When I received an invitation to Named’s book launch in London at the New Craft House, I was thrilled for two reasons. 1. I got invited to Named’s Book Launch in London. 2. I have an opportunity to make a party dress…to wear to their book launch!
If you’re reading here, you probably know it–Named is my favorite independent sewing pattern company. I have made so many of their garments and now after having spent a lot of time wearing them, I can tell you the garments I have made with their patterns continue to respond to my style.
So, I jumped at the idea of making a party dress for the occasion. Since I hadn’t made much from their last fall 2017 “Earth Science” collection (to my surprise!), I chose my favorite of the collection–the Stella Shirt dress.
The Stella shirt dress is a classic Named style–simple, elegant, easy to wear and to make your own. Thats how my Stella feels now that it is finished.
The long pussy bow blouse is eye catching, while the elastic waist makes the dress flexible in many different ways.
When the pattern came out, I especially loved the use of chiffon and lining. Contrasts with fabric opacity is a design element I will always be fond of! I had expected to do something similar, long ago when I had originally planed on making this dress. But, when I actually did, I chose a fabric that wasn’t transparent. Instead, I used a sharp black floral viscose from Fabric Godmother. I also lined the bodice and skirt with a black viscose voile.
The pleasure of a lined dress is, to me, one that is hard to compromise on after you’re used to it. When I first started sewing, I always dreamed of neatly finished garments and I’m finally starting to successfully create clothes that are beautiful inside and out.
In addition to the lining of my Stella dress adding elegance, it also adds a great weight and texture to the garment. This dress is soft, yet sturdy. It moves freely, too.
As for modifications, I made my usual 42 (grading out to a 44 at seams for back and bust). I also significantly shortened the dress to an above the knee length.
As for construction, the dress a smooth, intermediate pattern. After a recent Burda Style trouser failure, sewing the Stella was a pick me up that just allowed me to appreciate the many joys of sewing.
If I often find my way with Named patterns, I like to think their designs also challenge my sewing style. Their new book looks especially promising for this reason. Meeting Laura and Saara was delightful and I hope I’ll have that chance again, soon. In the meantime, you can be sure I will be working my way though Breaking the Pattern…more on that in the future!