Grey Dress of Doom

It’s taken four weeks in the magic closet and a brief separation of about 12000 kilometres … before I can smile when I wear this dress.

To be fair, it’s not the pattern that was the problem. It was not reading instructions, making decisions about lining fabric based on look not function and not cutting out the striped fabric single layer to make the stripe matching easier…

I’ve loved this pattern even since I received the August issue of BurdaStyle back in 2009. The architectural lines appeal to me. I like the horizontal darts and the way the stripes almost make chevrons.

The funnel neck and cap sleeves are cool too.

Technical details

BurdaStyle 08-2009-124

Size: 36-44. I made a 42 (sort of; 42 at the top grading into a 40 waist and then out to a 44 at the hips with a 15 mm swayback adjustment).

The fit is not too bad. It would probably look better with Spanx, but that’s almost always true…

Fabric: Twill wool cotton blend, lined with a very slippery, monstrously-prone-to-fray mystery fabric purchased for Spotlight for $2 per metre. The print on the lining is nice (but the niceness factor stops there). The wool cotton fabric was a delight to work with. It was a Gay Naffine fabric from May 2009; almost the same vintage as the pattern.

What I did wrong:

The main problem was inserting the zip into the outer layer before sewing in the lining. I wanted to check the fit, but didn’t think ahead or read the instructions to realise that sewing in the lining at the neck and the sleeve edges required an open back seam. I unpicked one of the sleeve edges to see if I could rectify the problem. Of course that didn’t work. Then I unpicked the zip. Then I reinserted the zip, then I resewed the sleeve, then… that’s when I called it the grey dress of doom and hang it up to contemplate…at a distance.

This was one of Burda’s sewing course styles with detailed instructions and diagrams, so I have no excuse.

I still like this pattern, despite the journey.