Floral Dresses Forever

I love a good floral print dress! This one is no exception. The colours are bright but the navy background tones it down.

blue floral burda dress-6

The pattern is a Burda Magazine pattern from 9/2014, dress #122. (It’s easier to remember patterns when they have names, isn’t it? Cambie Dress is more memorable than Dress 122.)

You can see the design lines more clearly in the pattern line drawing and model photo. They’d show up if I had used a solid fabric!

burda magazine dress

You could argue it isn’t the best match of pattern and fabric, and I agree. I wanted to try out the pattern in fabric I already had and though the weight would be right for the flared part of the skirt. The floral print is small enough so the flowers don’t look chopped up along the seamlines, unless you examine them closely.

The fabric is a cotton sateen with 3% spandex, lined with bemberg rayon lining.

blue floral burda dress-2

The cotton makes it comfortable to wear and not overly dressy. It’s a dress you can wear whenever, not just special occasions.

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Here’s the back view. It has a nice shape around curves without being too snug.

blue floral burda dress-8

I cut a size 36 on top and size 40 at the bottom, tapering in between to about a size 38 at the waist. After sewing a muslin, I took a bit of extra length out of the centre back, and reduced some of the extra I’d added at the hips.

Tips for this pattern:

I’d fully line it next time instead of cutting the lining in a straight line. The pattern instructs you to cut the lining short, straight across the lower hip/upper thigh, so it’s much shorter than the actual dress. What I’d do is cut exactly the same pattern pieces for both lining and main fabric and hem it nicely, knowing the longer hem at the back will show through the front a little.

blue floral burda dress-5

The lining stops about where my watch sits in the photo above. It isn’t uncomfortable but I’d prefer a full lining. Especially in winter, for wearing with tights.

Staystitching the curves is important to sewing all of the curved panels. Staystitch, pin both ends of the seam and clip in between to release the seam allowance. A lot of clipping is required to get the seams to lie flat! Alternately, you could press the seam allowances to one side rather than open and finish them together. You’d still have to clip them to sew the seams though.

blue floral burda dress-3

You have to follow the order of construction in the instructions.! I’m tempted to do my own thing but if you do, you won’t be able to insert the zipper. I find with Burda instructions there are no visuals so I want to ignore them completely, but sometimes there’s a reason for the specific order of steps. Just a suggestion if you make this dress, do follow their order of sewing steps.

In the next photo the shadows highlight the flared part of the skirt, even though I’m squinting in the sun.

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What I actually wore that day: dressed down with a denim jacket and caramel leather bag.

blue floral burda dress

If I were to make this again, I’d choose a solid colour so the seaming shows up. I’d love a forest green or charcoal grey for Fall. There’s a beautiful version with contrast lace panels on the Russian Burdastyle site that makes the most of the seamlines. That could be something to try as well. If I’m going to go to the trouble of sewing all those curved seamlines, I’d like them to show up.

I love when a pattern works out, I’m always tempted to try it again right away with a few changes or improvements. Do you do the same? It’s satisfying to sew something good, and then sew something even better for round two.

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45 Responses to Floral Dresses Forever

  1. Meg the Grand June 17, 2015 at 6:22 am #

    I love the use of floral prints! I think the fit here is spot on, and I like your idea of fully lining the next time around. I’m much more likely to make an item if I can wear it year round (with or without layers added).

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:46 am #

      Thanks! I agree, I’ve made some summer dresses that look very out of place with black tights and boots in the winter. A darker floral looks more seasonally appropriate year-round.

  2. Beate June 17, 2015 at 6:30 am #

    Nice dress! I have sewn it, too, and it fitted very well to me.
    I already changed the lining to full lenght, as I read it in some blogs. I relocated the zipper to the side, which worked well, and did no staystitching at the curves but finished them together with a serger which went very well.

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:47 am #

      Smart! I wish I’d changed the lining but now I know for next time. Why did you move the zipper to the side – so it’s easier to zip up, or to use a shorter zipper?

      • Beate June 17, 2015 at 12:37 pm #

        I like it more at the side, I think it’s easier to close :-) And yes, I can use a shorter zipper.

        • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:40 am #

          Makes sense!

  3. Renee June 17, 2015 at 7:39 am #

    Pretty dress. Looking at yours I think I’d love to try this in leather and wool. It fits you really really well.

