I will preface this by saying how much I love this dress! So I will go right ahead and show the pictures before all the talking.
Now, the talking bit.
The flounce dress includes a bold flounce to drape in front – which piqued my interest. Initially, I was going to use a cobalt blue crepe, however, at the last minute, I remembered this bright pink wool fabric that I had bought from Fabworks. It is a lightweight wool fabric, similar in texture to pashmina shawls. I found it washed well in a cold water wash and low tumble dry.
Sewing it up was a treat. The fabric is a joy to work with and responds beautifully to a steamy iron. Since the style doesn’t have a zipper – it sews up quite fast. The only tricky bit is when cutting out the pattern. The pieces have to be cut single layer and it is important to mark the seam numbers.
The pattern is a Burda Tall size which is drafted for taller persons. I selected my size based on my bust measurement which put me on size 76. I didn’t change the length of the dress but I did reduce the sleeve length by 2″ to maintain the bracelet length sleeve.
My favourite part of this dress is the flounces at the front. My least favourite is the back fastening. I am considering redoing that back closure and inserting an exposed zip instead. I wore it quite a lot these past 2 months but the back wasn’t an issue since I always wore it layered over a roll neck top. The other annoying thing is that the wool has started pilling where my coat would rub against it :-(.
I definitely want to make this again and do some contrast blocking with the flounces.
This was one of my January #burdachallenge2018 planned makes.
This is a dress I made for my February #burdachallenge2018 project. It wasnt a planned make – I reacquainted myself with the dark blue wool jersey that I bought from Fabworks in Dec 2016.
When I bought the fabric I recall that I wanted to make a Talviki sweater. Alas, with only 1 meter, it was not enough. Enter Burda 06/2016 #101C dress. Here is the line drawing which shows the simplicity of this pattern.
Since 1m was not enough for the mini dress – a fact I realised after cutting out three of the four pieces; inventiveness meant that I used a navy ponte for the front yoke – a design feature bourne out of necessity.
For the neckline, I just folded it under and zig zagged. I think this is a finish you can get away with when the fabric is of a more substantive weight like the wool jersey.
The picture shows how I wore it most of the time- with tights and boots and sometimes with a roll neck as well. Wool jersey is very warm and cosy which served me well for the colder days. The pictures were taken during the big snow days that ground Britain to a halt.
This is quite a versatile pattern – it works for summer with a lighter fabric like this one that I made here and can work for winter with a thicker fabric.
The Breton jersey dress attracted me with its wide boat neck line. It also looked simple enough to make and yet it took me nearly 18 months between tracing out the pattern and actually sewing it. Here is the picture from the book:
Sewing the dress was a pleasure as it is instant gratification of the best kind. And to end up with something that makes me feel like a stylish well considered adult, well, that’s just the cherry on the cake! The sewing instructions in the book are really good. Plus the sizing was spot on. This size was selected based on my bust and without any alterations at all this is what it looks like.
If I had to nit pick I’d say that there is a swayback issue on the back but honestly I asked my husband what he thought and he earnestly said that the behind was fine. And that is good enough for me :-).
Fabric was from Jacks Fabrics in Leeds market, bought last year so I am quite pleased at how quickly this fabric was turned around :-).
Overall there are many things that pleased me about this project.
The book only cost £9.99 on Amazon with free P&P. Its great value given the number of patterns that come with the book (27 I think). There are a few more patterns I want to make from there. I did make the Japanese top already.
I have already traced out this skirt which was the reason that I bought the book. After seeing Beth’s version I was very inspired to make it.
I have a little brother who is quite fussy about his clothes. When he finds something he likes he tends to buy upwards of 5 of the same item as he hates shopping and doesn’t like ‘wasting time’ on what to wear. His clothes are all similar colours and shapes therefore interchangeable.
While in Japan, he found a jacket he liked but there was only one in his size. No problem he thought – “my big sister can copy this jacket for me and make 5 more“. Luckily he visited with us at the end of August last year with his jacket and an express desire to go looking for fabrics that he likes. I took him to Fabworks where he spent all of 10 minutes before deciding on a wool suiting in navy blue.
Now, though I was in the doldrums at the time, even I refused to just copy something and not add a little extra…….something. My philosophy is that if you are going to ask Michaelangelo to paint a ceiling – then LET MICHAELANGELO PAINT A CEILING LIKE THE SISTINE CHAPEL!!! I refuse to spend hours working on something that is just going to look …..bland. That’s not me.
