Sophie Kingo Blogs

Insight into Sophie Kingo's African-Scandinavian inspired clothing and accessories


African print autumn accessories

Last weekend I decided to experiment with sewing autumn accessories. I’d been admiring “infinity scarves” or “cowls” for a while now and decided to try making five up from my lovely African print fabric stash. Two use a lovely mustard, royal blue and grass green kente print fabric and have contrast yellow or green lining and one uses a lovely brown, green and black wax print fabric. Two others are made with a beautiful leaf print fabric – one pink and blue, the other orange, green and blue.

And the best thing? They’re not just for the ladies. As wonderfully demonstrated by my husband and me on a rainy London day, they are unisex. So men and women alike can bring a bit of bright Ghanaian colour to these miserable British autumn days. Oh, and they’re reversible. Bonus!

I’m thinking of making up many more to sell in my Folksy store, so do let me know your thoughts. And keep an eye out for another take on these I have in mind.

African wax print cowl

African wax print cowl

Kente print cowl with green contrast lining

Kente print cowl with green contrast lining

African wax print cowl

African wax print cowl

African wax print cowl

African wax print cowl

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A New Sophie Kingo Website

It’s that time, ladies and gentlemen, to release on the world the new Sophie Kingo website.

I decided a couple of weeks ago to explore how much my own domain name would cost and look at developing a great website showcasing my African print girls’ dresses that continue to grow in popularity.

One thing led to another, and by the end of my lunch hour I was in possession of a domain name and web hosting service. Fast forward a couple of weeks, several nights web developing (with some much needed development support from a techie friend), and testing by a few friends and family and it’s ready.

You can find information on how to order your own Sophie Kingo African print girls’ dress and where to buy Sophie Kingo Afro-Scandinavian inspired jewellery, along with information on available fabrics and testimonials.

More will be added over time – including, I hope, a gallery of Sophie Kingo dresses in use by the lovely little trend setters who are lucky owners.

This blog will still be in action to showcase all that I am making whether it’s for me or for others, but please do share the new website with your friends and family. You can find it at

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African print girl’s dress number 7

It’s been just over two weeks since I last blogged.  Just after telling you about the last dress it was my husband‘s 30th birthday, which signalled the arrival of my parents from Hull and a weekend of family and birthday celebrations. This meant I didn’t get the time to even just look at drawing up a pattern for a 6 month dress till last weekend, never mind get to Brixton to buy some new fabric.

Eventually when I got to Brixton at the weekend, I wasn’t that impressed with the fabric on offer in my two favourite Brixton fabric shops – African Queen and Freeman Textiles. But after rooting around I picked out two lovely fabrics – one dark red with black, white and yellow flowers, the other turquoise with bright pink and blue flowers (left).

Jeffrey was away in Newquay on a stag do at the weekend, so i ceased the opportunity to get working with few interruptions on the eight dress orders I have picked up. I got the bulk of four age 6 month dresses made, in between housework, baking, seeing friends and battling two headaches. All that is left is to hem them, which it seems particularly hard to find the time for this week. But I managed to complete one last night, which our neighbour collected tonight. And she really liked it. In her words: “it’s nice to not get the normal pink dress.”

So, this lovely specimen below is winging its way to the lucky little daughter of a couple who recently spent a year travelling around Africa. Here’s hoping they like it and it reminds them of their travels.

More to come later this week.

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A new girl’s African print dress

Another dress complete. And I love this one. Regulars to my website, or those who find themselves often in my company, will recognise the print from this shift dress I made late last year. The strip at the bottom is printed kente – the cloth of kings from the Asante people of Ghana – and helps make it feel even more Ghanaian than the others.

When I started making the African print dresses for girls a couple of weeks ago, I decided I’d make six – ages one to six – and did all the cutting in one go (the cutting’s the slow and boring part of the dress making process, so it’s nice to get it out of the way in one fell swoop).

Before completing the age six dress I had sold the smallest to one of the husband‘s colleagues. And then, having shared the pictures and link to my blog around work, I had sold the age six dress before even completing it.

And here are a few photos of the dress the lucky six-year-old Rose will be swanning around South London in in the not too distant future. Once I get a dress completed for her 10 year old sister, that is. If I’ve learnt anything from my parents and other parents I spend time around, it’s that what you do for one you do for the other. And who could possibly give one daughter a lovely Sophie Kingo African print dress without giving one to the other?!

