Featured Member: Maya511

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born in Guam and my family moved to Southern California (just north of Orange County) when I was three. I currently live in Hollywood, so I didn’t stray too far from where I grew up.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
When I was a little girl, I used to hand sew little cushions that I stuffed with cotton balls stolen from my mother’s makeup drawer. The first thing I ever made with a machine was a super simple unlined mini tote bag. It’s a shame that I didn’t actually make an effort to learn how to sew until this year—in my mid 30s! I’d always wanted to learn, but for some unexplainable reason, I was extremely intimidated by sewing machines. I finally gathered the courage to enroll myself in a basic sewing class earlier this year (where I made the mini-tote) and I’m so glad I did.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
For me, it’s a well-needed creative outlet after a day at the office. Also, It’s just so gratifying to wear/use something that you’ve made yourself—a feeling to which I’m sure all of you Burdastyle.com members can attest. I can honestly say that it’s the most enjoyable hobby I’ve ever taken up, as well as the most addictive.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I’ve got two favorite things: 1) shopping for fabric and letting my imagination run wild 2) that feeling of exhilaration I get when I complete a project. What I like the least is deciphering pattern instructions. I’m primarily an aural and tactile learner and possess very poor spatial awareness —so sometimes diagrams actually serve to confuse more than to help. Oftentimes, I have to make a miniature model of the project in order to figure out the actual construction of it!

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
Purely fantasy of course—I would make an insulated cooling wrap for the earth to slow down global warming!

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I’m looking for inspiration, above all, and there’s plenty of it here! I love perusing member creations and I’m inspired by what I see on a daily basis. I’m also looking for stylish, versatile patterns, and BurdaStyle has got that covered as well. What’s more, there’s a real sense of community here, which I love. Everyone is so helpful and supportive. I honestly can’t think of anything I’d change!

7. What is your motto?
My general motto is a quote by Bertrand Russell: “The good life is one inspired by love and guided by knowledge.” My sewing motto is “Don’t sacrifice enjoyment for perfection!” I sometimes take a lot of short cuts when I sew for myself, which I don’t necessarily encourage, but I think it’s important, when undertaking any creative endeavor, to relax, have fun and to not beat yourself up when you make mistakes. I mean, when it stops being fun, what’s the point in doing it, right? That’s what I say, at least!

Maya511 has a great sense of color and style, just take a look at her fun floral top or any of her many creations. She also has a blog which chronicles her sewing adventures.

Featured Member: Jeffrey

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am from Grand Rapids, Michigan; born and raised. I currently live in Grand Rapids and am attending Calvin College

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I sewed for myself was a pair of short shorts, for basketball. My friends and I play recreation-league-intramural basketball at Calvin and we dress in 70’s clothes, including short-shorts. I wanted a pair that matched the colours we picked for the team.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing plays the role of helping define my style and attitude towards life. Sewing is a hobby, but I would say that the role is practical. I like making things that I will use. I have made a lot of bags because bags are functional. Making rather than buying changes how I view my possessions. I appreciate them more because I have put something personal into them.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite thing about sewing is brain storming, looking at something and thinking how to make it for myself. My least favorite thing about sewing is not having time to sew.

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
I guess I would make a camera bag for my older brother. I would really like to see him appreciate my hobby in the same kind of way that I do

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I’m looking for a place to be together with like minded people. People who like to create; people who prefer homemade to brand-named. I’m not sure how the site could be better, more guy-oriented stuff would be nice, but it makes sense that there is so much women’s stuff.

7. What is your motto?
Make don’t buy

Jeffrey is one of the most prominent men on our site. Not only does he have great creations to share with us, he has taught us all how to weave our own cloth in his awesome how to. This month Jeffery is featured in Burda Mode magazine. Congrats Jeffrey and we look forward to seeing more of your creations on the site.

Featured Member: Lalalalayla

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I grew up mostly in Arizona with frequent visits to Manhattan, cut my teeth in Los Angeles, and gypsy’d across America last summer before landing in Brooklyn.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
Making has always been a natural and constant thing for me, so I don’t have a specific answer to this question. I come from a family of makers. My dad is a fixer/maker/builder, and I have a box of things my mom and aunties and grandmas made for me as I was growing up, from ceramics to costumes to party dresses to stuffed animals. I also grew up in a family that would get excited about a pile of garbage because ‘maybe we can make something out of this’.

