Introducing…Charlotte Emma Patterns

As mentioned previously, since the start of 2020, I’ve been preparing to launch an independent sewing pattern company. Thank you to everyone who volunteered to help with pattern testing – the response has been far beyond what I hoped for.

I’m approaching the point of being able to release my first pattern (and will be in touch with testers very soon). It’s taken me much longer than I thought to get to this point (I was originally very optimistically aiming for around April!), but, despite being a project manager in my day job, I haven’t been too concerned about holding myself to deadlines. I knew that launching the company would need to fit around work – and other – commitments. Giving myself space to take as long as needed means I have been able to thoroughly test the patterns (I have more than one in the works), and to identify some great collaborators who I have been working with to get to this point.

One of those collaborators – Lisa Barrett – has helped me to develop the new ‘brand’ & name which I thought I’d share some of the thoughts behind today.

Moving from English Girl at Home to Charlotte Emma Patterns

I’ve been using the username ‘English Girl at Home’ since I launched my blog in 2011. The name was actually a variant of my existing Flickr user account, ‘English Girl Abroad’, which I had chosen because I almost exclusively posted travel photos.

My blog, like many others, started as a general craft blog, before I began to focus specifically on garment sewing, and English Girl at Home provided a suitably generic name. The name has served me well for my personal blog over the last 9 years, but when I decided to launch a business I knew I didn’t want to retain the name.

Firstly, I didn’t want to use gendered language in my company name. Even though my two fit models are women, and the patterns are designed for bodies with breasts, I wouldn’t want anyone to feel excluded by the use of gendered language. Plus, while I’ve been happy to use the term girl in reference to myself, I didn’t want to appear to focus on youth, or to infantilise, in the context of a pattern company

Secondly, I didn’t want to refer to England in my company name. I am English, but I hope that my patterns will appeal to, and be made by, sewers internationally. I’m also very conscious that companies which do try to use ‘Englishness’ as a selling point often can project a simplistic and nostalgic view of England.

So, over the next couple of months I’ll be retiring the name English Girl at Home, and instead adopting Charlotte Emma Patterns. I did consider lots of other names, but ultimately decided to keep it simple and use my own (first and middle) name. In part, because I still intend to use my accounts to share my personal sewing and other hobbies.

Alongside my name, my new logo features a thimble design, chosen because my hometown of Birmingham has a long history of thimble making.

I hope you like the new name and logo. I’ll be sharing more thoughts on starting the company as I approach the launch of my first pattern. You can sign-up to receive my new newsletter if you’d like to keep up-to-date.

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