Black ruched dress: Burda 110 08/2017

Black is so difficult to photograph! This is my version of Burda 110 08/2017 (the link is to the Russian Burda site because of the recent changes on the US site). Hopefully you can see the details, because this dress has a lot going on. Gathering, pleating, buttons, and believe it or not there are pockets too, hidden in the skirt front pleats. Those aren’t part of the original pattern. They are horizontal inseam pockets inserted in an additional seam added by slashing the skirt front pattern piece along the inside fold of one of the pleats. Once the skirt is made up the pleat folds itself over the top of the pocket and hides the opening.

Here’s Burda’s version. Beautiful, but I bet they had to photograph it carefully. The fabric has to be lightweight and very elastic to work for this design, and when it’s white as well there must be huge potential for accidentally revealing more than intended. I added an underlining to the skirt in my version to get better coverage, and if I ever make it again I’ll do the same with the bodice as well. To reduce bulk at the seams I made separate underlining pattern pieces from a basic pencil skirt shape without any details, and then mounted the gathered and pleated fronts and backs onto them.

Burda 110 08/2017 model photo. A woman in a white dress sits beside a swimming pool

You can see in this back view that my slip is showing through at the shoulders. A second layer would probably have helped with that. The fabric is a lightweight single knit viscose/elastane jersey from Croft Mill. At the time of writing it’s still available. With my pattern alterations I used pretty much every scrap of three metres; I was worried I wasn’t going to be able to cut the whole thing. If I remake this I’ll buy a bit more fabric next time so I can underline the bodice too.

This is a Tall pattern, and the design is certainly proportioned accordingly, with the long slim skirt and cuffs. I found the cuffs came out a little baggy on me and would narrow them slightly another time. I don’t think I have unusually thin wrists so that’s worth watching out for if you’re making this.

What’s slightly surprising about the design is that they have you put in a really long zip, from the neck point right down to the hips. This is somewhat tricky to do: the fabric isn’t particularly stable to start with and then there’s the thick gathered section at the centre back skirt seam to negotiate. The zip isn’t necessary for getting the dress waist over your hips, because the waist’s elasticated anyway and the fabric, as previously mentioned, has to be very stretchy. I can get the dress on without undoing the zip or buttons at all. Admittedly it messes up my hair, but if that’s a consideration then a shorter zip to centre back would solve that and be a lot easier to install.

I like the button detail at the back of the neck. They’re secured with thread loops which are oddly satisfying to make. Pleased with the buttons too; they’re just plastic but they are exactly right for this dress.

This has turned out to be a surprisingly wearable dress. The stretchy fabric means the long pencil skirt isn’t as restricting as it looks, and it’s quite warm. The pockets haven’t worked as well as I’d hoped; the fabric is too light to support much weight so anything like a phone tends to distort the skirt front. I think that could be reduced by adding interfacing, or maybe extending the back pocket into a stay that could be caught in the waist seam. I cheated for the photos and didn’t put anything in the pockets.

I do think it needs a belt to make it look finished, and it needs to be leather (or fake leather) rather than fabric. Or maybe I should add more length to the bodice to make it blouse out and hide the waist seam.

I’m kind of tempted to make this again. White would look great but I don’t have any shoes that would go with it so I’d never wear it. Maybe beige or taupe?

19 thoughts on “Black ruched dress: Burda 110 08/2017

  1. It looks really good, but I agree with the need for underlining. A second version would no doubt be very useful, I’m afraid I would vote for a bright rather than beige. Red maybe?

  2. It looks great, but I’m not surprised the pockets sag. I find that even with wovens, unless there is a really firm waist, pockets I’ve added pull down with anything heavy in them. It’s why I tend to default to my bumbag for my phone, even when my pockets are big enough 😅 They’re really handy for keys, a credit card, and $note, for going for coffee at work though.

  3. Really great dress! Looks stunning on you! As I’m not tall, I’ve modified and used the top part of this pattern to make a sweater that I like very much. Now, seeing your dress, I’m really tempted to work on the bottom part to make the whole dress! Thanks for posting! Oh and yes, you should go for a red one!

  4. I’m so happy to see this made up! I really love it and while I love my full, round bum, the ruching is just a no for me. LOL!!! This is absolutely STUNNING in black. I think it would be more formal in a light-colored neutral and more funky in a bright color like red or fuchsia or a bright blue!

  5. This is a very nice dress, and perfect in black. I have to say I passed it over in the magazine precisely because it was white and the gathered hip yoke would just be a little much, I thought. But your version is so very flattering and chic. Your addition of a beautiful belt pulls it all together.

    And for your second version, I totally think it needs to be a statement colour.

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