With all that, though, I don’t remember starting to sew until college. I remember trying to recover a couch and choosing really bad material. And I remember getting my roommates to dress up with me as a rock n’ roll band for Halloween, and I made my costume from scratch: it was awful and too small and I obviously had no idea what I was doing and I looked like a hooker. A few years later, my ex-husband bought me a nice sewing machine, and it was onward and upward after that.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing IS my life these days. Freelancing for BurdaStyle, I get to sew a lot of the beautiful garments you see in our Creations. And I’ve also been working on my Etsy shop, Led Thread, which keeps me busy and satisfied. I’m also doing a TON of custom work. Last year I dreamt of taking a sewing vacation (just sewing for a week), and now I dream of taking a vacation FROM sewing (no sewing for a week)! That said, though, I love sewing and the creative process and I am incredibly proud of how far my craftsmanship has come in the last few years.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I hate trying to get fabric to do something it doesn’t want to do.
I love the sense of accomplishment I get knowing garments I’ve made are out in the world living separate lives that I know nothing about. I like to imagine what they are doing: maybe shoved in the back of the closet, maybe in the donation heap, but maybe on a tropical vacation or fancy party.

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
I would make myself a really avant-garde gown.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
Ah, well, I really truly love BurdaStyle and I think it is a beautiful project. I am very excited about the site redesign, because right now it is a bit clunky and difficult to navigate. I love having a place where people can share their creations, and I really like all the positive feedback our members are so generous with. I like seeing how people execute the patterns, what fabrics they choose and what changes they make. I also use the How To’s quite a bit to jog my brain if I’m coming up to a sticky construction issue. Oh, yeah, and the patterns!!

7. What is your motto?
There is no place to go save up.

Layla has been here at BurdaStyle since October of last year. In addition to keeping us laughing and being a major force behind our cookie consumption, she is also responsible for many of the patterns and creations put up by BurdaStyle (the Charlie bag, the Bella pants and Pete, the Men

Featured Member: Bathina

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am originally from Germany near cologne but now live more south in Mannheim. I also spend three to six months of the year in Ohio, because my boyfriend is from there.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I made was the apron from BurdaStyle ;-) a very nice and easy 1st-sewing project.
The first time I was in Ohio with my boyfriend I thought about starting to sew. So I bought a sewing-embroidery machine on Ebay. I always wanted to do this but I never had time for it. The years before I went to my work and in the morning I studied in the evenings, so no time for any hobbies.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Since I started sewing a few months ago, I figured out how creative the world is and what fun it can be. At first I only made clothes but now I like to sew some decorations too.
There’s so much to learn and I want to learn it all. If it’s pattern drafting, designing, the knowledge of fabrics & techniques everything is very exciting for me. Normally I didn’t have patience for something – sewing has changed me at this point.
I feel such more in balance since I started to sew and the time in one day is never enough.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
The result is my favorite thing of all it. The steps between are sometimes little and hard and in the moment it can be painful; you start to think that you will never finish this project like you planned. But at the end you forget all this anger (yes sometimes anger comes up) and you’re proud to reach your own little goal.
I haven’t gone to a sewing-school yet, only some great pattern instructions like yours, the www, TV and good Books helped me to ‘fight’ the patterns.

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
I would sew something for the home or a nice a bag. To make clothes for somebody is a bit difficult, above all it should be a surprise present.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
BurdaStyle patterns were the first one’s which I didn’t have any problems with. And if I had a problem BurdaStyle has a very huge collection of helpers.
I like the community they are all very friendly. I like to see the members in process and that’s pushing me in my work.
BurdaStyle is easy to use- I like it!
Sometimes there are these ‘fake’ pattern ( only a picture without a pattern or an instruction) from the USER – I don’t like this

7. What is your motto?
Nothing is impossible to sew when you’re not afraid of your faults. Be accurate when you’re sewing. Don’t give up- give yourself time and try again later.

Follow Bathina’s creative thought process by checking out her blog! Also she and her girlfriend just opened a new website called Creativoo. The main idea of the site is it is a community for all kind of crafting hobbies that posts more videos instead of pictures. Check it out!

Featured Member: Toupinette

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I grew up, studied and lived in Paris for most of my life. My husband is a south of France man and he didn’t want to live in Paris because “it’s too cold, too raining, too many people and too far of sea” (he has a great sense of exaggeration!). So, I moved to a little town in south of France famous for its fondness of food: Montelimar. The NOUGAT’s town (you know it’s candy made with honey, almond and sugar….).

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
Because I’m crazy for clothes and fashion, I would to be able to make my own wardrobe. Many reasons of that:
- I love designer’s clothes but too often it’s very expensive;
- I want to have original outfits;
- I think it’s an ecological and social action.

So, last year, I asked for a sewing machine for my birthday and the first thing I made was a simple gray linen bag that I use when I travel. I was quite pleased with the result so I decided to make something hardier: a real outfit. I bought sewing books, discovered BurdaStyle, saw amazing creations of the other members, downloaded beautiful patterns, made a lot of horrible things, learned from my mistakes and now I have begun to sew some clothes that I’m not ashamed of!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
When I was younger, I never had manual hobby. I was very frustrated because the creative part of me was completely ignored (I’m lawyer, it’s not a very creative and funky job…). So sewing allow me to develop the creative part of me (and have nice, original clothes too !! ) That’s why it’s become my favorite hobby. I’m always thinking of my future creations and dreaming of when I get to sew beautiful fabrics, pattern or creations of other members!
In conclusion, I can say that’s sewing makes me happy and fills me with pride.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
Lots of favorite things: choosing the perfect fabric, imagining the results, seeing pieces of fabrics becoming a real clothes, etc

Least favorite: marking the pattern on the fabric and cutting pieces of pattern (because I don’t have a big table so I have to make it on the floor and it’s not very comfy!)

