Sunday, 2 December 2012

Bonus Burda of the month: 11/2012 #136B

We've had a mini heatwave the last few days so I haven't been able to take any photos without looking like a sweaty, frazzled mess but I promise I made this latest project from the November issue in the month of November.  How's that for tackling my Burda challenge head on and then some? Admittedly, the dress I chose to make is easy peasy, but still - two garments from the one issue in the same month!

I chose to make 11/2012 #136B, a very simple kimono sleeve dress with no shaping other than very curvy side seams:

Not my usual style, since I always feel the need to cinch in my dresses with vertical darts in the front and back, plus a swayback adjustment and a narrow shoulder adjustment. But one of my good friends recently wore a similar style dress in a stripe knit which looked fantastic so I decided to copy the look using the multi colour stripe ponti that I've been wanting to use for a while:



Remember I asked you all whether I should make a dress or skirt from this fabric? Well I'm glad I went with the dress option because I love, love, love this dress! It's so comfortable because the ponti (a Japanese ponti from Spotlight) is very soft and has enough stretch for comfort but isn't thin enough to be clingy.  Plus it's fairly casual in a nice way, and I think it looks really flattering.  Even better, I took this photo after I'd been out shopping and it's hardly wrinkled at all.

Of course, being a Burda pattern there had to be some issue with it.  Foolishly, I didn't notice on the pattern diagram or the model photo in the magazine nor when I was tracing out the pattern that side seam finished well below the bust line and not under the armpit like a normal dress.  And in my humble opinion, there is nothing more unsexy than a flash of side cleavage even if you are a supermodel with a spectacular bust.  You can see in the photo below that the armhole opening is slashed almost to my waistline:


This would be ok if I had planned to make this as a winter dress to be worn over another layer, but since it's a summer dress I knew that I didn't want to wear anything under it so I decided to try to modify it to make it a more standard kimono style before hacking in half to make a skirt.  The photo below shows the new seamline where I sewed it to a point under my armpit and back down to the sleeve hem, as opposed to finishing so low:


I could have taken the seam straight across from the point to the sleeve edge instead of angling it downwards, but I wanted to keep the flutteriness around the sleeves so I didn't want to reduce the width of the sleeve at the hem line.  I think it works too, because now the sleeve is closed up under the arms but isn't puckered or bunched up and I've still maintained that flowiness around the shoulders:




Making that change doesn't restrict arm movement at all, and nor is it too tight across the bust line so it was a good save.  I much prefer this fabric in a dress to a skirt because I just don't know what top I would have worn with a skirt.

And best of all, check out the seam matching at the shoulder line:


To get that seam matching I did have to slide the front piece along the back piece until the lines matched, which meant there was a bit of overhang at the sleeve edge and neck edge:


But I just trimmed the sleeve edge to make it even and the loss of that bit of length from the sleeve and at the neckline isn't too noticeable and was worth it for that chevron effect.  (Just ignore that horrible amount of skin under my arms and nude coloured bra strap you can see - this was before I sewed up the side seam).

The other change I made to the pattern was to draft a facing for the neckline because I didn't want any visible top stitching since I wouldn't be able to match the thread colour to the fabric.  Because this is an 'easy' style in the magazine, the pattern instructions called for neatening the seam edge, folding and stitching which is what I would have done if this was a solid fabric colour, but I think the neck facing looks cleaner for this fabric.

My final verdict: when Spotlight has it's next sale on fabric (probably any minute now since it seems to happen very regularly) I'll buy some more of this fabric in a different colourway and make another version or two of this dress.  Sure it's not nursing friendly, but these days I can't feed Toby unless we're in complete isolation anyway because he gets so distracted so it shouldn't be too much of a problem.

And speaking of Toby - yes Angela he is standing.  A little too early for my liking, because he surprised me one day by standing up in his cot and I hadn't pulled the sides up yet so thankfully he hadn't toppled out but I freaked out anyway! He is such a strong little boy and he seems to be hitting his physical milestones much earlier than Anna, so much so that I need to get started on babyproofing the house because he's very nearly crawling too.

So now I need to finish the year on a high note and make something from the December issue.  It arrived in Friday's mail, and I think it's going to be a little tough because there isn't too much in there catching my eye at my moment.  But I shan't let Burda beat me - I'll find something I'm sure.

33 comments:

  1. Oh that is really lovely! I think your changes at the armhole made it look even better. I just saw this fabric on Friday (I hadn't seen it before even though I'd looked after seeing yours). It does have a lovely hand. But I didn't buy any as I have way too much fabric still.

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  2. What a great fix on the underarm seam--it takes care of the problem, and visually is more slimming than the before pictures. I love how the stripes chevron on the shoulder seams.

