Burda Style 7179 - Vintage Style Shirt Dress

by - 4/03/2016

My finished dress using the Burda Style 7179 pattern

I have a complicated history with this pattern. It was one of the first dress patterns I bought when I first started sewing properly in my late teens. In my naivety I pretty much thought 'how hard can it be?' to make this shirt dress. Alas, I learnt the hard way.

I chose a classic gingham cotton and a light/medium weight interfacing
I first made the Burda Style 7179 vintage style shirt dress about 5 years ago and to this day it's still one of the worst things I've ever made. I made it out of a floral viscose, back then I didn't have an overlocker and the seams frayed to holes after the first wash, I ironed nothing throughout and don't even get me started on that collar. However I wore it with so much pride that Summer, and still don't have the heart to throw it out.

Instead, I decided it was finally time for round 2 and I wasn't going to let this pattern beat me again! The Burda Style 7179 dress is a classic vintage style shirt dress with some great variations on the collar, sleeves & belt options. I'm not keen on the long sleeves, so I went for option B with the short sleeves.

Here's a peek at the pattern:
There's some great variations for this dress. I'd love to try the 'C' collar next time!
Anyone who's made this patten will know about the collar. The instructions are reasonably understandable until it gets to the collar construction. To me, at least it makes so little sense, if the images weren't there I think I would have just put it all in a bin and burnt it. 

In the midst of my collar sewing breakdown, I Googled the pattern to see if I could find some reviews to see if anyone else struggled or if this was my lack of dress making knowledge. It turns out it seems to be a bit of a notoriously awkward pattern and that dress makers alike applied their common sense to finish the collar in their own ways.

How sweet are these baby pink heart buttons I picked up at my local haberdashery? 

I was happy it wasn't just me, made a pint of coffee and got back to it. Applied my common sense and managed to make a decent looking collar, eventually. Not perfect, but certainly my best yet.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the outcome. There's definitely changes I would make if I were to sew this dress again. I'd also try to make the 'C' option collar for a retro nautical vibe. I found the 'A/B' collar difficult as the instructions weren't very clear, but by applying some basic sewing methods I'm sure most could figure it out eventually. 

I personally feel this pattern is better suited to confident seamstresses rather than beginners. If you're just starting out with dress making and want to try a shirt collar, the instructions for this pattern probably won't guide you much. I made the dress over two afternoons and can't wait to wear it when the weather brightens up!

Get this pattern & fabric:

Have you made the Burda Style 7179 vintage style shirt dress? How did you find the instructions? Did the collar trip you up aswell?

I hope you enjoyed my first dress making post! Thanks for reading, pinups.

This post contains affiliate links.

You May Also Like


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Collars can be a lot of seamstresses' nightmares! But, considering their importance, a necessary evil. I felt that way about zippers for a long time.

    Either way, your dress looks fantastic and fits you so well! The heart buttons are such a nice touch and super fun. I wonder if this pattern is still available on sale somewhere? I'll have to take a look.

    Great job at tackling it again!!

    1. Thank you! I've popped a link on where to buy the pattern at the end of the post. Really is worth a try if you have a taste for retro dresses!


  3. The dress looks great! Would you mind linking/explaining the alternate collar insert method you used? Im making this dress and I don't think I can bear to unpick it again!

  4. I am struggling with the collar as well. can someone help explain properly how to do the collar part please. Thanks