BurdaStyle Blouse

Hey all! I hope your week is going well. For me, I am a little glad the weather has calmed down a bit over the last couple of days. I am no longer stewing in my own perspiration, it has cooled a little and there is a nice breeze – a welcome reprieve!! But enough about the weather…

Burdastyle Blouse
This is my second Burdastyle #122 blouse from the 1/2008 issue (version 1). This time made in a gorgeous embroidered cotton from The Fabric Store in Brisbane.

The fabric was not 100% the right choice for this blouse and the pattern really demands a fabric with more drape & weight to it. Rayon is perfect, but creases like a b****. The cotton doesn’t crease half as much but can be a little poofy so I have to be careful that I don’t get mistaken for a pregnant woman! (anyone who knows me knows that is not happening!)

Burdastyle Blouse
Hopefully not looking pregnant here!

That aside this is a good “shirt with jeans” pattern, easy to wear. Although not so easy if you want to layer. Because the sleeve cuffs are loose and big enough to fit above my elbows, if I put on a cardi or jacket they ride up and sit uncomfortably. I think this could resolved by finishing the sleeves with an elastic cuff, that way you could at least retain the circulation in your lower arms if you wear a jacket.

Burdastyle Blouse

I have made a few alterations to the original pattern:
– added 3″ to the length (it would be super short if at the original length)
– omitted the placket
– omitted the sleeve vent and button
– shortened the sleeves by 2″

Burdastyle Blouse

Otherwise the construction was pretty much the same as before, except that this went together well and I had no issues with the neckband like before (I still wonder if I got those pieces back to front last time).

Detail shot of pleats and topstitching

So all told an okay blouse to wear with jeans if the weather is stable. I don’t mean to sound underwhelmed, I do like the blouse and the detailing, it just doesn’t get worn so much. I think I prefer sleeveless tops for layering, the three quarter sleeve is just a little annoying at times. Fusspot? Perhaps.

Blue and green should never be seen, without another colour in between…

At least that is what my mother would tell me. She would also tell me not to wear long skirts as they made me look short. What would she know?!

Proving her wrong I bring you my latest project a sage green blouse:


I love playing with different styles and silhouettes, and whilst I love a floral dress for summer, in winter the jeans and boots tend to come out of storage. Having no idea what I wore last winter I decided that I needed some more winter tops in my wardrobe.

The pattern is #122 from the 1/2008 issue of Burdastyle. I first came across this when visiting Marjorie who had made the blouse before (and incidentally has the best collection of Burda magazines ever!). I tried hers on and it fitted perfectly (with the exception of the sleeves being too long) and so borrowed her traced pattern. WIN! Or so I thought.

Burdastyle #122 1/08

Enter the Sewaway in Melbourne where I took this pattern as one of my (many) intended projects. I had carefully cut it before I left and I was ready to go. I dutifully sewed it up and then tried it on. Aaargh – it was way too big at the neck/shoulders. But why??? I had tried it on and it was perfect.

Lightbulb moment – Marjorie’s was made with a cotton (maybe a voile?), my fabric is rayon. Damn you rayon and your wonderful drape!

I had to unpick the neckband and take 3″ (!!) out of the width. To solve this additional fabric issue, I added a centre box pleat.

Burdastyle #122 1/08

There was supposed to be a functioning placket but the box pleat made this tricky so I decided to make it a fake placket, as luckily I had not cut the vent yet. The buttons are vintage from my US trip last year.

Then I guess it must have been getting late and I was getting tired. I realized I had got my sleeve bands and placket pieces mixed up and used a sleeve band for the placket. Gah!  Of course the placket was too short to fit around my arm and I didn’t have any extra fabric as I had cut it out back in Brisbane and the scraps were long binned. Another hack job was on the cards. I used the two placket pieces to form the missing sleeve band. This just means one sleeve band has two joins instead of one. Pretty sure no one will notice and if they are looking that close I can just elbow them in the nose!!

Burdastyle #122 1/08
Sorry for the crappy back shot

The blouse has some really interesting details. The sleeves have two pieces, an upper and lower sleeve. The upper sleeves extend across the back and join in the middle to form a yoke, but at the front join the bodice to form a raglan. There are pleats on the back and front which are stitched down approximately 3″ to control the fullness (and hopefully assist in avoiding the pregnant look).

