Thursday, May 20, 2021

Burda 6429 top in silk charmeuse

A friend mentioned to me the other day that she hadn't seen a new blog post is a while and that is definitely true. Here in the bay area people have generally adhered to the health guidelines and so our chances for socialization have been few and far between. Contact has been limited to close family or friends that we have chosen to have in our "pod".  The normal times of meeting for drinks, a group dinner at a restaurant or going to meetings of various organizations all seem like the far distant past. However the uptake on vaccines is also very high here, most everyone I know has received it so we are coming out of our hibernation and it feels really strange, but in a good way. 

So that's a long way around to say that my interest in making new things for my personal wardrobe had reached a low ebb. Anything I sewed in the last 12 months has mostly languished in the closet waiting for the opportunity to be out and about. Wearing things for Zoom meetings just doesn't have the same effect and I might get some odd looks if I sat down for a video chat wearing my red wool coat. (actually I wore it once just before the lockdown - in fact to the last large social gathering for a very long time). In the last few months I've been occupied with doing online classes. It's become evident that teaching online is no walk in the park - I would say they are a LOT more work than in person and I'm looking forward to getting back to those for many reasons.

But I have made myself a new silk top. This is a Burda envelope pattern, 6429.

Green silk top 1

And now you can see the state of this corner of my garden. The roses are doing OK as well as all the California native plants which tolerate low water but oh that should be nice and green now in May but we had about 40% of normal rainfall this past winter. Very worrying. But back to sewing.

I had a gift card from my last birthday for Fashion Fabrics Club, a website that I periodically order from and have mostly very good luck with. If you hunt around on their website you can find some real bargains. This is called hammered silk charmeuse, so it had a pebbly texture. I have another piece of this fabric in purple but I think I will save that until next winter. This color was very discounted and when it first arrived I wasn't sure about it, too much like avocado green, a color I don't wear (but yumm I love to eat avocados, I must go through 3 a week). 

It seemed like the ideal fabric for this pattern which I was wanting to try. Another contender for the category of "tops that look nice on computer screens".  I made the view on the right, the one without the waist seam. 

Burda 6429 pattern env

If you look closely at the technical drawing you can see that the sleeve seam is quite close to the neckline, only about an inch away. You attach the sleeve into the armhole as normal, but then you run a row of stitching inside which attaches the sleeve head further towards the center. 

Green silk top front

I neglected to take a picture on the dress form of the back view which I think is really nice. The pattern calls for a zipper and I basted it in, but then realized that I could easily get it over my head without so removed it. 
The slight trouble with silk charmeuse is that the sheen and texture of the fabric do show some wrinkles, I think they are noticeable on the dress form but not at all in real life where you are moving all the time. 

Green silk top back

silk top green 2

For a long time I didn't like this type of sleeve but now I do. It needs just the right fabric and probably an open neckline to balance out the coverage of the sleeve. 

Green silk top side

As for fit adjustments, I made a Burda size 38 at the neck and shoulders and graded out a bit at the side seams. I like silk tops to be a bit roomy and flowy. I think I made it shorter by about 4 inches. Now that it's finished I think the neckline is a bit wide for me, I always have this problem with tops with that shape of neckline. If I make it again I will pinch out about 1/4' on either side of center of the neckline. To make it stay in place I added some strap keepers which I just make out of some ribbon and small snaps. My hot tip for adding strap keepers is to sew one side of the snap on the garment, then sew the other part of the snap on the ribbon, then snap it shut and only then attach the end of the ribbon to the garment. Then you get it to just the right length.

Green silk shoulder snaps

Green silk top closeup

Now that I've sewn it up I do like the color, a green top that matches my green eyes. (yeah, mine are green but if only my eyes were that color!) 

Soon to be posted: I've just finished a dress that is from an older Burda magazine - I find such gems in the past issues I wish I had more of them but it's probably better from a storage perspective that I don't. 

Up next at Hello Stitch - my online class for June is Sewing Jeans. It's a month long class, meeting two nights a week. Jeans may seem daunting but they go together quite easily. For this class we suggest the Megan Nielsen Ash jeans pattern (stretch denim) which I have made in a variety of fabrics with various degrees of stretch and it works for any of them. Or you can use a different pattern if you already own one. 

Green silk top walking

So that's the latest - now that summer is on its way and lockdown is phasing out my sewing spark has returned. I just traced some shorts from the recent Burda so I guess that will be one of next projects, along with the jeans..

Happy Spring sewing,

Today's garden photo, the blossoms are just about gone and now we have tiny little oranges, but oh the fragrance when the orange tree is flowering is just heavenly.

Orange blossom


  1. Love that silk top on you, you're definitely gorgeous in green! And what a find, that hammered silk charmeuse looks heavy bodied and luxurious. Fashion Fabrics Club is a trusted resource of mine too! They will cut as small as 1/8 yard pieces on most of their fabrics. I have used that feature as an invaluable swatching service to find great deals. xo, Andrea

  2. I loved hammered silk too. It's so luxurious and rare. The colour is gorgeous and looks beautiful on you. I also worry about the oil spot which seems inevitable so I have stopped sewing with silk.

    1. Oil on silk can be removed using cornstarch. You pat a thick layer of dry cornstarch over top the stain (and some underneath won’t hurt as well). Sandwich between absorbent cloths and apply pressure via a heavy book, cast iron pot, etc. Leave 24 hours. The cornstarch absorbs the oil. After 24 hours, brush off the cornstarch.

  3. I have the same issue with these wide necklines which look great on the models but always turn out too wide for my tastes. I didn’t realize I could just “pinch out” some the excess. Makes sense though, very clever.

    Oh, FFC has great bargains and unique finds, and sometimes both in the same piece! I especially love the selection of discounted bolt ends. You had a great score with your hammered silk!

  4. It's nice to see you, and I can imagine that low ebb - got one over here as well! Stay well, do a rain dance, Coco

  5. The fabric color looks like emerald green in the photo's and it is a beautiful color on you. It is a really pretty blouse. I am currently working on a top from a Burda 1998 issue so I know what you mean about finding great garments in old issues. I recently gave a Zoom presentation on Plackets to my AGSG group. Putting together an engaging PowerPoint presentation on the topic took so much time. But I wanted to tell you I referenced the two placket How To articles you had written and shared on the Craftsy website. Great pictures and instructions. Thanks for doing those.

    1. Thanks Audrey! I've been teaching a lot of shirt classes lately and glad I wrote those :) Happy to hear they were useful.

  6. That hammered silk is GORGEOUS and that color is everything.

    I can't imagine teaching virtually, hopefully we'll continue to see people vaccinated and things opening up so you can return to in-person.

    Can't wait to see that new Burda.

  7. Me encanta, te ha quedado preciosa y de mi color favorito; también utilizo las cintas en los hombros para sujetar los tirantes. BESICOS.