BurdaStyle Twisted Maxi Dress, with literal blood, sweat and tears

I sewed through my finger for the first time ever in the making of this dress.

Fortunately the blood washed out.
Fortunately the blood washed out.

Not intentionally–though I have been assured that this sewing-through-fingers business is a rite of passage–but I still think it could add a touch of gravitas: I bled for this dress. Stupidly.

You know how it is. This fabric is a super slippery, very slinky rayon jersey and it did not want to stay lined up properly, so I was using my fingers to hold edges together even though I’d used a ton of pins, and the machine was going really fast and my finger went up and over the presser foot and, yeah. Yelling. Blood. Half a roll of toilet paper to staunch the bleeding. Band-aid. And then, because I am hardcore, right back to the sewing machine to finish the dress.

The Back, with the tie.
The Back, with the tie.

(OK, it’s not that big a deal, but it’s the first time it’s ever happened to me. Any sewing injury stories to share, Dear Readers?)

The dress, by the way, is the Burdastyle Twisted Maxi-Dress 02/2013 #115.  It turns out pretty much exactly as it looks on the web page, it fits well, it’s very heavy due to all the fabric in the folds and twist, it’s incredibly low-cut in the front so beware of that (I ended up stitching the front pieces together an extra 2″ or so to provide bra coverage), and the front twists and folds are fiddly to put together. There was quite a bit of sitting on the floor with the fabric pieces and the instructions, and squinting back and forth from one to the other to figure out how it went together–but it did, and here it is, and look! Not bad, eh?

Front twists and folds.
Front twists and folds. I do look a bit maniacal in this one, don’t I? 

It would look really smashing with a border print, if you have a border-print jersey. If you don’t, it looks plenty nice in a regular jersey cut on the straight-grain, which is what I did, so long as it’s a four-way stretch. It took 3m of narrow fabric and I cut a size 40/44 mix with a bit of shoulder-broadening thrown in for good measure. The hem was just finished with the serger.

The fabric, by the way, was dirt cheap at $6/m, so altogether with the thread and pattern this is a $30 dress, sewn up in a fit of productivity/procrastination for the Dragon Ball. It’s also super-comfortable to wear, and you can’t even see the blood.

20 thoughts on “BurdaStyle Twisted Maxi Dress, with literal blood, sweat and tears

  1. Spectacular dress! Way to bleed and rally – it was worth it!

    I have yet to sew through a finger, but I’ve backed my forearm into a hot iron more times than I can count.

  2. This dress looks amazing on you! Absolutely spectacular. 🙂 Hopefully, you don’t literally bleed for any more projects! ouch!

  3. Holy woah! That’s a goddess dress if ever I saw one.

    Sorry about your poor finger! I don’t have any particularly horrendous sewing horror stories but I do quite often get fingers in the way of my scissors, resulting in a nice slice across the nail. I haven’t made it through to the nailbed yet but it’s only a matter of time…

      1. It’s not too bad – I think it’s the ‘blunt knives are more likely to cut you’ thing where because they’re sharp, and it’s usually when I’m holding an edge and cutting slowly, I notice before I cut too deep. So far I’ve only sort of nicked the surface. Good thing I’m using my good scissors!

  4. Your skills are admirable and you look lovely in the dress!

    Where should a man with no sewing ability take a pair of shorts that needs the pocket mended? The stitching split completely and the shorts are almost new.

    1. Tim/Mike/Ben, please go away. I can’t imagine a single decent reason for someone to keep posting on a woman’s blog under different aliases on an ongoing basis. Whoever you are and whatever your name really is, I have no wish to hear from you and I will a) save and b) not approve of any future comments.

  5. Great dress!
    The battle scare we have from our hobby. While kneeling on the floor to use my rotary cuter and mat, I somehow managed to roll the cutter onto my leg.

  6. Your dress is beautiful.

    I have stabbed myself in the knee with my scissors crawling across the floor to grab something. I have sewn through my finger twice – once industrial machine and once regular. Industrial machine was probably worse in that the needle is thicker an I ripped my finger out from it’s grasp. Regular machine it went through, broke off and hit my nail with the stub. Then I had to go upstairs and get my husband to pull the needle out with a pair of pliers. Not much fun. But that quilt was also called blood, sweat and tears – tears because the fabric balled up when it got prewashed and took two hours to untangle, sweat because I lost it for two years and blood because of the above mentioned incident with the needle in my finger. I went back too because I only had 10 inches left to go on the binding.

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