Why I sew so much BurdaStyle

I received this Newlook pattern as a gift with Sew magazine bought in Heathrow Airport. Yes I am that person who buys sewing magazines to read on long haul flights.

Fabulous I thought. A free pattern that’s looks so useful!

I made up style C in a cream linen from deep stash.

Best French seams and precision sewing I ever did do. Of course I don’t have photos of it – unwearable: the armscye was too low and it was too loose under the bust.

So I did a petite adjustment (2 cms out of the bodice above the bust and some waist shaping) and made another version. This time the square neck line of style D with the sleeves of A.

Now sort of acceptable.

Although the bust point is now too high and its still too loose under the bust, even with my adjustment.

However, let me tell you about the skirt.

It’s Burdastyle and I know what to do to Burdastyle to get it to fit first time.

I know. It’s just a pencil skirt. But still. Those panels are kind of nice.

This is Burdastyle 10/2016 #106

I drafted up one size to a 22 (the petite equivalent of a 44) at the hips and halfway between a 21 and 22 through the waist.

I made it up in a mystery fabric from deep in the stash that behaves like a wool, so probably is a wool or a wool blend. I don’t recall buying it, so it might have been my mothers. That means it’s at least 20 years old.

I love it! Much more than the Newlook top!

There’s something to be said for sewing from a pattern company that uses a pattern block that you know works for your measurements.

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Pink lace top with black trim: BurdaStyle 02/2013 #135

An easy top to sew with a Chanel like vibe.

Not a lot more to say!

The lovely pale pink lace fabric was a remnant from my dear friend M of Nonsuch Sewing. The pattern is BurdaStyle 02/2013 #135.

I traced off a 40 and then did a 3 cm FBA. I removed the extra width the FBA created by grading down to the waist at the side seam.

The sleeve length was dictated by my fabric length. Two third length sleeves are perfectly fine, thank you very much!

Some poly satin black bias tape and a ribbon completed the look. No I didn’t follow Burda’s instructions and cut out a neck band and sew it on. Not when perfectly good satin bias tape was on hand!

Bam. Partnered with a new skirt of Felicity’s – new retro inspired outfit.

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Another African wax print dress: BurdaStyle 07/2011 #131

The two fabrics used in this dress are souvenirs from fabric shopping in Paris with Felicity last year.

The pattern is BurdaStyle 07/2011 #131 in a size 44 with the cap sleeves swapped out for regular sleeves from BurdaStyle 10/2012 #118

I moved the neckline up a few cm, and used my stipey square fabric on the bias for the side front panels.

The handsome Mr Bingley (Nonsuch‘s sewing assistant) helped me place the pattern pieces just right.

Other changes were a centre back zip and slits on the side seams.

I didn’t have a long enough zip, so I added a button and loop at the back neck.

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This dress pattern now will enjoy a break! After 5 versions I think I need to try something else…

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Wattle shirt-dress: Burdastyle 06/2013 #103 pattern hack

Going to a fabric store with Felicity means discouraging the purchase of multiple lengths of novelty fabric. She still manages to get a least one every trip.

Last time it was quilting cotton with a wattle print.

While I moan and groan theatrically at the time, her fabric choices usually turn out okay.

This dress was based on a Burdastyle shirt dress 06/2013 #103 that I’ve used for Felicity before.

After making the normal full bust adjustment, I cut the bodice pattern pieces off at the waist.

The skirt back was a rectangle cut the width of the fabric (112cm).

I used the original pattern to curve up from the hip. I did the same for the two fronts, and cut the facing separate.

I added tucks by eye somewhat haphazardly, with about 2 to 3 cm in each tuck.

The tucks stopped about 10 cm from the side seams, so the dress was smooth under the pockets, and a few cm from the center front so the button band was flat.

The pockets are a great shape, which I highlighted with yellow silk bias trim.

And because I could, I finished the neckline with yellow bias too!

Cute buttons

Cute dress!

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Using the ‘right’ side of the fabric

Thank you for your kind comments on my last post about my reversible skirt. It is a bit ridiculous that making such a simple garment has been so pleasing, but it seems that lots of you are with me on this!

Now, I promised to show you the more mundane use of this fabric.

This simple dress is version #4 of Burdastyle 07/2011 #131.

It’s much roomier than the last version I made. I’m putting that down to the much looser weave of linen cut on the straight grain for #4 versus using tightly woven cotton cut on the cross grain for #3.

Linen and loose fitting – perfect for hot humid weather when I still need to look pulled together. It’s already been worn multiple times.

This time I cut the sleeves on (I butted the side bodice and cap sleeve pattern pieces together, ignoring the wrongly marked seam numbers)

The focus on pattern matching was balancing the vertical stripes down the centre back and front and matching horizontally though the side seams, – not the shoulders! As you can see.

Next up:

The last warm weather shirt dress for Felicity, in her choice of quilting cotton. Australiana rules!

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The dilemma of reversible fabrics

I know which side of the fabric is the right side, but what if I like the wrong side too? That makes it an unintentionally reversible fabric, right?

This fabric is a delightful Italian linen from a high end English menswear line. I was lucky enough to visit Ditto fabrics in Brighton in the UK last year, and this is one of my souvenirs. The right side is the classic navy and white plaid. The reverse has a beautiful bronze coating.

So, what to do?

I did what any sensible sewist would do. I squeezed two garments out of my fabric length.

And made one of them reversible. (I think that means I made three garments…)

The main garment hasn’t even been photographed yet. The squeezed-out-of-the-remnant-and-made-reversible simple pencil skirt? That’s today’s story!

The hem is fringed.

I zigzigged and then pulled out threads

The waist was finished on the brown side with grosgrain.

I turned under the seam allowance at the waist and topstitched the ribbon on. Hardly noticeable on the ‘right’ side.

The darts were top stitched down too.

The zip was exposed on the navy side

And even a more ‘exposed’ on the brown side

I ran the grosgrain ribbon down the seam underneath the zip, to cover the seam allowance.

Looks like that ribbon goes all the way from top to bottom, doesn’t it?!

The other seam got flat fell treatment

and a bias strip covered slit at the hem.

I love this skirt!

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Linen wrap skirt: BurdaStyle 02/2015 #109

More sewing for Felicity

This skirt was made with the same fabulous embroidered linen I’d used earlier for a boxy top.

It’s a lovely wrap style with box pleats front and back and enormous pockets.

Pattern: BurdaStyle 02/2015 #109B

Size: 36-44, I made a 42. It’s a bit big on Felicity, but, being a wrap style, this just means the centre front pleat overlaps a bit at the waist

I ran out of fabric and had to piece the waistband with plain white linen: Felicity’s skirt has a seam at the top of the waistband with plain white linen as the backing, and all of the back pieces and ties completely in plain white. She wrapped the ties back to the front in these photos and then wore a boxy over blouse, so you can’t see them at all.

I top stitched the pleats and flat felled the side seams. And then covered the seams up with enormous wrap around pockets. You could fit a novel in these, with room to spare!

I like this skirt and this style a lot. Perhaps I might steal it from her wardrobe. Or make myself one of my own…

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