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!

Featured Member: JJ

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born and grew up in Thailand. I’ve lived in the USA since 1998.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
Like other girls, my first sewing project was doll clothes.
I was lucky to have my mom and her sister teaching me to
sew. They both went to fashion school. My aunt had a tailor shop too
so I get to use some cool tools such as fabric covered button and
belt makers! But all my doll clothes were hand sewn because, I was
not allowed to use the sewing machine.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing was on and off in my life, when I don’t sew, I make soaps!
To get the long story short, I used to sew and make soaps professionally for little while
but now it’s mainly for fun
and to save money. I no longer buy clothes and soaps.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite thing is sewing of course. My least favorite thing is the finishing
touch details such as making buttonholes, sewing buttons and hemming.

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

I enjoy making kids clothes too especially for my 4 yr.old son.
Family and friends around me get handmade clothes for gifts even
they didn’t request them.

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

Burdastyle is an amazing site, I can’t even describe
how much I enjoy using the free downloadable patterns and
see other creations from around the world, so inspired!
For the improvement part, I can’t think of any…it’s very good
as is.

7. What is your motto?
Fine feathers make fine birds. The tailor makes the man.

JJ has done so much on the site! See her many creations and profile here, but also be sure to see the blouse she designed that was chosen in our first design competition, and the Leg-of-mutton Top Pattern she designed and uploaded herself!

Featured Member: Stepanka

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am from the Czech Republic, currently living in Sydney, Australia.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
1st thing I made was a stuffed caterpillar, sewn by hand, for my mums
birthday and I was 5 years old. First thing I sew on a sewing machine
was a stripy tshirt, when I was 6 years old. I was in trouble for
that, because I was not allowed to use my mums sewing machine, but I
just could not help it. She was in shock when she found me at home,
proudly wearing my new top which she had no idea where it came from.
After that, mum taught me how to use the sewing machine and I started
making outfits for Barbies and selling them to my friends.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Basically, I could not live a day without creating something. I love
my sewing machines and my scissors :)
Besides this simple way of enjoyment, I also design for clients, but I don’t stitch! I get them stitched. But initially I do stitch a sample piece.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I love everything about it. Sad, but it is true.

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

I would create a functional wardrobe for Britney Spears (i am not her
fan, but i just can not watch what unflattering pieces she is
wearing).

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

I am looking for similar creative souls on your web, I am always so
happy to see that people are enjoying sewing and I love all the
inspiration i get from your members.
I would love if the uploading pattern thingy was less complicated. I
would be more than happy to upload some patterns, but i find it too
time consuming.
I love the whole concept of the website, it is wonderful. Thank you.

See some of Stepanka’s colorful and feminine creations, especially the awesome Beach Cover Up, made from the Desira pattern, by viewing her profile here!

Featured Member: Zahra

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
Hi, I’m from Karachi, the Brain of Pakistan.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
First thing I made was a dress for my Barbie doll! I was around 11-12 yrs old. And I was totally inspired by my friend who had this whole wardrobe of her Barbie! She made everything for her doll. Clothes, bags, cushions and what ever she could sew.
But I lost interest in miniature dressmaking soon. Later for my graduation I took Fashion Design, that’s how I learned sewing properly. People here don’t sew clothing, they get them stitched by tailors. I also did not stitch my own clothes until BURDASTYLE inspired me!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing is a perfect way for me to spend my day! Its even more fun when one works with group of people/classmates. It has wonderful effect on us. Creating something from an idea, Working on it and then giving it a finish. It’s very refreshing, yet challenging!

Besides this simple way of enjoyment, I also design for clients, but I don’t stitch! I get them stitched. But initially I do stitch a sample piece.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I hate troubles that my sewing machine creates!!! And I even hate filling out bobbin and threading the machine!! It just breaks the tempo!
Love everything else about sewing!

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

It could be for anyone, something unique! Depending on the person.

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

I am looking for more wonderful patterns! Tutorials and what not! There is so much one can learn from this wonderful site.

I think admin should participate in discussions on regular basis! Cause they are the ones we lookup to for perfect answers or solutions. Although, this site has some amazing members who come up with such wonderful creations but there are certain issues that only BurdaStyle can resolve.

Besides this, I also find a need of a tutorial or series of tutorials regarding illustrations, reading technical drawings, making one, what to keep in mind etc. . .
As now members are sharing their patterns and many don’t know how to work on technical drawings or people like me are not very good at them. So it would be really nice to see some tutorials regarding this.

And BurdaStyle can also encourage members to sell their patterns at this site!

7. What is your motto?
Is to enjoy every moment of Life! To cherish what God has given me and to make proper use of it.

Learn more about Zahra by seeing her profile here, and be sure to download the Retro Top pattern!

