Two-Piece Set: Burda 6970 and Hollyburn

Here’s a two piece set I sewed! I was inspired by Sophie’s post here about two piece sets on her blog Ada Spragg. Actually, Caroline was the one that mentioned it during a discussion about us both wanting to sew more just for fun projects. Which got me excited about dreaming up two-piece set projects! So here is mine.

two piece floral set - crop top and hollyburn skirt 1

The top is the bustier/crop top from Burda 6970, same as the turquoise one here. I made the first version to test the fit, so my two-piece top would be even better.

two piece floral set - crop top and hollyburn skirt 3

The skirt is the Hollyburn skirt, view A, the longest version. I meant to place the centre front seam placed on the fold instead but totally forgot while cutting it out, so it’s the same as the pattern. Looking at these photos, I think the waistband would look better narrower, so there’s more space between the top and the skirt.

two piece floral set - crop top and hollyburn skirt 2

The good part about combining these two patterns is that the bustier pieces fit in the wasted space around the Hollyburn pieces! So it doesn’t take much more fabric to add a crop top while cutting out the Hollyburn skirt. If you skipped the self-fabric facings and used a different fabric, you could save even more.

two piece floral set - crop top and hollyburn skirt 5

The fabric is a cotton voile from Telio, originally planned for a Cambie Dress. It would make a lovely Cambie, very pretty and girly, but I think I’m even more pleased with it as a two-piece set. For one, you can mix and match the pieces!

crop top burda 6970 2

(Cool sunlight effects in these photos. I have no idea how they happened but it’s rather neat!)

crop top burda 6970 1

I totally fixed the gaping across the top edge of the bustier top. What I did was added stay tape across the neckline, but cut the stay tape shorter than the seamline. That way, it ended up shorter than the seamline, pulling the edge in tight against the upper bust. (I wish I’d written down the measurement somewhere! I believe it was half an inch but when I make this top again, I’ll measure the finished edge of this version to compare.)

crop top neck edge of bustier pulled in with stay tape

I also added stay tape across the back neckline, just for good measure.

The top goes especially well with a dark slim skirt.

crop top burda 6970 with pencil skirt 3

In fact, I prefer it with a dark solid bottom rather than as a matching set. As a set, it’s pretty much just like a dress, but with a dark skirt the top stands out more.

crop top burda 6970 with pencil skirt

I underlined this version, since the cotton voile was on the thin side and I thought it might wrinkle at the sides. It’s lined with stretch white poplin because that’s what I had on hand.

lined with cotton poplin

Added a cute ‘Handmade with Love’ label (get them here!):

handmade with love label

I understitched the lower edge of the armhole, the back neckline, and the front neckline. You can only stitch part of each section but it makes a much nicer edge.

understitched armhole

I catchstitched the hem to the underlining, instead of topstitching as it calls for in the instructions. There was no visible topstitching anywhere else so I wanted the hem to be invisible too.

catchstitched hem

And the best improvement I made – I reduced the facing by 1/8″ (3mm) so the fabric rolls to the inside ever so slightly.

facing cut slightly smaller

This makes nice edges along the neckline and armhole and reduces the chance of the facing rolling to the outside. When you can’t understitch, this helps improve the finish.

crop top burda 6970 with pencil skirt 4

It fits well, it feels comfortable and I feel rather sexy in it. It’s easy to make things that are cute and pretty and girlish, but I rarely choose things that give off that sexy bombshell vibe. It’s a little outside my usual comfort zone but I absolutely love it. I feel hot in it!

crop top burda 6970 with pencil skirt 2

There’s a limit to how many crop tops one person needs in their wardrobe, but I have plans to make one more – a plain black one. On the envelope cover the sample crop top is black and I think it looks great. Now that the bustier fits well I may even try the dress version.

burda 6970 envelope front

So I was inspired to sew this top for the co-ordinates theme, making a matching set to wear, but I actually prefer both pieces on their own. I’m glad because I might not have made this pattern otherwise and I really like it.

What do you think about coordinating sets: yes or no?