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  3. I love your dress! I will remember your "fix," should I need it in the future.

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  4. Love this dress on you! I am glad to see this made up, and your solution for the ultra low armhole. Your alteration to the armhole improves the dress. Oh, and excellent stripe matching, cool chevron effect.

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  5. Love the dress! You did a great job of fixing the sleeves.

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  6. The dress looks great and the matching at the shoulder looks fantastic. I clicked through from my reader and noticed your new(ish?) banner - so perfect, I love it!

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  7. Oh run to Spotlight and get more of this fabric because that dress with your alterations is spectacular! I love when a simple style combined with a great piece of fabric gives you a fantastic garment!

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  8. Fab dress! I am mentally earmarking for a striped piece of knit I have (which is begging to be turned into a t-shirt dress for when it's our turn to have summer).

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  9. WoW! You should feel so proud of yourself! Looks like you not only succeeded at your challange... but got your closet filled a bit more too! What's not to like?

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  10. Great dress and great armhole reconstruction. Those changes can so often go really badly so well done. Is it just my Spotlight (Castle Hill) or are they getting better fabric lately? It seems to be of better quality and more of what I want instead of lots of sparkly little girl dress up stuff (which has its place and uses I know). Bet your dress was really comfy on Saturday (38 Celsius here)

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  11. Kristy this looks fabulous! You have created such a lovely dress from this simple pattern and the fabric is a perfect choice!

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  12. I never seem to see interesting fabric in Spotlight. I don't know if it is because mine is closing down so they aren't getting the new ranges, but I keep seeing interesting fabric on blogs that I'm sure have never been in my Spotlight.

    Good job on that armhole! Your version is a million times better than the original.

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  13. This is a lovely, simple stylish dress and suits you well. Great changes to the pattern, that I think quite a few people will be adopting. My local Spotlight (Brisbane area) only seems to stock ponte in black, black, or black! Never patterns or stripes...J

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  14. I would have ignored this dress. Your slight sleeve fix makes such a difference to the shape. It's really flattering on you and I really like the stripes. I think I'll make one of these if ever get the November issue (I just got September).

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  15. i saw this in my reader and said "Wow" aloud. It looks really great on you. I also think the sleeve adjustment you made is not only practical, but also makes the dress look much nicer. Great job!

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  16. What a fantastic dress! It looks comfortable and stylish, perfect for this hot weather. And that is such a good idea to fix the gapey-sleeve, much more wearable now.

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  17. I agree w/Carolyn. Run, don't walk, and get more of this fabric to make more. Great save on the sleeve and the side seam shaping gives you a fabulous shape!

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  18. Great save on the underarm area! This dress looks great on you. Good job!
    Barb

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  19. Japanese ponti at Spotlight ! I will definitely be looking out for this. Your new dress looks fab.

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  20. This dress is gorgeous and looks great on you. That fabric is so nice - I made a dress for my daughter out of it too, and went back and stocked up in the last sale they had! I like the underarm adjustment too, nothing worse than unintentional side boob...

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  21. Fantastic dress and perfect matching, and you did such a great job for the underarm adjustment.

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  22. FABULOUS!!! Lesley S

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  23. Oh this is so good, and your fix makes it so much more wearable.
    -Sewingelle

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  24. You could almost feed out of the excessive underarm area from your first attempt! I really like the dress, especially with the pattern amendment.

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  25. Love the dress, it's a great use of that fabric and your waist looks tiny :)

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  26. This is great, I'm glad you went for a dress with this fabric as it looks great on you. It was a good save with the underarm adjustment - I think it actually looks much better afterwards, the sleeves sit better.

    (I am also amused by you Southern Hemispherians and your talk of heatwaves - I'm looking out the window at heavy snow...!)

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  27. That's a terrific dress, and looks like it would wear well, even in the heat. Very nice.

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  28. You look great in this dress. It looks shapeless in the line drawing. But looks cute on.

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  29. The chevron on the sleeves is awesome--I noticed it in the very first photo. Thanks for showing your clever fix for the gaping underarm--I'll have to keep that in mind.

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  30. Wish I had a Spotlight... is that an Australian line of stores?

    You look great in the dress - and I completely agree with the alteration. See women's cleavage just ruins an outfit for me. Super job!

    Toby is quit the boy! I think he will be a wonderful, blessed handful as a toddler! He just has this look of "As soon as I can walk.. the fun I will have!"

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  31. I like how you've made this dress work. The sleeve change works like a dream.
    The stripes make sewing more interesting but also makes the way you've made them match give this dress at more refined feel to it.
    I love it.

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  32. I love this dress! You are such an inspiration!!

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