Adventures with burda 7232

My daughter graduated from primary school this year.  Her school make kinda a big deal of it and there is a bit of going overboard with the dress etc.  At this age, dresses hardly get worn, so I wanted to get away with something pretty inexpensive...which meant keeping an eye out in advance for a pattern / fabric etc she might like.

So months ago we picked out Burda 7232.  It is a "burda young" pattern and I was hoping to be able to grade it down for her.  When I opened up the pattern envelope and examined the pieces, I realised that she is still way off even the young pattern line.  I was going to draft a similar one from scratch for her, and decided to make up one for me, just to get familiar with the construction.

I made a muslin.  This dress is all about the back.  It is hard to fit the back on yourself, so I took it away on a weekend meeting up with my sisters and got Bernice to fit the back for me.  Then I came home and promptly lost the muslin.  It still hadn't turned up a couple of months later, when I was in the thick of making my sloper for my drafting course, so I used the sloper to help me fit.

I made up the dress in some half price fabric from Lincraft.  Then I had no where to wear it.  The fabric is kind of thick and textured, and the dress sits quite high under my arms, so I thought if I was wearing on a hot day, it would chafe me under the arms.  So it sat in my cupboard for a few months more and finally I pulled it out a fortnight ago to wear to an event at my local, air-conditioned art gallery.

Now that I have seen photos of it on me, I will probably never wear it again.  I thought full skirted dresses were supposed to be good for pear shapes, but somehow, this circle skirt with its plaid print does not work on me at all.  This skirt is a couple of inches longer than the original pattern.

In the meantime, I still had a dress to make for my daughter.  Earlier in the year I had an emergency sew for her, when I discovered that she had grown way more than I realised and had nothing that fit to wear for her confirmation the following day.  We pulled out the fabric that I had put aside for the graduation dress and a burda pattern from a magazine.  I made a very quick muslin of the bodice, tried it on her and she went to bed.  It needed so many changes that I made a second muslin and woke her up to try it on (surely I am not the only person to have done this!) and then got to and started on the real thing.  A bit of late night sewing and then a hem in the morning and this is how it turned out.

I used the pattern from that dress to draft a version of the burda dress.  In the meantime, she changed her mind from view A, with the diamond cut out, to view B with horizontal straps at the back.  It turned out rather nicely in the end.

The fabric is just a quilting cotton from spotlight, but she liked the colours and print, and like I said, the dress may never get worn again, so it fit our budget.  Though it looks so lovely, I am hoping she will wear it for Christmas.


  1. You are so lucky to have your sisters to share your hobby with (and fit your garments!). Love the choices you made for both your dress and your daughter's dress. Hope she enjoys the transition to high school. Such a big step.

  2. I love your daughter's final dress. I'm sure she could get some more use from it during the festive time. I like your dress too and rather than scrap the whole thing why not put your a line skirt on it. It would be a shame not to wear it after all that work and the bodice front and back looks so good. I'm not a fan of circle or full skirts generally.

  3. The dress looks lovely and she is just gorgeous. Best wishes for high school next year!

  4. Her final dress is awesome! I can't believe that's a quilting cotton. Such a cool print. I hope she wears it again, too.

  5. What a cute dress! I had to laugh at the thought of you waking your daughter up to try on a muslin. I sure have thought of doing that several times. My DD is quite a bear so I never did. Really cute dresses. Great fit.