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How to line the Burda peplum top

3 September 2012, 15:53

Peplums are a major AW12 trend and one that’s well within reach of most home sewists and high street shoppers. There are plenty of patterns out there, but one of the nicest I’ve seen so far is the cover design from the August 2012 Burda magazine, which is also available to purchase as a pdf download here (and you can look at the full instructions and layout diagrams on that site for free).

A lot of peplum dresses just feature a ring of excess fabric around the hips, but here, the curved waist seam plus the sloped hemline and bias-cut peplum on this particular pattern really sets it above the rest. I also like that it’s separates, so I can pair my top with a skirt, slim trousers, or leggings and get much more wear from it than just a single dress.

One thing I don’t love about this pattern, though, is that it’s unlined. Or rather, it has lined cap sleeves, a narrow bias edge on the underarms and a neck facing, but nothing further. It’s pretty straightforward to make lining pattern pieces from the shell and facings (see below), but the construction was more challenging to figure out. It is possible to do a nice clean finish almost entirely by machine (you still have to sew the hems by hand), but you have to do a bit of clever reordering of the construction…

Luckily for you, I made notes as I sewed so I can share my clever order of construction with you!

As mentioned above, you’ll need to modify your bodice pattern pieces after you’ve cut out your shell fabric. Place the neck facings on top of the bodice pieces (annoyingly, in this case they must be face-down so the shoulder seams and CB/CF edges line up), trace the neck facings onto your front & back bodice pieces and then cut these off before cutting your lining pieces. Remember to add seam allowances to these new cut edges, too!

Be sure to interface the facing pieces, then attach them to the lining pieces and treat as one for the rest of the construction.

Instructions for a clean-finish lining!

  1. Sew all darts, attach peplum pieces to bodice on the shell, and sew at shoulders (but keep it open at side seams and centre back!), ie: the follow the first few steps of Burda’s instructions, but stop before the zipper insertion!

  2. Do the same for the lining

  3. Sew the sleeve shell pieces & sleeve lining pieces together at the bottom edge of the sleeve. Understitch, then baste around the other (armscyce) edge

  4. Baste the sleeve onto the shell with right sides together (beware of excess ease!! Don’t skip this basting step!)
  5. With right sides facing, stitch the shell to the lining/facing at the neckline and armscyces, ensuring the sleeve is not caught in any seams (it should be tucked up inside)
  6. Clip all curves, flip right side out and press well

  7. Understitch the underarm portions up to the sleeve join marks

  8. Stitch the facing to shell at the shoulder seams (stitch in the ditch of the shoulder seam)
  9. Finish the seam allowances of the peplum by whatever means you prefer (I bias bound mine with some strips in my stash)
  10. Sew the side seams of the shell and lining in one pass, making sure the waist seams are aligned

  11. Sew the invisible zipper to the shell

  12. Open up the zipper and sew the lining to the zipper tape, right sides facing. Flip right side out.

  13. Press up the seam allowance at the bottom of the lining and hand stitch the lining to the waist seam allowances

  14. Hem the peplum

  15. Dance!

If you ever need to reorganise pattern instructions to get a clean machine finish, always remember that if you’re sewing more than one edge (neckline, armhole, etc) at a time, each seam must be C-shaped! If any are a complete circle, you’re going to find it impossible to flip right side out. I’m not going to admit how long it took me to overcome that particular mental stumbling block, but just trust me on this, that’s the key!

It’s taking me a bit long to finish this top than usual, but it’s not for lack of time, per say, more that the time I’d usually be sewing in, I’m now just so knackered from my marathon training that anything more than horizontal just isn’t possible! I’m happy to report that I passed a major milestone this weekend, running my first 20 miler, and solo no less! I’ve got a few more of these to do before October, but with all things, they should get easier the more I do them…

Also, I’m finding new obstacles placed between me and my sewing these days…

Nishi is so much more chilled in my sewing room than Bosco was – he couldn’t stand to sit still for more than a minute or two – too much to do! She’s just content to be as near to humans as possible!

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  1. I started sewing dress #133 from the same burda and the construction steps will be very useful… Just need to process them in my head! Thanks for this great tut

    Sewing princess    Sep 3, 05:00 PM    #
  2. Your kitten still remains beautiful as she grows. She’s so good – my cat always wants to lie on the pattern pieces. I just don’t ‘get’ peplums, don’t care for them myself, but I take my hat off to you for being able to figure out how to do this complicated sewing and re-structuring the order of sewing.

    — Patricia O    Sep 3, 05:05 PM    #
  3. Hello Nishi! ** Thanks for sharing your copious notes. That pattern is so eye-catching, probably a lot of people will have a look at your tutorial and thank you. Nice :) So, do you like how your peplum outfit looks?

    — Katharine in Brussels    Sep 3, 05:31 PM    #
  4. Awesome-ness :)! I wanted to make this a lined top + you’ve just saved me the headache of working things out – thanks muchly hun!

    Claire (aka Seemane)    Sep 3, 05:48 PM    #
  5. Thanks so much for this, I wasn’t sure what to do with the Peplum part. I just finished the dress version, and the peplum top is next.

    Jenn    Sep 4, 01:19 AM    #
  6. Agreed on all fronts – this top is a bit special in the peplum department. But unlined? Really? Wow. I would absolutely be one to line it. So thanks for the tips! Looking forward to seeing it modelled :P

    poppykettle    Sep 4, 01:33 AM    #
  7. Ooh, thanks for this post. I just made my Salme Patterns (similar) peplum top but I turned a lined version into an unlined one :-) It’s good to have both options!

    K-Line    Sep 4, 01:58 AM    #
  8. I love this pattern! I can’t wait to see your finished product. I haven’t tried a peplum yet as I’m not sure I want to accentuate my hips any more…

    ZoSews    Sep 4, 09:52 AM    #
  9. Love the tute! Thanks! Which marathon are you running? I am training for Chicago and then San Fran women’s half. :)

    — Elizabeth    Sep 4, 08:32 PM    #
  10. I don’t like some of the peplum looks but I do like this one. The Burda pattern looks similar to the dress Katie Couric chose as a favorite for her new show. I thought I would try to find a similar dress to sew, but after reading your thoughts on the tops’ versatility I think I will order the pattern from Burda style and try to size it up w/pivot and slide alterations. And I will use your tutorial because I think a lined garment looks better and feels better to wear.

    — susan    Sep 7, 08:16 PM    #
  11. thanks so much for this! i’m thinking of making the dress version and with my fabric I’ll need to line it.

    dixie    Sep 18, 05:28 PM    #
  12. Thank you so much for this – so helpful. Whole week I can’t figure it out how it should be done. I read tons of posts for lining, also a book especially for lining.. Nothing was working, but this is true :-)
    Thanks again :-)

    — ltinuviel    Feb 12, 08:57 PM    #

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