Sunday, 1 December 2013

Burda of the month: 11/2013 #103 Back keyhole blouse (and Burda of the month replay!)

I finished my November Burda project yesterday, so despite Burda not sending me the magazine until the 20th of the November I still managed to get it done in the same month! Big pat on the back for me. Thanks to my husband taking the kids out to see a Hi-5 concert and shopping in Chatswood on a Saturday afternoon (those who know Hi-5 and Chatswood will know that it was more than suitable compensation for all the client dinners he had last week!) I managed to get not one, but two garments started and finished in the same day.

Of course it helped that I chose a rather simple top to sew this month. I must admit that I struggled to pick a project this month, because after reading some rave reviews of this issue when it arrived I was a bit blah about the patterns. Some were ok (narrow pants, raglan sleeved dress, panelled dress etc) but since I had made similar type garments in recent months I decided to go out on a limb and sew something quite different to my usual style. I made the pleated neck, voluminous sleeve and shapeless top, 11/2013 #103:

 
 
And actually I don't mind it even though it's not my usual overly fitted style. I made a few small changes to make this more summer friendly - the fabric I used is a thin cotton voile from the stash in a small navy blue and red floral, and I made the sleeves elbow length instead of full length. This way it's still light and breezy enough to wear during summer but has good coverage for keeping my fair skin out of the sun. I probably should have either made the sleeves slightly longer or slightly shorter, because the narrow cuffs tend to get pulled up into my elbow bend and the result is that super puffy sleeve you can see above!

The back has a keyhole opening and two pleats at the neckline too. A word of warning to anyone planning to make this - the neck opening is really tight and probably needs widening to make it easier to get on and off and for more comfortable wear. I ended up sewing on a long loop from hat elastic so that neck opening sits wider open at the back so that I don't spend the day feeling strangled:


And the other tip I have for anyone making this is to trace the sewing line of the shoulder dart properly otherwise you'll end up with really pointy shoulders. Because I added my usual 1.5cm seam allowance when I traced the pattern and just sewed according to the cut edge, my darts ended too abruptly and needed rounding off:


And when I checked the pattern I could see the fault was all mine - I should have traced the curved sewing line from the pattern rather than charging on in my usual style!


But overall I quite like this pattern, I can see it made up in a soft, draping fabric like washed silk with full length sleeves for winter. And the bonus is that it only took me about two hours from cutting out to finishing, although admittedly I had already traced the pattern during the week which is the most fiddly, boring part of sewing with Burda.

But wait, there's more! I was worried that I wouldn't have anything to wear this with so I decided to make a new pair of simple, black shorts to wear with it. It turns out that this top looks good with jeans and my denim skirt so I need not have worried but I needed a new pair of shorts anyway, so no harm done. I used Burda 10/2013 #127 which was my Burda of the month project from last month:


I sewed this pair from a stretch cotton drill that I bought on Saturday morning when I popped into Spotlight to get a zipper. In fact by the time I started sewing these shorts the fabric was still a little damp from prewashing - how's that for stash avoidance! It's been quite a while since I bought some fabric specifically for a project, but unbelievably I didn't have any stretch black cotton in my stash.

The last pair I made from this pattern was from a cotton linen blend that didn't have any stretch (although it did bag out) but was quite soft, and it's amazing how different the garment fits being made in a stiffer, stretch fabric. This version sits higher on the waist because the fabric doesn't slouch down, the pockets stick out a bit at the sides and I had to take in the centre back seam a lot more because it was gaping at the back. I got a decent fit at the back I think, if you can ignore the VPL (sorry, it's not a good look is it?) and the gaping side pocket.


The other changes I made to the pattern (besides cutting it off a knee length of course) was to sew two welt pockets at the back just to break up that expanse of fabric - I've read somewhere that well placed pockets can make your derriere look smaller and more shapely than not having any. The other change I also made was to cut out the pattern with a fly extension like this:


instead of sewing on a separate fly extension. It just cut out a few steps and simplified matters. I also ignored Burda's instructions completely this time for installing the zipper because I recall being thoroughly confused by them last month, and instead used Sandra Betzina's super simple and effective method, seen in this Threads video.