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So, with that alongside five dresses for 3-6month olds I have been asked to make, I’ve a busy couple of weeks coming up.

And don’t forget, if you want one, just drop me a line. And why not get yourself an oyster card holder while you’re at it? Get one for just £4 when you order a dress.

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Two new African print dresses – For sale

I never realised two blog posts could result in 570 blog views in two days. But it seems that’s what blogging about gorgeous home made girls’ African print dresses and how Burberry Prorsum was inspired by me can bring. And what a great reception. Lots of people have been sharing the link, and I’ve had enquiries from four people about making dresses for girls of six months, one for a four year old and one for a 10 year old, so I’m going to get to the drawing board this weekend to make that happen.

But as for the turquoise, red and pink dresses I made at the weekend, I have now sold one. The age 1 turquoise dress has been snapped up by a teacher colleague of my husband‘s. Her little girl has red hair, so she  is undoubtedly going to look adorable in it. And what a steal. That lovely little dress was proving a real favourite amongst many and I’m actually quite sad to see it go as it was the first one I completed.

But, it is gone, and a cute little girl in West London is hopefully going to look lovely wearing it. So it’s time to add a couple of other dresses into the mix.

Tonight’s additions are two purple dresses – one for age 4, the other age 5. Again, both are 100% cotton, 100% hand made by me, and 100% one-offs. None of your mass produced cotton/polyester Primark tat here. The one on the left is age 4 and is made from beautiful batik fabric bought at Obuasi market in Ghana – pretty special – and is one of my favourite dresses so far. The one on the right is age 5. Here they are:

left age 4, right age 5

These two dresses are for sale at the introductory price of £22 each plus postage.

If you would like to snap one up before it goes please email me. You can also find me on Facebook and Twitter. I’m not picky about how you get in touch.

And if you can’t bear just for your little girl to have something in African print, take a look at these Oyster card holders for you. Get one for just £4 when you purchase a dress. Bargain!

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And finally, if you’d like to see more about Obuasi and other parts of Ghana, which have inspired this range of dresses, click here for our holiday snaps.


Little girls in African print – Dresses for sale

As I mentioned in my previous post – Burberry Prorsum inspired by Sophie Kingo – African print is again on trend this spring summer.

Over the past two years I’ve made lots of dresses using West African print fabric – both for me and two little girls, and have also made oyster card holders (for sale), a foot pouffe, birds and cushions out of my leftovers. I just love the bright colours and bold patterns of West African print fabric and like to link into the heritage of my (relatively new) husband and extended family. I just don’t seem to be able to stop buying fabric from a great little Ghanaian fabric shop in Brixton market to make myself more new dresses – but I’m ending up with quite a lot now.

A couple of weeks ago I was speaking to two colleagues – Fancy and Lauren – about some of the things I’ve been making and they planted in me the thought of making more dresses for little girls. To sell. And what better than in African print, for fashion conscious mothers (and fathers) and on-trend little girls?!

So I stepped to it and last weekend started making three little dresses – one each for a one-, two- and three-year-old. All are 100% cotton with matching fabric covered buttons and entirely hand made by me.

And here they are. Ok, granted, one of them isn’t in African print fabric, but two are. And more are in production, so if you have a 4-, 5- or 6-year-old and want to get your hands on one then do come back soon.

These three dresses are all for sale at the introductory price of £18 each plus postage. 

To buy one for that special little girl in your life, drop me an email. I can also make dresses to order. Please get in touch to discuss options and price.

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Jewellery for sale

Well, there are only 35 and a half shopping days left till Christmas. This is somewhat filling me with dread as I realise I’m struggling to work out what to give people as gifts. Making gifts for people every birthday and Christmas means I’m constantly feeling like I have to think of something new to make. And this year I’m struggling.

But, for those who buy gifts for their friends and want to buy one of a kind items, where do they shop? I’m getting seriously fed up of the cheap mass-produced poor quality throwaway items you see for sale on the high street and think others must too.

So, I’ve created a new Facebook group – Sophie Kingo Handmade Gifts and Jewellery – to show you, and hopefully sell you, some of my one of a kind items.

Here’s a taster of what you can buy. Click on the group and on the relevant photo albums for more information and cost.

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