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
One of my best friends makes fun of me when I told him that I had begun to sew (he saw my first creations… hmmm). He bet that I’d never be able to make a men suit for him. So I hope, one day, I’ll be able to make him a great suit for him!!!!

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
First all, I really, really, really love this site and the community!
I ‘m always looking for patterns, inspiration, support and advice and I’ve gotten them on BurdaStyle.

I love members who are very nice. Their support gives me the hunger to continue.

I love the creations of members, I’m very impressed by the talent of them. Some creations look very professional and stylish. It’s astonishing.
I m’ always amazed by the way of the same pattern can be interpreted by different members. One pattern becomes many different, original and singular creation.
It’s very inspiring.
I love the BurdaStyle team who select patterns and give them a modern and funky touch.

I love solidarity in this community because people share tips, how to, advice, pattern.

For me, this site is perfection… just one fault: it’s hard for me to understand pattern because it’s in English and I’ have bad English … but I’m okay because it’s my fault … I slept during English lessons and it’s the occasion to improve my English!!!!

7. What is your motto?
Not very original… CARPE DIEM

Even though she slept through English class, she appears to be doing a great job with the English instructions. She has been making incredible creations and mastering the art of sewing.

Featured Member: Shiela_Imbao

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am from the Philippines, living at its capital, Metro Manila.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
My first project was a black silk shantung basic-dress. I made the pattern from scratch as part of my first lesson in basic sewing & dressmaking school in one of the older dressmaking schools here in Manila called the Golden Hands Institute.

Sewing for me came out of nowhere. I am trained as a food technologist and had worked for two major restaurant and food corporations for 2 years each, before getting married and working with my husband at their family business related to manufacturing and heavy industry. My husband suggested that I try sewing, for me to be able to have what ever dress I want. You see, choices available are limited as others would agree. It’s always something too simple, or something ill-fitting, or something overly priced and poorly done, or simply the styles available aren’t MY style. So I agreed to try his suggestion, and within weeks I was immersed in dressmaking, pattern making and fashion design. I was making projects at home not related to the course I was taking. I would try to make replicas of blouses that I already own, or I would try to make my own designs. Every piece I made then, I still keep in my closet now, to remind me of how far I’ve gone and how much I’ve improved in craftsmanship and taste. And I’d do the school projects in school, learning as much as I can from my instructors (it’s a one-on-one approach) as I can.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing for me right now occupies about half my week. So far it doesn’t produce a lot of income for me, since I only sew mostly for friends and relatives (at cost) and only accept very few referrals. But lately I’ve been doing dressier full-on projects for attending weddings, graduations and other formal events. I’ve learned so much from my last few projects and I think I am now more capable of making a bigger range of apparel for myself and others.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I think my favorite would have to be being able to dress myself and my clients, having only our imaginations as a limit. My last client wanted a hot-pink silk dress copied from: a hot pink dress worn by Chloe Sevigny and a black dress worn by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. The result was exactly what we talked about, and much to my client’s approval. That exact outfit would have been impossible for her to find locally, and at such a reasonable price.

My least favorite would have to be the amount of work involved BEFORE getting to the actual sewing part. The pattern making, cutting and tracing alone takes me several hours. Sometimes it takes more time than the assembly and sewing part itself. But aside from that I like the work involved especially when the result is something that doesn’t look store-bought, and is very well-made.

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
My least favorite would have to be the amount of work involved BEFORE getting to the actual sewing part. The pattern making, cutting and tracing alone takes me several hours. Sometimes it takes more time than the assembly and sewing part itself. But aside from that I like the work involved especially when the result is something that doesn’t look store-bought, and is very well-made.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I look for patterns, and inspirations for my future projects. I think it would be nice if more patterns were available from your site so there would be less need to buy patterns from other vendors.

7. What is your motto?
If you can’t find something reflective of your style, make it yourself. If you can’t make it yourself, learn how. If you’re not yet good enough, practice until every outfit you produce is picture perfect, fits like a glove, and wows everyone who sees it.

To see shiela_imbao’s creations click here! Her hot pink cocktail dress shouldn’t be missed

Featured Member: Juebejue

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am from the Silicon Valley in the Bay area of US. I had been living here for the past 9 years. I grew up in China and Singapore.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I made was clothing for Barbies when I was 10. And then I moved onto sewing teddy bears and soft toys when I was 16. The first real clothing I made was the red skirt I posted here last year. When I was little, my dad (yes, my DAD is awesome! :D ) used to sew up beautiful clothing for my mom and me, so I guess I got a little sewing tendency from him. I always wanted to sew real clothing, so after I graduated from school last year, I started sewing real clothing.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
I love making things, and I have gone through phases such as soft to making, paper craft, jewelries, etc. I just can’t seem to relax! I am also very small, so its hard to find clothing that fits me. So sewing is a practical hobby that is fun, and it helps me relax after work.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I love shopping for fabrics, sewing them up, making cute details, and wearing them! If I have to pick something I don’t like, maybe it is the cutting of patterns and fabrics. I wish I had a cutting monkey!

