Lace Back Shirt

Occasionally, I look through the patterns on BurdaStyle’s website, but rarely buy them unless it’s one I must have, but cannot find in a current BurdaStyle magazine that I can check out from the library. So I collected a wishlist of them over time, and this Back Lace Top pattern of theirs was one I’ve been enamored with for quite a while. When I checked a bunch of the magazines from the library, I was excited that this was in one of the magazines. It looked so easy, and only required tracing three pieces from Burda’s crazy pattern insert. But soon after starting it, I affectionately began to call it the Trainwreck Shirt.

My lace back shirt

Don’t get me wrong, I think it looks stunning! But I think it would have been a different experience if I didn’t bother to read the instructions at all and tried to follow good sewing principles instead. But more of that later.

When I decided to make this shirt, I know I needed a really nice, scalloped lace to work with for the back (which is the whole point of the shirt in the first place). Mom mentioned she was going to one of the best fabric stores in Austin, and asked if I wanted anything. I asked if she would look for some scalloped lace while she was there and showed her what I was planning on making. She found a couple good options, but I settled on this black lace, which is quite a bit different from your average floral bridal lace.

Lace back shirt

The easy part was getting a crepe back satin to go on the front, and I picked up what I needed at Pacific Fabrics in Bellevue. Alright, I got all I needed for my shirt (and yay for not making yet another dress or skirt that would require buttons or a zipper or something other than fabric and thread) so I got to work cutting out the pattern pieces. Oh, what’s this, I have to make my own bias strips. Guess that’s three more pieces to this pattern that I didn’t take into account. No matter, if you’re lazy, I guess you could just get some bias tape, but it won’t match the front fabric, so I was okay making a couple strips of bias strips.

About the time I was trying to figure out how to deal with the front facing and joining the front and back at the shoulders, I realized I must have been done something wrong or the instructions (that don’t include pictures, unlike the Big4 patterns or Burda’s Sewing Vintage Modern book) just didn’t make any sense to me. So I fudged it, and it just felt like a trainwreck. No one knows what I did, except me, and I’m surely not entering this into any contests, so no one will see the atrocity on the inside of the garment.

Lace back shirt neckline

I adore the pleated neckline

There’s a lot of hand-sewing for this shirt, as well. All three of those bias pieces are hand sewn to the back neck edge of the lace and either armhole, so what should have only taken a day to throw together, took a little longer because of the hand-sewing I had to do. It’s fine, I had a lot of stuff on my Hulu queue to catch up on. Also, I probably should have shortened the shirt a bit. It’s fairly long, and hits my hips, so it bunches up in the front a bit. I guess I could work on my posture, too.

All-in-all, if you have a great piece of lace you want to showcase (and don’t mind showing off a bra or have a neutral colored camisole to wear underneath for a bit more modesty), this is a pretty good pattern to use it on, just be prepared for a little bit of hand-sewing!

My lace back shirt front

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