So happily I've got a 100% success rate when it comes to sewing from my Burda mags this year - but if Burda waits until a few days before Christmas to send me the December issue I doubt I'll be able to pull off another swift project like this one.

34 comments:

  1. Maybe it's the fabric, or the shorter sleeves, but I like your blouse so much more than the Burda's version! *^o^* It looks great with those shorts, great job!

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    1. Thanks! I wasn't sure about the fabric, being so dark, but it's the perfect weight for a summer top.

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  2. Love your blouse, this one is on my list to make up. Thank for the suggestion regarding the fit of the neck.

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    1. Thanks Levone. With the neckline - measure twice, cut once! Of course I didn't do that though....

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  3. Lovely outfit! The blouse is really pretty and a great shade of red for a redhead, which is often hard to find (at least for me!). What a nice background for your pics too!

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    1. Thanks Debbie. I took the photos in front our neighbours garden, they are more diligent and their garden is prettier than ours!

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  4. You cut your hair!!! Looks great!
    Congrats on having some well deserved sewing time!

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    1. Thanks Kyle, I should do it more often but I never seem to find time to get to the hairdressers

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  5. Lovely output. I always use that Sandra Betzina video for inserting a fly and it never fails.

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    1. Thanks Christy, that video is foolproof isn't it?

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  6. Very nice, and congrats on getting it done in November!

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  7. Your blouse looks great! I really like the dress version of it in the same issue. Thanks for the heads-up about the neck!

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    1. After making the top I think the dress might be a little voluminous, and would need a belt to give some shape, unless you were after a loose flowy look of course

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  8. I like your blouse more than Burda's too ... think it's the shorter sleeves. Could the cuff be a smidge tight & that's why it's settling in your narrower elbow?

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    1. Yes, you're probably right Wendy about the cuff. Hmmm, am I bothered to go back and fix it though?

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  9. An outfit in one day, well done and I also prefer your blouse to the Burda version. The colour looks so good with those impressive black shorts.

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    1. Thanks Sharon, it's been a while since I was able to churn out a whole garment let alone two in one day. It's amazing what can be achieved with a bit of child free time!

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  10. I really like your top, the fabric is great and the style is something I could see myself wearing. You have to draft your own patterns with Burda don't' you? That's a bit beyond me at this stage, sadly.

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    1. Thanks Melanie. You don't draft patterns with Burda, only trace them out from the magazine.

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  11. I love the blouse. I have a couple of 1940's patterns for similar ones. The fabric is really pretty. It must be hard picking something to sew from Burda each month when the seasons in them are the opposite to what we're having.

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    1. It gets especially hard in the summer to pick something out because the Burda patterns are all about heavy coats and winter clothes, and I just can't get in the mind set to make something like that when it's stinking hot!

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  12. Kristy
    Great blouse - I love the fabric and the short combo is terrific
    Well done you!!
    Wendy

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  13. Well done on your items. Looks great on you.

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  14. Well done on getting your Burda projects made in time. I really like your blouse and you have a perfect fit with your lovely shorts. My November Burda arrived late too; later than usual so hopefully December will be faster. There are some reviews out on the December issue and BurdaStyle has some December patterns ready to download if that helps you prepare for your next project. Good luck; you will probably need it with the lead up to Christmas.

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    1. Thanks Marjorie. December issue is still not here - unless I'm sewing on Christmas eve I don't think I'll get the challenge done this month!

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  15. Just beautiful! I was also thinking this pattern would be great for summer, if sewn from a light cotton fabric. I really like your version. Great job!

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    1. Thanks Agnes, obviously great minds think alike!

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  16. Interesting blouse and very nice in cotton voile - I can't help wondering what this blouse would look like with the key hole and button in the front.

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  17. Two garments in one day? you are very efficient!! I really like Sandra Betzina's video, it makes zipper insertion so simple!

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  18. Oh! I have tis blouse on my cutting table right now, hope to finish it before christmas.

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  19. I love your top. It's one of the patterns I had my eye on, so I'm really happy to see it made up. I'm new to your blog, and I'm really loving your Burda of the Month posts!

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