Ralph Pink Lara Shirt
This is the Lara Shirt from Ralph Pink. It's the first pattern I've tried from this company. They have quite a glamorous selection and not one but three patterns for 'drapes', sort of lounging around at home kimono / cover up style things. I would love to be the kind of person who has a whole range of different silk home drapes, except I can't stand having cold legs and would inevitably end up half retro lady of leisure, half flannel pyjama bottoms.
Apart from this shirt I also like the look of the Coco trousers and the Fari coat, although I really don't need any more coats.
I feel like the Lara Shirt really hits the right midpoint between dramatic and wearable. I love the pairing of the big swing of the massive sleeves and then the fitted waist. The mandarin collar works well although I think it looks best completely done up - the shirt doesn't look quite right with a button or two undone.
Construction was fairly straightforward - one of the easier collared shirts I've made I think.
The beautiful fabric is a Japanese double gauze from Miss Matabi's Etsy shop, and arrived very promptly. I'd read a few things about double gauze and was keen to try it, and it is indeed very soft and cosy to the touch. It doesn't quite have the crispness of a true shirting fabric or the drape of something silkier like the sample Lara, so I think the shirt has perhaps come out less formal / sharp than the intended design. But it feels very nice against the skin and the richness of colours and the leaf design are stunning.
I couldn't spot any buttons that seemed to go well enough with the fabric so I tried out some metal self-covered ones - my first go at using them. It took me two or three practice goes to get the right size circle of fabric - too small and everything isn't tucked in, too big and and the two pieces won't pop together. They were quite fiddly as they were the smallest size available, but it was extremely satisfying once I had a little pile of them. I'm really glad I decided to try them as I think with such a lovely design on the fabric it looks best uninterrupted by solid elements.