May 31, 2017

Lenox Shirtdress Sewalong Day 3: Burrito Method Yokes and Shoulder Seams

Now that we’ve sewn our front and back princess seams, we’re ready to complete the bodice of our Lenox Shirtdress by sewing the yokes and shoulder seams using the burrito method. This method gives an incredibly clean finish requiring no hand sewing and enclosing all the raw seams. It is our favorite yoke method!

Start by pinning the inner yoke to the back bodice with the right side of the yoke against the wrong side of the bodice as shown.

Sew this seam at a 1/4″ (6mm) seam allowance and do not finish the seam. Next, pin the outer yoke to the back bodice, right sides together. The edge of the outer yoke and inner yoke will be lined up and the inner yoke will be down on the bottom. Sew all three layers together at 1/2″ (12mm) seam allowance. I’ve flipped the outer yoke up slightly here just so you can see it. Make sure all the layers are down when you sew!

Flip the outer yoke up, leaving the inner yoke down and lay out the back bodice with right side up. Pin the two bodice fronts to the shoulders of the outer yoke, with right sides together. Sew these shoulder seams at 1/4″ (6mm) seam allowance.

Okay, now comes the tricky part! Lay the whole bodice out flat with right side up and inner yoke still down. Roll each section up (like a burrito!) towards the yoke seam. Below, you’ll see what it looks like with the back and one front rolled.

Once all three pieces are rolled, it will look like this:

Now you’re ready for the step that gives the burrito method it’s name. Fold the inner yoke up so the shoulders of the two yokes meet, sandwiching the rolled up fronts and back in between. Sew across the shoulders at 1/2″ (12mm) seam allowance.

If you have a particularly bulky fabric, you may want to grade the yoke seams and shoulder seams, cutting one of the seam allowances in half, to reduce bulk. Now it’s time for the big reveal! Reach in either through the side of the yoke or the neck hole and pull out your rolled up fronts and backs. Sometimes it feels like you have to pull more fabric than you should, but just keep pulling until there’s nothing left in between the two yokes.

Once you’ve pulled everything through, you’ll have your yoke seams and shoulder seams sewn and completely enclosed. Press the yoke flat from both the right and wrong sides. Staystitch around the neckline in two sweeps, starting at the front and ending at the center back. Baste the yokes together at the armhole edges, and you’re done for today.

Congratulations on successfully conquering the burrito method, one of my favorite pieces of sewing magic! Next time, we’ll attach the sleeves and sew the side seams of our bodice.

2 thoughts on “Lenox Shirtdress Sewalong Day 3: Burrito Method Yokes and Shoulder Seams

  1. That burrito magic still gets me 🙂 So clean, so cool and so mysterious. Still not sure how it all works but love the results!

  2. Kate says:

    This is totally meant to be helpful, not critical: This post isn’t tagged with the lenox sewalong so I had to go looking for it when I saw the posts jumped from 2 to 4 when I had clicked on that tag. 🙂 Thanks for the beautiful sew along. I am sadly behind but really excited to start my first cashmerette pattern.

Let me know what you think!