As I set about the task of choosing my first project, I discovered this lovely Black Linen Rayon blend fabric. It has all the lovely qualities of linen but with less of the creasing tenancies (thanks to the rayon mix). Sarah was also kind enough to drop in a small amount of her Stay Humble Sunset Cotton for the pockets too (which is equally delectable).
Sometimes, probably more often than not, I pick a pattern and then search out the fabric. This time it was the other way around. I loved the linen and was unquestionably keen to make something with it. The Nina Lee Carnaby Dress pattern choice (also available on the Like Sew Amazing site) came pretty organically after this. I was pitching for a Summer work dress. With pattern and fabric combimed, that’s exactly what I got.
I cut a size 10 and graded out to a 12 at the hips (a standard alteration for me). As a note for next time I think I will make a slightly larger seam on the shoulders as I am fairly narrow up top and the current version is slightly too wide. Other adjustments were pretty minimal although I did decide to eliminate the zip in the back. I felt that a key hole opening with a hook and eye was a little more in keeping with the organic, natural look of the linen.
The pockets are undoubtably the most notable feature in this pattern. (Who doesn’t love a pocket?!) The Stay Humble Sunset Cotton works perfectly and offers just enough contrast whilst still fitting my ‘work dress’ brief. What’s more it is just so soft!
The linen is as much a dream to wear (test driven in 26 degree heat during our freak May heatwave) as it was to work with. Having worked with a lot of drapey viscose fabrics recently, this was a welcome change. It handles fantastically through the machine and is even great when it comes to pressing. It does have a tendency to fray (a lot!) but nothing an overlocker can’t solve. Although I didn’t overlock it before I put it in the pre-wash, I would probably do this next time to reduce the amount of fraying on that front too.
My only other observation with this fabric is that it is fairly sheer and therefore would recommend either a full lining or a slip underneath. I did the latter and it works just fine.
Overall I am delighted with my finished make and I highly recommend both the fabric and patten. Not a ground breaking, statement look but a dress that will get a lot of wear. A dress that fits my style, is versatile and has filled a gap in my wardrobe. What’s not to like about that?
Pattern House: Nina Lee Patterns
Pattern: Carnaby Dress
Main Fabric: Black Linen Rayon, Like Sew Amazing
Pocket Fabric: Stay Humble Sunset Cotton – Soulful Designed By Maureen Cracknell Art Gallery Fabric, Like Sew Amazing