RESTYLE: Behind the Scenes Look at our BurdaStyle Photoshoot

Drawn Upon Dinosaurs for Inspiration


Sean Cabezas dreamed up the skirt pattern we have featured here today on BurdaStyle. Sean is a senior at Parsons in New York City and offered his inspired look for us to turn into a pattern to share with our community.

Basic Sloper Patterns: Priceless


Do you own any basic slopers or pattern blocks? Well, if you went to fashion school, you do, and you know how incredibly useful they are. But if you didn’t- well perhaps you don’t have to go to school for this, with the resources available to the sewing community these days.


BurdaStyle RESTYLE series: the SHAKIRA dress from Susanna Locascio on Vimeo.

Introducing the first behind the scenes video from our BurdaStyle RESTYLE photo shoot. This week we feature Alden in our newly modified Shakira tunic dress. We tore off the sleeves, hemmed the armhole, took in some girth, chopped off some length and cinched the waist. See our team of talented people make this dress come alive again!

New York Fashion Week A/W2010


It’s fashion week here in New York city and it is off to a, awkward start- I was devastated to learn of Lee Alexander McQueen’s sudden suicide last week, as he has been an idol of mine for the past decade. He was the reason I studied Fashion Design in Italy, his collections covered my walls and inspiration boards, and it was his collections that I always looked forward to viewing the most each season. I just can’t get over it really…that his talent has gone away.

The Other Side of the Picture


I <3 Olivier Theysken. At the age of 18 Belgian born Olivier attended the renown École Nationale Superieure des Arts Visuels de la Cambre to study fashion design. He dropped out 2 years later to launch his own line. Creator of demicouture macabre, gothic-inspired garments the designer made his first collection out of bedsheets, though these pieces did sell well, financial restrictions led him to shutter the label shortly thereafter.

Menswear Influence


Today I am taking note of the alluring refinement of menswear. I have always admired a nicely dressed man. While living in Florence, Italy, I found myself at times completely awestruck of how magnificently the men were dressed- not to mention the women. In Italy, it was common for most people to own just a few high-quality designer pieces. These designer pieces would be worn and re-worn time and time again, such was protocol, and very well taken care of. How different this is from American fashion today, where many of the pieces the general public purchases are disposable? Transient. Fleeting. Cheaply made.

What I love about menswear is the simplicity. Styles and silhouettes remain very much the same over the decades, yet the newness lies in the precision of detail. A boldly printed bow tie with a fried egg pattern looks like classic paisleys from afar, but up close offers a freshness & sense of humor to fashion. Tailored coats made to be worn for years continue to be created, only changing slightly in fabric and texture. Paul Smith is a well known example of someone taking these classical elements and simply changing the details (colorful striped linings, iridescent button holes, polka dotted ties).

Do you pull inspiration from menswear? Do you ever wear mens clothing, steal cozy pieces from your boyfriend or husband?

Photos from The Sartorialist

Raw Talent


London Fashion Week [ Central Saint Martins Ready-To-Wear ] Autumn/Winter 2009-10

Each year Central Saint Martins College of Art, London’s most promising source of pure, raw fashion talent, hosts a catwalk show for Fashion Design major’s body of work. This show attracts numerous international editors from around the globe, anxious to see what is NEXT for fashion design and who is behind it. 17 student designer collections are showcased with the chance to win £5,000 from the event’s sponsor, Harrods, as well as the chance to show off his or her collection in the store’s windows.

Isabella Blow discovered McQueen here. Katharine Hamnett graduated from CSM in 1969 and is famed for her political designs. Her slogan t-shirts are iconic to this day. John Galliano graduated in 1984. Giles Deacon graduated in 1992. He worked for Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, Bottega Veneta and Gucci before setting up his own successful label in 2004.

What do you think of the current talent? Are these designer’s predicting what’s to come in your eyes? Are these looks wearable? Inspired? Desirable? Click here to view a slide show of my favourite looks from the show.

