Added May 4, 2014
Los Angeles, Uni...
Long summer dress with an open back in a lightweight fabric.
I bought this Burda pattern for the Open Back Dress from the website, and I think that might be where some of the problems with this pattern lies- if I had gotten it from the magazine I think the directions and pieces might have been more cohesive. I am a solidly Intermediate seamstress, which I think is necessary for most Burda patterns because the instructions are so bare and sometimes omit steps that a beginner sewer would not even realize were necessary. In this pattern for the Open Back dress, however, it wasn’t the instructions that were lacking, but the pattern pieces. There seem to be 2 extra pattern pieces included in the download that are not mentioned anywhere in the directions, piece 27, which appears to be a skirt front, and piece 24, which looks like it might be a pocket patten piece.
In the instructions, it said to cut out three extra pieces not included in the pattern from the material, and it gives the dimensions of each piece, all 90.5 inches long and two of varying widths. One piece would make the sash and the other two pieces were intended to be the skirt panels which would be gathered and fitted onto the bodice. Unfortunately I cut all my pattern pieces out before looking to see if they actually made sense (because why wouldn’t they?) and found myself with two skirt panel pieces and an additional pattern cut-out for a skirt front that seemed to not be included in the instructions anywhere. I realized that using the extremely long skirt panel pieces were going to overwhelm my small frame, not to mention the skirt of this dress is drafted to be just above the ankles, which is a weird place for someone who is 5’3". So I decided instead to experiment with the skirt pattern piece included in the pattern and I cut out two more skirt pieces from my skirt panel material to match up with pattern piece #27. This pattern piece is fitted in the hips with two pleats in the front that match up with the bodice darts, and then it gently flares out towards the bottom. The skirt came out beautifully (slightly gathered in the back, two pleats on the front piece) and I will use these pieces to draft more skirts like this with a waistband.
Anywho, the bodice of this dress was so ill fitting that I had to fix it several times before getting it to a place where it fit properly. If and when I make this dress again, I will add more length to the side and back pieces of the bodice and pull in the side seams more because the first draft of the bodice gaped a couple of inches on each side. I sewed in a bra and the fit is good now, but I have to use doublesided tape on either side of the boob area to keep the material from gaping at the side (I couldn’t really bring the seams in any more). I think the fit of the bodice would be better with re-drafted pattern pieces.
lightweight cotton turned inside out
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