McCalls 6996 and Burda 7105 – a resurrection

7 months ago I got a brand new sewing machine with all the bells and whistles, I was ready for SWAP 2016, when sloth took over. I was pregnant, tired and at the end of the day I only had enough energy to move from the sofa to the bed. I took a break until spring when after a couple of maternity sewing failures I stocked up on maternity patterns.

I started with a Burda 7105 skirt which, to my surprise, was a great success.


When I saw it I thought the belly band at least would be cut out of something with some stretch. But no, they instruct you to cut the band from the same fabric as the rest of the skirt and the pattern recommends ‘light wools’ and stretch fabric for the trousers only. I was worried the skirt won’t fit for long with a rigid interfaced (!) yoke but 3 months later it still does.


March vs June


After making the skirt I took another long break until the last couple of weeks. I started with a soft bra which is cut and patiently awaiting to be sewn. I made a pair of Burda mag pyjama shorts (documented on Instagram) and a cardigan. Noting maternity specific, I plan to wear all of them for a long time.

The cardigan is McCalls 6996. It looked pretty relaxed, not in a slouchy way and I thought there’s not much that could go wrong with it. I cut an M and didn’t make any alterations to the pattern.  Looking at the pictures, I shouldn’t have skipped moving the shoulder seam forwards.

The hem is curved so I carefully marked, pressed and hand basted it before sewing. When I saw the picture on the left I couldn’t believe it’s so ripply. But then I realised I forgot to press it after sewing (LOL). Problem solved, now I have a perfectly flat hem!


BUT I might need to do the hemming again. I think the combination of colour, length and slightly baggy shoulders make this cardigan look very outdated (me being in desperate need of a haircut doesn’t help either). So my next project is to shorten it by 6 inches, that would suit me a lot better.

There’s a month to go until baby arrives and I think I will at least finish the bra until then AND make a summer dress. I will have a couple of weeks off work so I might do even more!

One more Burda 08/14 seamed dress

This dress was ready a month ago, just in time for the “One pattern,  many looks” contest on Pattern Review. It didn’t make it into the contest because I misread the rules and added sleeves, but adding pattern pieces was not allowed, only altering the existing ones.

I used the same pattern, same size, altered in the same way as the first time. The first dress fit great, but it’s made in ponte roma. This one is cotton sateen, there’s less stretch in this fabric since it’s a woven, but I didn’t expect it to be so tight. I haven’t worn it outside yet 😐

This is what I had in mind when I decided to use the stripes. It was more dramatic in my head, but I guess in reality is less… impressive?

There is some thought in the chaotic swirl, there’s a continuous line going from my right underarm to side left, I marked it on the pattern before cutting. I knew I won’t be able to match all the lines because of the different angles but I wanted to have at least one row that matched.

I have a few more finished items to show you – a pair of Duathlon capris and a modified Scout. Simple quick makes, because lately knitting is eating all of my time. I’m knitting the gorgeous Old Romance and I’m almost done!

There’s another knitted top that I abandoned for Old Romance. It only needs 10 more rows, so that one should be ready soon too. After that I have a few hats and cowls planned. I’ve been to the knitting and stitching show today and I touched the softest wool I’ve ever touched in my life – MrsMoon’s Plump – this is going to make the greatestest winter set.

Burda 8/2014 103 or the million pieces dress

Actually there are only 14, but still…

It was love at first sight with this dress. I don’t know why it took me so long to make it. This is actually a test, I don’t love these colors together, but this ponte I had around was a suitable fabric to test the pattern. And luckily for me, the pattern fits! There are some obviously changes I made:

1. added sleeves – I like my dresses with sleeves, don’t really get the little wings Burda keeps using for all their dresses. The sleeves are from an older Burda dress, same size as the one I used for this one, 38

2. I made it a lot shorter, probably close to 20cm shorter. This makes the dress a bit unbalanced, the proportions are now a bit off with so much white at the top and so little at the bottom. Oh, well!

3. Because I shortened it I didn’t feel like raising the back vent and dropped it completely. I never made one before and I didn’t want to start now 😀

4. I did some kind of sway back alteration, as in I started sewing the skirt to the top at the sides using a 1/4 seam allowance and I gradually went to a 1/2 seam allowance at center back.

The pattern doesn’t have  facings, and while they are very easy to make yourself, I thought that the neckline would get to bulky. So I sewed the lining directly to the dress at the neck and then I pick stitched the neckline to keep the lining from showing. I did understitch as well, but I felt that it wasn’t enough. The lining is a very light elastic lining so I was worried that it would get dragged out by the heavy outer fabric. I used Sherry’s wonderful tutorial for sewing the lining using the machine.