So, I stood my ground and insisted that there had to be something different to denote that it was truly a one of a kind. He agreed to look at contrast fabrics for the lapel/facing. This was huge. My brother is not one to change his mind or indeed concede his sartorial choices. He chose the Liberty Tana lawn which reminds me of a Wuthering Heights’esque moorland. Still, it was better than nothing.
Did I mention this was at the end of August last year?
With all that time I didn’t come back to the project nor think about it until he asked me during a recent Skype session. Feeling bad I set to it this past weekend and copied the jacket using carbon paper and a tracing wheel. It’s not an exact science but between my pattern drafting knowledge and common sense, I made some headway.
A weird thing happened. Duty and honour (and some guilt – ok mostly guilt – that I had made him wait all these months) drove me to start on the project. At some point I started enjoying the process. It felt like the wild west (why am I saying this? I’ve never experienced the wild west nor do I wish to); but as a metaphor, its meant to say that I was excited and curious at how I would do. It’s been a long time since I have felt like that.
When acquiring a new skill set there is joy/exhilaration when you first learn to do new techniques. But, as time goes and you gain more experience that sense of fear/anxiety/exhilaration that keeps you on edge is gone because you get to a point where you know how to do this that or the other. It becomes easier to execute a vision and the high is never is as good as that first high of nailing a fly front or easing a sleeve for example. Which is not necessarily a bad thing in itself…..
But this was new territory for me.
Not only was I making it for someone else who has a very clear expectation of what he wants; I also had no pattern.
Figuring out grainlines, forgetting notches, not adding ease to sleeve cap………so much minutiae of things I forgot to do but I carried on. Lessons learnt. Falling forward.
To frame the time period here:
August 2017 – Assignment given and materials procured
15 March 2018 – Casual enquiry about jacket over Skype
18 March 2018 – Copied jacket, cut fabric and sewed up body
19 March 2018 – Sewed collars and sleeves.
20 March 2018 – Hems, buttonholes and final pressing.
This is the toile. I had no fabric that was similar to this wool suiting to use and since he wants 5 of them I reckon by the time I get to the fifth one, it’ll all be gravy.
I have written this before I send it off to Switzerland tomorrow. He will now have to feedback to me before I embark on the next one. I am at peace and in calm within myself. I tried my best.
Hand on heart tried my best. And thats good enough for me.
Even if he doesn’t like it – it doesn’t matter to me any more – it won’t affect my sense of pride and achievement in this. I had tried to express my feeling that I feel now but last night as I read the closing chapters of Bartlett and the Ice Voyage (a great book btw) to my kids Bartlett said the words for me so I will share them…
For a long time he (Bartlett) gazed vacantly at the last two pieces of pale iceberg. If the ice melted, if the melidrop thawed and rotted, then everyone would say that they had failed. But hadn’t they really succeeded? He and Jacques, together with Gozo, and Captain Wrick, and Mordi, and Michael, and all the others who helped along the way, had captured an iceberg, and towed it across thousands of miles of ocean, and preserved a melidrop for weeks. No one had done any of these things before. Did it really matter now if the melidrop reached the Queen?
Thanks for reading this far if you have. Ramblings sometimes take over…sometimes 🙂
A random #burdachallenge2018 post on IG made me aware of this BurdaStyle kids sweater pattern.
Surprisingly I haven’t paid too much attention to kids sewing patterns in BurdaStyle Magazine.
I decided to give this a go because of the simplicity of the pattern.
No neck seam but just the shoulder and side seams only.
I used a fleece lined scuba fabric that I bought last year from B&M Fabrics (Leeds Market). This was one (pair) of my January #burdachallenge2018 makes and I was happy with how they turned out.
I used hot pink cuffing for the sleeve band and green jersey for the hem band. The other alteration was to omit the zip. My fabric had more than enough stretch to easily go over the head. With the zip this pattern would work with wovens.
They got the seal of approval from the twins and they love their sweaters. The sizing was spot on. I traced size 110 for their 104cms height. They will be wearing these for at least a couple of more years yet.
I am now going through my collection of magazines with a view to finding more kids patterns that I can try out. Have you sewn with the kids patterns from Burda?
Thanks for stopping by! And until next time, Happy Sewing!