symbols, which inspired our Stone Symbol print. Later, by the mid 9th century in the Byzantine era, churches were painted with colourful, figurative frescoes.

Fairy Chimney Design Process

We sketched ideas out before drawing with a wacom tablet into photoshop to develop the patterns.

Sampling the design

Once the designs were ready, one of the most important parts of the process is sampling. We select and test the colours until we get the right combination by mixing up swatches. When we’re happy with the swatches we’ll do a test print before going back and tweaking the colours to make them lighter, darker or a slightly different tone if we think that would be better.

Hand Screen Printing Fairy Chimney Fabric

When we’re happy with the sample we get going on printing the full run of fabric. Each colour is screen printed separately by hand to slowly build up the design. The Fairy Chimney print has 6 colours, so that’s 6 screens.

The White Stone Symbol print has 2 colours, so that’s just 2 screens. We have to keep watch throughout the print run to make sure everything is aligning properly. Sometimes we’ll have to adjust the position of the stops on the table (which determine where to place the screens) by a millimetre or two to make sure there are no big gaps or overlaps.

Stitching Fairy Chimney Products

Once the fabric is printed, it goes through a heater to cure and set the design before being brought back to our studio. We decide on the threads, trimmings and specifications for each product, and wash the fabric before Masterji and the team start stitching.

Fairy Chimney Quilt

The Fairy Chimney Quilt and pillowcase with Pink Stone symbol headboard makes such a dreamy bedroom.

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