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
Once I get good enough, I would attempt to make stuff for my family and friends :) It would be really cool to make a fun family “uniform” that is not tacky ;)

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I was first attracted to BurdaStyle by the freebies. And slowly, I got addicted to the user creations — its so inspiring to see everyone’s creations! I work in engineering, so I don’t personally know anyone who sews (except for one of my friend, whom I’m coaxing into sewing), so this place is somewhere my sewing-personality can feel at home. This site is awesome, I love everything about it — creation uploading, how to interface, free/cheap pattern downloading… you name it! But the most important part of BurdaStyle is the encouraging users and the warm community.
As for improvements, maybe it can have a way to list users by location, so that I can look for people who sew near me and ask them things like, where I can find a good local fabric store! Also, it would be nice to have some sort of notification when someone leaves a message on your creation or wall. And fixing small bugs here and there!

7. What is your motto?
Have fun! That is the most important part of sewing!

Juebejue’s incredible creations have such beautiful lines; She makes elegance look so effortless!

Featured Member: Karencilla

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I’m from a very small country called the bridge of the world and heart of the universe: Panama. (Not Panama City, Florida haha). I was born and lived here my whole life, although people usually think I’m from some part of Asia!

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
It’s kind of a funny story. I used to watch my mom using the sewing machine a couple of times to repair or alter some clothing, but I NEVER paid attention to it. Some time later, my sister who is 5 years younger than me, told my mom that she wanted to learn to sew and asked me to join her in the classes because she didn’t want to do it alone. My mom asked a friend who is a dressmaker to give us some classes and she agreed. So within the first classes I began to fall in love with sewing. Unfortunately we had stop classes because of school and college. The funny part: my sister now doesn’t like sewing! My very first project was to do a simple black pencil skirt with my own pattern. I enjoyed doing it so much just like every piece I do now.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Believe it or not, it relaxes me. My career sometimes can be very stressful, so I try to take some time to sew. I like to create and make things with my hands so I do have other hobbies that I love; like doing mosaics and stained glass, though sewing is a very useful and fulfilling hobby. I’m trying to always have a new project to do and dedicate some time of the week for it. I think there are two things that keep me sewing: my love for fashion and BurdaStyle. Since I discovered this site, I’ve improved a lot.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite part of sewing: planning the project, choosing the fabric, assemble the pieces, see the whole project taking shape and of course wearing it or see it being worn or used. My least favorite part: cutting the fabric, TRANSFER the pattern’s marks and iron, but anyway those things have to be done!

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
Definitely, a gorgeous prom dress for my sister, yes the one I mention before; she is graduating this year from high school and I will love to make it for her; also a shirt for my boyfriend (well, that could be my next project!) and for me, I will love to do a flowery vintage dress.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
Inspiration, ideas, and new things to learn. Everyday I have the habit to check my emails, my Facebook profile, some blogs and BurdaStyle. What I love? The constantly new things you upload to the site, and the community. Everybody here is so supportive, encouraging each other and sharing their ideas, opinions and doubts, that’s what I really like. Improves? Pretty much nothing, but I would really like to receive a notification or something when somebody writes a comment or opinion about my creation.

7. What is your motto?
Maybe. “Be grateful”. Usually we are so “busy” and we forget to pay attention to those little things that make us happy, those things that we have to be grateful for: be able to watch a sunset, good health, the people that care about you, being with your family or be able to eat three times a day (or even more!!). Many of us are very fortunate and we need to live being grateful for those things, not regretting all the time for those things we don’t have and certainly, we usually don’t need. Yeah yeah, I know that I might sound corny but it’s so true.

To see Karencilla awesome creations click here Make sure you see her incredible skirts and bags! Her fun, pink JJ shirt is something not to be missed. She also has pictures of some incredible beaches on her profile, these will warm you up on the coldest rainiest day.

Featured Member: Nuiwida23

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I have resided in Southern Maine for my entire life (all 16 years of it)! Naturally, I love the ocean, sailing, and lobster (yum!).

