Sunday, 23 June 2013

Yellow twill summer dress - The perfect beginner's sewing project

After a long sewing break I was aching for a summer dress project. I can't resist yellow in the summer, so I picked up 2 and a half metres of this bright yellow cotton twill fabric at Queen's Street West. I love the colour;  just buying it made me happy.

Cotton twill
As soon as I got home, I washed it. In addition to pre-shrinking the fabric, I like to get rid of any paint residue that might be in it. I use a full hot washing cycle with laundry detergent. The disadvantage of pre-washing the fabric is that you need to iron it once it dries.

I was looking for a very easy summer dress project so I picked out the Burda pattern Satin Dress 04/2013 #108. I liked this pattern; no zipper, no button holes, perfect for a beginner like me.

I bought the pattern online and printed it out. The process was quite simple, although Misha got a bit impatient with my 20+ page printing job as he was about to pack up his laptop and leave for work.

Once I assembled the pattern and taped it together, it all started to make sense.

Burda pattern coming together
Reading the pattern, cutting out the fabric and sewing it together was straightforward. Given that the twill is dense, I didn't need to add an underlining. I used the iron intermittently, whenever a pleat needed to be pressed. It made the sewing part much easier.

Once I finished the dress I added a cotton lace trim at the bottom...

...and a small lace bow on the front; just to create some interest. Misha approved of it; he somehow became a self-appointed style consultant in the process.

And here is my yellow twill summer dress. The colour actually looks even brighter in real life.

Burda pattern 4/2013 #108

I get a lot of "you look like a sunshine" comments when I wear this dress. I take them as compliments. I like to spread sunshine around.


P.S. If you are new to sewing this is the perfect pattern to get started with. I am planning to use this pattern again for a printed cotton dress. It will be fun to see how different the dress will look just buy using a different fabric.


  1. Pretty! I like the touch of white at the hem and collar; it really makes the yellow pop.

    I haven't worked up the nerve to try a Burda pattern yet; I'm always worried I'm going to mess up adding the seam allowance.

  2. Thanks for the nice comment. I didn't worry much about the seam allowance, just added a bit when I was cutting out the fabric. I find I like the convenience of printing out the Burda pattern instead of waiting for it to arrive in the mail. Where do you shop for patterns? Any favourites?

  3. Amazing.Simple.Chic.

    (And the weeding dress was great too!!!)

    It is so nice to make your own clothes! Have have just discoversd this blog but I already love it :D !! Actually I love everything related to sustanaible developpment :)