Getting smart with Sharpies: Mexican inspired coasters

Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk

I’ve recently got obsessed with all things Mexican. There was a reason for this, myself and the good Dr B always cook something nice on New Year’s Eve and this year we fancied a feast of Mexican style veggie food.

As I was researching various tasty vegetarian recipes* to prepare for us, I kept coming across some beautiful Mexican tile designs. They were absolutely stunning. Not only did I want these tiles in my kitchen and bathroom (when we get round to doing them up) but I was so inspired that I needed these designs in my life straight away.

Although many of the tiles came in a gorgeous array of different colour combinations, I was really drawn to the blue and white ones (you know me, I love to keep designs simple when I can help it). So I got out my Sharpie pens, grabbed my spare mdf coasters from my old Shibori coaster project and set to work on whipping up these beauties.

Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk

Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk

First I gave the mdf squares a lick of white acrylic paint. Once they were dry I drew out my designs freehand on the coasters in pencil. I didn’t want to trace the designs directly as I wanted to add my touches to them to make them my own. I also opted for freehand because, and I know some of my design friends won’t like this, I don’t like it when everything is straight on and symmetrical. I like to keep things wonky every now and again – for me it’s more fun that way.

Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk

I’m going to give them a little varnish so I can actually use them (I was in such haste to draw the designs on and then get them shot that I clean forgot) but I thought I’d share them with you now as I’m chuffed with them. Can’t wait to get them out now.

The whole exercise has got me thinking of my own pattern designs, can I be more ornate? If I keep my colour scheme simple, can I go to town on the motifs? This project has inspired me to have a bit more of a play and to come up with some new work – watch this space for what I do with this.

Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk


Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk
Mexican Coasters (c) Ella Johnston ellasplace.co.uk

*Spiced roast cauliflower and chickpea tacos with a yoghurt lime dressing and salsa plus nachos with black bean chilli and guacamole with a side order of red cabbage slaw and smoked paprika roast potatoes, if you’re asking. No, we couldn’t eat it all and it lasted through to the next day and beyond. I did take pictures but the light was rubbish and to be honest we were too intent on scoffing rather than blog stuff – sorry!

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