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Bomb Squad Artist Spotlight: Jade Gordon

Our Lady of Perpetual Kittens, Jade Gordon

You’ve most likely seen Jade’s work around Bombsheller before. Perhaps you pined for #SkullPile around Halloween, or recently agonized over which color variant of #Tentacles to choose (correct answer: all of them). Maybe you considered wearing #ThanksgivingCats or #ChristmasCats to family dinners last year, or found yourself wondering just how many cat leggings is too many cat leggings (correct answer: no such thing).

Jade wearing an early iteration of #Tentacles at Steamcon

Jade wearing an early iteration of #Tentacles at Steamcon


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Jade’s selection of shells continues to grow – we just added her 11th design to our catalog! Welcome #Corgiflage – perfect for those times when all you want is to blend into a pile of fluffy-bottomed puppies.


We adore Jade and her designs, and we think that building a collection of that size is the perfect excuse to introduce her to you!

While Jade makes a lot of badass textile prints, it’s not her only focus, and certainly not her only talent. She creates using a variety of mediums – pen, pencil, watercolor, digital – but has also managed to create works in a variety of different styles while still making everything undoubtedly her own. Her creative works range from animals in suits to human bodies in motion, from fan art to fairies, from earth to the deep reaches of space. Chances are, no matter what your interests, you’ll find something in her gallery that you’ll love. We asked her a few questions, and we were delighted that she provided us with answers to share with you all!


ee, JA Tentacled Jade Gordon Self-Portrait

You use a variety of styles and techniques in your art. When it comes to creating, do you have a favorite artistic style, or does that vary depending on your mood? 

Well, how can I ever let go of a love of the organic-ness of Nouveau? I think these days I spend a lot of time admiring independent comic artists. There’s so much variety in style and technique, yet there’s often still a heavily organic and crafty feel to it.

My own work definitely varies with mood, or whatever I’ve been looking at lately. I try to seek out new inspirations when I feel like I’m habitually making things of a formulaic technique rather than being creative. I feel like I go in waves for a long time, then I move on to a new style/technique/theme. 

A steampunk robot Jade Gordon, otherwise known as J-99-B1

Do you have a favorite medium or mix of mediums? 

Blue pencil and inks are probably the most beloved, but I’m leaning more toward digital and tablets because the increased speed and simplification are a lot less wear and tear on the joint and neuromuscular issues I have. 

Last year, you created hundreds of new textile designs. Just how different is the process of creating them versus your fan art and your paintings?

Textile designs can be so prolific because I can play with my original art and include that as well as things intended to be patterns from the start. I think developing for textiles gets me in the habit of thinking about how the art can be used – even simple prints need space for bleeds, and sometimes the ability to print as a square or a rectangle… or on a button, sticker, etc. I feel I’m getting better about having that in mind earlier in the process.

Textile prints from Jade Gordon’s website

What do you like to listen to or have on in the background when you’re creating? Do you have a playlist you’d like to share?

I do have to be listening to something while I work! Sometimes I’ll use Pandora for a little randomness, but I often find concentration is best aided by Classical, Instrumental/Movie Scores, or something driving and loud like NIN, Daft Punk, or Ministry – it’s all enjoyable but more of a noise that locks distractions out and I get a little more focused on the work at hand. I also sometimes find re-watching favorite movies or TV shows to have a similar effect as a familiar long-form music piece.

Most of my music lives on my computer, but sometimes I’ll throw together a list like this (click the top left icon on the video or click here to see the full list):

Are you working on any projects right now that you’re particularly excited about?

Not especially! I am generally working around my health needs and limitations, so I feel like I’ll never be done with all the little ideas, much less planning for the bigger ideas (though I am trying to gather my lists and notes to design some kind of new workflow)! I’m hoping to do more painting soon, now that I’ve worked out a little more space for an easel, my last painting mishap sprayed electric blue paint all over a kitchen wall. Thank goodness acrylic paint peels off many things when dry!

44th president Barack Obama follows you on Twitter. How does that make you feel?

Grateful that I don’t feel the need to entirely block him out like I do with 45? I’m also curious to see what Obama does from here on. Presidents don’t historically have the best track records/lifespans, but watching them as we can in the modern era, the choices they make, their priorities, their continued sacrifice and care of others, and how the process and atone for their errors is… interesting!

Thanks for chatting with us, Jade! We’re looking forward to seeing what you come up with next.

View the full collection of Jade Gordon shells here!

For more of Jade’s work, make sure to check out her website and follow her on social media!