Looking at the dress, you’d think sewing it it’s going to take forever. It only took me about 3 hours from start to finish, BUT I did skip ironing. Naughty, naughty! The ponte is very forgiving with fit and pressing, but I do need to press that center back seam below the zip :|. I think tracing the pattern took longer, because DID YOU SEE THE AUGUST PATTERN SHEETS???!! Sorry for the caps but they are atrocious! Fortunately the September sheets don’t look as bad, so hopefully this was a one off.

Ok, so I don’t love the colors , but I love the dress, the fabric makes it super comfortable for a sheath dress and I’ll probably wear it again. Because  I did wear it yesterday to work and everyone loved it. Or they say they did 🙂


The title describes not only my skirt, but myself as well. I strutted this skirt last weekend with a peafowl worthy attitude.

I bought 2m of this fabric from Goldhawk Road at the sewing meetup. I thought 2m would be enough for a maxi skirt in my size, but I should have paid more attention when drafting the skirt pieces. I almost didn’t have enough for the waistband, I had to sew 3 pieces of fabric together to have enough. The bias seam line is not my idea.

Pieced waistband sewn on the bias to avoid bulk

I searched for inspiration online, trying to find a maxi skirt that wasn’t just a gathered rectangle. I initially thought of using the skirt panels from Anna but I didn’t want to have so many vertical seams, even though they wouldn’t be very visible in this print. I started going through my patterns/Burda magazines to see what I could use and in the February issue of Burda there was this skirt that looked a bit lot (can’t decide) like Gabriola.

I used the top panels from this pattern and drafted the bottom panels myself. I basically draw a straight skirt starting with the Burda panels as the top of my skirt, cut them at the diagonal lines and then I slashed and spread the bottom panels making them as wide as my fabric was. I added a bit to the length just to make sure it will be long enough. I forgot I needed a waistband too!! That is why i ended up piecing the waistband and in the end I had to remove 7 cm from the bottom of the skirt 😦 . And that was not my only mistake. When I bought the fabric and as I was drawing the pattern, I kept remembering myself to cut everything in one direction, with the feathers going top to bottom. Guess what? I cut my front the other way around… I was so upset, I almost didn’t want to go on with the skirt. But after 2 days of agony I finally decided that it’s not SUCH a big problem and it’s not really that visible either.

But I still felt that I needed to make up for all the mistakes somehow. I’ve recently re-stumbled upon one of Susan Khalje’s videos for Threads magazine where she is talking/showing techniques for building waistbands. I decide to give the 4 layers+ ribbon waistband a try – my fabric was light enough to handle this kind of treatment.

I decided to try other couture techniques as well, so I went ahead with the snap (popper) and hook and thread bars for closure, fell stitched waistband and lining, hand picked zipper, catch stitched seam allowances and 4 point loops for hanging the skirt. I don’t think i forgot anything, this should be it 🙂

I lined the top panels with a cotton silk lawn. It’s very light, but in combination with the main fabric it should be enough to hide my underwear. 🙂

Unfortunately this lead to some puffing in the back, I think the lining is slightly shorter than the shell and there is some bulging at the bottom of the zipper, I need to trim the seam allowances in that corner. There are a lot of seams that meet there. I’ll try to steam press it after trimming, I hope it will get better. I will need to take another round of photos, as I wasn’t able to see this problem before. My mirror must be deceiving 🙂

Oh, there is one more thing I wanted to say about the thread bars – if you decide to use them – sew them tightly, they get looser with wear. I let them a bit loose and they have stretched more.

I am very happy with the ribbon waistband – it springs back flat after sitting, something that doesn’t always happens with an interfaced waistband.

And that’s my Scout, in case you’re wondering. I don’t think there’s much wear left in it, it’s been on a “at least twice a week” program for many moths now. I’m finishing this post and I’m going to cut two more. 🙂

Have a nice sunny Sunday everyone! 🙂

Pattern Pyramid still in London

Second stop in London and 4th in the UK, the pyramid had a great time here in her home land, but she now wants to see the world again 🙂


I picked 2 lovely 1960s patterns – The People 143 added by Joanne and McCalls 5996 added by Jennifer via Amy.


Have a look at some of the other awesome patterns that long to travel


I love that Simplicity 3552



I added 3 patterns but I’ll add a Burda mag too if the pyramid goes to Australia or NZ, or other countries where Burdas are rare.


