Designing Fabric Prints with Photos – Part 3

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If you want to make a fabric print that repeats seamlessly forever, Gimp comes with a filter that makes it really easy. Like, one-click easy.

Supplies and Equipment:


GIMP softwarethis is free, open source software that is similar to photoshop
– a photo – the higher the resolution the better!
– a free account at Spoonflower or any other company that will print fabric on demand

If you’re using a photo for this, just open the photo in gimp. If you’re using an edited image like the one I created in the last part of this series, check the layers window to be sure you’re on the layer with the photo elements (not the background layer).


Then, go to Filters>Map>Make Seamless and let your computer do the work. You’ll go from the floating flowers pictured above to this:

When uploaded to spoonflower as a fabric repeat, it will print like this:

To me, this is the perfect fabric for a lightly gathered skirt. You can choose the exact size of the repeat when you print to match the scale of your garment. Making a ballgown? Making a Barbie doll dress? Just adjust the size to fit. Be warned that with a print like this you may lose some of the sharpness in the faded areas (this is being printed on fabric.)


Here are some more examples of this filter being used on other images:

That same original photo from earlier in the series.


And one more. This photo:


Became this print:

This filter is fun because it’s so fast – you can try it on a lot of images and then use whatever comes out looking the best!