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
When I want to learn how to do something, I dive right in! The first thing I ever made was a set of purple patchwork quilts that were just the right size for my two dolls and their bunk-bed. I was 11 years old and would accept no help! My Auntie Dana has always been my sewing inspiration. She does custom upholstery and home design; I owe my natural abilities to her! When I was younger she used to make me clothes, and one I specifically remember was a blueberry print dress. She loves that we share an interest in sewing, and whenever I need assistance she is my go-to!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing is my creative outlet; it gives me a sense of accomplishment when I can create something beautiful out of something that had no distinct purpose before. It also fulfills my need to be unique! When I make something, I know that no one else has the same dress, bag, or skirt. Sewing sets me apart from the rest, and lets me express my style.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
Let’s start with my least favorite, since that’s easier to answer! Marking the fabric, hands down. I can never seem to get it all, and it stops the flow of creating something when you have to worry about your seams matching up! If I had to pick a favorite, I would say that initial feeling of inspiration. I get that every time a new pattern appears on the site. I also love being able to say “I finished!!!” since the last few touches can be a struggle for me!

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
I would LOVE to sew an elegant evening dress for myself, and actually have a party to wear it to! I love vintage clothing, so something 40’s inspired would be lovely.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
When I found this site I was looking for a place with patterns and helpful tips. Boy, did I get that and so much more! There couldn’t have been a better site for me, because the support and inspiration that I have received from everyone involved is invaluable. My two favorite aspects of the site are the sense of community and the awesome patterns! Something that I would love to see is more variety in the kinds of patterns. Like everyone, I love the Charlie bag and would love to see another accessory or bag pattern.

7. What is your motto?
I have learned that life can be so exciting when you do something unexpected, say what’s on your mind, and use your imagination. As Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus always says, “Take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!”

To see Nuiwida23’s incredible creations click here! Also check out her profile

Featured Member: Oonaballoona

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?

I am from New Jersey, USA, originally, then lived 12 years in New York, which is kind of the same thing— unless you’re a born and raised New Yorker, then New Jersey is another hemisphere. Now I’m in Los Angeles, which is another UNIVERSE.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?

My first sewing project was a big old pig made in my home economics class, I think it was the 5th or 6th grade. I chose pink taffeta, naturally… you would think with that choice, my pig would have been frilly, but he was actually quite huge and sleek with sharp seams and WAY overstuffed, there was no cuddling with this pig. I mean, you could have used this pig as a chair for a small child. Home ec was only offered one year, and I pretty much stopped sewing except for the odd (and badly executed) hem here and there. Oh, and the prerequisite pair of slashed up-the-legs jeans in high school. Am I dating myself? BurdaStyle has really got me sewing again, with the help of some fancy sewing items landing in my lap… a featherweight 221 from my parents, and a dress form from my mom in law.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?

It keeps me sane and makes me happy! A friend told me that if I was going to live in LA, I had better have something to do that had zero to do with “the business”. I thought that was sort of dramatic… I have loads of hobbies anyway… well, she was right, people eat sleep and drink the biz here and that diet is really not for me. I’ve found that sewing has stuck more so than my other hobbies, it has the perfect combination of order and creativity. BurdaStyle definitely has a lot to do with my continuing obsession, as there’s always something new & cool to work on.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?

Those first few seams where you can see your creation taking shape and you know you’re doing it right is awesome. also pressing seams puts the universe in order. my least favorite thing is FITTING. I just want to finish it and put it on for the first time and have it fit like a glove. I would save myself loads of time if I would just
try the damn creation on once or twice before triple stitching those side seams, but it takes away from that little dance of joy at the end if you’ve already had it on before it’s completely done! but, if it doesn’t fit… no dance of joy. Rock and a hard place, eh?

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?

I was warned: once people know you can sew, there’s no end to the “minor” requests made… I’ve been asked to make a jumper for a chihuahua, a man’s blazer out of a baby blanket, a pair of jeans… I think people really don’t know how much time goes into it. (and they are a bit delusional about my skill level). So if I could make
something for anyone, I guess I’d make them understand what they’re asking! If I could make something for someone… I would make the perfect suit, and the someone would be my husband. Skill-wise that’s a pipe dream, but if we’re talking fantasy here, there it is!

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?

I visit pretty much daily, looking for new creations and using all of the great information and generally stalling on doing the things I am supposed to be doing. I really like everything about the site, and I know you all are improving things constantly. I love the community here— no one ever gets touchy or offended, everyone is so incredibly supportive of each other, and as far as online communities go in my experience, that’s an anomaly. I mean, I got in trouble because I introduced myself to 2 yahoo sewing groups at the same time… good lord, I think their world would end if they saw the double posts in our forum. Oh, I guess that is one area I’d love to see improved, heh heh, now that I mention it… but seriously, this site rocks.

7. What is your motto?

Hmm. I’m not sure I have a specific motto, though I could very well see myself walking around with theme music playing constantly. THAT would ROCK. through living in Los Angeles, I’ve become very aware of how important it is to be true to who you are as much as humanly possible, and to have fun doing so. This town is sort of more
fiction than fact, and it’s easy to get swept up in that. So I guess my motto is be true, to thine own self, and whoever comes your way, or whomever. You know what I mean…

To see Oonaablloona’s awesome creations click here! For more on Oonaballoona and to see more of her work check out her blog.