I have added 3″ to the pattern length, unusual for me since I am 5’2″, but the pattern is pretty short and I really wanted to avoid any potential tummy flashing!!

Time for a close up, plus bonus peek to the inside which is predominantly French-seamed.

Burdastyle #122 1/2008

All construction issues aside, I absolutely love this blouse and it is perfect for our mild Brisbane winters. I feel like I am totally channeling Nina Proudman in this.

I love this show so much - if you haven't seen it, what are you waiting for??
I love this show so much – if you haven’t seen it, what are you waiting for??

Burdastyle #122 1/08

Pattern – Burdastyle #122 from 01/2008 issue – not available online
Fabric – 1.5m of Rayon from East Coast Fabrics
Notions – vintage buttons and thread

MMM – the final days and a couple of new things

Well MMM has now wrapped up, and whilst I like wearing me-made each day, it turns out for the most part I wear at least one me-made item each day, taking a picture of myself everyday is a little tedious.  I apologize in advance for the pics that all have the same backdrop.  I am now back in Brisbane and it turns out winter is well on the way and it is now dark at 5.30pm so I can’t go outside to take pics.

Day 20
A bonus for you – two outfits today! One a new one, still not sure how I feel about it though. The top is a Sorbetto (free download don’t ya know!), and the skirt a simple dirndl.


That evening I met up with Erin of MissCrayolaCreepy for ice cream in Arroyo Grande.  I had emailed her for some fabric shopping tips and she suggested we meet up. “Hell Yeah” I thought, what a fun opportunity.  Of course we talked sewing patterns, adjustments and blogging all over the most delicious ice cream!  I had Strawberry with a chocolate fudgy ribbon and Erin had one called Motoroil, a super chocolate-y one!  Yum-o!  If you haven’t checked out Erin’s blog, go do it, she has some lovely makes and is currently hosting a Gatsby Challenge.

It was a little cooler and I wanted to wear a cardi, so I wore my Spring has Sprung Hazel.

 photo courtesy of MissCrayolaCreepy
Day 21
Off to LA in my I Feel Pretty Hazel.  Here I am rummaging through fabric at The Loft where they sell fabric offcuts by the pound, and when I say offcuts they were mostly 5-10 yards a piece! I bought 9lb of fabric – go me!!

MMM '13 - Day 21

Day 22
Guess where we went today (in Colette Sorbetto blogged here):

MMM '13 - Day 22

Day 23
Lunch at the Cheesecake Factory, wearing Tiramisu (appropriate perhaps??).

MMM '13 Day 23
Day 24
We had a super long day as our flight was not until 11.45pm. We filled most of the time in an Outlet Mall for some last minute shopping. This is a new top, a variation on the Banksia by Megan Nielsen.

Day 25– Ha – we totally missed this day on our flight home!

Day 26– No pics sorry, I was feeling super average after our long overnight flight. I can’t even remember what I wore!!

Day 27
My Buttons are Expensive Dress

MMM'13 - Day 27

Day 28
Hmmm, black photographs so badly, I have tried lightening the photo, but now it looks like my top is see-thru!! It’s not, but it is printed with little charcoal polka dots that reflect the flash. The skirt is my basic black made last year and blogged here.


Day 29
Breakfast meeting today so I had to look presentable, wearing Vintage Vogue 9463.


Day 30
More black – what can I say, it feels like winter today and the colour seems appropriate. Merino ruffle top and BurdaStyle skirt.


Day 31
Working at home today, yay, in my Hollyburn skirt, look out for two more soon!

MMM'13 Day 31
MMM Summary
So I really learnt about my wardrobe shortfalls this month, although perhaps it wasn’t super indicative as I was away for most of the month and my travelling wardrobe is always different from what I wear day to day.  Not sure why this is, I guess the majority of my time is spent at work so I need work appropriate attire.  But being away made me really notice how many casual clothes I need to make. Tops and skirts will be the go before my next trip away, whenever that might be!! This week I have also noticed a desperate shortage of work appropriate winter wear. I have started on some of these items already and hope to blog them soon. 
Whew, so glad to not have to photograph myself everyday – that is hard work!!  How did you all go?

