How to create a pattern – Part 12: Playing with grids

In the past, I have written a multitude of articles about grid-based patterns.

When I see a grid-based pattern, I break it down into blocks or segments. First I look at the individual block.

FleuriTOO 1 Block

Repeating this block without rotation creates a pattern. I would call the single block pattern the Base pattern.

FleuriTOO 1 Block variation

This pattern is based on a 4×4 grid. One block is rotated – to turn this 2×2 block into a pattern, the step-out must be drawn on a 4×4 grid. And this would be a child pattern.

Fleuri on a 4x4 grid

Fleuri on a 4x4 Grid

What happens when you turn the block? Below you see a couple of possibilities demonstrated with a simple block containing the letter A. Each rotation has been marked in a different color.

Grid Template 1

Below is one of my practice sheets. This is what I do with all grid-based patterns to find out the true potential.

Grid Journey Template 4

To make the difference even clearer, I have colored the page.

Grid Journey Template 3

All this is old news though. Let’s put more emphasis on how to create a play page and create new patterns!

One aspect, that many pattern designers have not used often is to RESIZE the shapes. You don’t have to draw a shape to fill one section of the grid. Have a look at the image below. You might just get inspired to try something new.

Resizing shapes

Let’s take Loops as an example:

Playing with Loops

Try to resize and rotate, flip and turn!

Below is an extract from a play page:

Loops resized

Yes, they would all be patterns, the question is, are these patterns worth sharing? Not every repetition of shapes turns into a nice pattern. Sometimes you have to really work on a design to make it look attractive. But that is the fun part! Keep on playing until you find a combination of shapes in different sizes and directions.

Just like you did with ribbon patterns, create a couple of different ideas on a play page, number each design and post it in the group. DO NOT CREATE A STEP-OUT! Just a play page!

You might also look at the section featuring grid-based patterns to check which designs already exist.

Let’s get started!

You might want to read up on the next write-up that explains how to rotate shapes:

How to create a pattern – Part 13: Creating a step-out for a grid-based pattern


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