Featured Member: Sunnyb64

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I’ve lived my entire life in northern Delaware, on the east coast of the US.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
I grew up with it-my mother’s sewed for my whole life, as does my grandmother and my aunt. So she started teaching me how to use the machine when I was about seven years old. The first thing I clearly remember making was a Barbie dress that I hand-sewed from white felt scraps and seafoam-green yarn. I had to cut it off the Barbie later because I forgot to leave an opening to take it off. I think the first thing I sewed on the machine was probably an awful pair of elastic-waist shorts in the horrible neon colors they had in the 80s-so it’s probably a good thing I wasn’t taking pictures of my creations back then!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
When I was growing up, making clothes was a huge personal expression thing for me-I really hated the thought of wearing the same generic mall clothes as my classmates. Plus it made it really easy to have skirts that were long enough for my school’s dress code! Now, I work in a creative-based field (I’m a musician/music teacher), so it’s really nice to have something creative that’s purely for fun. Plus the clothes in stores still generally either bore me or annoy me when I know I could make them better (and often cheaper!)

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
Planning the project is a lot of fun for me, whether trying to decide what to do with a gorgeous piece of fabric, what to use for a certain pattern, or trying to come up with my own design altogether. I also really enjoy the machine work, and I love finishing things so I can wear them out of the house! My least favorites are cutting out the patterns and ironing. Especially ironing-I know it’s necessary, but it still annoys me.

5. If you could make something for anyone, who would it be and what would you make?
The ever-elusive perfect-fitting pair of jeans! I’d also love to be more adventurous in sewing for other people in general, as fitting anyone other than myself usually scares me.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
Besides the free/inexpensive patterns, the best thing is the sense of community, hands-down. Everyone is so encouraging of everyone else’s work and willing to share their knowledge and ideas, and I just love that. I also really love that experimentation with the patterns is encouraged, and seeing the different variations on the same pattern that people come up with! I’d really like to see a feature where how-tos connected to particular patterns can be linked from the main page of that pattern, if possible. And I want more mini-challenges!

7. What is your motto?
Borrowing from John Lennon, since I believe it really applies to sewing too. “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.”

For more info on Sunnyb64, take a look at her profile. If that is not enough for you, make sure you check out her blog!

Featured Member: EmilyKate

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I’m from Melbourne, Australia, which seems to be a very crafty city- I’ve noticed there are a lot of BurdaStyle members who live here too!

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I ever made was a ruched midriff-baring peasant top from a floral chintz fabric that in retrospect I think might have been designed with quilters in mind. It looked just as horrible as it sounds, though in my defense the whole Year 8 Textiles class had to make the same thing, and theirs looked just as awful. A couple of weeks after assessment my mum did up a batch of homemade jam and cut the peasant top up to make pretty lid-covers for the jars.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
What role does sewing play in my life? Its a bit of a paradox in that it helps me unwind AND it keeps my mind going a million miles an hour! For awhile there I thought I might go into the fashion biz, so I did the fashion school thing, but while learning about mass-production I realised the joy for me is very simple, it’s in the process of sewing and pattern-drafting- I love the fiddling-about of construction and creating things that are unique. While I have a real fascination with the stunning capabilities of the industrial “Fashion Machine”, I can’t help but think that in a world of contracting resources, we gotta be a little careful and we have to love our stuff longer- which happens naturally and beautifully when you make it yourself!

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favourite thing about sewing… sewing encompasses so much of what I love, its difficult to pick out one thing! I’m a fabricaholic (is anyone immune?), but I also nerd right out on the technical aspects- I LOVE patternmaking, and that was my best subject at school. I love reading about couture techniques and cool little hacks that make my sewing life easier. I’m also into collecting vintage sewing machines and notions, and trying to figure out how all the mechanical gizmos work is a lot of fun. As for what I hate… um, I’m not crazy about grading patterns once I’ve drafted them, and hemming is a drag. But that’s it!

5. If you could make something for anyone, who would it be and what would you make?
If I could make something for anyone, it would be for my fella, and it would be something he could actually wear. That hasn’t happened yet. I’ve made dozens of things for other people but for some reason the things I make for him are, like, jinxed or something. The first shirt I made him, the buttons all popped off and skittered across the room. I sewed them back on but he was still wary, so it ended up going to the op-shop. I knitted him a hat, and when he put it on, his normal, friendly face was immediately transformed into that of an armed robber. The next shirt I embroidered various cactuses onto. Yeah, I don’t what came over me with that idea, either. Op-shop! I’m considering trying to make him the Jakob shirt, maybe that will break the curse?

