Friday, November 1, 2019

Burda Magazine swing top

I've been going through some of my Burda magazines recently and tracing off some patterns. I prepped this really interesting swing top a few months ago but have only now got around to trying it!

It's a jersey top, #115 from the 11/18 issue. I really like how the neckline and sleeves are fitted, with an extra swing in the back. A nice fit at the shoulder & neck makes oversize items look like they are intentional, and aren't just too big for you!
Feeling pretty Rock'n'Roll here with this painting by local artist Blair Yeomans

I used up the last of my "test" jersey for my first trial of this top. This was a huge 6m or so piece of lightweight knit I got at the thrift store for $2 a couple of years ago, and have used to test many pieces. I've only kept and worn these two, though -- my Itch to Stitch Lindy Petal Skirt (a free pattern which I highly recommend) and now, this Burda swing top.

This one is an easy Burda; their lack of complex instructions doesn't really matter here, since the top is only 3 pieces: front, back and sleeve. The extra features that make this more special than just a straightforward top include gathers at the shoulder both front and back, and a shaped back hem that has a bit of an angled shape to assist in a nice drape. I also really like how the sleeve is 3/4 length and quite close fitting. It adds a nice structure to the shape.

This was an easy sew, but one difficulty I had was getting the neckline to sit smoothly. It's just a turn-under-and-stitch finish, but the gathers are pretty close to the edge of the neckline, and the turn under is thus not totally even. Also, I needed to pinch about 3/4" out of the centre front, which I didn't do on this test garment, and it throws the balance off a bit. Not enough so that I won't wear it, but I did correct it on my second garment which I've already cut out ;) I've also moved the gathering over closer to the shoulder by 1/2" to give myself a little more room.

When I traced this pattern, I made the decision to add 3" to the hem and make this more of a tunic length, to suit my own preferences. I've left the original hem line traced on the pattern as well in case I ever want to make the original shorter length. However, I'm not 20 and don't usually wear short tees half-tucked like in the styled Burda photo so that's not too likely. I prefer it the way I've finished it for my own habits.

It was an easy make, with minimal adjustments for me, and it feels comfortable and stylish to wear. I think this is definitely a winner in my books -- like I said, this test garment is one I will wear (and have worn twice in the 6 days since I've finished it) and have already cut a fancier second version! I have a couple more Burda tops that have been traced off for a while and I'm hoping to also get to those this fall.

You can really see the side drape here

And if you can get this little Boomerang video to work, you can really see the fullness of the swing!


  1. Beautiful top and great fabric. I wonder how it would go with pants? I imagine slim style would be ok?

  2. I hardly ever wear pants, but I do have a pair of long slim black pants that I wear with heels, and I think that those might be okay as well!


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