Thank you, @Burda_Style!


Remember my last post, when I was so annoyed that the Burda Instagram account wasn’t sharing many plus size makers or patterns? Well, I posted on Instagram, and we got that changed!

(My account is private, so I can’t link to it here… but here’s where Sewcialists reposted part of what I shared!)

“I’ve been sewing an awful lot of @burda_style lately – the first Big 4 patterns I’ve actually enjoyed! I wish more of their plus-size patterns or larger sizes were represented in the @burda_style Instagram account though – when you have a good product with affordable prices and fairly inclusive sizing, why wouldn’t you show that off? It makes me think twice about buying more patterns from Burda … But then again, I always believe everyone deserves a chance to learn and improve! I’ve tried DMing the @burda_styleaccount twice, with no result, so if you like any of the dresses I’ve made here, maybe you could politely and positively encourage @burda_style to share and repost more makes in a range of sizes? #sewingisforeveryone #sewinclusive#curvysewing #plussizesewing”

I’m thrilled to say that they (ok, Meg behind the account) listened! Burda now has a new hashtag #burdastyleplus to connect curvy makers, and the account has been highlighting plus-size patterns and makers consistently in their feed and stories this week. They’ve also listened to the pleas of the @sewover50 crew, and shared more pictures featuring older women! They’ve put out a call for more monthly influencers, and I bet there will be a range of ages and sizes in the people picked. Representation matters, and it’s heartwarming to see if make a step forward in some way!

And also, it means that I can happily support Burda by sewing their patterns, like this (dare I say it?) sexy dress I just made!


This is a Burda Plus pattern from 04/17, which has really nice seam lines that are totally hidden by the print. I don’t care though – I feel great in it! I love that it covers bra straps but still has a cute off-the-shoulder feel. I shortened the bust at the shoulder, which I think means the cut-out shoulder isn’t as visible and large as it should be… but can we just take a moment to admire the fit with only that one adjustment?


Wait, I lied! I also raised the centre front V about an inch and a half. I only like low necklines on wrap dresses that sit firmly in place. I also added a folded waistband when I seamed the bodice and skirt together for a belt effect.

The fabric is a floral Liverpool knit from Cali Fabrics, which I received in return for blogging for Cali. I had fun styling the shoot as a “sewing date with myself” for Valentine’s Day, although I’m more likely to wear it to a wedding I’ll be attending in spring. I will definitely make this pattern again, perhaps with some colour blocking.

A sewing date with myself always need to include gummy bears, and something tasty to drink! I hate wine though, so this is Ribena!

This is one of the first patterns where I actually added seam allowances! Normally if I’m just sewing something loose I’ll skip them, but with all the panels and curved pieces, I know I needed to do this properly. Thank you to everyone who gave me really clever suggestions on Instagram… and especially to the people who know me well and told me just to wing it as I cut out! Turned out that I can cut a 1cm seam allowance easily by lining up the edge of my rotary cutter with the pattern, but it definitely added a fair bit of time to getting the pattern ready!


So there, a #BurdaStylePlus success! Totally unseasonable, and all I want to sew right now is maxi sundresses… even though we’ve got two more months of snow! UGH. What are you sewing these days?

22 thoughts on “Thank you, @Burda_Style!

  1. I’m having the same mismatch between what I want to sew, and what I need, and what the ruddy weather is doing! So I have two lightweight blouses and one absurdly thick jumper cut out, plus a craving for cheesecloth kaftans and cosy pyjamas. Madness!


  2. That’s one awesome dress, Gillian! That style is so feminine, flatters your curves beautifully, and that fabric! Just my type. Your photo shoot looked like fun, I wish I could be more relaxed about photo shoots myself. Can’t wait to see what’s next. What am I sewing? Just completed another pair of Jalie Eleonors and a pair of long pants with big pockets for my hubby.


  3. It’s a lovely dress, and I’m glad that adding the seam allowances went painlessly. And that BurdaStyle responded so quickly! Also, if what you want to sew right now is maxi sundresses, go for it! That way they’ll be ready to go for the warm weather, and you can maybe pair them with a cardigan in the meantime. (I started sewing shorts yesterday myself, though my situation is a little different since I’m lacking in summer maternity clothes and need to get them ready to go.)


  4. Yay for getting Burda to be more inclusive! That’s a really cute dress, you always have the best fabrics!
    Apart from being close to finishing a toddler frog costume for the little one, I’ve got a couple of pullovers in my sewing table. For some reason, after years of wearing all dresses, I’m all about separates at the moment… 😁


  5. Hi Gillian, a big ‘hello’ from Scotland. That dress is beautiful, you look stunning.
    I just wanted to tell you that your posts always brighten my day; thank you for making the time to write them. I was very sorry to hear about your concussion injury and it’s awful after effects. I was concussed in a car crash a decade ago and know that it takes…time to feel on solid ground again. I’m so glad that your recovery is progressing well and that you’re able to sew – always inspiringly! – once more. Congratulations too on making your successful approach to Burda and again, thank you.


  6. Your dress is fabulous! You look amazing in it.
    I’m so pleased that you met with success with getting BurdaStyle to be inclusive of plus sizes. I find Meg of BurdaStyle to be lovely to deal with.
    You mentioned the Sewover50 group and I’m not sure if you know this but, myself and @sharonmads who are both over 50 have been members of their 10 strong influencer team since last year :).


    1. I didn’t realize that! Glad to hear it and makes me love Meg even more! 😊 I think one of the challenges from a visibility perspective is that most of the images on the Instagram feed are from the magazine, and most of the community re-post happen in stories and then disappear. It makes it hard to see if plus size people, older sewists, people of color etc are being featured regularly!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Gillian,Looking Good. Any tips on starting on sewing knots. It get caught in my bobbin area everytime I start. Blessings,Collettia

    Sent from my iPad


    1. Hmm – sounds like maybe you need to change to a stretch or ball point needle? Then it should pass through the fabric more easily, and not shove the fabric down into the bobbin. Hope it helps!


  8. I totally bought the two burda patterns from your last post on the strength of your makes–I’ve never worked with a Burda pattern before, so I’m a bit apprehensive, but I’m trying to have an attitude of curiosity toward my sewing this spring, as my style is shifting, and I want to try new things. Can’t learn without risk!!


  9. I though Burda add back the seam allowances some years ago…I have some of their paper patterns that say that? Did I miss something…


  10. Love that dress (it certainly IS SEXY!) and also that shirt that you are sewing on your date. I saw the completed project on Instagram, done by a few sewests, and now I’ve pinned that pattern to think about. I will have to sew some more from newly acquired first.


  11. Even though you are happy with them you continue to insult them by lumping them in to the Big 4? They are emphatically not part of that conglomerate, that’s why they fit so well


  12. I am a massive Burda magazine fan, I have heaps of them and sew fairly regularly with the ‘spaghetti’ patterns. I remember someone commenting on my blog at some point about the lack of diversity in their models. So I’m so glad they are willing to change their way, and I feel so much better about giving them my money!


  13. A huge departure from your usual silhouette, certainly not what would work for your everyday life- but the view from the back is gobsmacking good!


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