english girl at home

A Sewing & Knitting Blog, Made in Birmingham, England


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Comic Art Sudley Printed with Contrado

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Contrado are a London-based company who offer fabric printing on demand. I talk about my experience designing and printing a fabric with them in my latest vlog, which you can view here:

As mentioned in the vlog, my design was inspired by a comic-print, black and white Prada skirt, which I eyeballed in a shop window. My design features some personal favourite comic characters / artists.

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

The design was printed on Contrado’s Crepe de France fabric. The fabric is light/medium weight, with lots of drape.  The image print quality is very high, with even small details printed clearly. The colour didn’t run when I washed the fabric, but I did get some colour/image transfer when I ironed this dress on a high heat (following one wash). The fabric is slightly see-through; I lined the bodice and will wear a slip underneath.

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

I used my fabric to make a Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress, with the skirt extended to floor length. I thought Sudley would be a good pattern to show off the fabric, due to the lack of fastenings or darts. As in my previous Sudley, I cinched in the waist of the dress by attaching elastic around the waistband.

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

I’m looking forward to wearing this out – although slightly wary about how dirty the hem may be by the time I get home!

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Megan Nielsen Sudley Dress in Contrado Comic Print

Disclaimer: I was provided with two metres of fabric in exchange for blogging about it, all opinions expressed are my own.

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Chinese Character Door Mat

Chinese Character Screen Printed Door Mat

Having screen printed some tote bags with Chinese characters I thought they might also look good on a door mat. This door mat features the characters 欢迎你 and lets guests know they are welcome. The door mat itself is shop bought with a screen printed design added by me.

These are available to buy from my Etsy store.

欢迎你 Screen Printed Welcome Doormat


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Screen Printed Hydrangea Bags

Screen Printed Hydrangea Bag

I was running a little late making Christmas presents this year. On the 23rd December I was busy screen printing bags as extra Christmas presents for lots of family members. I went with a two-colour hydrangea design on grey bags.

I did the screen printing in our shed and hung the bags out to dry on the washing line. It took longer than it should have as a neighbour’s cat decided to help out by joining me in the shed and winding around my legs!

Screen Printed Hydrangea Bag
Screen Printed Hydrangea Bag


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Ruan Lingyu (阮玲玉) Lino Print

Ruan Lingyu 阮凤根 Linocut Print
Ruan Lingyu 阮凤根 Linocut Print

This is my second film star lino cut print in a couple of weeks. This time the subject is Ruan Lingyu, 阮玲玉. Ruan was a big star of the Shanghai film industry in the 1930s. She has become an idol partly due to her suicide at the age of 24, which is attributed to a combination of abusive relationships with her lovers and pressure from the press.  I discovered Ruan through Liu Ye’s beautiful paintings of her, and then went on to watch her films and admire her work as an actress. Her films are fairly easy to get hold of, especially her most famous film The Goddess, and also check out the Stanley Kwan film about her Centre Stage featuring Maggie Cheung.


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LouLou Lino Print

A new monochrome linocut print, carved and printed last weekend and finally cut to size and framed this week. It’s sized 5″ x 7″ and printed on a pale purple card.

The image is based on a photo of Louise Brooks. Brooks fascinates me. Her life story is a perfect tragic tale, of a brilliant actress whose career was ruined by the studio system and her own unbending personality. I find that photographs of her convey a sense of that forceful personality, as well as her beauty.

LouLou Linocut Print

LouLou Linocut Print

LouLou Linocut Print


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中秋节快乐 ~ Mid-Autumn Festival Mooncake

中秋节快乐 / Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!

Today is Mid-Autumn Festival, an important holiday in the Chinese lunar calendar. Mooncakes (月饼), pastry cakes which normally contains red bean or lotus seed paste and salted duck egg yolk, are eaten at the Festival and are frequently given as gifts (they tend to be quite expensive).

Pictured below is one of the mooncake linocut images I created for this year’s Mid-Autumn Festival.

The card pictured in the third photo is one of those I gave to colleagues at the Mandarin class I attend.
Mooncake Linocut Print Card
Mooncake Linocut Print Card
Mooncake Linocut Print Card