And, an Editor’s Note: Zahra is right! As admins, we should and would love to spend more time in the forums and commenting on the site, and very much appreciate how much the members communicate with each other on their own. We find ourselves so busy sometimes that getting in the forums does not happen as often as we would like. We will certainly do our best to respond to all of your questions as they come up. If you find your comment is not responded to, you can always send an email to answers@burdastyle.com or send any of us personal messages!

Featured Member: Yoshimi

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I am a molecular biologist who was born in Japan. I am married to a
husband, who is also a molecular biologist. He has been very
supportive to my sewing and taken all photographs of my creations. We
moved to UK 10 years ago with our daugther as we both got jobs as
researchers there and stayed for about 5 years. Since we came back to
Japan, we have been living in Mishima city. I started sewing half a
year later after coming back to Japan, because I could only find
similar clothes in similar colors with only 1 or 2 average sizes in
the shops. I didn’t like those clothes, besides, they didn’t have my
size. Eventually I stopped moaning and decided to make myself what I
want to wear instead.
3 years ago, I went to see a color analyst who tells which colors
would suit you by seeing your colors of eyes, skin, hair, etc.,
thinking knowing what color would suit me might be useful for sewing.
She then condemned me to stop wearing bold colors and black. She also
showed me the colors that suit me perfectly, and I had to admit I was
way too far better in pink and pale blue. The effect of the colors on
my face was too obvious. As I had been such a black wearer, I was
utterly flattened by the verdict. My wardrobe was full of blacks at
that time. But I realized for the first time that I had been wearing
what I thought was cool, not what was making myself look better. I
started to wear soft pale colors experimentally and my life has
changed so much. I’m getting lots of compliments on what I wear (not
on me, that’s the point I have to laugh at), and I’m happy with
myself looking a bit better, now.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
I really liked hand-crafting ever since I was a child. I sewed my
first garment when I was 12 years old. It was a bikini, made of blue
piled cotton (fabric for towels!). I was really lucky because it
didn’t get torn in the crowded pool!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Because I make myself all clothes but underwear and woolen sweaters,
sewing plays very important role in my life now. It’s the chance of
self-realization, too. I seriously try to think what to sew before
getting started. I use better fabrics as far as my budget permits, so
that I can drive myself into a corner. Otherwise I tend to sew
something with just a curiosity, might get something nice but
wouldn’t work as my wardrobe. I don’t like to abuse the natural
resources in that way (but it happens so easily). Thus I learn the
way of self-control by sewing as well. Did I forget to mention sewing
garments itself makes me relaxed and gives a jolly good time?

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My least favorite part of sewing is cutting! I’d be so nervous
because it’s the time for no going back. My favorite part is the time
for assembling those 2D into 3D and seeing a dramatic change.

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

I am secretly sewing a tie for my husband for Valentine’s day. It’s a
cute one, with many many little penguins.

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

I love the fact that BurdaStyle is giving us such a great place where
we can talk about our passion for sewing, as well as providing many
free pattern downloads. I have been inspired so much by others
creations, and always thankful to everybody for sharing their
information. I can even hold back my desire for black clothes by
applauding others creations! Thank you, BurdaStyle!

7. What is your motto?
“I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance.” (Socrates)

Learn more about Yoshimi and see the wonderful creations she has made (many in pinks and pale blues!) by visiting her member profile. You should also check out her blog; even if you can’t read Japanese, you might be inspired by some of the beautiful photos!

Featured Member: Ctee

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I live in Sydney, Australia

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I made was this horrible cowl neck dress which was probably about two years ago. It was basically two rectangles sewn together. I started sewing when my auntie lent me her sewing machine to me.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Haha, well basically everything I wear I have made, never go shopping anymore, which is good. I have saved so much money.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favourite thing about sewing is when you had a design in your head but it turns out even better than what you were expecting. Oh my least favourite thing would be ending up with something I wouldn’t wear and then feel as if it was a waste of perfectly good fabric.

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

My good friend Lane, she’s really into flannels. I started cutting it out but i havent started sewing yet. I have to keep persuading her not to buy a blue flannel.

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

I really like how everyone here is so nice, and they give you constructive criticism and people take in the criticism without the attitude.

7. What is your motto?
No pain, No gain =)

Learn more about Ctee by visiting her blog, or viewing or her unique creations and member profile!

