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Henry Moore

1 Aug

Today I went to see the Henry Moore textile exhibition at the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich.

art should be part of everyday life

Although mainly known for his sculptures, Moore also designed in textiles for clothing and upholstery.  This exhibition shows his textile art from the 1940s and ’50s. 

Barbed Wire by Henry Moore

In 1943 Moore began working with Zika and Lida Ascher of the Ascher Textile Business.  The Aschers, Czech refugees, had escaped the nazis and started a new life in England. 

It was the end of World War 2 and Britain celebrated with bright colours.  Together with other artists, including Henri Matisse – famous for his cut-out collage art, such as The Snail (more info. on this piece) – colourful abstract designs were produced on 36 inch square silk scarves, and as many as 60 % of these were exported from the UK worldwide.  These were handprinted adopting a new screenprinting method just for “artists” called Serigraphy.  Dye was applied through the open areas of the stencils that were fixed to a fine silk screen, through onto the fabric.  Other materials deployed included parachute nylon, cotton and rayon.  The silk scarves were hugely popular and were often framed and put on the wall instead of being used for wearable fashion.

The Aschers and Moore continued to work together producing dress and upholstery fabrics and wall hangings.


Henry Moore’s favourite subjects included abstract trains, caterpillars, sea creatures, figures, various types of masks, clocks, palm trees, treble clefs, safety pins, hand studies, sometimes with either piano keys or barbed wired running through the design.  He would “box in” elements of some designs (such as the very abstract trains), and other linear work was further simplified to basic lines, zig-zags and triangles (think of his Zig Zag [1954] piece in orange and red).

Below: photos I took of the Serigraphy in 5 colours, rayon.


1951 was the year of The Festival of Britain – my father went to this exciting event, he told me how much I would have loved it! – and although Moore hadn’t entered any of his textile art, he was showing one of his famous sculptures.

Tom Mellor, the director of David Whitehead Fabrics  noticed Moore at the 1953 Painting Into Textiles exhibition and 2 of Moore’s prints were produced.  Flatbed screenprinting was used, and inspired by The Festival of Britain, the designs were mainly “painterly“.


This exhibition runs 22nd Jun 2010 – 29th Aug 2010.

Click the above link (This exhibition) to be taken to the museum’s page for info.  Disabled parking just outside the door, they were very accommodating to me.


More interesting links – – –

Copyright Stephanie Faith 2010  

Photograph, Barbed Wire, the property of Matt Pia

Scotty Dog Cap

6 Jun

Recognise this fabric?  It’s the same fabric as my “Scotty Dog Skirt” AND(!) the “Scotty Dog Bag” – 2 separate posts; the skirt is almost finished.

After seeing to the skirt, there was quite some fabric left, so after making the little bag, I covered one of my British army caps…and there’s still some fabric left hehe 😀 

Me wearing my Scotty Dog Cap :p


Scotty Dog Bag

6 May

I designed and made this little Scotty Dog Bag during my first couple of weeks of grieving – – – Dad would have loved it.  The fabric matches the skirt I’m still(!) making on my dressmaking course.  The skirt will also feature this Scotty Dog applique (on a black panel) but with a dog lead – gold chain or chain stitch in gold embroidery thread.

Scotty Dog Bag by Stephanie Faith 2010


They at the dressmaking course think I’m dog-mad.  I think they’re right :p

New fabric

4 May

I couldn’t resist this cotton fabric the other day: it was half price, printed with my fave colours green and red, with charming birds and flowers. 

So I came away with the last 2 metres and a sewing magazine featuring a free Capri Pants pattern.  I’ve been wanting to make Capri Pants for a while now so pounced on that magazine,  but I’m not too sure now…I am afraid of sizing up, getting it wrong and wasting this beautiful fabric!  Not sure whether to make something simpler – maybe that scallop-edged 1940’s inspired skirt from The Pictorial Guide to Modern Home Needlecraft p. 62; but I would shorten it to above-the-knee. 

