Sophie Kingo Blogs

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


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Baby Elspeth and new fabrics

I’ve been making and selling girls’ dresses for a little while now. It doesn’t really supplement my salary from my full-time ‘proper’ job a great deal, but it’s a nice way of keeping up my dressmaking hobby without just expensively giving away dress after dress to family and friends or ending up with hundreds of dresses for me. Basically, I like to sew so I thought I might as well try to sell some of what I make.

Anyway, I’ve had a website- sophiekingo.co.uk – up and running since last year and have seen a few orders from people I don’t know – notably from Fuerth and Hamburg in Germany and Taunton in Somerset – via my Folksy shop. The mother in Somerset recently shared this picture of her lovely daughter Elspeth sporting a Sophie Kingo special with plenty of room to grow. Doesn’t she look gorgeous?

Elspeth in Pia

Elspeth in Pia with Malene trim

It’s so nice receiving images of girls in the dresses I make. I don’t have children of my own, so I often don’t get to see my creations being worn. But luckily, a few parents have shared pictures with me, and you can see the lovely Georgie, Matilda, Hannah and Romey enjoying their dresses on my website.

I have a couple of other orders to get on with this weekend – another for Hamburg and one for a friend’s niece in London – but had run seriously low on stock. So the hubby and I took a trip to Brixton yesterday to pick up some new fabrics. There wasn’t a great selection available and sadly one of the shops I regularly used – Freeman Textiles – has closed down. It’s the sad result of the gentrification of Brixton Village from a West Indian/African hodgepodge market into an arcade of trendy eateries and boutiques. But I managed to find some printed kente and a couple of other wax prints from African Queen that will look lovely when made up into dresses – either for me or for girls…

So, anyone wanting to buy their own Sophie Kingo creation for their little girl – or even just one they know – can now take their pick from 12 lovely colourful West African print fabrics. Summer is just around the corner – I promise – so why not get your order in while you can enjoy it?!

 


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How to wear a Sophie Kingo African print dress

Here’s a three point lesson from two gorgeous recipients of a Sophie Kingo African print dress.
  1. Look cute
  2. Look proud
  3. Strike a pose
And here they are showing off their dresses.
And if your little girl has a Sophie Kingo African print dress, please share a photo with us and receive 15% off your next order. Email: contactus@sophiekingo.co.uk or visit the Sophie Kingo website to order yours.


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Two new dresses

Adwoa, age 2 and Abena, age 2

Here are another two Sophie Kingo African print girls’ dresses. One for a colleague of mine and one for a colleague of the husband’s. Both for two-year-olds. I just hope the sun comes out for long enough for then to enjoy them.

Remember – if you want one for a little girl in your life, visit the new Sophie Kingo website.

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A kente girl’s dress

This morning I made a new dress – an order from my neighbour for her lovely little 16-month-old daughter.

Kara and her daughter came round on Wednesday to discuss options. Kara was interested in the colours and feel of the fabric and which colours complemented her little girl’s skintone, while her daughter was more interested in the zebra mask lurking in the ‘blue room’ – our storage-cum-music-cum-fabric room.

Kara opted for the printed kente – a gorgeous bright print – which I think deserves an explanation and history lesson.

A history of kente

Kente cloth is a Ghanaian royal and sacred woven cloth (or nwentoma), traditionally worn by the Asante people of Ghana in times of extreme importance. Kente is still highly regarded across Ghana today and is often worn for special occasions such as traditional Ghanaian weddings.

Asante kente can be identified by its dazzling, multi-coloured geometric shapes and bold designs and each design has an individual meaning. The cloths are identified primarily by the patterns found in the warp threads and different colours hold different meanings (see here).

The dress

This kente design (sadly not woven kente which is very expensive, but instead printed) uses gold, ping, green and blue, conveying:

  • wealth, royalty, high status, glory and spiritual purity (gold);
  • femininity (pink);
  • vegetation, planting, harvesting, growth, spiritual renewal (green); and
  • peacefulness, harmony and love (blue)

And here it is:

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New Fabrics

When I posted the blog on my new skirt, my workmates Nina and Catherine decided they each fancy one. So, on Saturday, Jeffrey and I took a trip to Brixton to meet up with Nina to pick out some fabric so that she can join me and make her second item of clothing.

Of course, I couldn’t leave Nina to buy some fabric on her own; I had to buy some for a skirt or dress for me, and to offer for the African print girls’ dresses.

Here they are. You can also see them on the available fabrics page should you wish to buy a girl’s dress in one of these beauties:

photo (2) photo (1)

And this Saturday I plan on using some of them. But before then, I will be making a dress in printed kente for my neighbour’s gorgeous little 16 month old daughter. And I’m taking orders, so if you would like a dress for a little girl near you, please check out details in the ‘shop and drop me a line.


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A new tween girl’s African print dress

When I first set out making African print girls’ dresses in March, my boss loved them. She bought herself an African print dress from a shop in Camberwell last year, and when she saw my girls’ dresses she had to have one for each of her daughters.

Green and pink dress, age 12

The girls are aged 10 and six and they are gorgeous. In March I had already made an age 6 dress which my boss loved, but she didn’t want matching dresses for the girls. The 10-year-old also asked for something slightly more grown up but still in a style that allows her to run around and play.

So, I  altered a girls’ shift type dress pattern to have tab shoulders like the other girls’ dresses and used some lovely green and pink African print fabric that my boss had bought in African Queen in Brixton. As you can see, the dress is much less a-line than those I make for ages 6-months to 6-years, but just as lovely.

And if you’re wondering why I made an age 12 dress for a 10-year-old, she is very tall for her age.

Here are the some pictures of the girls’ dresses:

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