Part of my research, whether I’m working on a project or just out shopping to get inspired, is to not look in obvious or conventional outlets, but rather hunt for treasures.  My mission . . . become inspired, learn, grow, and have fun.

Last year, I had the opportunity to meet with Melissa and Brian Pawlecki, proprietors of “Birds of Ohio.” Missi and Brian work tirelessly to provide designers a resource for inspiration, specializing in vintage patterns and textile swatches. Walking through their studio was like being in a candy store for designers. There were endless amounts of prints, vintage clothing, accessories, and trinkets that a designer can utilize for existing or future projects. It’s a great resource to build your library or purchase materials for your work. I highly recommend checking them out at

When I last visited Birds of Ohio, I was working on a project for an ocean lifestyle client and was searching for potential upper pattern prints. Missi was kind enough to send me pdfs of prints I selected that I thought were relevant for my client. Although the prints were not used for my initial project, they were a huge hit for an outsole idea on a kids project I just completed. You never know when or how you might use an inspiration.  I will be posting those pics shortly.

Check out an example of the pattern influence of one of their prints on one of my sketches. My goal was to integrate the latest trend of the minimal baroque that is currently in play. I love the black and white color combinations,  the baroque lines on eyewear, accessories, and even prints on footwear.  I wanted to draw a shoe with  the moderness of baroque that included an old hawaiian influence, translated into modern times. I wanted to design the shoe with a summery feel with touches of a pre fall element, Summery upper with a heavy heel.


So here is what I came up with beginning with my inspiration boards and direction:

Followed by the inspiration of the hawaiian pattern from Birds of Ohio:

Resulting in:

Happy Summer Everyone . . . Cheers!