Fabric Spotlight: Linen

How to wear linen clothing, style linen accessories at home and how to care for it.

Linen fabric is one of the most luxurious and easy-to-wear textiles going around and the benefits are plentiful. There are a lot of questions surrounding the flax-based fabric though. Can linen clothes go in the dryer? Will linen clothes shrink? Will head-to-toe linen have me resembling a Byron Bay influencer? (the answer is no).  We dive head-first into the world of linen to discover what it is, how to wear it and how to make it last longer than one summer. 

Linen benefits

Linen is made from fibres found in the flax plant. It’s a sustainable and renewable textile that feels fantastic against the skin whether that be in the form of clothing or home accessories like bed linen. It’s a breathable fibre too making it a good choice for warmer weather as it will wick moisture rather than causing you to sweat. It’s also tough and durable- which is good news for clothes, especially if you consider cost-per-wear and from a sustainability perspective. Interestingly, it’s a perfect textile for allergy sufferers as it’s hypoallergenic. 

How to wear linen

Linen is a wonderful fabric to include in your wardrobe, we feel it should be considered a staple or part of your capsule wardrobe! Linen clothes for summer months are a blessing with their moisture-wicking properties, ensuring you don’t become a sweaty mess during the day. Linen epitomises a casual elegance and laid-back style. Team a linen shirt with jeans or pants for a classic combination (this will never go out of fashion!) like our Yenna Shirt in white. Add loafers, heels, ballet flats, sandals or sneakers to steer the look in the direction you want. Or for an essential linen dress that will take you from the school drop off to work to a family BBQ, aim for a simple yet flattering shape like the Strom Dress

 

Linen is not just a casual clothing item and can be elevated. Accessories will do the job, such as heels, jewellery or teamed with other textiles, just as a linen top with tailored pants or a linen blazer over jeans with heels. We’re also a fan of linen pants, especially in warmer months as they provide coverage while still keeping you cool. Try our Strom, Coast or Margot pants for inspiration. Linen accessories are also stylish! There are linen hats, bags and our ever-popular Berkeley Scrunchies which are so cute and nothing like the scrunchies of our 90’s youth. 


How to bring linen into interior design

Linen has been utilised in interior design for many years due to its soft handle, durability and chic appearance. Linen can either be plain, block-coloured or printed and there’s a home for linen in every interior design scheme. Linen works across soft furnishings like upholstery, cushions, tableware and bedding. We love it all and find any excuse to bring it into store! Some ideas include:

 

  • Bedding. Linen bedding, including sheets, duvet covers, cushions and throws will add texture and warmth to the bedroom. Linen is glorious to sleep on and its breathability and hypoallergenic properties make it a healthy option too. We love everything by pattern masters Sage and Clare (hello Camarillo and Fresno ranges) as well as the elegant simplicity of the Christophe range. We have some wonderful tips for mixing and matching patterned bedlinen that you can read here.
     
  • Dining. Up the ante and bring linen to the dining table for a memorable meal. Linen tablecloths, linen napkins and linen tea towels are staples on the House Warming shop floor if you need some ideas! 
     
  • Bathroom. A linen bathrobe to pop on after a warm bath or shower is everything you could wish for. Linen makes a perfect fabric for a dressing gown as it will only soften and improve with age. 
     
  • Living room. A row of linen cushions across the couch is just as at home in a beach house as it is in a modern family city home. They’re classic in style, pared back in aesthetic and will add the subtle warmth and texture other fabrics can lack. Printed and patterned cushions are a fun way to bring a layer of interest if you feel like the room is “lacking. Linen will also sit back well with other fabrics and fibres too, mix it up to your heart’s content. Kinsley, Luna and Aloha are some of our current picks.

How to care for linen

At House Warming we’re often asked about how to care for linen and if linen clothes can be washed and ironed. The most important thing is to remember to read care tags as every product may have different recommendations (some might be dry clean only)- however, there are some general guidelines that will apply to most pieces. 

 

  • Hand wash or gentle machine wash in cool water. Hot water can loosen fibres. 
  • Use mild detergent and separate dark from light items (and it’s best to wash with similar fabrics)
  • Ensure the cycle is gentle if using a washing machine
  • Air dry or place the item on a clean towel and roll it up to remove excess moisture before hanging on the line. Avoid the clothes dryer if possible
  • If linen needs to be ironed, be careful to not use a very hot iron. Steam or a water spray can also be beneficial 
  • Hang linen clothes when storing

Linen is chic, timeless and a natural fibre. It’s also durable, breathable and soft to touch. The list of benefits is endless- even with the specific care instructions. Adding linen to your wardrobe or your home will never be a bad idea and will transcend fads, leaving other fabrics dreaming of having such a good reputation! 

Inspired? Create your own linen wardrobe


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