Have you noticed that linen textures have become very popular in design these days? In this tutorial we’re going to create a linen texture using GIMP the free open source alternative to Photoshop. Still with us? Let’s get started.
Go ahead and open a new image. I am going to make mine 700 x 700 px in size so that I can trim off a little when done and have it span the content area of my blog post (610px).
Next you will need to pick the base color of your fabric. Often when I use this effect I’m creating a background (see the background of my blog) and therefore usually opt for a subtle light gray or tan. Since I’m going to be using this image as the featured image in this post, I will select something slightly bolder. The color that I will be using is #0078ff – a very rich blue. Go ahead and fill your background with your selected color.
Create two new layers and call them Horizontal Multiply and Vertical Multiply. (Shortcut for creating a layer: Ctrl+Shift+N) Fill both of these layers with white.
Next we’re going to add some noise to both of these layers. Select the Horizontal Multiply layer and go to Filters > Noise > HSV Noise. Your will now get a popup window that looks like this….
Adjust accordingly: Holdness: 1, Hue: 0, Saturation: 0, Value:140
Select the Vertical Multiply layer and follow the same process but alter the last option slightly. Holdness: 1, Hue: 0, Saturation: 0, Value:110
Set the mode of both layers to “Multiply”
Now using a motion blur we are going to make these dots look more like threads.
Select the Horizontal Multiply layer and go to: Filters > Blur > Motion Blur. — Set the length to somewhere around 50 and the angle to 0 (important). Next select the Vertical Multiply layer and navigate to: Filters > Blur > Motion Blur – Length 50 but this time set the angle to 90 (important).
Create two new layers and call them Horizontal Screen and Vertical Screen. Fill these two layers with black.
Add noise to each layer – again mixing it up a bit on the “Value” for Horizontal and Vertical layers — Filters > Noise > HSV Noise… Holdness: 1, Hue: 0, Saturation: 0, Value:120 — Vertical Screen: Holdness: 1, Hue: 0, Saturation: 0, Value:146.
Set the Mode on these two layers to Screen
Next we’re going to add a Motion Blur to both layers. Select the Horizontal Screen layer and go to: Filters > Blur > Motion Blur. — Set the Length to 50 and the angle to 0. Next select the Vertical Screen layer and navigate to: Filters > Blur > Motion Blur – Length 50 but this time set the angle to 90.
Trim your fancy new linen texture to the desired size and voilà.
This tutorial was inspired by a post from Elixir Graphics: Creating an iOS linen texture in PhotoShop