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Geometric Sheath Dress in Charcoal

Added Dec 12, 2011

By burdastyle

New York, New Yo...






This week BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook contributor and prolific member squirrellypoo shares with us her take on our ‘80s-centric geometric sheath dress.

In her words: I loved this sheath dress the second I saw it, and I didn’t need much persuasion to see it’d be the perfect double-duty holiday dress – it’d work equally well for both my husband’s fancy birthday dinner and any Christmas parties.

On second thought: Though on reflection, it might be a bit too sexy for my office party!

On fitting the pattern: As this was a close fitting sheath with a non-stretch fabric, I opted to go right ahead and make the only fitting alteration I ever make with Burda patterns, and even then it’s only occasionally – I removed 2cm above the waist line across all the vertical panels so the waist of the dress is more in line with my own.

On stylistic changes: The only style alteration I made was to alter the sleeve length to be full length rather than bracelet length. To do this was a serious no-brainer – I just laid a regular Burda full-length sleeve underneath this one (Lydia is my go-to!), matching up the underarms, and marked the new length. Then I just extended the sleeve seams down to the line. Done!

On full busted garments: If you usually require an FBA (Full Bust Adjustment), it’d be super easy to do one on this pattern – the little “wings” attach onto a glorified princess seam, so you just need to cut those off your pattern on the marked lining line, do your FBA, and then reattach them when you’re done. That being said, this is a low cut, very close fitting dress, so if either of those descriptions make you nervous, you can a) make a taller inset triangle piece to raise the neckline and/or b) go up one size in the skirt pieces or use a stretch woven fabric.

Make sure to visit Fehr Trade for more!

Material Notes

Fabric details: Charcoal gray, ex-designer (sorry, I can’t tell you who!) 68% poly/29% viscose/3% elastane (though I swear it’s non-stretch!) flannel that just feels so soft and wonderful! I’ve lined the bodice with turquoise Bemberg lining fabric for a lovely pop of colour.

Wool crpe, 140 cm (55 in) wide: 1.85 – 1.85 – 1.90 – 1.90 – 1.90 m (2 1/8 yds). Lining for bodice, 140 cm (55 in) wide: 0.45 m (5/8 yd) for all sizes. 1 invisible zip, 40 cm (16 ins) long




Fall, Winter
Garment Type
Punk, Rock, Vintage


Project creator

14 Comments Sign in to add a post

  • Missing

    Dec 18, 2011, 10.48 AMby Jolands

    I loved this dress also when i saw it. I am making it now for christmas and its almost finishes. I choosed a black strech fabric. I didnt like the sleeves couse they were to wide for me, what looked a bit shabby on me. So i made it with short sleeves, used from another pattern (THE black dress from december i think). Maybe i will place a picture when its finished.

    1 Reply
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      Dec 20, 2011, 03.52 PMby squirrellypoo

      Yes please do share! I’d love to see it!

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    Dec 17, 2011, 09.52 PMby 1diane

    This dress would be a new style for me, absolutely beautiful.

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    Dec 15, 2011, 01.51 PMby Ganluine

    Beautiful, and you look amazing in it! I love the fabric you choose. Maybe i read over it in the article, but what fabric is it? Anyway, keep up the good work.

    1 Reply
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      Dec 17, 2011, 05.55 PMby squirrellypoo

      Thanks!! The fabric is a poly/viscose blend flannel that was given to me by a friend from when she used to work in the industry. It was leftover yardage from a designer’s collection, but I can’t say who. ;)

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    Dec 14, 2011, 02.13 PMby Tracey McGowan Wirth

    Love it!!! Nicely done my friend!

  • Missing

    Dec 14, 2011, 12.26 PMby Merryg

    I learned to sew in high school from a wonderful nun …we called her pruney…but not to her face!

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    Dec 14, 2011, 01.51 AMby quiltsewsewsue

    Fab dress – I have loved this since seeing it in the mag – you have done a great job! Enjoy your parties!

  • Missing

    Dec 13, 2011, 05.05 PMby tigger0580

    This dress is beautiful and can be worn for any occasion or at the office. The pattern is really original.

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    Dec 13, 2011, 03.45 PMby carottesauvage

    Really sexy!, I understand your concerns when it comes to IT guys…

  • Iphone_002_large

    Dec 13, 2011, 09.13 AMby tracymcd

    That is absolutely fabulous! Loving the blue seamed stockings we are just getting a hint of in one of the photos too. And another great SE1 location if I’m not mistaken.

    1 Reply
    • 150x125_large

      Dec 13, 2011, 10.14 AMby squirrellypoo

      thanks! Yes, it’s the New Concordia Wharf gate on Mill Street, SE1. Well spotted! :)

  • Missing

    Dec 13, 2011, 12.46 AMby iin

    It is perfectly fit on you…Love it.

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    Dec 13, 2011, 12.27 AMby nouvellegamine

    so gorgeous! i love the pattern and how great it looks on you.

  • 150x125_large

    Dec 12, 2011, 08.19 PMby squirrellypoo

    thanks!! It’s more that my office is full of IT boys so anything more than a teeshirt is overdressed! :)

    2 Replies
    • Poe_large

      Dec 13, 2011, 12.43 AMby ladykatza

      Oh hey, you too? Mine finally got used to seeing me dress up so I no longer get the “What, do you have an interview or something?”.

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      Dec 14, 2011, 01.10 PMby anajan

      Hey Melissa, I work in the IT industry too, and for a long time I was the ONLY girl in the office. It didn’t stop me from dressing feminine. I think it’s just the matter of habit. The guys got used to seeing me nicely dressed, and I think they’re now confused when I come to work wearing a pair of jeans and a tee shirt. :)

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    Dec 12, 2011, 06.59 PMby anajan

    It’s really wawoom! I like how the dress accentuates body curves, making soft, yet sexy silhouette. I agree with nerja2007 – it’s not vulgar at all, so feel free to wear it for the office party. After seeing your version, I will definitely try out the pattern.

  • Leather_bow_large

    Dec 12, 2011, 05.53 PMby Sewing And Style

    I love Melissa’s blog and always follow her new adventures in dressmaking. This one looks great! Just as I would have expected! Office party- now that’s a great idea, maybe I will make one like that for my work xmas do… There is nothing vulgar about this dress, so don’t hesitate!

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