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Turning Old into New Challenge

Brace yourselves, it's a long one!

This weeks challenge put together by Sandy Hunter was to tackle the basic structure of a pattern i.e. free form or grid, and turn it on its head by gridding up a freeform pattern, or doing the reverse.  Brilliant - just the sort of thing I love to do!

I regularly take gridded patterns and turn them into a freeform design, so I decided to take a cruise through the pattern folder and find some freeform patterns to turn into a grid.

Here are the results (along with some earlier blog images using the patterns where I could find them):


Inapod tangle pattern grid version

Love, love this as a grid and will be definitely using it again. 

Here it is in a wonky grid:

Inapod tangle pattern wonky grid

and a freeform version I did in Feb. 2013

Inapod freestyle drawing


Leaflet pattern

Leaflet already utilises a framework of S-strokes, which can be regimented or very loose, but I wanted to try drawing it within the confines of a grid and, again, love how it turned out.

Leaflet on a loose S framework:

Leaflet wonky grid


Maryhill grid


Mooka grid

I played with this one a bit and couldn't find a way that I could squeeze in more curvy scrolls and have it look how I wanted, so just stuck with a single scroll for each box.

Some freeform Mooka from March 2013

Freeform Mooka


Scrolled feather grid version

A very old scrolled feather design

scrolled feather and coneflowers 


Trentwith grid

On a wonky grid:

Trentwith wonky grid
Loved this challenge, thanks, Sandy for putting together such a fun one :)



  1. Really like Onomato and Scrolled Feather in a grid. I was thinking to literally and would not have thought to put Scrolled Feather in a grid. Looks great though. Can't decide which Leaflet I like best.

  2. I totaly agree with Donald, i love how you put them into a grid. The scrolled feather is awesome, I never thought of it by just using a small part of the tangle to put in the grid. You opened my eyes to try the challenge again on a different way!

    1. Thanks, Diane :) I think that's the great thing about these challenges is the opportunity to see all the different approaches everyone takes. h

  3. All of them turned out so beautifully! They look great in the "wonky" grid.

  4. Really good! The feather is so delicate!

  5. Wasn't this a really fun challenge? I love all the different ones you did. I also did Mooka and it is amazing how different free form tangles look in grids. I like your use of "wonky" grids too. Delightful work!

  6. You have such a whimsical warm feel to your work....each one is beautifully rendered.

  7.! i need to take this one tile at a time and study each one! every time you post i just keep saying how much i love your work. sheesh! i wish i could come hang out with you for a day and get you to teach me some cool curvy stuff! you pretty much rock!

    1. Thank YOU Alice :) I really enjoyed this challenge (as you can tell!) it was too hard to just stop at one.....or two........ hahaha. I keep trying to convince John that we need to head over to the US for a holiday - so you never know! Maybe one day :)

  8. Helen. These are all great. It looks like you had good fun with this.

  9. Wow, Helen. This post is a master class in Tangling. Every image is a study in design and technique. I love the InaPod series. The wonky grid version is awesome, and the Freeform 2013 image is stunning. Trentwith is a beautiful pattern and I find your wonky grid version to be so appealing. Beautiful work on all the patterns.

    1. Thanks, David. I took a bit of a different approach to Trentwith and worked from the centre out in pretty much a continuous line which I think gives a smoother result (and, easier (for me) to draw).

  10. I love what you did with each of these patterns! I bet it was hard for you to put things in a straight line grid because your wonky grids are what we are used to seeing from you. Always beyond beautiful and inspiring!

  11. Obviously you did love this challeng! And how lucky we are that you did: what a great source of inspiration and new grid patterns for us all. I love all your ideas, especially INAPOD and TRENTWITH and the beautiful LEAFLET. All your old and new work is always so airy and flowing and yet simple and so elegant. You have a great talent.

  12. Stunning and beautiful and inspiring... thank you!

  13. I love your wonky grids! Very fun.

  14. Thanks, everyone for the lovely feedback :)

  15. Well, an other comment for you: What a great post with so much pretty things to look at. Thank you for sharing Helen.

  16. It is a treat to my eyes, when ever I look at your works.

  17. Wow! What a treat to see all these! Beautiful work!

  18. I knew this visit to your blog would be a most enjoyable experience. I know how you love to deconstruct tangles and was so curious to see what you would do with this challenge. Mind blowing. You really are such a talent, Helen. Love the tangles you've chosen and I think I particularly like the wonky gridded Trentwith. I leave your blog a more cheerful and contented person! Axxx

    1. Annie, your comment bought a big smile to my face this morning :) Thank you!

  19. Very beautiful work, as always. When I grow up I want to be like you.

  20. Absolutely loved both the Inapod and Trentwith in the wonky grids. But then again, your work is always so beautifully gorgeous. I have tried and tried again to get my designs the way you get yours to flow, But like JL said above, I want to be like you too when I grow up. Fabulous work!

  21. Wowsers! Thanks for the inspiration!

  22. Thanks for the inspiration! I want to try Leaflet and the roses in alternate boxes on a wonky grid.



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