Gift Guide: 2015


It’s that time of year! Time to start thinking about stuff to buy other people instead of yourself. This can be really fun if you have just the right gift to knock someone’s socks off — which is where we come in. If you’re going to buy clothes for your sister, friend, or significant other, Bombsheller is the answer.

  • They like to be comfortable? Bombsheller.
  • They like modern art? Bombsheller.
  • They like traditional art? Bombsheller.
  • They like to work out? Bombsheller.
  • They like to geek out? Bombsheller.
  • They have a big butt? Bombsheller.
  • They have a little butt? Bombsheller.

Seriously, you can’t go wrong with leggings. But if you need some help, we’ve put together a few gift giving suggestions.

For your nephew in his third year of residency who insists on using medical terminology at the dinner table.

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For the open-minded cat lady who wanted to be an astronaut as a teenager but now works in the library.



For your friend who wanted the floral pants by Céline or Dolce & Gabbana but couldn’t afford them.

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For your daughter majoring in philosophy who only reads heavy books about death and just spends hours staring at clouds.



For the person you call every time you can’t get your phone/computer/printer to work (they wish you would stop calling).



For your friend who is obsessed with fantasy novels/games/TV shows and knows way too much about dragons.



We’ve also collected all the best sellers of 2015 on Pinterest, so if you want a safe bet, those are definitely the most popular. Still not sure what to get your loved ones? Tweet at @thebombsheller and we’ll give you our expert advice to help you choose the best design. And if you’re really lost, grab a Gift Certificate and let your pals choose for themselves! There’s no wrong way to gift leggings.

Espionage Cosmetics X Bombsheller


Bombsheller babes have long been fans of the scientific nail wraps and nerd glitter from Espionage Cosmetics, a company that makes it possible for you to adorn yourself to the geekiest limits of your imagination. We’d been dreaming of a photo shoot with them for a year, so when CEO/Glitter Jedi Jaimie contacted us about a collaboration, we said yes yes yes!

On November 27 (Black Friday) we will be releasing #WyvernScales, a brand new exclusive design from Espionage available only through January 1. I know what you’re thinking — “Does it match any of the nail wraps?” Answer: OF COURSE! The dragon scale nail wraps will also only be available through the holidays, though, so if you want this look plan accordingly.

#SquadGoals — wait no, #WeyrGoals


Adobe Illustrator Tutorial: Live Color with Sew Heidi


There are so many tools in Adobe Illustrator that you’ve probably never utilized them all — unless you’re AI pro, Sew Heidi. If you haven’t heard of her yet, go to her website right now! Her blog is fun to read and she has tons of video tutorials showing how to use Illustrator for fashion design. In her own words, Heidi is a “vector junkie and AI nerd who teaches other fashionistas to love Illustrator as much as she does.” If you get the impression she knows her stuff, you’d be right. That’s why we’re so excited that she’s done a tutorial on our template! Take it away, Heidi.

If you’re working with vector artwork, the sky’s the limit for quickly creating multiple colorways using Live Color in Illustrator (available in CS4 & newer). This recoloring technique works great whether you’ve created original vector artwork or you’ve used Image Trace or Live Trace to convert raster to vector. In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to take a traced photograph and create multiple colorways all within a matter of minutes. You’ll learn how to edit individual colors, or keep complimentary colors and like hues locked together to easily create harmonious color options. If you need a refresher on converting a photograph to vector, check out this tutorial on Live Trace for CS5 & older or this video on Image Trace for CS6 & newer.

Love the design? You can get it for yourself right here!

Canvas to Clothes. How Fast? Real Fast.

At Rose City ComiCon, we teamed up with Dark Horse for a daring event: showcase a comics artist creating art live at the booth, turn that art into leggings overnight and deliver them to fans the next day.


This was actually the second time we made a design into leggings overnight. Last year we got Seattle artist Jonathan Wakuda to spray paint a design on New Day Northwest and brought back leggings for the show the next morning. But why keep all the fun to ourselves in Seattle? We knew we could make this happen for the comic fans in Portland who were going to RCCC. Dark Horse was stoked to do it, and we were even more stoked when we found out they were bringing in Joëlle Jones, who we’ve had a major art crush on since we discovered Lady Killer at Emerald City ComiCon.


It was a huge hit! Bleeding Cool wrote about it on their blog — it’s a great article with awesome photos, you should read it. Lots of attendees stopped to watch Joëlle draw (and just as many stopped to watch the time lapse video of her drawing the day after). Everyone who wanted #LadyKiller leggings got them! And if you weren’t there, you can still get them online.

Even sweeter, so many women were excited about comics merchandise that wasn’t t-shirts. We know! Seriously, none of us needs another t-shirt. Hail spandex.