SPOTTED: People Having Fun With Winter Dress


I just bought some red lip tint and rosebud salve and I am already feeling better about these gloomy winter days. Why? Because there is hope. I took an imaginary trip to the Nordic countries and found, thanks to The Sartorialist & CopenhagenStreetStyle some hidden diamonds in the rough.

Trends Spotted
Vintage. Back in the olden days they knew how to make a warm coat. Before fleece and technologically enhanced textiles a good old fashion down-stuffed parka or a wool peacoat was worn in the winter months. But sometimes these lovely finds just don’t seem to fit. Here’s a How To Reszie A Vintage Jacket Tutorial for you.

Going Up. No matter the coat you’re wear- stay warm! stay dry! if you find yourself on a fair day with no rain in the forecast, don a pair of wedge heels with some warm tights. Not only does they raise you up, they lift your spirits too. (I am actually wearing some today and feeling lighter)

Paint it Red. It was all over the Spring/Summer runways on people’s lips, nails & cheeks- and is spotted now all over the streets. (Personally I dislike lipstick, hence the tint & rosebud salve I’ll don instead and the smell is aromatheraputic). Whatever the day, whether dull or drab, red is exciting & fresh and a welcomed relief from the monotony of winter.

Chunky Scarves. The bigger, the better. My mother got me Yokoo’s Pembroke Cowl for Christmas and I actually get excited to go out just to wear it. I wrap it around my neck twice then pull over my head as a hood. So cozy.

Mr. Fox. Love it or hate it, I’ve seen many a gal wrapped up in huge vintage fur coats, hats, boots & stoles. It is a guaranteed method to channel your inner spirit animal towards staying warm if you don’t mind the possible repercussions.

Plaid. For many years, brands like Woolrich and international Army regiments have been making toasty lined woolen plaid coats for guys & dolls. Check out this plaid coat made from the Elizabeth pattern b one of our users to inspiration.

V Magazine Sizes Women Up


On January 14th, V Magazine’s size issue hits select news stands and there is already much buzz about over the argument of professional models vs. “actual, real, normal, regular, realistically (or whichever term you choose)” proportioned women. V magazine, which is known for pushing the envelope on fashion journalism, invited Karl Lagerfeld (infamous for being “fat-phobic”), to shoot a fashion spread of burlesque dancer Miss Dirty Martini for the issue (pictured above left), after Lagerfeld called German magazine Brigitte “absurd” for banishing professional models and depicting real women in their pages for good. Renegade fashion photographer Terry Richardson shot a professional model next to a “normal” sized woman (pictured above right) for the issue as well. Does one look better than the other? Don’t they look like Photoshopped images of the same girl? A couple of years back fashion officials in Madrid set a minimum body-mass index for runway models. Efforts gained urgency after 21-year-old Brazilian model Ana Carolina Reston died of anorexia in November 2006, weighing only 88 pounds (40 kilos). Clearly some changes need to be made in the industry.

I know we’ve heard much from BurdaStyle members about wanting to see more patterns for realistically-sized women’s bodies and your desires for us to utilize actual “plus-size” models for our larger sized patterns (as you’ve quite pointed out that our beloved Alden is not plus-sized according to the real world) in photo shoots. It’s too bad we cannot afford Hungry author and international plus-sized model Crystal Renn (bottom right), who I find absolutely stunning, with her Natalia Vodianova eyes & pout, to pose for us. She is the only plus-size model to have ever appeared on a Harper’s Bazaar cover and has been spotted on the runways of Vena Cava and Heatherette. Lets hope this trend will stick.

What do you think of the use of professional models? Would you like to see larger women on runways? In magazines? Do clothes look better of waif-like figures?

Fairy Tale Fashion


I tend to see the world through rose colored glasses and find heaps of inspiration hidden within innocent fairy tales of imaginary lands full of beauty and intrigue. There is a bit of a resurgence of fairy tale fashion happening now, and I’d like to see more of it. Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland comes out sometime this year, Roald Dahl’s novel adapted for the screen by Wes Anderson, Fantastic Mr. Fox, the stop animation wonder made quite a splash, and we’ll never forget our childhood favorite fairy tale coming to life in Spike Jone’s Where the Wild Things Are (which I have yet to see as I’ve mixed feelings).

