Burda’s Member Model Challenge Dress

I’m certainly no model but I always appreciate a good challenge. Burdastyle.com was hosting another one of their member model challenge projects and I decided why not? (Spoiler: I didn’t win) The featured dress for this month’s challenge was their Gathered Tube Designer dress 04/2010 #165, a simple and flattering strapless number that can be sewn in a variety of fabrics for a mix of different looks. The sewist can create an elegant evening dress or a casual day dress or even a beach number. The pattern is extremely versatile and you can certainly notice this when browsing through the contest entries.

I decided to make mine using this beautiful soft turquoise paisley-esque cotton I picked up in the Đồng Xuân Market in Hanoi last summer. The dress is very comfortable, highlighting my true waist line and falling at a nice length above the knee. I double hemmed mine as the fabric will fray with washing so my next one- yes, I’ve already planned for a second in black- will be 1.5″ longer. A perfect addition to the summer wardrobe, dressed up or down.

The pattern comes in two pieces with instructions to cut out a third thin strip for the inside elastic waist casing. The instructions are straightforward and to the point, perhaps a little too straightforward for this novice sewist. I was a little confused with how the top of the dress was folded and sewn to accommodate for the elastic in upper dress edge. I folded the top of the dress inside 1 inch, pressed, then folded her again 1 inch and pressed. I sewed nearly all around, following the marking to not sew the space in the middle front. You then slip the elastic through, pinning the ends of the elastic on either ends. Sew in place and sew the vertical lines at these edges to hold the elastic in place. This method allows for subtle contrast in gather for the upper edge of the dress. I really enjoyed creating the elastic waistline as it called for an inner casing. A 1.5″ wide strip that is sewn to the inside, all around to the dress waistline, which your waist elastic is pulled through and then sewn in place. The casing makes the inside looks clean, laundry safe and allows for access to elastic for any future adjustments.

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Four finalists were chosen this morning by the Burda staff, opening the voting session which will run until March 16th, 2015. The chosen four made lovely dresses which they modelled beautifully in their photographs. These women know how to represent themselves and their work in front of the lens.

Even though I didn’t make the cut, It was a lot of fun to participate and see how we all created a unique looking dress from the exact same pattern. They all look so different. This truly highlights how a vision and personal style can truly influence our interpretation of a pattern so differently.

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