As I wrote in my previous post, August is #TributeMonth in the #sewcialists world. I wrote on the Sewcialist blog about 5 inspirational bloggers and instagrammers, 5 ladies whose style and attitudes I love. But there are so many more sewists I get inspiration from. So I want to dedicate my first post in August to some more of my favourite sewists.
As you already know, I love Burda Style Magazine, in spite of the copying sheets bonanza and dodgy instructions, so I take a lot of inspiration from sewists like Mokosha and Chris from Said and Done, who bring Burda designs to life in so many inspiring ways. So this particular project is a tribute to Mokosha, Chris and all the ladies who sew a lot with Burda. Mokosha made this very pattern here and here, in two very different fabrics. Thank you, ladies, and here’s my version.
This little number surreptitiously climbed on top of my sewing queue and also got photographed hot off the sewing machine. Yes, I know, I must be running a fever or something…
In my defence, this project has been buzzing in my head for a long time now, and originally, I was planning it as part of the #sleevefest2017, and add some sort of flutter sleeve, but it did not work out in the end. But, as I will show you in a bit, this dress can be worn in such a way that it might still get a bit of sleeve action after all…
I’ve made this dress twice before, and it really is one of my favourite Burda Style patterns ever. Incidentally, it is actually one of their best sellers in the online PDF shop. I love the cocoon-y shape, the raglan sleeves with a twist, the pockets and the faced hem. I also love that it can look quite different depending on the type of fabric. I’ve made it in heavy upholstery fabric with faux leather, jersey with faux leather and now in a very thin and drapey crepe. And it works for all, even if I do say so myself.
This version is was the most difficult, because of the fabric. It’s a lightweight poly crepe, and even though it’s not too hard to sew because the crepe texture stops it from being slippery, it’s an absolute nightmare to press. I really struggled to get the seams nice and firmly opened, especially the shoulder seam, which is very rounded and still came out a bit wavy. I should have reinforced them with a bit of iron one tape, but it only occurred to me after I’ve sewn the seam and it stretched.
To get around the relative thinness of the fabric, I decided to self-underline instead of self-line, and I left the raglan sleeve in a single layer, for style effect. It’s not too obvious in the pictures, but the front yoke is a bit more transparent. The underlining worked well, mostly, but I can see in the pictures that there is some pulling here and there in the hem area. I will eventually unpick the hem facing and hopefully, it will be sorted.
The sleeve can be worn folded or unfolded. When it’s unfolded, it sort of sticks out a bit and looks a bit fluttery, quite funky really! Does this count for sleeve funkiness?
So here are the details.
Pattern: Burda Style Magazine, Oct 2014, design #127, size 38. This is the line drawing.
Fabric: Poly crepe, unsure of the shop, as it was a gift
Notions: one 20in concealed zipper, a bit of interfacing
Alterations: I had modified the shoulder slope on the pattern a while ago, otherwise, no changes. For this version, I reduced the neckline by 1/2 in, as the previous woven version felt a bit too high. I also put in a longer zipper than the pattern required, and I made it invisible instead of exposed.
The construction is really simple, there were no issues at all. The only part that was a bit more time consuming was inserting the bias binding, as the fabric was so difficult to press.
I overlocked all raw edges, which also helped secure the two layers for each piece together (the main and the underlining).
The hem is finished with a facing, which is one of the design features I really liked about this pattern. This is also a bit time consuming, as the facing was interfaced, stitched to the hem, understitched, finished with the overlocker then sewn down to the dress at 3.5cm wide.
I would definitely recommend reinforcing the shoulder seams with iron-on tape or twill tape, as it will stretch, as mine has. The neckline was less of an issue, but feel free to reinforce if your fabric is too stretchy.
Verdict: This dress feels really nice to wear, as the fabric is nice and fluid. And it has pockets. But having seen the pics from all angles, I am a bit dubious whether it really works in this kind of fabric. I will unpick the hem facing and see if it solves the pulling problem. The crinkled shoulder seam is also bothering me, but I’m worried if I open the shoulder seam, it might stretch the fabric even further. So overall, the jury is still out on this one.
ARE YOU TAKING PART IN #TRIBUTEMONTH? WHAT ARE YOU MAKING AND WHO IS IT A TRIBUTE TO? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW OR START THE CHAT ON TWITTER @SEWRENDIPITY!