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54 Responses to Two-Piece Set: Burda 6970 and Hollyburn

  1. Carolyn September 22, 2014 at 6:36 am #

    Wow Tasia, you look fantastic in this set!! You should definitely feel hot in it. :) I agree that the top looks even better with the black skirt, just because it emphasizes the fact that it’s two separate pieces. Hope you have a fun date night planned for this outfit!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:17 am #

      Thanks! It’s a great date night look for sure. :)

    • Moe September 22, 2014 at 1:31 pm #

      You do look great in that set!

  2. anto September 22, 2014 at 8:30 am #

    Omg Tasia, where do I even begin!? First things first, you look stunning!!! The fabric? gorgeous! The colors in that print look so pretty.
    I give coordinating sets a big YES. I love that they are so versatile and accommodating to how you are feeling that day. Like, one day you might want a really fun and colorful print all over, but on a different day you might want a more toned down outfit with a fun pop of color.
    As soon as I saw this Hollyburn as a separate on the third picture (it does look like a whole dress in the first two) my first thought was how cute it would look with a solid Nettie.

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:16 am #

      Thanks so much! I feel great in this outfit. I agree, it’s nice to have versatility! The skirt could go with a sweater or simple blouse, the top goes with solid bottoms.
      I’ve seen someone make a Nettie and wear it with a Hollyburn! Check it out: http://www.carrieinstitches.com/blog/nettieandhollyburn
      You are right, it’s a great pairing!

      • anto September 24, 2014 at 9:30 am #

        Her Nettie/Hollyburn pairing is EXACTLY what I had in mind. Thanks for sharing the link!

  3. Kristin lion September 22, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    I have been loving the 2-piece setaculars! So much fun! This looks great! You find some of the coolest fabrics! And I would say you nailed the fit! I want one, but I’m totally on a bra sewing kick right now!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:15 am #

      Thank you! I’ve been saving this fabric and I’m happy with my project choice. I can understand being on a bra sewing kick, they’re so fun to make!

  4. Hélène September 22, 2014 at 10:14 am #

    Beautiful! I do prefer with the black skirt for the contrast, but I also think that the cropped top looks more stunning with a pencil skirt. Looking at your last picture, do I hate it when they stamp their big red “No exchange” notice right on the illustration of the pattern enveloppe!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:49 am #

      Oh I know! I hate that too. I’ve heard people say they will actually buy patterns online or from other places just to avoid the stamp on the artwork!
      Thanks for the comment on the outfit! I agree, I think both the silhouette and the contrast colour make the second outfit more interesting.

  5. Marie September 22, 2014 at 10:15 am #

    I actually hadn’t given the cropped look any consideration whatsoever -instantly dismissing it as ‘not for me’ but having seen your last two I’m definitely tempted to give it a try myself! Don’t know if I’m bold enough for matching though just yet!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:50 am #

      It’s easier to wear if you keep the two pieces separate. (I’d brought both outfits with me to take photos, but spent the rest of the day in the black skirt and top.)
      I’d thought it was not for me either, since I see a lot of boxy tops and shorts or other fashion-y combinations, but this is a little more retro and sweet. It’s a more ‘me’ version of the coordinated set!

  6. Frances Z September 22, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    Your work is beautiful. And that outfit looks fabulous on you. Wonderful!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 10:51 am #

      Thank you very much! It’s a pretty set that’s super fun to wear.

  7. Annabelle September 22, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    Gorgeous Tasia! It really does work well as separates or as one outfit. Of course I love the fabric that you picked out, you have such an eye for fabric.

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 11:08 am #

      Thank you, I love this fabric too!

  8. Rebekah September 22, 2014 at 11:06 am #

    Would you be interested in showing some photos of the stay tape, and a little info about how you did it? I know it sounds super simple but I could use a picture or two. I have a bra that gaps a little and it really bothers me because of how it shows through my shirts. I’d love to fix it.

    Thanks!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 11:12 am #

      I didn’t take good photos during the process but I will when I make this top again. Here’s a post that explains the basic method: (http://charisecreates.blogspot.ca/2013/09/the-cambie-dress-adventure-super-online.html (scroll down to the bottom)
      Basically you cut a piece of stay tape shorter than the edge that is gaping, then pull the tape tight as you sew and ease the too-big edge to the tape. Claire Shaeffer’s book Couture Sewing Techniques explains this as well, that’s where I got the idea from although I didn’t refer to the book while sewing. I just remembered it was a good idea. Hope this helps! It may be harder to do on a bra, since it’s already finished, but that’s the general idea.

