Category Archives: Burda Maxi Dress

My First Maxi Dress

Just in time for the weekend, my maxi dress is finally finished! Since I skipped inserting the zipper, the last few steps of gathering, attaching, and hemming the skirt was very easy. The only change I wish I would have made to this design is taking in the underarms a bit – I think there’s just a bit too much material there (I’m thinking that this is just a new alteration that I’m going to have to keep in mind, since this seems to be a problem in several patterns recently)
So, what are my thoughts on this dress? First off, it’s another winner from Burda – it’s stylish, the fit is good, and it came together easily. Secondly, I’m glad I skipped the zip…. it’s really not necessary if you use a fabric with enough stretch and recovery. However, I am being very careful when I put it on just to make sure that I don’t pop any stitches, just in case! Lastly, be sure to chose you fabric wisely. Thin cottons or jerseys will look best with this design – anything too hefty will bulk up in areas (remember there’s lots of gathers around the bust and waistlines) and won’t give a flattering drape.

Making A Dent

It was so nice to be able to have some uninterrupted sewing time yesterday – sewing has got to be so much cheaper than therapy (wait, maybe it isn’t. I do have a rather large fabric ‘collection’).
While I didn’t get to everything that I would have liked, I did make a nice dent into my list…. I even made some progress on my Burda Maxi Dress! This is the bodice to the dress – as you can see, I’ve skipped the invisible zipper. I went to the mall with Taylor the other day and checked out several dresses with a similar design – none of which had zips. I slipped on one (if I wasn’t already in the process of making a dress, I would have just snatched up this one, it was adorable) and didn’t have any problems wrangling it on, so I thought I would skip it with my version. Consequently, I decided to eliminate some of the interfacing (like the back of the dress) so that it would retain more stretch. I’m not sure if all knit interfacings behave the same, but I’ve found that the kind I’ve been purchasing reduces some of the stretch.
So far, everything has gone together without a hitch – let’s hope it all continues that way! What did everyone do over their weekend?

Fighting For Fabric

I’m finally set to start sewing on my Burda Maxi Dress this week. I managed to cut out all the pieces… however, I had to fight for the fabric as our bird decided that it made a nice place to take a nap.
Now we’re off to today’s crafty activity – tie dying shirts for cheerleading camp. I’m actually excited to get to help…. I wonder if they’ll let me make my own?

Maxi Dress Road Map

As much as I love the patterns found in Burda, I really dread tracing the road map of pieces that are inside. So yesterday I put aside my dislike for tracing and started to work on the Maxi Dress. Since my seam tracer has gone missing (I believe it is the abyss that is called my sewing work table), I didn’t add seam allowances to the pattern pieces and have decided that I will ‘eyeball’ it when it comes time to cut the fabric…. I hope I don’t regret that decision later. I’m also heading out to get an invisible zipper for this dress too, after checking out the pattern pieces, I think that I’m not going to be able to skip this step even though I’m using a stretch.
Anyone else working on this at the moment? I’d love to hear your thoughts before I start sewing this up!

Paisley Halter, Complete

It may have taken weeks to finally get back to it, but I’m happy to say, my paisley halter is…. FINISHED!
So, let’s talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly with this pattern!
The good: The overall design is exactly what I was looking for, plus it’s simple to put together.
The bad: If you’re wanting to make this top for yourself, it might be difficult to find as it is now out-of-print. I’m not sure how old it is, but I believe it is pre-New Look. It also needs a bit of ‘updating’ in the length of the finished top as it is a bit short for today’s styles.
The ugly: Whoever wrote the directions for working with stretch fabric needs to be fired. There is a lot of straight stitching going on which is a definite ‘no-no’ when working with knits – I can’t imagine all the popped seams and stitches you would have after trying to put it on. This pattern is also an unnecessary fabric hog. The entire front of this top is supposed to be lined in self fabric. I know that this is to create a finished edge, but a shelf bra (which is what I opted to make instead) would do the same thing without wasting material. Lastly, is the sizing. While the fit is good, the amount of elastic needed for the back of the top is WAY too much. After an initial fitting, I wound up having to take it all out and remove 4 1/2″… and it’s still a bit on the lose side!
I’m not going to say that I wouldn’t recommend this pattern – it’s got good bones. However, before you start sewing this one up, I would recommend tweaking it a bit to avoid some headaches!

Cutting, Cutting, Cutting

I spent the better part of an afternoon doing nothing but cutting fabric for my Field Bag. While there isn’t a lot of pieces to the bag itself, there are several ‘layers’ that need to be cut – the exterior and lining fabrics, pockets, interfacing and fusible fleece. Even though cutting fabric is my least favorite part of sewing, I’ll happily cut all these layers just so I can avoid using Timtex! As much as I love how it gives shape to a bag, it’s just such a booger to work with. All I have left is to cut the material for the piping – I plan to use my new Simplicity Rotary Cutter for that part. I’ll be starting on this project as soon as I finish up my paisley halter.
The July issue of Burda arrived on Friday and I have to say, this is a great issue I found so many things that I would love to make including this maxi dress (and for petites no less!). We have a big family get-together at the end of this month and I think this would be perfect to wear. The instructions call for using a border print jersey (I’ve been tempted to pick up one of Ann’s, which is still on sale) and a side zipper. Do you think it’s necessary to insert a zipper if you’ve got a fabric with good stretch?