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:48 am #

      That would be awesome! A much more sophisticated look than a cotton floral print. Wonder if it would be challenging sewing leather around tight curves and getting them to lie flat. You could always topstitch the seams after to hold them down. I’d love to see that!

  4. zilredloh June 17, 2015 at 7:41 am #

    I’ve had this pattern in my burda favorites for a while now, your pretty floral dress is further proof that I need to up this in my queue. :) Yours is so pretty and thanks for the tips about the lining.

    I love that you can dress this one up or down, as needed.

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:49 am #

      Thanks! Versatility is key, it means it’ll get worn more often. This dress would be lovely on you! It’s the reason I bought the magazine so I’m glad I made time to sew it up.

  5. Thewallinna June 17, 2015 at 8:25 am #

    Floral dresses look so pretty on you! This one has also caught my eye, but I rather envisioned it in knit jersey. When I just saw the dress, I was not quite sure about the front flared panel, but the more versions started to pop up, the more I like it. I love the idea of sewing the same garment, if the pattern worked for the first time, but I am getting distracted my new and shiny patterns. So I rarely revisit a pattern.

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:51 am #

      A heavier knit like ponte would work well in this style, I think. I also wasn’t sure if the front flared panel would look silly, since the back is plain, but it’s nice. It’s almost better in the print as you can’t see the circular seamline. I’ll often sew things twice, then move on. Or worse – have plans to sew something twice, buy the fabric, and then get distracted by the new and shiny!

      • Annette June 18, 2015 at 7:39 am #

        I too am always and I mean always, distracted by the new and shiny! Love the dress BTW! Annette

        • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:44 am #

          It’s common with creative people, I think! Always planning our next project and the one after that.

  6. Sarah June 17, 2015 at 8:33 am #

    I am kind of obsessed with floral anything! I love the fabric! Lovely dress!

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:52 am #

      Oh me too. I love a good floral print!

  7. Shannon June 17, 2015 at 9:02 am #

    This is gorgeous! I love the fabric, and it looks like it fits really well too. I’ve never had very good luck with Burdastyle patterns personally, but I’m thinking I might give one another go now that I have a little more sewing experience. I’ve seen some great garments made from them!

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 9:59 am #

      Thank you! What did you have trouble with, the instructions or the fit? Or just choosing styles that looked good on you – sometimes the styling can be misleading or too ‘fashiony’ to see the clothing clearly.

  8. Caroline June 17, 2015 at 9:44 am #

    Hi Tasia. Most of my summer dresses are floral! This is a great one – I love the curved seams and the front frill. I love repeating a pattern if it works. At the moment I am working on repeating a dress made from the bodice of one pattern and the skirt from another. Floral, of course! :-)

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 10:00 am #

      Smart idea! If you get a good fitting bodice pattern, switching up the skirts is a great way to add variety.

  9. Linda Galante June 17, 2015 at 10:00 am #

    Super cute! I saw this pattern when it came out but haven’t made it. I love the print, but could imagine it would be stunning in a solid too. Thanks for the lining tip…

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 10:46 am #

      Thanks! Yeah, if you want the seamlines to show, a solid would be better. I do love the print though! Happy to share the lining tip, it’s not a super big deal either way but if I prefer a full lining, you might as well..

  10. Susan June 17, 2015 at 10:40 am #

    Lovely! I have a very OLD Burda pattern from a book and really like. It will have to be lined also. This may just give me the incentive to get going on it. Thanks.

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 10:53 am #

      Good luck! Sometimes lined dresses are easier because you’re just sewing the same thing twice and joining it around the edges. Plus you get to hide the insides!

  11. Erin June 17, 2015 at 11:47 am #

    Lovely dress, especially on you! Although I do not agree with the premise that you are any way not gorgeously figured, this dress really balances you (aka, the bottom half matches the top half with a nice inward curve in the middle).

    I loved the dress that you linked, too. It looks as though with that one the flare part of the skirt was eliminated (Google Translate was not as helpful in reading the comments as it could have been ), which serves to highlight the lace panels even more. Was this pattern included with the magazine or a separate purchase?

    • Tasia June 17, 2015 at 11:58 am #

      The pattern was included in the magazine! With the German/UK/Russian Burdastyle magazine, all of the patterns shown are included. It’s the USA version that only includes some of the patterns and has you download others.
      You’re right – she did remove the flare panel! I was paying more attention to the contrast panels and I didn’t even notice. It looks nice both ways. And thank you! I know what you mean, the extended cap sleeves and neckline balance out bottom-heavy hips, in a good way. I know I’m hippy, but this dress doesn’t overemphasize the fact.

