Pattern placement is not easy! Burdastyle 10/2014 #105

This fabulous printed stretch fabric seduced me in New York City. I knew it would make a great knit dress.

And how much fun is that print?!

It has girders, cityscapes, buildings, bright flowers, sunset-water reflections, and flowering cherries.

But what bits should I put where?

I’d purchased 3 m, but with a close to 70 cm pattern repeat, I didn’t really have a lot of choice. The dark blue girder section had to go under my bust.

The question was more about whether the cherry trees should be on the side, or through the middle. If they went through the middle, the whole dress would be darker and the red and yellow flowers would be sort of lost and obscured by a darker building, but the trees would have featured. And I really like the trees.

But the trees didn’t win. Having the yellow and red flowers and then the lovely soft pink near my face swayed me…

You can still see the trees from the side

Technical details

Pattern: Burdastyle 10/2014 #105

Size: 34-42, I made a 44. I traced off the 42 and then did a cheats draft out to a 44 by cutting the front out on the fold with the pattern piece 1 cm away from the fold and the same for the back, but angling from nothing at the neck down to 1 cm at the hem.

I should have drafted a centre back seam and made a sway back adjustment. But I couldn’t bear to cut up the print.

There is some pooling at the waist as a consequence.

Fabric: I don’t know for sure but it’s probably polyester spandex from the feel of it. Sort of like light weight spanx, but without a huge amount of stretch- about 30%. It could almost be swimwear. Then it would be a nylon lycra mix. It came from Spandex House in New York City.

Changes I made

All pretty minor – I shortened the overall dress length by 5 cm and changed the sleeves to ¾ length. The sleeves are drafted overly long so they can be scrunched up. I’m not a fan of this look and it irritates me when I wear sleeves that have to be pushed up.

This pattern was also available as a colour blocked top. Isn’t it cute? And a great use of knit scraps.

The top part of the sleeve for this top was almost perfect for what I wanted. I cut my dress sleeves out on this line, without a hem allowance, and then turned up a 3 cm hem.

This is a good pattern.

The waterfall neckline really is lovely and the yoke formed by wrapping the back piece over to the front adds a nice bit of framing, plus additional stability to the shoulder.

And aren’t those Manchurian Pear blossoms magnificent?

Three weeks ago just a few buds were swelling on a bare tree, and the promise of spring was in the air.

Now we have a tree smothered in flowers and buzzing with bees:

I love spring.

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22 Responses to Pattern placement is not easy! Burdastyle 10/2014 #105

  1. Tia Dia says:

    I love spring, too, but I am head over heels in love with autumn, which is our current season in the north! The blossoms on your tree are just gorgeous. And, speaking of gorgeous, I am very impressed with your dress. I’ve seen that pattern made up so many different ways and it always looks good. I think you made the right decision avoiding the CB seam, regardless of the excess fabric, to preserve the integrity of the print. Said print is gorgeous – you always seem to pick such good ones – and the dress is amazing. You’re sure to get a lot of wear and many compliments on it.

    • SewingElle says:

      I love autumn too, perhaps even more than spring. But when the sun is shining and the birds are singing and the blossoms are that exuberant, it’s hard not to love spring too.

  2. Gorgeous dress! I can see why the fabric called out to you…it’s spectacular. I’m always amazed to see how accomplished sewists adjust their patterns for fit and arrangement of fabric design – so helpful and inspiring.

    • SewingElle says:

      This is one of those fabrics that would probably look spectacular in any style and on anyone. But I’m still happy I took care over the pattern placement, to make it as good as I could.

  3. sewbussted says:

    Perfect pattern placement choices. Such a pretty and unique dress.

  4. Your garden is looking gorgeous. Very similar to my courtyard. I have ornamental pear trees – Bradford something or other. And box. Your dress is lovely, and the back is fine!! You will always get some pooling an folds with a knit. What a great fabric. Wish I had some! And pattern.

    • SewingElle says:

      Ours are Chanticlear. I’m convinced our children will look back on box and ornamental pears in the same way I regard sacred bamboo and diosmas. There’s a lot of fashion in gardening too!
      Thanks for being so positive about the pooling.
      You can have this pattern. Its available as a PDF download as well as being in last years October issue. Just click on the link in the pattern number above. Not affiliated, just an enabler…

  5. QSue says:

    I think the dark colour under your bust is slimming so I really like your chosen placement of the fabric.

    • SewingElle says:

      You’re right and thank you. It could have been even better if the dark colour was a little below my waist. But that was not a possibility given how the fabric was cut. I needed another 70 cm..

  6. You picked the perfect pattern to showcase this gorgeous print. Love the print placement too. A very beautiful dress ideal for spring.

  7. Gail says:

    I can see why you were seduced by the print. Fabulous and I love the pattern you used. I ticked it as one of the patterns I’d eventually get around to when I saw it in the Burda mag.

  8. Summerflies says:

    I love the match of the fabric and the pattern is also one I’ve earmarked. I’ve got a pattern nearly exact but I’d like to try the Burda. I love the flowers around the neckline. Another great dress!

  9. Rikki says:

    Oh wow, the print is even more spectacular seeing it here on your blog! What a fabulous dress!! You look great in it!:)

  10. Linda says:

    Fabulous fabric! I love the design of the dress too, those shoulder details and waterfall neck look really good. Popping in as part of my blog comment challenge 300 in 30 days!

  11. Emily says:

    That fabric is wonderful and I’m glad also you didn’t do the CB seam and mess with the print. The dress is just fab – you do have such a good eye. Is it nice to wear, the fabric I mean?

    I have made that pattern up as a top, not the colour blocked version, and I hadn’t thought of using scraps. What a good idea as I have loooooads of smallish pieces I haven’t had the heart to donate/chuck out.

    Spring in our garden is a mass of green as we have mostly native NZ trees which are evergreens. Still the herbs and daisies and citrus are going nuts …. spring is my favourite season in this hemisphere 🙂

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