MMM – Days 13-19

So we are now more than halfway through me-made-May! How are you all going?  I am on, but sorry starting to repeat now, so sorry if this is boring, I will put up new outfits separately so you can skip these if you are tired of the same clothes. Travelling severely limits the variety unfortunately, and the weather has not been as warm as I hoped, limiting me even more.

I have realised I need to make the following:
– capris
– a couple more skirts, and a better Kelly skirt, perhaps in denim
– a Minoru would make a great travel jacket if I can find the right fabric

So, on to what I wore:

Day 12
Touring in south Tennessee, such pretty country, I just love it down there!
Lorna Suzanne cardi and Old Navy jeans.

MMM'13 - Day 12

Day 13
Off to the Jack Daniels Distillery and more driving through the countryside, I wore my Sew for Victory dress, I love it, but seemed to be the only one wearing a dress in the area. It seemed like jeans were the uniform!

MMM'13 - Day 13

Day 14
Finally a warm day and I got to take a sundress out of my suitcase!  This is my Hazel dress blogged here.

MMM '13 - Day 14

Day 15 &16
Ok, I did wear me made on these days, but we arrived in San Francisco on the 15th and both the 15th and 16th were so cold that I had to layer so much that all me made was buried! This is how I looked for two whole days, cannot believe the wind in San Fran, it just rips through your clothes, but the locals seemed to think it was warm!

MMM '13 - Day 15 & 16

Day 17
Once out of the wind it was a pretty nice day. This photo taken out front of the “painted ladies” in San Francisco, I am wearing my BurdaStyle skirt and Papercut Coppelia cardi (to be blogged soon).

MMM '13 - Day 17

Day 18
Now on the drive from San Francisco to Monterey, such gorgeous scenery. Wearing the same outfit as day 12. Lorna Suzanne cardi and Old Navy jeans.

MMM '13 - Day 18

Day 19
Yay kinda warm today, so I am wearing my Colette Sorbetto and Mango jeans.

MMM '13 - Day 19

Whew! That’s quite a catch-up, hopefully as we head further south I will be able to wear some different clothes to make it more interesting.

MMM – Days 6-10

So far Me Made May is going well but I am definitely learning my wardrobe shortcomings and where I need to focus going forward.

MMM is also really good for getting me to blog some of the items I haven’t previously blogged as I didn’t feel they deserved their own posts.

So, onto what I wore and some things I have learnt so far:

Day 6

MMM'13 - Day 6

Skirt – Kelly skirt 
Top – Coppelia Cardi by Papercut, to be blogged soon 
From prolonged wear, I have realised this skirt is still too big around the waist and I really should have used a stiffer interfacing to stop the waistband stretching further. I have already altered this once and am not super keen to pick it apart again…hmmm hot wash perhaps?? BTW – the picture is taken at our gorgeous B&B we stayed at in Kentucky, a historical mansion. 
Day 7

MMM'13 - Day 7 
My Lorna Suzanne cardi blogged here.
I love this cardi, although the collar means I can’t wear it with any of my Banksia tops as collar on collar looks weird. The three quarter sleeve also limits wearability. I still love the pattern though.
Psst…check out the brekky, yum-o, this is what we got served in the morning at the B&B!
Day 8
MMM'13 - Day 8
Top – Colette pattern SorbettoSkirt – BurdaStyle Denim skirt
I love this skirt and wear it loads, it seems to go with everything and makes a nice change from jeans.
Day 9
MMM'13 - Day 9 
Skirt – Kelly skirt again from above Top – Hole-y moly Banksia
Day 10
MMM'13 - Day 10 Ok, so this day I kinda cheated! We went to Mammoth Cave on this day and the caves are really cold, so I wore long cargo pants and a thick jumper, not made by me at all, but practical and warm. I didn’t pack for super cold weather and so didn’t really have any much warm with me, besides what if I got my nice me-made things dirty? So we walked a lot and exhausted when I got to the hotel I changed into my Pjs which I remembered I did make! Not previously blogged as I didn’t fancy posing on the internets in my jammies, but you get the idea!

MMM – Days 2-5

So rather than do a weekly roundup as I don’t know where I will be or if I will have Internet access I thought I would just post whenever I can.

Day 2
2 May

Colette Sencha blouse with jeans

Day 3

MMM'13 Day 3
So this is how I look after 20 or so hours of travelling from Brisbane to Chicago – terrible! The top is my oversize top previously blogged here, it is super comfy for travelling.

