Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Finished: BSM 08-13-138

Some time ago, I realized I didn't have enough dresses.  So I initiated the Great American Dress Project.  This dress, #138 from the August 2013 issue of Burda Style Magazine, is the first dress in that project.
Burda Style Magazine 08-13-138

Pattern Description:  This design is a basically a variation on a shirt waist dress.  It includes a self-fabric belt and a scarf.

Pattern Sizing: This dress is from Burda Style's plus size range; european 44 to 52

Construction Notes:  The most difficult part of sewing this dress was finding a fabric covered belt kit in a brick and mortar store.  I usually go to JoAnn for notions like that, but my local JoAnn did not have fabric covered belt kits.  Luckily, I was able to go to Philadelphia's little garment district, Fabric Row.   I didn't have heavy interfacing for the belt, so I used two layers of the heaviest woven interfacing I had. The result was more than adequate.

The pattern called for lace trim along the edge of the collar.  I had a specific type and color lace in mind.  Since I couldn't find exactly what I wanted, I omitted the lace.

belt loops sewn into seam
Although this dress has a belt, belt loops were not mentioned in the instructions.  I made loops out of narrow bias tubes and sewed them into the waist seam.  The belt would creep up to an unflattering position without loops.

The sleeves look like your average set in sleeves, but they are not.  They are inserted like a raglan sleeve.  You can't see it on the technical drawing, but there is a seam from the shoulder to the slit that allows the sleeve to be inserted like a raglan.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?  I wasn't sure how the final project would look but let me say, I really like this dress!  There really isn't anything I dislike about this pattern.

Fabric Used:  100% polyester.  I had to remember that pressing 100% polyester presents a challenge.  I needed to use a clapper for every press.  I enjoy sewing natural fibers because they are so easy to press, but as long as I used the clapper and plenty of steam, pressing really wasn't that big a deal.

Conclusion:  I really like this dress!  I want to make it again, maybe in a solid color.  I hope the rest of my Great American Dress Project goes as well.


  1. This is very flattering on you. How is the MOB outfit coming along?

    1. I finished the MOB dress. I only have to send it to the cleaners for a professional pressing.

  2. The dress looks great on you. I'd love to see it in a solid jewel tone. I think that it would look gorgeous you. I need some dresses for spring and I think I'll check this one out.

  3. That's a great dress and you look great in it. Very pretty! Another couple of ways to get dress loops is to either run your serger without fabric and get a long run of thread. Pull it tight and use it. The way that I like best is to pull a long run of bobbin and top thread, double it back on itself a couple of times then do a narrow zigzag over it.

  4. I forgot to say I've been using these so long, that I don't remember where I learned them or I'd attribute the sources. Perhaps one of your other readers will know.

  5. Love it, so cute Especially the belt.

  6. Love this dress. Very flattering. I agree with the jewel tone idea.


  7. Oh Lee, a great looking dress. Love the belt too.
    Karen in Illinois

  8. Hi Ella Ray This time you really did it! This dress looks altogether (I might would make the sleeves a little smaller) lovely and pretty on you! Do this one again! Different fabrics and colors. I agree with you (I really like this dress!). Mary

  9. Ooh, lovely dress. Yes make it again, it looks great on you.

  10. You look great in this dress. Fits perfectly!

  11. I am searching everywhere for Vogue Pattern V8259, just wondering if you have this pattern and if you could get in touch with me please?

    Kindest regards

  12. Lee, this looks really great on you. I can see you making this one a few more times in different colors/prints. And yes, why would Burda mention belt loops? They tend to omit little, important details like that.

  13. It is always nice to find another Pennsylvania sewist. In what part of our fair state are you located? I am 20 miles north of Philadelphia. I wonder if you would consider adding the gadget that allows someone to follow by email subscription? It makes it so much easier to follow really good blogs when the new posts come right to your inbox. I just heard that we might get snow on St. Patrick's Day! I had really thought it was gone. From Wednesday night until Tuesday morning, the temperature dropped 61 degrees! Crazy weather.