I'm back! Meet Burda 11/2015 #112

Sunday, 24 May 2020
woman posing on the side of the road in blue jeans and a maroon check top

When my enthusiasm for blogging petered out last year, I thought that would be the end of my blog. But someone emailed me recently to ask about a pattern I'd made many years ago and as I was scrolling through my old blog posts to find it I realised that I missed recording my rants and raves about various patterns as well as other snippets of things going on in my life. Instagram is good for a photo, but obviously you just can't capture the details of a pattern and project in that space, so here I am again!

These are strange times aren't they? I am very thankful that I am healthy and I still have my job when so many others have lost theirs due to the COVID-19 shutdown but I am busier than ever with work, two children to homeschool and a dog demanding pats all the time! Working from home has also forced a rethink in my wardrobe, as I don't have enough smart tops to wear and I can't be bothered putting on a dress for the camera.

woman posing in a maroon plaid check long sleeve top

Enter my latest project - a simple funnel neck top with a neckline zipper which helps get it over my head and adds a bit of interest. This fabric - a Marc Jacobs wool bought from the Fabric Store in Surry Hills a few years ago - has had a long journey into becoming this project. Firstly I made this fabric into a shapeless sweater dress but I really should have known better that shapeless looks like a literal sack on my curvy body so I pulled it apart and instead made it into a fitted dress with darts. Which was great until the next wash when the fabric shrunk a little more even though I did prewash and it became too tight to wear.

Finally, I've made it into a top using Burda 11/2015 #112 and I plan to hand wash and stretch it into shape from now on in case it still has a bit more shrinking to do.

technical drawing of a sewing pattern and a model wearing a top with zippered neck
images from burdastyle.com
The only changes I made to the pattern was to lengthen it by 5cm as it is a cropped length and I graded out to the next size below the waist. I really like the centre back seam even though I had to pattern match the plaid because it made it easy to get rid of that sway back pooling I often get.

photo of the back of a woman's top in maroon plaid

Although it's a simple pattern the Burda magazine has illustrated pattern instructions in the magazine. However (and here is my rant!) I don't think the method for the neck zip is the best way of doing it.

photo of sewing instructions from Burda magazine

Essentially you sew cut the seam allowances off, sew the zipper tape on top, then hand sew the ends of the zipper tape together and sew the ribbon over the top of the zipper tapes. Doing it this way leaves a gap between the end of the zipper tape and the shoulder seam, unless my zipper tape is unusually short because I'm sure I transferred the mark from the pattern where the zipper stop goes correctly. I had to sew a small square of fabric to the underside to fill in that gap. I think a better method would be to sew the seam from the shoulder edge to the mark for the zipper stop, and then install the zipper as an exposed zip with a welt pocket type opening instead - this would hide the zipper tape, leave no gap at the end and keep that shoulder seam strong too. Or at lease use a zip longer than the magazine recommends!

four photos showing a close up of the zipper insertion into the shoulder of a top

Ironically it turns out that I should have narrowed the shoulders anyway because this sits off my shoulder point - that would have solved the problem of that little gap! Although looking at the pattern I think it's designed with an extended shoulder.

close up photo of a zipper

photo of a woman wearing a top with a zipper on the shoulder

Because of my forward rounded shoulders (thanks to being a side sleeper and having poor posture) I'm getting a fold of fabric across the front below the neckline. For my next version I would do a forward shoulder adjustment by taking a bit of width out of the front and adding it to the back instead.

photo of a woman posing

So if you're still here reading - welcome back and thanks for sticking around! I hope to get into more a regular routine with my posting. So many projects to catch up on....

63 comments:

  1. I'm glad you are back. I enjoy your sewing and writing. Thos morning, during Sunday breakfast, I looked through old Burda magazines and decided I want to do this pattern in fall.

    Dagmar

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    1. Hi Dagmar, thanks for still reading along! Looking through my old Burda magazines is a favourite past time of mine, if only I had time to make all the patterns I tag!

