Monday, 2 May 2016

Burda of the month: 4/2016 #135 Girls Shirt Dress

I just snuck this Burda project in while it was still April, so I've managed to keep my 100% success rate going for another month at least. Funnily enough I thought I would get my April project finished in March since my magazine arrived a few days before April and I had originally planned to make a simple top for myself. But Anna asked for a new dress, so I set aside my own plans to make this dress instead and for a number of reasons I procrastinated on finishing it until I was forced to by the end of the month deadline.

I made 4/2016 #135, a button front shirt dress for her:

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

Unusually it's not modelled in the magazine, but instead just the garment is pictured.  I think it's a cute dress, and looks nice in the navy blue fabric they've used:

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com


I let Anna pick out some fabric from my stash, and she chose a poly/cotton pink and grey plaid fabric that has been in the stash a long time and was either an op-shop purchase or a gift. It is a lovely soft and drapey fabric, but boy was it difficult to sew with. Not only was it shifty when I was handling it, but pulls in the fabric kept occurring when I was sewing the vertical seams, even though I tried several different needle types. A bit of tugging to pull it back into shape and pressing seem to fix it though.

Pattern wise it's a pretty simple design - just a button down shirt with a three quarter circle skirt. The skirt is self drafted which required a bit of mathematics, but is nice and full. I was pretty close in matching the side plaids - I like the diamond pattern it makes:

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

The collar piece is simply sewn onto the neckline without a collar stand, and then the neckline is worn open to create that notched collar effect. It has a fold back facing that extends to the shoulder seam and then a bias strip is sewn along the back neckline. Again, an easy way to do it and it looks pretty good:

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

The pattern is designed to have elastic sewn to the seam allowance of the waistband which is a method I hate - it's really uncomfortable to wear and doesn't look that good either. Instead, I sewed the seam allowance down to the skirt to create a casing and slid some narrow elastic through - this created a nice amount of gathers at the back:

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

The elastic is supposed to stretch all the way around the waist to the centre front, but I found that pulled open the placket because there isn't a button at the waistline. Instead I only used the elastic on the back, which gives it a bit of shape although the front is a bit shapeless but a 7 year old does not need a form fitting dress so it's absolutely fine!

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

Anna's verdict - she likes it and plans to wear it (phew!). I like the pattern and will make it again when I find the right fabric, but next time I will increase the length of the skirt and reduce the length of the sleeves slightly. I will probably add a lining to the skirt as well, because the full skirt will probably cling to tights. The sleeves do have an opening placket which is a bit fiddly, but apart from that it's a fairly easy make and I do recommend it if you are looking for a smart winter dress for girls.

Burda 4/2016 #135 girl's shirt dress in pink and grey plaid www.loweryourpresserfoot.blogspot.com

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