Not many of you know that I am the owner of a large collection of Burda Style magazines both in English and German. Luckily this year, Hila – SaturdayNightStitch has launched a sewing challenge Burda Challenge 2018. I decided to join in. Initially, I intended to use a magazine that I already had. However, I’ve ended up buying issue 2 of the magazine published in U.K. Ups!
I actually wanted to make a combination of two blouses in the magazine they are patterns 102 and 120. I like the bodice on pattern 102 but wanted to use the sleeves on pattern 120.Then I proceeded to trace the pattern. I did not remember the patterns were so crowded. A good few years back they had more than 4 sheets to trace your patterns off. On this occasion, I was reminded why, although I like many of the patterns in Burda Style magazine, I am not too fond of tracing their patterns ( and I am one of those who does trace every pattern) and then making them. My friend Alex (Sewrendipity) came to the rescue by giving me a Frixon erasable highlighter which makes tracing patterns easier. When I am done with one patterns, use heat and the marker goes away!I did not add the seam allowance at this stage, though, in hindsight, I should have. I have no idea what was I thinking because I usually make sure I add the seam allowance to the paper pattern before I even cut into the fabric. Guess, I was trying a new way of doing things, thinking I can save up time. And used a magnetic seam allowance guide(I got mine from Amazon) that attaches to my scissors. This was the first time I used it and discovered that I need a lot more practice to get more accurate in cutting my fabric with the correct seam allowance (especially around curves).
To make my top I used some leftover Liberty fabric from my Simona blouse (blogged about here) and some navy blue poly-cotton I got from Abakan Fabrics. Based on my body measurements I cut a regular size 40.
Although both tops have raglan sleeves, the second top has a dart in the sleeve. I decided to wing it, and re-drew the sleeve pieces using the armscye lines on the bodice and skip the dart. And, to my surprise, this fitted almost perfectly with the neckband of my first top! It is beyond me how these things work for me better than when I slave over every detail trying my make them a perfect fit. I used a combination of using the sewing machine and the overlocker/serger to finish seams and I have gone through the construction. Any seams hidden inside the facings, I did not bother to finish. No one will see them, not even me!
I love the neckline on this top. The pleats give it a nice touch. I chose to use a different fabric so that it shows off the neckline better and the design elements of the pattern.
To give the top a more cohesive style, I used the same navy blue fabric for the sleeve cuffs and for the midriff as well as for the neckband.
Remember when I said that I was not very accurate cutting my fabric? Well, this shows in the back. Although the zip is inserted correctly because my pieces were not all the same. The lines across the zipper in the centre back meet only on one point. Argh… serves me well! Next time, I’d better add the seam allowance to the paper first, or not use contrasting fabrics so that this is not as obvious.
In making this top I did not use the instructions in the magazine, which are notoriously not that great anyway, especially for a beginner. As I have quite a few years of sewing under my belt, I tend to skip the instructions anyway. Only when I am pattern testing or making complicated garments I actually use them, for obvious reasons.
Surprisingly, I totally like my new Burda Style top. I’ve been wearing it quite a bit. I like that it is quite versatile. I can wear it with a skirt in the office or with jeans for a casual outfit.
And my cutting mistake is not that in your face when I am wearing the blouse, especially when I do not tie my hair up. You only know it’s there because I told you or you are a stitcher who tries to have every details done perfectly. I learnt that sometimes something is more beautiful if it has little defects (or better said ‘design elements’) that make it unique.
Do you find yourself trying to perfect patterns you are mixing or like me end up winging it? How do you go about mixing pattern pieces from different patterns to create a new garment? I’d love to know how you go about it as I’m thinking to start mixing elements from different patterns and maybe you could teach me a few tricks that will save me some time and fabric.
Thank you for reading my blog and look forward to reading your comments.