  12. Claire June 17, 2015 at 1:25 pm #

    I made this a while ago in pink cord. I made the 38 graded to a 40 from the hips, I found the top a bit too big on the bust, but fine in the back, with some minor alterations it has a great fit.

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:41 am #

      It’s a cool pattern, thanks for sharing yours! It’s nice without the godet too.

  13. Katy June 17, 2015 at 3:37 pm #

    What a lovely dress with interesting design detail. As always you’ve done an awesome job. So nice to see some personal sewing projects of your own again :)

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:41 am #

      Thanks Katy! Nice to be talking about sewing projects just for fun. :)

  14. Sam June 17, 2015 at 11:22 pm #

    I’ve been thinking of making this pattern for ages, your beautiful version might have just convinced me.

    • Sewing Sveta June 18, 2015 at 2:13 pm #

      For ages sounds funny for this pattern%)) Not so old one%)))

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:44 am #

      Thanks Sam! It’s a nice one with interesting seamlines.

  15. Marianne June 18, 2015 at 12:26 pm #

    Is your bemberg lining stretchy? I’m always struggling to find a good quality stretch lining. Lining fashion fabric containing spandex with a woven would make you lose the benefits of the spandex, I suppose?

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:47 am #

      It’s not stretchy, it is hard to find a good stretch lining on its own. You could always use a stretch satin or another smooth fabric that stretches but isn’t specifically lining fabric. I’ve done that before, for example when I wanted a printed satin lining for a coat. And yes, it does remove most of the spandex benefits, but I didn’t make this dress extremely snug so it doesn’t matter too much to me. I chose it more for the print than for the stretch factor. All depends on your pattern design and if it requires stretch as part of the fit!

  16. Sewing Sveta June 18, 2015 at 2:11 pm #

    Lovely dress! Thanks for tips! It would be fun to meet you on the streets wearing the same fabric%)

  17. Juliet June 18, 2015 at 4:21 pm #

    I love the idea of a block colour to show up the seams, but your version is very summery. I’m surprised how short the lining is. Good idea to lengthen it. Tasia, do you always make a muslin first for all your garments?

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:57 am #

      Usually I do, if there’s something I’m concerned about or if I’ve never made it before. For patterns other than Sewaholic patterns, I’m often cutting a smaller size on top and larger on the bottom, or making other adjustments to accomodate my shape, so it’s nice to be able to see those changes in 3D before cutting the real fabric.

      I really like the process of making muslins, strangely! Plus it helps me to envision the garment on me vs. the pattern illustration or photo. It does take time though and sometimes I don’t get to the real thing for a while.

  18. Kathy Sews June 19, 2015 at 4:13 am #

    I love it!! I like your fabric choice for the pattern. I’ve been thinking about this pattern since it was released and have always thought it would be too fancy pants for everyday, but using a fun, bright floral is perfection. It looks just lovely on you!!

    • Tasia June 19, 2015 at 9:58 am #

      It’s kind of fancy pants for every day, I agree. A casual print, or a solid colour in a matte fabric are the best ways to make it less fancy, I’d say. I still like the original grey sample in the photo too.

  19. Veronica Darling June 20, 2015 at 4:54 am #

    I love this shape and the curves… AND that it has a lower neckline … a lot of the paneled dresses have higher necklines, and I prefer scooped a little. Great choice of fabric from the stash, and love how easily you’ve styled it. You could totally wear with opaque tights and very high shoes for an evening/autumnal event!

    Maybe I should know this, but are Burda patterns available outside of the magazines?

    • Tasia June 22, 2015 at 9:17 am #

      I agree! I’ll totally be able to wear it in the fall with black or navy tights. That’s the nice thing about darker floral prints.

      Yes, there are both envelope Burda patterns and magazine patterns. Here in Canada you can buy the envelope patterns at the fabric store along with Vogue, McCalls, Butterick. The magazines are a little harder to find but you can find them at specialty bookshops. I am not certain if the styles are exactly the same, like if you can buy the same dress as either a single envelope pattern or as part of a magazine..

  20. Phjm June 29, 2015 at 1:19 pm #

    I really like this, I’m on a Seahawks bandwagon I would do color blocks of their colors and tone down the neon green with a gray lace overlay.