I have to say, cinema this year (well, last year really) has been right up my alley. There were 3 fashion documentaries worth mentioning, Valentino: The Last Emperor (loved the pugs! loved the seamstresses!), that Vogue one where Grace Coddington really steals the show- talk about someone who lives in a fantasy world! and Lagerfeld Confidential was just plain surreal. Remember how his fingers were always dripping in Tom Binn’s rings? Well, Binn’s just keeps on getting better & better (and more famous which makes me sad, but happy for him I guess): Binns has designed a 35 piece collection for Disney Couture with prices ranging from $100 to $500 which will appear on a larger scale in stores such as Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s and boutiques including Kitson and Fred Segal. It features tea-cup necklaces and heavy, macabre, decadent body decor.

In honor of Alice in Wonderland, Parisian department store Printemps asked Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane, Bernhard Willhelm, Haider Ackermann, Manish Arora, Ann Demeulemeester and Maison Martin Margiela to invent one-of-a-kind dresses for Alice. These beauties are pictured above, as is Binn’s Alice jewelry.

So out with it! Who is making fairy tale fashion out there? I want to see pictures! xoxo

Outerwear: I Am Freezing


It’s cold here in New York city. No, that’s an understatement, it’s freezing: with the windchill & snow & ice it can be dreadful. Must dress warmly. There are many chic coats out there that look wonderful but leave you shivering in your boots. I have numerous pretty vintage woolen coats & capes, the kind that are sharply tailored and smartly cut from English houndstooth and Irish wovens, but cannot block the wind if their imaginary little lives depended on it. What is a gal to do to stay warm?

This Year In Fashion


2009 has been quite an interesting year in fashion. Designers have pulled inspiration from the thriftiness of the depression era to the masculine curves of the ’80s, from an early ’90s sporting look to ’40s inspired Grecian goddesses. With looks ranging from Casablanca to Blade Runner, fashion seemed to have no rules or regulations this year.

What were your favorite looks of 2009? Where do you see fashion moving? What do you want to get rid of? See more of?

Tell us your opinion in this slideshow!

Holiday Looks to You Can Rock Around The Clock


Does anyone actually have any time to make themselves a to-die-for Holiday dress this season? I say if you’re going to make anything for yourself in the next few weeks that New Years Eve probably provides the best excuse to make something amazing! I was going to make an inspiration board for you all but I’m feeling generous this year: I’m giving you patterns! Well, ideas of which patterns to use to make the new year even more glorious!

Top left features a lovely lounging lady wearing the Minna dress. By using a metallic embellishment you can shine like the North star. Here’s another Minna variation to dream about as well. Make it in a gem colored tone and pair it with a cozy cardigan.

Moving clockwise the next dress is simply gorgeous and definitely has a stage presence. If you want to look like a ballerina from the Nutcracker you should make something like this show stopper.

Nothing says sophistication like knife pleats and wool. The Lancey dress embodies all of those traits & more. Download the pattern here.

Be the Belle of the Ball with bows and pleats in this cute holiday dress. Wear it with style with vintage gloves and a cape. Get the pattern here.

Compete with shiny ornaments and make a Madison in red dress, which is based off of our original 40s dress pattern.

In Or Out: Ruching, Lace & Gathers


Ruching, lace & gathers bring to mind, for me at least, dated period costumes. But quite recently many designer’s have brought these old & loved techniques back to life with a new and increased vigor! Do you use lace in your designs? Do you make pieces with excessive gathers or pleats? Do you know how to incorporate ruching into your work?

Well, whether you love to utilize these techniques in your designs, or if you need some tips, this week’s posting should send you in the right direction.

Kasia Skirt
A ruched waist with an adorable buttoned-up placket is a great skirt for the Holidays.

Nadine and Nadine Plus
A sophisticated & sassy gathered coat which looks great in velvet or crepe wool.

Tikva Trench Coat
Recently featured but too good to not talk about again, this trench coat offers full swing & gathers.

Amanda and the Amanda Plus
A cute and flowing blouse for any time of the year, make it in a chiffon & wear a camisole underneath.


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