How not to Choose Fabric for the Project

This is my public service post, as in learn form my mistakes and save yourself from desperately trying to save a complete sewing fail. lol I have to admit, I am happy with the end results. I wore both the skirt and the top quite a bit, especially the top. It's just not what it was supposed to be.

What was it supposed to be? It was supposed to be a dress. This dress to be exact. Ready for it?

As you can see it looks nothing like the outfit I made. lol I had my eyes set on this pattern for a long time. It's a Burda pattern from 04/2015 magazine, #119. Here it is in the web shop.

So what went so wrong? For the most part it was my unfortunate fabric choice. I wanted something with the great drape, so it will flow and move as I walk. I went through my fabric stash and found these two rayon pieces that were an ideal match. Score! It wasn't. The first problem I ran into was that the overlap in front would not stay, it sagged sadly and wanted to stay open. Of course, I interfaced it so the edges were nice and crisp and looked beautiful as long as I stayed still and maintained a perfect posture. As soon as I moved it sagged in front, and as soon as I sat down it would fly open exposing bits that should be covered. Nope. I also think some of the issues are inherit to the design. So I went back to the drawing board and decided to eliminate the crossover neckline and make a simple v-neck. Luckily, I had enough fabric and the result looked great. So I carried on.

I realized that I have almost zero pictures of the front. This is the only one, where I bent awkwardly and the skirt looks weird. I also somehow looked cross eyed and confused, so not to scare any of my readers, I chopped off most of my face. Back to the sewing process. I attached the curved band and then the skirt, and that's where new issues occurred. The skirt fabric was just slightly heavier than the bodice fabric. I didn't really notice it until I attached the skirt. The skirt took quite a bit of fabric too. Once it was attached it pulled the bodice down in the most unattractive way. It's wasn't too bad in the front, minus small waves and wrinkles above the curved band from the pulling, but it was quite comical in the back. I looked straight as an arrow from my neck down to my knees. Big rectangular board. A slightly wavy board.  lol That was a definite no.

So I unpicked the bottom from the top and decided that I really liked the top, and especially the high low shape. Except it was way too short in front. And that's when I decided to add a ruffle, because apparently there is nothing a ruffle can't save. Right? lol I think it looks quite cute. I usually pair it with shorts or skinny jeans or a pencil skirt.

Once I was done with the top I was trying to see if I could salvage the bottom. I ended up adding a gold elastic waistband and called it a success. I don't wear it as much, but I think it works and I don't hate it.

I still want to make the dress pattern. I hope this time I will choose the fabric that actually works.


  1. It is good to hear how others (even designers) sometimes struggle with patterns that just look differently from what you thought it would be. I think the outfit looks great!

  2. First of all the result is stunning! And second, way to go for persevering and making it work brilliantly despise several set backs, lol. I love the original dress too and I think you need something crispy like poplin/shirting or maybe double gauze would work! It's soft but has body at the same time. Or Brussels linen. Okay, I'll stop now :-)

  3. i always like every your post thx for share

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  5. Oh Olga, I must admit I had a giggle reading about your troubles. I am a bad friend, I know! It made me think of my recent sewing fail. I was not as patient as you though! The pattern went into a recycling bin, and the fabric is in the 'to save somehow someday' pile haha But the result is so nice! I am in love with the top!


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