Monday, 6 February 2012

Burda Style long t-shirt

I'm really glad I read a review of this top before I made it. It can be really hard to tell from the magazine photos just how things will turn out.

Anyway, I would normally make a Burda Style top in size 40 or 42, depending on the style. Really I'm a 40 who needs a full bust adjustment, but sometimes that's a lot of fiddling to little end (as in the case of this design). I used size 42 of Burda Style 11-2011-114 - but didn't add anything for seam allowances. Virginie noted that the top felt sloppy if you cut your normal size, so I figured this would be an appropriate compromise.
(sorry, no make-up. It's a public holiday again!)

This particular pattern is the 'sewing lesson' in the Burda Style magazine, so has quite detailed step-by-step instructions. It's a reasonably simple top anyway, if you've ever sewed something with sleeves before.

I did wonder what fabric to use. The magazine merely states 'jersey', which didn't give me many clues about weight or stretch. It's hard to get stretch fabrics in New Zealand. My local store had a soft viscose jersey, which is kind of heavy (i.e. it would stretch on a hanger) but is thin like t-shirt material. It turned out well for this pattern. If I was to make this for a winter top, I would try to source a thin merino knit or similar, as I think it would work really well. The top only needs enough stretch to go over your head and fit your arms in!

I didn't bother to 'finish' the insides of the neck cowl. They won't ravel, because it is jersey. And as I don't have an overlocker, I was more likely than not to destroy the fabric by trying to finish the edge! It's fine. You can't even see it, and I wouldn't worry if you could.

This is actually a really comfortable top. I find it really difficult to get long sleeved t-shirts that I like. My fitting problems are numerous!

Firstly, I like actual long sleeves. Not 3/4 sleeves, not ones that are meant to reach my wrist but somehow don't. This top has ABUNDANT sleeve length. I also have broad shoulders so I appreciate the dropped-shoulder design on this. It makes the sleeves work better for me.

Secondly, boob space. The drape of this top is a bit weird on me, but I'm getting used to it. At least it fits. Related to this is my need to not have boobs hanging out of my top! The neckline on this is perfect - it doesn't look like something granny would wear, but it's not revealing at all.

Thirdly, length. Because my boobs take up so much space, often the front of tops is too short. Also (and you can see this illustrated better in the back picture), I am very short waisted. My waist is right below my bra. Normal stretch tops tend to roll up until the bottom sits at my waist and my guts are on display! So the extra length and weight of this top helps a lot with this.

I don't know why I'm standing sort of crooked. Never mind.
In all, I'm really pleased with this pattern. Unlike pretty much everything else I've ever sewed, I can imagine myself making a whole wardrobe of these!


  1. Looks good!! I too am of the "long sleeves should reach my hand" brigade. And if they don't, I tend to push them up to my elbows because I think they looks stupid otherwise. Course, that's not particularly practical in winter.........

    Also? Hurrah for public holidays!! :)

  2. Thanks! And yes, proper sleeves are essential.

    Sadly, no more public holidays until Easter...

  3. I need a public holiday - they had one in Fiji today. We have a massive number of them there.

    Kat, the top is great! It looks store bought, it really does. I'm either no sleeves or long sleeves but I've been learning to wear the shorter ones a little more. Like now...but like Melbourne on my mind...they're pushed up over my elbows!

  4. Fiji sounds awesome for many reasons - more public holidays is a good one!

    Thanks for your compliment about my top! I wore it all day today (even though it's warm) and it was so comfortable. And the long sleeves stopped me from getting sunburnt :-)

  5. Looks good Kat - the comment about the neckline is so true! I love the colour too.

  6. I'm enjoying colour at the moment! And yes, it is so important (and yet so difficult!) to wear a neckline that isn't embarrassing at work.

  7. That color looks so good on you!!

    Maybe you wanna check out my blog? It's new and the concept is simple: I show one gorgeous shoe a day. Who doesn't want to get their daily fix of shoes? ;)

  8. That top is kicking goals all around - great shape, great colour, great fit. I gave up long ago expecting sleeves to be long enough for someone as tall as me, so I generally roll them up or just wear short sleeves. I think that's why I hate 3/4 pants, too - I'm scarred from being unable to find pants long enough for me!

    1. Thanks heaps Ness! It's so *satisfying* to make something that fits - and bonus points that it has sleeves of an adequate length :-)

  9. What a great color and style! I'm like you and love extra long sleeves and hemlines.

    1. Thank you! I love that Burda has slightly unusual patterns, it lets me try out something different.

      It is good to make something I feel really comfortable in. I hate spending all day pulling down hems and sleeves, so I'm really pleased about the length too.

  10. I've been eye-ing up that top for a bit too but then I'm not very good at sewing for myself presently. I love the colour and the top looks lovely.

    Interesting that you said its hard to find knit fabrics near you though I'm guessing that if you are in Auckland you have been to Global Fabrics? The Wellington one is fantastic, and dangerous for that reason, with plenty of most things....

    Just found your blog too BTW!

    1. Global Fabrics only seem to be open when I'm at work - maybe I need a sneaky long lunch break!

      Thanks for reading :-)


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