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
The BurdaStyle site is kinda scary, cos it’s like, the fulfillment of my very id or something!! It’s got everything a sewing-crazy person could want- constantly-changing eye-candy in the form of members posting their creations, members helping eachother out, members admiring eachother’s work (because as we know, while it’s great when your friends and family compliment your creations, only another sewer REALLY knows the work involved). The free patterns are great. And whoever came up with the How To interface, can I hug you? it really is a gift!! I check the blog every day because I always find out something useful. The real strength of the site I think will be the forums, and once they get sorted out that’ll be great. Sewers are in general, social, helpful folk and anything that aids their communication on the site will enhance the growth of community. And in particular, the BurdaStyle members are an exceptionally creative, energetic and friendly bunch! Everyone has something great to share.

7. What is your motto?
It isn’t really a motto, but it’s the simplest, truest and most useful piece of advice I’ve ever been given in relation to sewing: you’ve gotta press your seams as you sew! If you’re not in the habit of doing it, start now and make it your mantra – it’s the secret to having your creations go from looking ‘homemade’ to looking expertly hand-crafted!

For more info on Emily Kate, check out her profile. She has such awesome creations, and has taught us all how to make those wonderful cheeky panties

Featured Member: Susisonne

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I’m living in Karlsruhe in the south of Germany. I grew up next to here and moved to Karlsruhe for my studies.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I made were some curtains for my balcony last summer (2007). I needed some curtains but I didn’t want to spend much money. So I bought some fabric, asked my mom for her sewing machine and made my first steps with it. I was very satisfied with how they came out. So I also tried to sew some pillowcases with zippers. I had much fun with it and I still had some fabric left overs. This time I tried to sew my first garment: a skirt. After some weeks I bought my own sewing machine and went on sewing.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
I enjoy sewing. My studies are very theoretical so it is great to do something creative. For me sewing means relaxing. I spend many evenings with my sewing machine so my boyfriend sometimes says that I am a sewing addict.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
In my opinion the favorite thing about sewing is that you can create your own garments which are absolutely unique. You can do things which are exactly your style and fit. You can combine fabrics, colors and patterns the way you like and you can save a lot of money! I love to see the development of new garments: first you have only cut fabric peaces and in the end you have finished clothes. I like wearing things I made myself. It makes me proud because I’ve done it. I also thinks it is great that I do not have to buy clothes which were made in countries where people only get famine wages and have to work under catastrophic working conditions.
What I do not like about sewing is ripping up seams when I made something wrong. It costs so much patience and time. I also do not like hand stitching and cutting fabrics very much. But you have to go through it!

5. If you could make something for anyone, who would it be and what would you make?
There is no one special. I like making things you can wear everyday but also things for going out. I have sewn some things for my sister and my boyfriend, so I am very proud when they are wearing it.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I love this site because you get so inspired by all the members. Nearly every day I check the new creations for new ideas. It is great to have the possibility to write comments to other member’s creations. I’m always very happy when I have new comments on my site. The best thing about BurdaStyle is that you can download patterns for free and you can see what other members did with the same pattern! It is great to see the differences and alterations. When I started sewing I only did exactly what was described in the instructions. But with the Sidonie-MiniChallenge I had so much fun with doing alterations on my own. So please go on with such projects! I also like the how-tos because you can learn so many things!
I love that you can add other member’s creations to your favorites. But I think it would be also great if you could see the members who added your creation to their favorites. I only can see the first two of them and often the pictures are not the right ones. So this could be improved.

7. What is your motto?
I do not have a special motto. I just can tell all burdastyle members to go on with sewing and showing their creations on this site! It is so inspiring!

Susisonne has so many awesome creations, check them out here creations!

Featured Member: Ceregana

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am originally from Sofia, Bulgaria. I live since 2000 in Kassel – a middle size city in Germany. I came here to study architecture and I almost did the distance. My last exam is in march, so there is a limited number of sewing sessions till then.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
I am not sure I remember the first thing I’ve sewn. It must have been a pant or a blouse, when I was a teenager. My mom used to sew a lot so I somehow slipped neatly into it – I even had a small sewing machine as a kid (actually I think I never sewed something complete with it, it was just fine sewing straight lines…). Than I had a long pause and started doing clothes for myself about 2 years ago again, when I bought my own sewing machine.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing is a relaxing hobby. I love what I am doing and learning, but it can be very stressful and there is a lot of responsibility of being good and being professional in it. So sewing is a perfect distraction, because I still can do my own thing, but still doesn’t have to take as seriously as a profession. I am enjoying my layman status in it… The other role it plays it is this of me being tired of buying stuff, because it is fashionable and because I can afford to buy it, but me ending up with only few pieces I really love. So by sewing I made my resolution to make pieces I will wear for years, because they are exactly my style. And I like the idea it is much more correct and environment friendly… And it has been on the winning spot of best diploma distraction, next to the internet…

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite thing is to have the finished garment and have the feeling it is just what you wanted it to be and the satisfaction of being able to pull it through (I still have some unsewn dead bodys, that waited to be brought to live…).
I hate it when I do something wrong and must break the seams and start again. It just stops the flow and feels like a step in the wrong direction. And my machine is not very good at buttonholes…

5. If you could make something for anyone, who would it be and what
would you make?

I will love to make unique things that they really like for my friends and family. If I just only had the time and motivation for it…

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be
improved and what do you really like?

