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Playing with Patterns


Art + Design, Our Voice

  • Blurred museum wall with text that reads Museum From Home DIY
  • Family sitting grouped together, looking various digital devices
  • Inside of a shell.
  • Plaid Pattern

Gabrielle Clermont and Karly Boileau | December 22, 2020

#MuseumFromHome DIY is a weekly series from Cambridge Art Galleries with carefully curated content just for you. Join us each week as we explore a new theme.

This week we are playing with patterns! Patterns are everywhere around us, from nature to person-made. Get inspired by pattern with a visit to the Victoria and Albert Museum's Wallpaper Collection. The V&A has one of the largest collections of wallpaper in the world! Want more? Check out this article on the history of wallpaper.

Did you have a spirograph kit as a kid? If you're feeling a bit nostalgic, or want to share the fun with the young ones in your life, check out the Museum of Craft and Design's great tutorial (among many others) on how to make your own spirograph using everyday materials in your home! Now that you have all those spirographs made, use them in creative ways with these crafty ideas.

Looking for a new podcast? 99% Invisible focuses on design and architecture in everyday life that often goes unnoticed. Check out these two episodes from their series, "Articles of Interest," a show about what we wear. Learn about the history of the iconic plaid pattern from its beginnings in Scotland to its popularity with various subcultures in Plaid: Articles of Interest #2. Next, here the stories and special meanings behind the patterns used in the Hawaiian shirt with Hawaiian Shirts: Articles of Interest #4.

The Fibonacci sequence of numbers is one of the most fundamental patterns there is. It can be seen everywhere in nature, once you know how to spot it. Discover more in Arthur Benjamin's Ted Talk, The Magic of Fibonacci Numbers.

Bonus Content**

Delve into the world of iconic fashion designer, Betsey Johnson, whose outrageous designs often incorporate of eye-catching patterns, including Johnson's favourite print of choice - florals.

Stretch your brain with this episode of "The Power of Mathematical Visualization" on Visualizing the Fibonacci Numbers

Zentangle is a popular meditative drawing technique that creates patterns. Learn the basics with this ebook.

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