  9. Anita Boeira September 22, 2014 at 11:17 am #

    YES! I love the coordinating sets! I wasn’t too sure of them at the beginning, but I made myself one (the crop top is the bodice of the Anna dress, and the skirt is their Charlotte skirt) and I loved it. The fabric choice I think it ‘s what really makes or breaks the set. I love the top with just the pencil skirt, it’s super neat.

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 11:24 am #

      Your set is so cute! You’ll get a ton of wear out of that pencil skirt and on days when you feel like matching, you have a cute little top! The Anna dress bodice looks cool as a cropped top. Very nice!

  10. Katherine September 22, 2014 at 12:27 pm #

    Super cute and love the fabric. Looks like you will get a lot of wear out of both pieces. Have you thought about cropping the Cambie bodice for a similar look?

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

      That would work, wouldn’t it? Great idea! You could even move the closure to the centre front, like this one, and add the hook and eye tape.

  11. Rachael-Lynn September 22, 2014 at 12:34 pm #

    It’s LOVELY! You look great!

    • Tasia September 22, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

      Thank you!

  12. Martha Chippendale September 22, 2014 at 1:19 pm #

    The top and skirt are absolutely lovely !!!!
    I think this pattern lends itself for a summer and winter outfit. Maybe one in velvet for a Christmas party.

    I love it, I will show it to all my friends in craft lesson on Friday here in Gosport England. I for one, I am sure I will sew one for my daughter.

    Best wishes
    Martha Chippendale

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:17 am #

      Velvet would make a very pretty bustier top!

  13. Evie September 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

    You look fabulous in the top and the dark skirt! Love it!

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:16 am #

      Thank you!

  14. Amanda September 22, 2014 at 6:47 pm #

    You look great! Love the look of this. I like that you can wear it as separates and as a dress – really adds options! Good idea with the stay tape at the bust line to reduce gaping. I’m always looking for ways to get around that so I’ll have to try this technique.

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:15 am #

      Yes, it makes a big difference. It’s hard to tell just from photos but I can feel the difference when wearing the first version compared to the second.
      And yes – a two piece dress gives you great versatility!

  15. Sophie September 22, 2014 at 7:45 pm #

    Oh lordy! This is so fun and cute and playful. Just perfect fabric for a two piece. Love the shapes you’ve gone for too. Will add it to the round-up stat!

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:15 am #

      Awesome! Thanks for the idea and for rounding up great examples!

  16. Elise Cole September 22, 2014 at 9:45 pm #

    I love it! And I learned something new- had no idea they were called co-ords. I’ve been wanting to see a bustier/skirt combo since Dolce and Gabbana did that look a few seasons ago. Yours looks brilliant. I also wanted to ask about the stay tapes, but I see you posted a link above, so I’ll check that out. I also wanted to ask if you’d ever put in bust pads? I love the look of the bustiers, but sometimes I’m afraid that they will squish everything down into a mono-boob. What are your thoughts?

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:14 am #

      I’m not sure if they’re called co-ords in real life or just the fashion world! As in, I don’t think my friends would immediately know what I meant if I said it.
      Yes, I have put in bust pads! Here’s a post I did: http://sewaholic.net/a-little-more-oomph-making-bust-padding/ The dress in the example isn’t giving me amazing cleavage though so I think it requires much more padding to have an impact. Though now that I know more about bra-making, I could probably do a better job! Or sew an appropriate undergarment that fits under the top.
      I’m wearing a padded bra under this top though, because it isn’t visible as the straps are thick enough and in the right place.

  17. Hanne September 22, 2014 at 10:54 pm #

    Wowie! You look stunning. The fabric is gorgeous and the fit on this top is beautiful!
    I love the black skirt/floral top combo!

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:11 am #

      Thanks so much!

  18. Kat Sews September 23, 2014 at 12:30 am #

    Hi Tasia, you look fantastic. I think I prefer the pencil skirt outfit but the dress look is great too.
    Could you also explain that trick about reducing the facing? It looks very neat! I understand the principle but am not sure how you do this. Maybe you can point us to another tutorial or reference? Thanks a lot!