If you want to spend some quality time with the pyramid and show her around your place of the world, leave a comment below. I will be travelling in the next 2 weeks so I’ll pick the pyramid’s new destination when I come back, on the 5th of May.

P.S. I am so lucky! Not only did the pyramid visit me this week, I have also won 4 yards of fabric from a sewnews giveaway.

Burda top 111 02/2014

The February issue of Burda is the first one I bought in a very long time, maybe more than half a year. I loved many patterns when I saw the first preview but this wasn’t one of them. I actually thought this was ugly.

But then Pauline helped me see beyond the ugliness of the ruffly sleeves and I decided to give this pattern a try. OK, maybe they are not that ugly, but it’s not something I’d like to wear.

It’s just a basic blouse and in this fabric you can’t really see the lines of the pattern. I think this is the first time I’m making something with raglan sleeves. I usually make size 38 when I sew with Burda magazine patterns, but this time I decided to go with 36 after measuring the pattern across the bust. The top fits well around the bust, but it is a bit too narrow at the shoulders.

I like this two piece raglan sleeve, the shape of the shoulder is very soft.

Instead of using facings I decided to finish the neckline with bias tape. You might wonder how I handled the corners. 🙂

When sewing the tape on the right side of the blouse I made a small pleat at each corner. The pleat allowed the tape to “turn” at corners. If you don’t help the tape to turn and instead you stretch it around the corners, the neckline will pop out. It’s not very visible, but it happened to me at the right front corner. The pleat I made there was too small and I had to stretch the tape a bit.

It’s a lovely little pattern and I’m thinking of making it again as a plaid dress with bias cut skirt.

What do you think of the ruffles? Would you give them a try?

Burda 10/2011 – 122 Rochia semestru

Am inceput-o in februarie, am terminat-o in mai si am purtat-o prima data in iulie.

Burda 10/2011 - 122

Rochia din Burda e din material tesut, iar eu am folosit jerse. Asa ca in loc sa scot marimea 38, ca de obicei, am scos 36, sa incerc sa reduc pe cat posibil adaosul de lejeritate necesar unui material fara elasticitate.

Am folosit manecie de la alta rochie si am scurtat partea de jos cu vreo 15-20 cm.

Picture 007

In Burda, decolteul era finisat cu dubluri, dar eu am surfilat marginile, le-am indoit in interior si le-am cusut cu acul dublu. La fel am facut si la tiv.

Picture 006

Motivul pentru care a durat asa de mult sa termin rochia au fost manecile. Oarecum. Cand le-am cusut prima oara, lungimea umarului era prea mare, si m-am gandit eu ca daca tai rezervele si mai cos o data o sa fie bine. Dar capul manecii a ramas prea mic si a trebuit sa recroiesc alte maneci. Si mi-a fost greu sa ma mobilizez 😐

Dar acum e gata si deja am purtat-o de multe multe ori 🙂

Un sacou dungat pentru cel mai fain baiat (I)

Ha! Cel mai fain baiat de 2 ani de la mine din casa adica 🙂

La nunta la care am fost in rochia galben cu mov l-am luat si pe Sebi pentru cateva ore. Sacoul lui l-am terminat in ziua nuntii – si am avut noroc ca nunta sa inceapa abia la 4. 🙂

Cand acest sacou era inca doar un plan, ma plangeam pe forumul Lucru de mana ca nu gasesc bumbac creponat in Brasov.  O colega de forum din Bucuresti foarte draguta si foarte amabila avea 2m cumparati si s-a oferit sa mi-i trimita. Multumesc, Ioana!

Bumbacul avea dungile pe orizontala, asa ca am croit toate piesele pe firul de batatura. Am dublat apoi fiecare parte cu o testuta tare de dumbac taiat pe fir drept, pentru forma si tinuta. Dublura asta a fost suficient de rigida si nu am folosit alte metode de intarire a fetelor. Pentru maneci am dublat doar partea de sus, sa se aseze bine capul manecii, iar restul manecii a fost dintr-un singur strat. M-am gandit ca e mai comod la purtat asa.


Am inceput sa cos dublura de mana, aproape de linia de coasere.


Dar mi-am dat seama ca oricum am prea putin timp si am continuat sa cos dublurile la masina.

Sacou baieti

In caz ca va interesa, am gasit camera. 🙂 Acum inca mai astept poze cu Sebi de la nunta, imbracat in sacou. Sau sa ii fac altele?

Update: Vezi sacoul aici