Happy New Year everyone! I hope everyone has had a good start to the year so far!

For today’s post, I decided a lovely new dress would be the perfect way to start off my sewing journey for 2019!

I got 2 metres of the beautiful Atelier Brunette Viscose Crepe in the Storm colourway. It’s a light petrol blue shade with a lovely drape and sheen to it. I got the two metres without a completely set idea on what to make with it except that I knew I wanted a dress out of it. It’s always a little bit dangerous to get the fabric first without a pattern as there’s a chance you might not get enough but I like living life on the edge!

I ended up rifling through all my patterns and pattern books and decided to make the Saraste shirtdress from the new Named book released last year – Breaking the Pattern.

This dress was one of my favourite patterns from the book (I’ve already made the Solina dress and Utu pinafore) and I knew it would be on the top of my list of what to make this year. Luckily for me it takes just 2 metres of fabric to make!

The basic shape of the dress reminded me of the Alder dress from Grainline Studio - they both have a similar thing going on with a ruffled skirt that goes part way round at the waist. However, in typical Named Clothing style they’ve added their own twist to it!

There’s a ruffle in the collar and vents in the princess seam on the front shoulder. The pattern comes with all these optional choices so that you can mix up the design elements to fit your personal style.

The sample garments in the book uses cotton shirting but I wondered how it would work with something far drapier. I wanted it to feel more relaxed than a typical shirt/ shirtdress!

It was a fairly simple sew – it’s a well drafted pattern and wasn’t as fussy as I’d anticipated. The instructions are a little confusing as it flips between the shirt version and the dress version but it does cover everything. It was maybe half a day of proper sewing to finish it but that’s not including time taken to trace off the pattern!

I made a size 5 with no alterations to the pattern except to shorten the hem (I took off about 10cm and it’s still pretty long!).

Looking back at the photos, I think I could’ve done with taking some of that length out of the bodice instead of just lopping it off the hem! The waist is sitting a little bit low on me. It could probably do with a bit more of press too!

The only thing I would’ve changed to this dress would be to add in seam pockets in the skirt. It would have been a simple addition but I’d run out of fabric at that point and I didn’t fancy trying to find a fabric of a similar colour and weight to substitute in.

Despite all that, I’m happy with how it turned out! It’s a little librarian chic but I kind of like that! I think it’ll work layered up with a sweater and boots for winter and with some brogues for the summer.