you know i'm excited when i use the caps key.  the first time i tried it, this burdastyle pattern made me doubt any intelligence i might have in any area of life, let alone sewing. but after a night poring over the instructions with one of r's famous gin martinis, something clicked.

maybe it has to do with the gin martinis.

i wish i had a picture of my first attempt, a blatant copy of this wonderful version by lauren. it was quite pathetic. it's still stuffed in a ball in the back of the closet.  i ran into several problems... the instructions had mislabeled pieces, i cut the back piece out twice, i put the lining in upside down, and oh yeah, i didn't have enough fabric.  just a few minor glitches. this one was going swimmingly until r pointed out that the intended gathered empire waist made me look pregnant. (lauren, yours doesn't look preggers, how did you do it?) in hindsight i'm glad i have a husband who thinks i have a hot body and likes my clothes to fit, but at the time i went ballistic. (yes, i know. so i now add to the list: r feeds me alcohol, homemade hummus, and thinks my bod's hot. do not rip his head off.) 

even though i was fuming during most of the 3 days it took to fix it, i'm glad the pregnant waist is gone. thanks, r. you are my own personal tim gunn.  (but, you know, you like girls.)


  1. This is GORGEOUS, Marcy! Well done. So so pretty.

  2. So pretty! I love that you basically made it a casual maxidress. And how'd you avoid the preggo look? I like the look of the dress, but empire waist stuff with gathering really doesn't work with my figure!

  3. thanks becky! the answer is: lots... AND LOTS... of picking apart, redoing the gathering, and taking in the side seams... next time, i'll either take all the excess fabric meant for gathering and make it into one big pleat at the front and 2 at the back, or maybe i'll cut a smaller skirt than top. it's really full so i don't think there's any worry of it being tight at the hip.

    maybe there's a reason you bought too much material for that dress... summer cate?:)

  4. wow you certainly did conquer it, this looks hot! i'm a bit scared though. think i should do a test run first? i started a dress before i went away that is a bit dodge and i'm scared to go back to it. it's so frustrating and disheartening when it goes awry huh! glad you stayed with yours though and toughed it out. gives me courage to revisit my mishap too now. yowzers.


    I've been bloglinked! I'm soooo flattered! And I now feel completely encompassed in WOH...albeit a week late.

    First of all, the bust part is ATROCIOUS in terms of trying to make ANY sense out of the pattern. I tried to explain, in excruciating detail on the burda site, how I made it work....but I confused even myself. I've since made another version (also bunched on the floor...but salvageable at some point) and I STILL couldn't figure it out. Even though I took notes the first time.

    I don't know what to say about the preggers part. I used a really flowy jersey, so it just hangs and doesn't poof too much, but I did actually narrow the sides when I cut the pattern originally. It's just so much fabric otherwise. And DEFINITELY no worries about tight at the hip...I always worry about that (I'm of the no boobs all hip varietal...very pear-like) and there is no concern for that with this pattern.

    I won't leave another huge detailed account here....

    I'll just say yours looks BEAUTIFUL. Great Success! I can't wait to go see it on burda.

    And I'm totally beaming about the way-fantastic shout out!

    L :-)

  6. What's this I hear, Oona?


    I can't wait to tell your mother. She'll be thrilled!

    PS It's about time.

    PPS You'll have to give up those gin martinis for a little while.


    Seriously, both Lauren's dress and yours are stunning.

    Perfect dress for a balmy summer evening at Calico Grill. ;)


  7. moo: test run is advised! or i can email you the corrections i came up with for the highly wonky instructions.

    lauren, seriously, i wouldn't have tried it in the first place if it weren't for your GORGEOUS cate. and the part that helped me the most out of your instruction ordeal was to leave out that damn lining. i think i'm gonna make another right away so it sticks.

    and big daddy! do you think i would endanger the birthday month visit with the removal of alcoholic beverages?!?!

    we must try the outdoor dining.

  8. he Oona, this dress is gorgeous! I think it was totally worth all the hassle. By the way, thanks for the comment you left on my blog a while ago... it was the second comment I have ever received! Hope you're well!

  9. Oona, we're going to dine and drink wine until we throw our last dime in the blind man's cup! ;)

  10. what song is that?! it's on the tip of my tongue! elton john? steely dan?

  11. Bon Bon Vie (Gimme the good life) 1981 - T. S. Monk


  12. I guess the problem with the gathering and fullness is - they used a very light, thin fabric for the official version, didn't they? Something like chiffon, I believe.
    I love this version. The flowers are awesome!

  13. Very nice work! What lovely fabric. Where did you find it?
    And you do NOT look pregnant.

  14. Wow, that is such a cool dress!!! Will we get to see it in person?

  15. hats off to you, lady -- this dress is a STUNNER!!! it was worth every bit of the the effort.

  16. thanks everyone! e, the fabric was from hancock's, there is a location caught in a time warp in arkansas.


i thankya truly for taking the time to comment, i love a good conversation-- and hope you know my thanks are always implied, if not always written!