Lekala 4279 or Madame Butterfly

Since my last ordeal with the Burda maxi dress, I didn’t just look at the technical drawing before making this Lekala 4279 dress with a flounce, I also looked up examples from bloggers.


I only found one, but a good one. This cool lady made this lovely version of it:


No major incidents during the project, apart from an unclear front neck line: they say to make a ‘slight’ ruffle, no indication of width. If I align it with the given bias length to use it’s so tight it makes a V-neck. If I allow the extra 5cm of bias to cut, it’s so wide it’s gaping and hanging outwards. So I settled for 2,5 cm of the extra bias and it looks kind of like on the tech drawing.

Then I started pinning a teeny tiny rolled hem on that flounce, after about 10cm and 99 pins I thought there has to be a better way. I tried the hemming foot from my old Elna machine. It was very difficult to get right, if I held the ‘feeding’ fabric 1mm too far to the left, it left an extra frayed layer under the rolled hem, and if I held the fabric 1mm too far to the right, the hem wouldn’t roll on itself, it just hemmed. But where it worked it’s beautiful! Look at that!


In the end the dress looks too bombastic to my liking, the FLOUNCE is too big: I feel like Madame Butterfly! My fabric is probably not as fluid as it should have been… though it’s a very pleasant viscose with a washed silk look-and-feel. Also I found the size/shape quite wide (and this cannot be a sizing issue, since Lekala make a bespoke pattern to your exact measurements). It looks like a maternity dress somehow. Also the giant Flounce folds back over itself towards the front.


I unpicked the skirt, made it a narrower A-line skirt, which works better I find. I also top stitched the Flounce to restrain it to the sides.Β front-side2


It’s now OK, I have to get used to the Flounce though, I just don’t have the courage to unpick and resew the flounce narrower, not yet, maybe next summer… Or just get used to a bit more extravagance… or learn how to fly.


  1. I think this is a good statement dress for going out. The skirt is definitely better in the second version!

  2. The skirt is much better your way! As for the flounce, I agree it rather makes you look like a moth. 😲 You wouldn’t have to unpick it though to fix: you can just cut off excess width and make a rolled hem, either with an overlocker or similarly with zig-zag on a sewing machine. A rolled hem foot that you used with straight stitch only works on straight pieces of fabric, which the flounce isn’t. I tried to make it work so many times… I think those feet are cursed and I hate them. 😏 But I did have one good experience where I followed the manual to the letter: https://vintagesewingmachinesblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/13/know-your-snails-from-your-sea-shells-the-narrow-hem-feet/

    • Haha, yes, a moth, it’s too dark for a butterfly. I considered cutting off the excess, and re-hemming, but what with the effort that went into that pretty rolled hem, I can’t get myself to cutting it off… Also I don’t have an overlocker 😦 Does a zig-zag rolled hem show the zig-zag on the underside? If not I’ll try it elsewhere πŸ™‚ I’ll look it up anyway! I’ve used that rolled hem foot on another project since, and I’m getting the hang of it slowly, thanks for the link too.

      • Zig-zag rolled hem actually looks the same as an overlocked rolled hem – in both cases the stitches are put very close together creating a rope-like finish.

  3. OK thank you, I will try.

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