Summer Pattern Trends: The New Basics

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We style three of hot patterns for summer with bright new fabrics from MichaelMillerFabrics.com.

Best Patterns to Beat the Heat

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Yesterday our resident sewing and style expert Peter Lappin lamented his wardrobe choices as summer’s blazing heat descends upon New York City. I don’t know about you, but I am seriously feeling his pain as my clothing options seem to get slimmer and slimmer as the temperatures get hotter and hotter. I pride myself on being a tomboy who loves her pants and button-up shirts, but I admit to completely wimping out during summer’s intense heat and find that it takes all of my strength not to wake up and throw on a giant linen muumuu every morning (call it my equivalent to Peter’s pajama suit).

Would You Rock It: Head-to-Toe Print

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As the mid-season collections (Resort, Pre-Fall) become as closely watched as their Fashion Week counterparts, we’re starting to see more and more mico-trends emerge from these in-between offerings. One particular Resort 2012 trend that recently made me take notice was head-to-toe printed looks. These aren’t the same mashed together prints we’ve seen from season’s past (think SUNO, Miu Miu, etc) but rather a single print used on both top and bottom (and in the case of Celine, on the jacket as well).

Vacation, All I Ever Wanted: What to Make When You Have to Get Away

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Here in the States, most of us will be heading off for the 4th of July weekend – whether to another city, a beautiful beach or just hanging out in our own backyards. While you may not be taking a long weekend holiday just yet, chances are you will get away at least once (hopefully more!) this summer so I made a list of the pieces you’ll need to make before you head out of town. Whether it’s a big adventure in a new city, a sun-soaked weekend on a beach or a relaxing country getaway, find the projects and patterns you need to make for your vacation destination!

1 Pattern, 3 Looks: Tailored Shorts

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Shorts – once relegated solely to backyard BBQs and Summer beach parties – have taken a suddenly chic turn and become a standby for both dressy and casual attire. I vividly remember refusing to wear shorts from about the age of 15 to 21 (my mother thought I had completely lost my mind), but I finally gave in when the Atlanta heat proved too powerful for my feeble attempts at keeping cool in rolled up jeans and cropped pants.

Work It

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Maybe you’re just heading off to your first “grown up” job, recently made a career change or perhaps you’ve been in the working world for longer than you care to recall – but sometimes a surprisingly stressful part of the job is just figuring out what to wear. I’ve had the privilege of working in creative environments where I was encouraged to show my personality through my clothing choices and even though some of my employers had “guidelines” in place, they usually left lots of room for interpretation.

Ladies Who Tux

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At Monday night’s CFDA Awards, Leelee Sobieski, Phoebe Philo and Kirsten Dunst all showed up sporting sleek tuxedos. What do you think about their choice of evening wear? Who rocked the look best? While I’m not a huge fan of her shoes, my overall vote goes to Leelee who wore a suit by her husband, designer Adam Kimmel. She looks a bit like a cross between young versions of Lauren Hutton and Glenn Close, no?

Surf's Up!

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Anyone else noticing the surf/wetsuit influence infiltrating some of the Resort 2012 collections? Summer is a great time to test out bright, sporty looks and the zip up dresses from Michael Kors or the rash guard inspired tops from Derek Lam are the perfect inspiration to get you started. Check out a few of my favorite designer translations of the trend, plus get great BurdaStyle patterns to make your own fresh and modern surfer girl look!

Would You Rock It: Feather Extensions

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I guess I’m a little behind on the trends because I had no idea how popular feather extensions were until I read this article in the Seattle Times about the sudden run on fly-fishing stores in rural towns around the country for the coveted new hair accessory. Blame it on Aerosmith rocker Steven Tyler who has been seen sporting the look on the job as an American Idol judge, and Ke$ha – whose style is questionable to say the least, but she seems to hold a significant amount of sway amongst the fickle tween demographic.

Rooster saddle feathers are currently the foul/fowl accessory of choice and the demand has caused the price to soar from the $60/package you would normally see at fly shops to somewhere between $200 and $400! Hmm…rent or poultry hair accessories – life is full of tough decisions.

The New Influencers: Kate Middleton vs. Michelle Obama

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In case you haven’t heard, the new Duchess and the First Lady can seriously move some merch! Mrs. O has positioned herself as a fashionably refreshing alternative to the drab suit and TV anchor helmet-hair of First Ladies past and has been dubbed the “3-billion dollar woman” for her ability to impact retail and fashion with her clothing choices. Meanwhile Catherine the Duchess of Cambridge is proving to be a formidable opponent on the worldwide stage with her fashion choices being watched as closely as any celebrity or public personality. See how these two influencers stack up and let me know what you think!

Yohji Yamamoto: This is My Dream

Yohji Yamamoto: This Is My Dream from Hintmag.com on Vimeo.

2011 has been a great year for fans of Yohji Yamamoto (me included). After the heartbreak of watching both his New York store and New York office close over the past couple of years, then bankruptcy threatening to shut down his operations entirely, it’s been a relief to see the spotlight return to his talents as a designer and his contribution to fashion over the span of his 30+ year career. Earlier this year, Yamamoto released his autobiography entitled My Dear Bomb and now comes another peek into the life of one of the most thoughtful and fascinating designers of the last few decades with the documentary This is My Dream.

Tassels, Tassels Everywhere

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One trend I haven’t been able to ignore this Spring is the use of tassels on everything from belts and bags to hemlines and necklines. Once known as a symbol of luxury, tassels were originally used to distinguish rank in both military and religious orders. During the 16th and 17th centuries, tassel making – or passementerie as it was known in France, was a booming business with people clamoring for the luxury accessory which represented both wealth and standing within Parisian society.

Although the process of making tassels in our modern age is decidedly less time consuming, the adornment still holds a certain air of opulence in both decor and fashion. Click through to see some of my favorite uses of tassels this Spring and even a few ways you can add this embellishment to your garment projects.

1 Pattern, 3 Looks: Wide Leg Trousers

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If you’re looking to perk up your wardrobe with a fresh sewing project that’s classic yet totally on trend, look no further than the wide leg pant. There are so many great ways to wear these babies that are both trendy and timeless. Click through to see some fun styling options, as well as a few of the fantastic and diverse ways BurdaStyle members created their own versions!

Honored Guests: What to Make for Summer Weddings

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So it’s Springtime and wedding season is in full force. My boyfriend’s sister is getting married this summer and I’ve been going back and forth for weeks over what to wear. To be honest, I haven’t been to many weddings during my adult years and the puffy floral dress with matching dyed shoes I wore to my aunt’s wedding when I was 5 years old doesn’t do much for inspiration today.

1 Pattern, 3 Looks: The Shift Dress

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Making your own one-of-a-kind garment takes a heck of a lot more time that picking one up at a boutique. With all the hours spent making sure your seams are perfectly aligned and your hem just so, you want to get as much wear out of your sewing project as possible, right? Of course you do! Check out my favorite ideas for extending the life of one of our project patterns – a simple shift dress – and see fun ways you can rock this project all weekend long.

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