Day 4

MMM'13 Day 4
Sightseeing in Chicago in yet another previously unblogged Banksia.  This MMM is really getting through my unblogged items, yay!

Day 5

MMM'13 Day 5
The “bean” sculpture in Millennium Park – very cool. Me in the same Banksia as yesterday and Burdastyle denim skirt.

BurdaStyle 119a 10/2011 in Denim

Last year I found these great shorts from Freddie of Pinewood, I could never pull off shorts this short, but I had a vision of this type of style but in a skirt:


I had denim in my stash that I had bought last year and the pattern I used for my Winter Skirt seemed to match perfectly. 
I am so happy with the overall result, although the creases I get through the middle when I sit down a are a little frustrating, but looking at my inspiration pic, she has them too!


The denim is quite heavy but I used a denim needle and I went slowly so it all seemed to come together ok.  The seams are top-stitched using a 3mm needle and top-stitching thread with normal thread on the bobbin.  The patch pockets are lined in a remnant of pale blue cotton in order to keep the thickness to a minimum.

The pattern is available in the 10/2011 issue which I borrowed from the library and laboriously traced, or the easier option may be to download it for a mere $5.40 here.


I feel like I am rocking a real 70s vibe here and I love it!  It is super comfortable and it fits perfectly.


What post is complete without a derriere view??

I have used and traced off the BurdaStyle patterns for years now and have always found them to be brilliant.  The only annoying thing is, the printed packet patterns include seam allowances, but the downloadable and magazine ones don’t – something to really bear in mind when you are cutting out!!


Skirt – Burdastyle 119a 10/2011
Top – New Look 6026
Shoes – Sandler

In other sewing  news, I have just finished my Hollyburn skirt and another Sencha, pics to be taken and blogged shortly.  In the WIP pile progress I have a vintage Vogue dress and I have just cut out another Tiramisu!  Whew, so many plans!!

Winter Skirt & Long Sleeve Tee

At the moment in Brisbane it has been about  40 degrees each day for the past two weeks and I am sewing Merino.  Have I gone crazy?  Perhaps.  🙂

However, I am heading to London and Zagreb at the the end of February and I know it will be freezing – especially for my delicate constitution 😉

Why Zagreb you ask? I may have mentioned previously that I am an ice skating judge and there is a big competition in Zagreb that I am going to judge.  I have a few days free first so I will spend them in London, no doubt doing a bit of fabric shopping! I don’t think any trip to London for a sewer would be complete without a trip to the famous Walthamstow Fabric Market and hopefully I will have time to go to the V&A and to Goldhawk Road. 

I have made a bit of a plan, see my Pinterest board, and have worked out to complete my winter travel wardrobe I need a couple more warm tops, a black basic skirt to go with boots, a Tiramisu, a couple of cardis for layering and hopefully a more dressy jacket to wear to any functions etc.  I also need all these colours to work with one another so that they can be mixed and matched.  That way I don’t have to take so much, and therefore will have more room for fabric purchases! HA!

First on my plan BurdaStyle Skirt 119A from 10/2011. 

Source Pinterest

The skirt went together really quickly and fitted first try.  I cut a size 44 and used a black cotton twill with some lycra.  I can also see this made up in denim with contrast topstitching, it would have a cool almost 70s vibe.  It is a great little skirt that only needs about 1 metre of fabric – love that!


The skirt has large topstitched patch pockets that are tricky to photograph being black, and a side invisible zipper. I promise it is not as wrinkly as this photo would suggest:


The top is also newly made for my travel wardrobe.  It is a light merino knit with a very fine black and white stripe giving a charcoal appearance and is a little darker in person than the pictures. I used a RTW top I already own as a pattern for the shape, but added the neck tie detailing.  I like the RTW top, but the quality of the fabric isn’t good so it is all pilled and in need of replacing.

I love how comfy the merino is – so nice to wear and not at all scratchy like some wool can be and it is sooo warm!


My plan is to wear this with tights and boots, but with the heat we are experiencing right now, do you have any idea how hot I was just taking these pics?! 

I am pretty excited about heading overseas so if anyone has any suggestions on any “must sees”, please let me know.