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  2. So lovely to see you back here Kristy, you are one of my favourite blogs. I understand the need for interesting tops when doing virtual work calls from home, and this style is a really nice one. Tamsin

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    1. Hi Tamsin, thanks for your lovely comment! I just need to remember not to stand up when I'm wearing a nice top with some daggy old tracksuit pants

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  3. Yay, glad you're back! These are crazy times, & I'm glad you're all okay.

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    1. thanks Samina. These are definitely crazy times, all around the world...

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  4. Welcome back!! It is good to see you are well. I like the funnel neck top! The exposed zipper and fabric choice are nice touches.

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    1. thanks Vanessa for still reading and commenting!

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  5. really cute top love the plaid. And the blog looks great!

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    1. thanks Beth. I love reading your blog too, I can only hope I contribute as much useful information that you do

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  6. I'm so glad you are back! I sew a lot from Burda and I've loved your blog for years! This is an interesting top with the exposed zipper.

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    1. thanks Carmela - Burda patterns are great aren't they?

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  7. Kristy, happy to see you here again! I think your changes to the zip application are great, and the top looks fab on you! Best in these times.

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    1. thanks Cherie - all the best to you as well in these sad and strange times

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  8. Welcome back. I'm also finding renewed love for my blog. It's amazing what you find drawn to in these strange times. All my dresses are unworn and it's jeans and t shirts all the way. More of these needed in my wardrobe

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    1. thanks Claire. I hope I get to wear my dresses again soon, but right now it's comfy and casual

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  9. Thanks for all the details. I like all the mods you made to this pattern, and the plaid works much better with the braid than plain fabric does. Before I saw yours I'd automatically replaced braid with exposed zipper in my head 🤪 While its still my preferred option, depending on fabric I would now think about it. How much stretch does your fabric have, Burda is always a bit sketchy on that.

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    1. Hi Karey, this fabric doesn't have much stretch to it at all because the wool has felted up and it still feels ok but only has room for a think top underneath though. I think the just an exposed zip on the shoulder would look good too, especially one with a decorative zipper tape

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  10. lovely creation! so classic, vintage and modern all at the same time!
    xo eva

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  11. Nice to have you back Kristy! I "went off" the blog for a while but found it great to record my projects and ventures. Your latest piece gives me inspiration, will have to hunt some suitable fabric in my boxes.

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    1. thanks Therese. I know some people who are good at documenting their projects, but without the blog I found that I didn't really do that at all

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  12. Yes, we are still here and looking forward to your following garments and posts!
    Welcome back!

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  13. I'm a long time reader who has never commented before but just wanted to say how pleased I am to see that you're blogging again.
    I found your blog about the same time I started to sew again and you are one of the bloggers I added to my home screen and checked in on daily. I learnt a lot, got inspired, and kept checking every few days for AGES until I realised there you were on instagram. Instagram is Instant and interesting but just not the same as a blog.
    So thank-you Kristy for taking the time to blog and share your makes, the detail and stories behind them. (and your dog is gorgeous too,I hope that paw is healing well)

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    1. thank you for your lovely comment! I'm not that good at keeping instagram updated that regularly either, but you're right that it's not the same as a blog. The dog's paw is now fully healed and he's back to running a 100 miles an hour whenever he can

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  14. I missed you! Nice to see you back with such a nice looking top.

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  15. Welcome back. Blog looks good. And well done on keeping at it with that fabric.

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    1. thanks Vicki. As you know I have so much fabric that it doesn't really make sense to persevere so long but I just couldn't let this one go to waste

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  16. Delighted to hear that you and the family are well. I do enjoy your blog both for the technical content (eg zip treatment) and the general inspiration. The Covid lockdown (I am in the UK) has justified my extensive stash of fabric and haberdashery so there is a silver lining!

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    1. thanks Anne. We could be in lockdown for years before my stash ran out and sadly I haven't had as much time to sew through my stash lately as I had hoped

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  17. I love this top, I adore plaid and it turned out beautifully! And like everyone else, I'm so happy to see you here and to know that you're well!

