Burda 10/2016 104 (fancy pocket dress!)

This is a rarity for me – actually using a Burda Style Magazine in the same month as it was purchased.  I attempted the Burda Challenge in 2015, where you make something from each months issue, but I abandoned it early in the year.  It didn’t suit the way I make things.  I don’t shop for fabric regularly – I tend to pick fabric up as I see it, and then let it gather dust until the perfect pattern shows up.

The pattern is described on the Burdastyle site as the “Fancy Pocket Dress” !


I’ve had the fabric more than two years – I got it from an Op shop in Australia. That makes me sounds like a globetrotter (I wish!)- I’d happily pack my bags and get on a plane to anywhere, but circumstances don’t usually allow for travel!  So that was my first time abroad in years, and I loved it! I saw lots of Melbourne and a little of Sydney. Anyway, on one of the days I took a bus tour to the Grampians and during a rest break, while everyone was getting tea – I popped into an Op shop and picked up a few bits, this fabric being one of them.

It’s a light stretch cotton, and I had 1.5 metres – which is less than the pattern calls for, but I had enough. I should say that the dress pattern is longer than it looks in the magazine- I cut 3 inches off the hem before sewing it.



Despite the complicated shape of the pockets, this dress came together pretty quickly. I made it on a Friday evening and wore it to dinner on the Saturday evening! It isn’t lined – just overlocked and I made narrow facings for the necklines.

Because of the stretch in the fabric, I used iron-on interfacing strips at the neckline, shoulders and centre back at the zipper.



The instructions for the pockets were as clear as usual with Burda…! So I took a few pictures as I went along which might help if anyone plans to make this.

This is how the skirt looked from the wrong side – I interfaced at the base of the pockets before snipping into the fabric. ( the centre pleats are tacked in place)



You then need to pivot the pockets upwards at the point where it was snipped:


The pocket folds back on itself – you then stitch the pocket seam ,from the point at the base to the top edge- seen below at the left of the pocket piece.

(my pocket shape is a little uneven as I had to cut into the plain selvedge to get it to fit)


The baste the top edges to hold in place, before joining the skirt front to the bodice front.

The picture below is of the front right of the skirt – the triangle on the left is where the pocket was pivoted. You need to make sure to catch this fully when sewing the skirt side seams.



Other than that, the dress was straight forward to make – once I had inserted the zip and joined the front and back at the shoulders, I tried it on and pinned the bodice sides to fit, continuing down to the skirt. Because of the triangle cutout at the pocket on the skirt, it would be difficult to let this out on the hips, unless you adjusted the width of the pleats.

When I tried it on, I didn’t like how much the pockets stuck out. My fabric wasn’t quite as drapey as suggested.  So I improvised by pushing the pocket in towards the centre front, and topstitching it down – it looks like an extra pleat on the skirt, and means the pocket is still roomy enough to use, but doesn’t stick out as much.



That’s about it really – I’ll be keeping the pattern handy, as I would love this in a lighter fabric for the summer – and it looked great without the sleeves, so a sleeeveless version will have to go on the to-do list.




24 thoughts on “Burda 10/2016 104 (fancy pocket dress!)

  1. Thank you for those detailed pocket pictures! I’ll have this post in front of me when I take my stab at sewing this one. This dress is on my list, and has moved right to the top now I’ve seen your version! Lovely!

  2. In the Costume Shop where I work, we have banned Burda patterns for our beginning stitchers–they seem to be far too complex and hard to understand. Even I struggle with Burda, and I know how to flat draft patterns! I love this dress on you, and that you not only figured out that pocket but gifted us with your knowledge–Thanks!

    • Wise move to keep Burda magazines away from beginners…. I’ve seen the looks of horror when a new stitcher opens up the pattern sheets! Despite the bare instructions, I really love their patterns – consistent sizing, modern styling and I honestly don’t mind the crazy looking pattern sheets!

  3. As always, lovely work and it was a pleasure to read this post. I enjoyed the Australia connection, too. PS I wouldn’t be a globetrotter if my partner weren’t overseas, although I would love to see Melbourne again one day! I’m going to take a look at this pattern.

    • Thanks Stephanie, it was a fun dress to make. Melbourne was beautiful,and I was lucky to have a wonderful friend to visit. I loved travelling there on my own, it was a nice treat.
      Travelling so often must probably get tiring,but it seems like your long-distance relationship has the advantage of you both fully appreciating time together, and then having the freedom to do as you please with your time when you get home.:)

  4. I love the Grampians – we used to go there every year for a family holiday. Thanks for the detailed post, I’ve been thinking of making this pattern and I’m sure I’ll come back to your photos when I do.

  5. I love this pattern! I got my copy of the magazine yesterday, and I’m still debating whether this silhouette would suit me or not… you look great 🙂

  6. I agree that Burda can be a challenge, but I think they are the best company for a contemporary look and well drafted patterns. This dress looks really nice on, especially with the shiny gold shoes.

    • I agree- I think they’re the best patterns for a modern look and fit. I honestly love the challenge of figuring out the construction – I stopped buying them for a while when most of their designs were basic shapes aimed at beginners. There’s really no shortage of beginner patterns elsewhere!

  7. Your dress looks great. I fabric shop in the same way so understand the delight in finding the right pattern for a piece.
    I no longer buy Burda – I have a box full of back issues that have seen little use. The Burda challenge sounds useful to make you actually consider making something (anything!) from an issue. Maybe I should go back over them with this plan 😉.

    • Every now and then I stop buying them….I’m never going to get through all the issues I have! I have issues from the nineties that I was too confused to use at the time, but the pattern sheets are a breeze to navigate in comparison to the recent cluttered pattern pages!

  8. I love that dress, the fabric is so great and it fits well. I have to really talk myself into sewing anything from their magazine because i hate tracing their patterns but The designs are so cool. Well done!

  9. Your dress is looking lovely on you. Great fabric and great style. I love it when people adjust the pattern to suit themselves, and your result was a great solution, and it does look like a deliberate tuck.

  10. Terrific sewing Chris, and thank you for sharing.
    – Isn’t it funny how we sometimes get the perfect fabric from the other side of the world! I am in Australia and often look to the UK/Europe or US for quality yardage (metres).
    – As a huge “vintage” fan, especially 50s-60s this dress so reminds me of garments of these eras, and is now definitely on my “to do” list.. with some lovely original 50’s cotton (sateen).
    – So love what you have done with the pockets by making an extra pleat, and will be doing similar with my fabric as is not that drapey/fllowing.
    – And just a note on Burda patterns .. some you you say are a little bewildering for beginners .. well, have a look at the older 50s Burda magazines that had the pattern sheets in the centre, all pattern pieces (from every pattern in the magazine) on top of each other that are distinguished by line pattern and a Tracing Wheel is used to copy/draft pattern onto paper – and all in German too! Having used these for many years I still find them challenging at times!… Oh how times have changed!

  11. Pingback: Denim Burda remake : 104 10/2016 | make & wear – sewing-knitting-making

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