Hm, improving? I guess I will be happy to get more news feeds – I have my daily routine of checking website before i start working. I also will be interested in a kind of “behind the scenes” of every pattern that you make – the process from the sketch to the photo shoot.
And off course I love seeing the pattern modification how tos , but it doesn’t have to be you guys – users are also starting to post more of this. Sometimes when I am sewing something and couldn’t decide on a issue I get the desire to discuss is with some other users too.
What i really like about the site off course is the open source community idea. The positive attitude of the other users is a blessing too – it is just keeping one on trying again and being mean, since one can be anonymous is a think I hate about the web sometimes. I definitely sew and enjoy it more since i have the possibility to share the experience and the result.

7. What is your motto?
I don’t really have one. If I have to think of something it will be like “Don’t give up, keep on!” – just very down to earth and unromantic…

Learn more about ceregana by visiting her profile. Also check out her creations! To catch up more with Ceregana and find out what she’s up to, visit her blog!

Featured Member: Ale.B

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born in Milano Italy and have lived here all but one year (I spent my 16th year near St.Louis in Missouri). I wish I could leave this gray, noisy, polluted town, but it seems as Milano has the power to hook you in the back and never let you go. Also because of my job (graphic design in the fashion and art field) this is the place where I have to live.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
I really don’t remember sewing anything but buttons in my childhood. I was more for crochet and cros-stitch and some knitting, I learned that from my crafty aunts and grandmother.
I’ve always had trouble finding clothes that I really like 100% or that fit me right, especially pants, always too big on the waist, but most of all, I find it really disturbing to wear something that thousands of people also have, so I was always having a tailor modify my clothes.
15 years ago, I decided that I should start making my own clothes, so I bought a basic sewing machine that I still use (Pfaff hobby 303) but I got so frustrated because I didn’t know where to start, or what to do, so I just used it to hem my pants and fix the holes in my jeans…
Then a couple of years ago, I saw a skirt I liked in a shop, it was really just simple cotton, 2 side seams and the hem, and they were selling it for an embarrassing high price. So I decided to try and make my own inexpensive version of it. It came out fine (I didn’t post it though, I might get pictures of it and post it) it’s my favorite summer skirt, and after that I kept on making my experiments without patterns.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
I am now totally crazy with this sewing thing. I do it anytime I get the chance, that means mostly in the evenings, till 3 am. I think I need a bigger house because my wardrobe is experiencing a dramatic increase.
I just started pattern making school where this special and very patient lady teaches us, besides the basics, whatever we want to make, and I wish I could go there every day.
It is so relaxing and it also clears my mind from daily and work troubles. Sewing also makes me feel self sufficient, like growing your own vegetables or traveling with the wind on a sailing boat.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
The thing that I hate the most is marking the pattern on the fabric with the loose stitches, it takes too long, even though I like to see the fabric laying on the table, with loose white thread loops that look like a misterious 3-D hand-writing.
I love the sound of scissors when I cut the fabric, and most of all I really enjoy the fact that I can create something beautiful from a flat piece of fabric, something the way I like it (almost…).

5. If you could make something for anyone, who would it be and what
would you make?

I was thinking lately, with a friend, that I could do one of-a-kind models on which she could hand paint something, and then sell them.
I think I could also enjoy making unique clothes on request, for special occasions.
I would love to be good enough to make whatever I’m asked for, especially for my mother (she is very demanding.) I also enjoy making things for my friend’s newborn babies, so far I’ve been making 3 mini jeans jackets, one mini dress and three mini knitted baby sweaters

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be
improved and what do you really like?

What I really like is the sharing and the feeling of cooperation. I am so much inspired by all the other member’s creation, it pushes me to do better.
I am very grateful for the patterns you provide, and it is great that also the members get to upload and share their own patterns and advice. The how-to section is also very helpful. It’s very encouraging when I receive nice comments on my creations (and also very flattering…)
But you know all these things, it’s the reason why we all are here.
It’s a great community with an enormous potential that must be improved!!! There are a lot of members, I can’t imagine how many creations and interesting discussions are happening. What I really miss is some sort of notification when I get comments on my creations, but especially on other members creations. I wish I could “subscribe to the creation” and have some sort of panel where I can keep track of the discussions or comments I’m participating in or something like that. I easily lose track of where I made a comment or asked something, and unfortunately it gets lost in thosands of creations and discussions.
Besides that, thanks burdastyle team, and thanks to all the members!

7. What is your motto?
I don’t have one, but if I did I guess it would be something like: I can learn anything that anybody else can do, it’s just a matter of time

Learn more about ale.b by visiting her profile. Also check out her creations which include the almost Pollini dress pattern which is available for download. She loves photography and has a great photoblog which should definitely not be missed. For more examples of ale.b’s creative side, check out her graphic design portfolio. Keep up the great work!

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