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  18. Hello

    I have never written a comment before, but wanted to say thank you for bringing your blog to life again.
    I’m reading your blog since many years more or less frequently and i like your sewing „attitude“ - which says to me quality over quantity. And that’s not the most found positive characteristic on the internet, the more I appreciate it!
    I like your top (and particularly the shoulder-zipper-idea) …

    With kind regards
    eve

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    1. thanks Eve for your first and very lovely comment!

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  19. SOOOOO glad that you're back! I was worried about you, reading about the fires in Australia this past winter (um, your summer), and wondering how you and your family were doing. Plus, I like your sewing and the way you write.
    (The top is cute; love the plaid, nice idea about the neckline zipper).

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    1. thank you, that's very sweet of you. I live in the city so the bushfires didn't put us in any danger but they certainly were terrible.

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  20. Definitely happy you're writing again. And glad to hear you are well in this crazy time we are living in. Always enjoy your sewing stories.

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  21. Your venture back into blogging just helped me figure out what I need to do to deal with my shoulders which always seem to roll forward. Like you, I'm a side sleeper and have lousy posture. One of those things I can't/won't likely change. But the posture thing is still in my set of responsibilities. I think I'll talk with my physical therapist to see what I can do about that. So ... thanks!

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    1. apparently this type of posture is really common these days - too much time slumped at computers. My physio has recommended a lot of stretching exercises which I am sadly always forgetting to do regularly!

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  22. Lovely top, I love the clean lines and the neck. Thanks for the tips.

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  23. A am so happy that you are back! I missed your blog posts. I kept looking for your new posts and dropped by almost every day. Have a wonderful week! Greetings from Warsaw!

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  24. I'm so glad that you are back! I've really missed your blog. I am mostly a lurker but I always enjoyed reading your posts. Your new top looks great! Your pattern matching is super....as usual!...and you've got a great fit.

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    1. thanks Allison for your comment - I won't feel offended if you go back to lurking again!

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  25. I've had this pattern on the radar all these years - it is fabulous! And especially in this plaid!! Welcome back!

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    1. thanks! I was inspired by your continued hard work on your blog all these years - you are so prolific!

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  26. Great to see you back on the blogging train, I too have been struggling with the same 'dressy work top' conundrum. I wouldn't have thought of a plaid for this pattern - a beautiful choice and beautifully executed.

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    1. thanks! I had been contemplating a plain white textured fabric but I couldn't settle on a zip or ribbon colour. This fabric made it easy to pick navy blue out for it though

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  27. So very glad to see you return. Between the fires and the virus, I was afraid that something had happened. So very glad that is not the case. Clearly you've got a lot to tend to; it's very good to see that you continue to sew. The top is adorable.
    Take care, stay healthy, and keep creating.

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    1. thanks AJW. We have been very fortunate not to have been affected by either the bushfires or the virus, it's just been life in general that has been very busy

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  28. Hi Kristy!
    If I remember correctly you have your own fabric labels made. Where do you get them? Would appreciate if you could let me know.
    My email studiotherese88@gmail.com

    Many thanks!
    Therese

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    1. Hi Therese - I sent you an email - I bought some woven labels from the Dutch Label Shop

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  29. Oh, it's so good to see you again! I've missed your work and life in a different hemisphere. Always interesting to read your thoughts as well as see your sewing. Nice top this is particularly with the plaid and clever shoulder zipper. Lyrique Threads, New Mexico, USA

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    1. thanks! I always enjoy reading blogs of people in foreign settings too

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  30. It's soo good to see you again. I have missed your blogs: you are always such an inspiration, you writing is good and the pictures good illustrations.

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  31. Yay, you're back. These are certainly different times but so thankful to be healthy and have a job. Home schooling was doing our heads in, am I right? I really need to up my work form home attire. With Winter coming along I hope you have some nice long sleeve tops to sew up? I have a soft pink material that might be good for this pattern but would be scared about doing the zipper.

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  32. So excited you’re back. I love your blog x

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