Black & White Triangle Back Blouse | Burda Style Magazine 04-2016 #114

Burda Style Triangle Back Blouse 04-2016 114

Sometimes you just need a short and sweet little make in your (sewing) life. Something that sews up quickly and it’s also satisfying, and if it happens to be a wardrobe filler, well, then, that’s a Brucie bonus. You would not believe that this little top ticks all those boxes, buy my oh my, it so does.  I had a completely different idea when I first picked up this pattern but in the end, I just left it as it was and super happy with it.

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My love for Burda magazines is by now well documented, but I only buy them from time to time, if a particular pattern catches my fancy.  And sometimes, I desperately want a pattern from a past issue, but I don’t like just buying one PDF pattern, so I’ll go trying to dig up the magazine. Thankfully, our amazing sewing community (and eBay) very often comes to the rescue. Many thanks to Heather from the Dressmaking Bloggers Group on Facebook who very graciously sent it to me after I posted an enquiry on the group.

I was looking for a good hack-able base for a project for the #sleevefest IG challenge that Diane at and Helen from Valentine and Stitch. I wanted to reproduce a design with a kimono sleeve and double flounces, that I had seen a few people wear at work and then pinterested to figure out the pattern. Needless to say that of course, that did not happen – yet. The idea was to make a quick toile before I cut into my other fancier fabric that I had earmarked for that project, but as it often happens, the toile earned a life of its own.

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The pattern

This is a very simple kimono sleeve pattern, from the front, but it has a very cute v-neck back detail and a band. Basically, two pattern pieces and the band, easy peasy! It also has a key-hole detail on the front, but I didn’t like the look of it, so I skipped that part.Triangle Back blouse Burda Style 2016-04-114 Line DrawingThe fabric

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I had a very small left-over piece from a sari fabric that my husband brought from a business trip to India last year. It’s some sort of polyester chiffon, quite lightweight and floaty,  which worked well with the relaxed lines of the pattern. Shock horror, this is one of the very few floral types, if not the only such fabric you would catch me dead in. I guess it’s sort of abstract and monochrome, so my floral dread alert has not gone off too much. And I like that it’s one of a kind, and a gift from my husband – on specific instructions, of course…

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The construction

As I said,  the pattern instructions are super easy (though it’s Burda, so I didn’t actually read any of them). But who likes easy, right? To make things a bit more challenging, and because the fabric is a bit see-through, I decided to use French seams all over and finish it off with a tiny rolled hem. Which was a bit more time-consuming, but overlocking really did not work with this fabric.

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I don’t have a problem with french seams, even if you do have to practically sew everything twice, but I am clearly doing something wrong, as this is the second time the project turned out too small – this time in the sleeve area. I’m surely messing up my seam allowances somewhere… So I had to open the shoulder and underarm seams to let it out a bit, so I can actually put my arms through. I’m not a particular bingo wings owner so it might be that the drafting is a bit tight. I went back to the pattern and amended it to make it a bit wider next time.


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The sleeve edge was finished with the overlocker, as I could just not be bothered to do a rolled hem. But I did persevere on the hem and made a really tiny tiny rolled hem. I got the chance to use my brand new duckbill scissors. My method involves sewing a guideline, then folding, then using my edge stitch foot, trim the excess and fold again, topstitching with the edge stitch foot. I know there is a special foot for that, and I have it, for both 1/4 and 1/2, but I just can’t get it to work. And the time it takes me to try is as long as sewing the whole thing 3 times.

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The pattern requires facings, but the dreaded Inari experience definitely convinced me to stay away from those for good. I used bias tape to finish the neckline.

On that topic, not sure if you have ever experienced the difference between 100% cotton bias tape and a poly-cotton mix. I got a roll of the latter from Jaycots a while ago and really really loved it, so much finer and smoother than the regular cotton one. I now have a big roll of both black and white and I think I might slowly slowly accumulate it in every possible colour. I used Wendy Ward’s tutorial on how to insert bias binding on v-necklines, btw, as I had not done this before. It came out quite nicely, though I had to redo some bit to get it all lined up. Again, I used my edge stitch foot to get very close to the edge of the bias tape.

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The result

This was only meant to be a test garment, but I wore it loads this summer, both with jeans and with more dressy trousers. It absolutely filled a gaping hole in my wardrobe, which actually became quite obvious this summer. I really need separates, especially tops that I can wear to work and bottoms that are not black trousers. So this top, although nothing spectacular, really hit the spot and it was a quick and easy make to boot.

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I have already cut two versions, and hopefully one of them will actually end up being the planned flutter sleeve one that I originally got the pattern for.

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Details recap:

Pattern: Burda Style Magazine 04/2016 Design #114 size 38

Fabric: Poly chiffon sari fabric from Bangalore

Notions: Poly cotton bias binding from Jaycotts

Alterations: I added SA to centre back and front by mistake (duhhhh!), so it ended up a bit wider than it should have.

Next time:  I have removed SA from CB and CF from the pattern. Increase armhole.








  1. PsychicSewerKathleen
    18 September 2017 / 9:11 PM

    Really pretty blouse! I thought it was humourous that going all that way to India – having the energy, foresight and willingness to go hunting for a nice piece of cloth to bring back for you – he brought you back a swath of polyester and not silk?! I would have been hard pressed to not wrap HIM up in it! 😉

    • Alex
      18 September 2017 / 9:57 PM

      Ha ha! I think the thought it was silk. He said it felt silky 😁. Men! But I appreciated the thought, bless him!

  2. 19 September 2017 / 2:26 AM

    Really cute! That fabric….I made this myself (on my blog if you’re curious) and love your version! I like your idea of using bias tape on the neck, and total get your aversion to rolled hems…I’m with you on that!!

    • Alex
      19 September 2017 / 8:37 AM

      Thank you Elle! I love your blog, but didn’t come across this top yet, I’ll go have a look now. I now mostly use bias on anything, unless they are all in one facings!

  3. 19 September 2017 / 8:16 AM

    Great top Alex and I love it with those wide leg trousers! Thanks for sharing my v-neck binding tutorial – glad you found it helpful.

    • Alex
      19 September 2017 / 8:36 AM

      Thank you for dropping by, Wendy! The tutorial was super helpful, best I found on this topic! Loving you on the Pfaff IG take-over. As a fellow Pfaff owner and lover, I am so glad that it’s getting out there a bit more.

      • 19 September 2017 / 8:42 AM

        Aw thanks Alex that’s so nice to hear 😊

  4. 21 September 2017 / 8:23 AM

    Thanks so much for the shoutout Alex xx
    I think your top is really lovely! The fabric is perfect for it and I loved reading about your finishing techniques. I do that kind of tiny rolled hem a lot because I don’t own a special foot for my machine. Thanks for the bias binding tip too

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