Capri Pants OR Scallop Skirt: Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

Photos below of the Scallop Skirt – – – Enjoy :p

1940's Scallop Skirt

I’m going to put these photos – and the others of the Scallop Skirt – on my web site in the next few days so you can see them large 🙂

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Here are the large photos of the 1940’s Scallop Skirt page – – –

Fashion Trends for Spring 2010

13 Jan

Whether you are a dressmaker, jewellery designer or any other kind of maker of fashion items, or just simply want to keep an eye on fashion trends, these web sites can keep you in the picture – – – 

I like the article on Pantone’s Color of the Year: Turquoise; Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “It is believed to be a protective talisman, a color of deep compassion and healing, and a color of faith and truth, inspired by water and sky…”.
Gorgeous Graphic Heels from


Courtney Mason of talks about her  high heel art:

“The idea came about when I was commissioned to do a job using paint markers. I loved the technique and fine art side to it so much that I wanted to find something that could be painted for women to wear. This way they could feel beautiful while expressing themselves.”

Mmm maybe there is a way of recycling fave shoes that have seen better days.  My red flats come to mind, the covering has peeled off.

And there are many more fabulous articles on this fashion trend web site 😛

“Classically inspired but with a serious infusion of the sex and skin” declares the Fashioning web site, on the fashion trends for this year.  You can sign up for their free newsletters.

Striking patterned trousers big in 2010

I’m so excited about this trend for colourful patterned trousers, I might make myself a pair for my next project on the dressmaking course.  I do like the Marlene Dietrich wide pants…

Fashion tips

Hot pants, slit-to-the-thigh Veronica Lake style dresses, jumpsuits, ripped lacy or patched jeans, knee-high socks and Sparticus Shoes (still in!) …but I wouldn’t say combining those socks and those shoes together is a good look 😉

Other fashions mentioned but which I don’t like include jodphurs (best kept just for horse riding) and sports wear (fat lazy people and chads come to mind…not a pretty picture). 

1940's Hollywood Star Veronica Lake

1940's Hollywood Star Veronica Lake


Why not check out the various – clothing and otherwise – patterns at Burda Style?  A few are free and there is inspiration in abundance!

Paris Fashion Week reported by Vogue, the god of fashion.

I love the green jumpsuit from Issa as shown on the catwalk in London Fashion Week.  Her spring / summer 2010 collection is a joy –  the femininity, the flowing lines, the exotic colours, coral, yellow-green, jade-green, orange, pastel blue and pink, white…  The bold butterfly print skirt, very beautiful!  The Brazilian designer (the one behind Issa) Daniella Helayel, has a beautiful web site too.  No wonder I am a new fan, she is also a dog-mother!  Has 2 Maltesers, Monster and Snowball.

Vivienne Westwood Bambi bag

Vivienne Westwood Bambi bag

UK high street fashion at affordable prices reviewed and blogged at

Being a dog lover my fave designer bags are from Radley, and there is still a sale on!  

Turquoise Beachball purse from Radley

Turquoise Beachball purse from Radley

I hope this blog has uplifted your spirits, as it has mine in researching and writing it 🙂

Dragon Fly earrings from George at Asda

Dragon Fly earrings from George at Asda

This Doll Loves…

1 Nov

Please vote for me at the SpoonFlower Doll Panel competition!

A big thank you to everyone who voted for me 😀

I’m not in the 10 finalists but I don’t regret taking part in the competition because without it I wouldn’t have created this design.

Scotty Dog Skirt

26 Oct

Celebrating the Scot in me!

I’m currently learning professional dressmaking – – – and loving it. I’ve never made any clothes before and haven’t used a sewing machine since one time when I was a young teen, so: a little nerve wracking!

I wanted a simple A line skirt pattern and Mum came up with this, the Rock Jupe Skirt pattern from Burda. I don’t know the year. This pattern had never been used!
I’m following the B pattern.

Jute Skirt pattern from Burda

Rock Jupe Skirt pattern from Burda


At the first class our dressmaking tutor cautioned “it’s better finding a pattern FIRST and then choose the fabric.” So with her wise words in mind I fell in love with a certain fabric – – – a deep red tartan spotted with cute little Scotty dogs!

I knew I had to buy it: it was a very good price at £6.50 the metre, there was only 2 and a half metres left on the roll, and it had little dogs all over it!
And I was sure to find a suitable pattern :p

Scotty dog tartan!

Scotty dog tartan!

W o o f !