Stunning Ellie Cashman Floral Linen

No ones opening the door… guess it’s clear she’s gone. 

I have found true fabric love with Ellie Cashman and her moody dark floral designs. I recently made a ball gown (here) that is a digital print silk charmuse. The fabric I chose for the Chardon skirt was a printed linen because if you are going to spend that amount of money on one piece of fabric and postage from overseas, you should always make the cost of postage more reasonable by ordering additional fabric. That, dear readers, is logic!Ellie’s designs are exquisite and the underlying darkness in her design ensures it stands apart from that prettiness that is so often found in florals. Her designs are a mix of over sized blooms with digital enhancement and the odd butterfly floating in a sea of petals that give it a strong edge.

This is my Dirty Dancing moment, much to the horror of B1 and B2. I was, after all, having the time of my life. The water lilies were in fine form. And my death pose. May my inner gothling always be present.
The top is the Tiny Pocket tank (OOP) from Grainline Studio which I believe has now been updated to a similar pattern called  Willow. I find this top very flattering with the addition of some shaping in the side seams. I stumbled upon the cotton lace overlay and silk remnant at The Fabric Store and was down to the millimetre to cut the Tiny Pocket out. The silk hangs below the lace which I’m quite pleased with when it is sitting over the skirt but I think it will be more likely tucked in. I used some black silk bias to finish the neck and arms that I’d made many moons ago to add some contrast. The the ribbon was originally threaded around the waist however it didn’t sit well so I’ve left it at the back to give a little extra gather and definition to the waist. The linen I used for the Chardon skirt was the Dark Floral II light by Ellie Cashman and it was heaven to sew with. No fading with washing and it retained its original beautiful structure which held the pleats of the Chardon skirt so well whilst providing a little pouf. The pleats seemed to give the flowers even more depth as they overlapped. The skirt went together beautifully and having sized down from my previous version, is now more fitted around the waist. And of course it has pockets. As this is such a special skirt, I hemmed it with vintage lace gifted to me by Marjorie. She was kind enough to send me a collection of vintage laces from her personal collection last year that I could incorporate into my sewing. My mantra remains the same after all these years: Liberty, Linen and Lace. I hand picked the zip  due the thickness of the fabric and to ensure greater control over where it was placed. It sits flatly across the derriere and has all the good curves in just the right places.That centre flower looks so three dimensional within the folds of the pleats. Even when laying out the fabric it looked magical. I also caught a reclusive bug and lonely cute butterfly on the front skirt piece.

Thank you also to Chuleenan who convinced me with her versions of the Deer and Doe Chardon skirt that it is a fabulous pattern.

I suspect I may have enough left fabric over to make some beautiful cushions as well for my bedroom. Or should I try a top? Too many decisions for the poor brain today.

On the health front, my recent surgery was a complete success however surgical menopausal shock is about as much fun as it sounds. Hopefully with some more adjustments I’ll be back to work in a week or so and can get back to this wonderful thing called life. And my belly can deflate again. The poor little thing is still swollen. The scaring has healed beautifully but the poufiness of the tummy remains. In the meantime it’s rest, sew, and keep up fluids. And try not to complain too much. How do women not talk about what a horrendous thing menopause is! It’s really rather horrid. And I’ve been through many horrid things. But I now have this beautiful dark floral skirt for which I am most grateful.

Photos by Bruce. Location at Deakin University Waurn Ponds. Dark floral II fabric purchased from Ellie Cashman. (I’m saving up to purchase another piece to make a bed head…). Chardon skirt pattern by Deer and Doe. Tiny pocket tank by Grainline Studio, now reissued as the Willow.  Shoes from Camper. Tights from Wolford. Vintage jewellery from JeanJeanVintage. Flower crown by Gardens of Whimsy.


dark floral for a dark princess pips

A bud, a posy, a bouquet, a vase overflowing with blooms.. They make me happy and are an all too rare treat that I had forgotten until recently and now they are blooming everywhere.

grown by Pipsie

grown by Pipsie

There is a softly spoken of rule in our house; if flowers are mentioned a (Bruce imposed) minimum period of 3 months comes into effect before purchase of any type of flora can be considered. Due to this rule being in effect most of the time, for some reason when ever I am close I always slip up, floral bouquets come around once every 3 or so years. This has been explained to me as a way to ensure that I get maximum enjoyment out flowers, and am always taken by surprise when they arrive as they are such a rarity. It’s flawed logic, certainly, and if I wanted I could always make a purchase myself. But where is the fun in that?

My dear Parjie does come to my rescue if I’m feeling extremely overwhelmed or have had a run of health issues that see me needing flora therapy and flowers for Pipsie are sent my way.

Parjie flowers

Parjie flowers

I’ve also taken the great step of planting flowers in the front yard that can survive a little neglect. They make a lovely centre piece on the table in an old maple syrup bottle, and B1 and B2 appreciate the added element to the set table and will often pick something to add, often to my poor plant’s detriment.


Pipsie, I picked these for you.

“Pipsie, I picked these for you.”

To change topic slightly (but not entirely, just follow me!!!!!!), my bathroom has been 2.5 years in the making and is now almost complete. It is Pipsie perfect. With a black and white claw foot bath , a vanity that actually matches, a mirror you can see more than half your face in, and a view that I could get lost in for hours.

that wallpaper!

that wallpaper!

That wall paper. Dark floral. I think I’ve been waiting for that wall paper all my life.

I first discovered it on the Design Files earlier this year. A quick internet stalk and I discovered Ellie Cashman, who resides in Netherlands, and has created the most breathtaking surface design I have every had the pleasure of seeing. (Surface design is an all encompassing description that also includes what the old schoolers refer to as wall paper, but it’s so much more fancy than wall paper!). It was heart skipping, squeal inducing love at first sight. And now finally it is a part of my home. In my bathroom. Unexpected and very fabulous. The best part is , that when I’m sprawled languidly in bed of an evening, the dark floral peeks through the door and brings happiness to my heart. It is very much art.

There are plans for more floral walls. I think next on my list will be the tulips to hang in my stitching room, or maybe the the Rose Decay. Who could pass up a name such as that? Then there is the laundry. And the down stairs powder room. And maybe the hall…. I never believed that the feature wall went out of vogue.


I think that Ellie may have plans to print fabrics in the future. I may have to give Liberty a rest for a while if that is the case. I will be cocooned, embraced, swathed or otherwise enveloped in dark floral, rose decay and dark floral to light fresco. Do visit her web store. It is a feast for the eyes.


Do you have a thing for surface design and feature walls?


Pips xxx

Final note:  I love bathing so much that I used to randomly have baths at friends houses when they bettered my own, which was always a great way to introduce yourself to your man friend’s friends as well. ” You have a bath and  Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace? Excuse me whilst I disappear into the bathroom for an hour whilst you indulge in computer mayhem”. True story. And the beginning of my love affair with Margaret Atwood.