Sunday, June 19, 2011

Burda 3251 - The "Shuffleboard at 2pm" Tunic

I mentioned in my last post that I've been unfocused lately (mostly distracted by work) and it's affected my sewing. Seriously, what is UP with me? Apparently I am sewing for my alter ego and my alter ego is my grandmother-on-a-cruise. (Though both of my grandmothers passed long ago and neither one ever got anywhere near a cruise ship, but you get my drift...)

This is a long out-of-print Burda, but I really liked the silhouette and I thought it would work for me. Maybe it still would work for me in another fabric. Or a shorter length. Or worn with leggings. This is a fairly fitted top and I liked that. The button front is open below the waist and there are side slits. I like all of the above. Or so I thought.

I started with a size 16 (42) and altered the heck out of it. I usually start with a larger size, often a 20, but this time I decided to use my actual high bust measurement (42") and go from there. I think that did work well and I should do this more often.

The fabric is a pleated rayon that I bought at Yardage Town in San Diego last July. I intended this for a skirt that I drafted a couple years ago. I'm kinda sorry I didn't save it for that project. :/ This fabric is very stretchy (due to the pleating) and very unstable in the selvedge-to-selvedge direction. It also ravels easily and is very wiggly. And, of course, because it's a stripe, I had to match the pesky stripes. (It would be so much easier if I didn't like striped and plaid fabrics so much. :)

Materials and Notions:

  • Pleated striped rayon fabric from Yardage Town in San Diego.
  • Coordinating solid cotton for the facings, from Fabrix.
  • 4 7/8" buttons from Fabrix.
  • Twill tape to stabilize shoulder seams.
  • Fusible tricot interfacing for facings, also from Fabrix.

Alterations and Modifications:

  • This pattern has a dart and it actually pointed to the right place on me! (Wow, that never happens, though using a smaller-than-normal pattern size did raise it up a bit.) The dart was too long and too small, so I did my usual FBA, AFTER chopping the bottom of the pattern off. After the FBA I re-attached the two pieces, so the hip was not modified.
  • I lengthened the sleeves to below elbow length.
  • I shortened the shoulders by 1/2". Usually I have to shorten the shoulders by 1" when I'm using a larger size.

Construction Notes:

  • I stabilized the shoulder seams with twill tape cut to the length of the shoulder seam on the paper pattern.

    Stabilized shoulder seam and contrasting facing.

  • I did not want to use the same pleated fabric for the interfaced facings, so I use a coordinating solid blue fabric. It's a cotton "linen-like" blend. I have enough to make some coordinating pants. :)
  • I used 4 buttons that were larger than what the pattern called for. I found them in the giant button bin at Fabrix where you can buy 100 buttons for $5, but you have to sift through them to find matches. I used four buttons in three different shades of blue. Just for fun. You can see them in the pattern picture below.
  • I matched the stripes as well as possible. It wasn't entirely possible. For example, look at the picture below, where I am twirling. See how the stripe tilts down just below the armscye. This is because of the mammoth 6" bust dart. I matched the stripe at the top of the sleeve, at the CB, below the dart at the side seams, etc.

    Twirling exposes the stripe matching and the effect of the large dart (just below the armscye).

  • After the top was mostly completed, I tweaked the fit and removed even more width from the hip. I have started pinning the bust dart right on my body and, wow, does it improve the fit.

So, what do you think? I will wear this top, I'm sure, and maybe it will grow on me.

Pattern Giveaway and Miscellaneous


I want to thank all of you for your comments on my purse and the dress from my last post. I really I appreciate all of your points of view, though the dress certainly had folks on both side of the fence. :)

I had 35 comments on the Hobo Bag post, so I plugged in 1-35 into the random number generator. I figured if the chosen number belonged to someone who did not want the pattern, I would just try again. The number 7 came up, which is Martha from SG! Martha, it was not clear from your comment if you wanted the pattern. If not, let me know and I'll generate a new number.

Last week was another very intense work week, including a couple of 12-hour days. It was draining and no sewing happened, but I did sew this weekend. I just finished a top and will blog about it shortly. Lately I have been rather unfocused, and my sewing has suffered for it. This top is no exception, I think. Oh well, at least it fits well. ;)

Oh, the picture up top is from Me-Made-June. I missed photographing a number of days during the week, but was wearing (self made) jammies on those days anyway and was glued to the sofa, working. The challenge is to wear self made every day for the month of June, which I have done. Luckily the challenge does not include taking a picture every day - that is optional. :) This picture is from Friday, when we were challenged to take a pic with a loved one. I was home alone, but went to the mall at 9am to get a picture with my daughter's poster. Sheesh, the embarrassment, me and my tripod. I had to take a lot of pictures to get one that was halfway decent. :)

Off to write another post!