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:11 am #

      Thanks! I’m with you on that, I prefer the top with the plain skirt.
      I’ll do my best to explain in words what I did with the facing! Basically, all I did was reduce either side of the strap area by 1/8″ (3mm). The reason for this is because both sides of the strap need to roll to the inside. If the facing was simply on the armhole side, then it would be easy to roll the seam to the inside by pressing and understitching, because it doesn’t matter where the outer edge of the facing ends up.
      I simply trimmed the facing only by 1/8″ on both sides of the strap. Then, when I sewed the facing to the top along the strap area, I took a normal seam allowance. Then when the strap is turned right side out, the seam sits on the inside.
      I think this would be easier if I demonstrated with photos so I’ll add that to my list!

      • Kat Sews September 25, 2014 at 4:20 am #

        Hi Tasia, thanks for your detailed reply. I totally get it now and will use it from now on. It always annoys me when the facing peaks out. Thanks a lot!

  19. Liliana September 23, 2014 at 7:41 am #

    So beautiful! I love both, the complete outfit (at first I thought you had made a dress!) as well as just the top/bottom as seperates.

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 10:08 am #

      It does look like a dress doesn’t it? I think more space between the top and the skirt would help – a narrower waistband was my first thought. That’s why I prefer the top with a solid skirt. Although, that could be why the trend of a matching set often means a boxy crop top, so it’s easy to tell the two pieces aren’t joined.

  20. Roni Arbel September 23, 2014 at 11:29 am #

    Wow you look great wearing it! I like how it looks like a (vintage) dress from afar, but taking a closer look it’s a set.

    I may be in a minority but I like the matched set more. It suits perfectly with your personal style, and adds more sophistication (and fun) to it.

    What shoes do you usually wear with longer skirts and dresses for work? Do you always wear heels?

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 11:36 am #

      These are my usual type of shoe – round toe, low heel. Either that or pointy toe flats. The ones in the photo are about a 2″ or maybe 1.5″ heel. So usually a slight heel but nothing too high! (Or I end up kicking them off and going in stocking feet or barefoot.)

  21. Jo September 23, 2014 at 12:46 pm #

    So lovely! I’m a sucker for a lovely floral. My only concern with making a crop top would be my tummy splooging out the sides when I sit, do you find this is an issue? Ha, I’d find that embarrassing (although you’re probably much fitter and toned so maybe it’s not an issue for you!!)
    Regardless, it’s stunning :)

    • Tasia September 23, 2014 at 2:20 pm #

      No, the skirt goes high enough so it’s not an issue! Both skirts actually. Any ‘splooge’ is well below the waistline. On me, the extra weight is on hips, thighs and bum, not around the waist or ribs. :) Of course that all depends on your body shape, which is why I went for a high waisted skirt! No low-rider pants or skirts and crop tops, I wouldn’t want to show quite that much skin. Too much worry about sucking it in and what happens when I sit! The other thing about sitting is that the top and skirt get closer together, at the front at least. Though I will reach over and feel my sides next time I wear this top just to be sure. :)
      I love that we who sew can talk about this kind of stuff!

  22. Fiona September 23, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    I love seeing all the details like your under stitching Tasia, seeing all the elements like that gets me really excited about sewing and makes me want to get on my machine right now! I love how this looks on you and really want to try this pattern myself now!

  23. Miranda September 23, 2014 at 6:25 pm #

    Oooo!! I love how the bustier changes the look of each outfit, a very versatile piece indead! I love the floral fabric you’ve used too and how it looks both sexy and sophisticated at the same time. Gorgeous!

  24. Margo September 24, 2014 at 3:44 am #

    I love this set!!! I might be a little too self conscious to wear it here in canada but would definitely do so on a trip south! You look smokin in yours and I too love it with the dark skirt!

  25. Carmen April 22, 2015 at 6:02 pm #

    I’m planning to underline my crop top, too. Did you still interface on top of the underlining?

    • Tasia April 22, 2015 at 10:40 pm #

      I underlined the main pieces, and interfaced the facing pieces. Nothing gets both underlining and interfacing!
      Updated to add – let me know if you have any more questions! I checked the top last night to make sure I was right about my reply. :)

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