Featured Member: ClaireLovesToSew

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I grew up with my parents who live just outside London and I came to Plymouth to study,and have been living here by the sea ever since.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
My mum set me up well by teaching me the basics of sewing,and encouraging an interest in craft in general. I used to make dresses for my Sindy doll out of handkerchiefs, but the first thing I ever really sewed for myself was a plaid miniskirt, which I made out of an old granny skirt. I’m not entirely sure my mum knew I was chopping it up while she was in the next room!There seems to be a tradition of crafting on my mums side, my old bedroom is filled with amazing crochet books from the 1910s and suitcases of fabric handed down from grandmas and aunts…

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
An increasing one! Most of the time I was at uni, I didn’thave a machine, and ever since I got my own, I’ve been making up for lost time!I sew practically every weekend, but in my head I’m sewing 24/7. I’m sewingmore and more for myself these days – I feel guilty buying sweatshop clothes on the high street, so I’m fighting back!

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I am a bit under-skilled/lazy, so I take shortcuts and then I get annoyed when the shortcuts don’t work out. I should start being more strict with myself, in order that I can appreciate better pieces when they are finished.

My favourite thing has to be just the fascination in seeing a flat piece of fabric become 3D and moving and structured. It’s like origami to me.

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

They don’t call them classics for nothing – I’d love to have yards and yards of a beautiful silk or something and create an Oscar-winning dress. Possibly for an actress who happened to be exactly the same size as me,and then suddenly couldn’t go to the Oscars at the last minute so I could wear it! Muhahhahaha…

Closer to home, I’d like to get my ability to a level, where I’m confident enough to make stuff for other people, my friends and family. It’sall a bit experimental at the moment.

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

I love that Burdastyle aims to teach as well as to share. My learning curve is so steep since I found the wealth of information available tome here, and that Burda-ians seem so happy to help each other. Nowadays I use two machines when sewing – the sewing machine and the laptop! I hope you guys can iron out the kinks soon, just keep being the pioneering site you are and move onwards and upwards!

7. What is your motto?
I guess my friends would say “Every day’s a schoolday”.

Learn more about ClaireLovesToSew, and the super cool creations she makes on her “70’s-tastic sewing machine” by viewing her member profile!

Featured Member: Lilo

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born in Romania in a city (Oradea) only 20 km from the Hungarian border; many people who live there are hungarian, my family as well, so my mother tongue is hungarian. I learnt romanian later at the childrengarden and basic school.
I moved to Sweden when I was 20 years old, so my passport and my university degree are swedish. Much later, when the idiot at Scania told me I didn’t have the right education when solicitating for a job as engineer in scientific computing (I am a MSc in guess what? Scientific Computing!!) I gave up on both trying to find a job in Sweden and my precious education.
I took a job in the pharmaceutical industry as modeling & simulation scientist (pharmacokinetics) in Germany in 2004. It didn’t klick though with my (actually dutch!) boss, so I started working and living in the Netherlands, Nijmegen in 2005 and do that ever since.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
My first clothes were made for my three ‘daughters’ (i.e. dolls, they were Barbie-like) when I was something like 8 years old. So I was making up stories about what happened with my daughters, telling them to my grandma (who gave me the dolls) and making clothes for them. At the age of 10 I thought well, if I can make clothes for my girls than I could try to make something for myself? I saw grandma’s sister sewing simple things on her pre-war machine with a foot pedal, so … So I went to the shop and bought myself a piece of nice pink linnen. I measured myself. I made a pattern of a blouse with raglan sleeves. I cut the fabric and sewed it by hand. Of course I never heard of moving ease at that time, so the blouse turned out to be too small. So I figured out adding a diamond-shaped extra piece under the arm at the armhole would make it wearable. I proudly wore the thing a couple of times! I never heard either of finishing the seams, so it decomposed before I grew out of it. I didn’t sew anything more in twelve years. I started again when I met a friend who was sewing and got my ‘old thing’ (=my first machine, a Singer Melody in 1990) from my parents-in-law.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
It’s my absolute favourite hobby and I am getting more and more ‘serious’ about it in the sense of wanting to improve my skills up to the professional level. I started taking a basic course in pattern making and sewing techniques; I really enjoy the new skills I got with the course (although I’m not very happy with the teacher, I quitted her and will start with somebody else soon) and I just want more, more!
I spend most of my spare time in my sewing corner, I can spend a lot of time in getting details right like moving a seam 1 mm if I think it would improve the fit. Ironically, the better I get with my technical skills the more obsessive I turn with my garments.
I also decided for a half year ago to sew all my clothes (well, as many as possible). I only bought a … goose-feather(? don’t know the proper English) jacket on sale since then.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
I love to stand in front of a beautiful fabric and figure out what I would like to make from it, find a fitting pattern/design. I also like to draw and cut out the pattern when it’s my own design (but copying something out of BWoF is just a boooring necessity). I LOVE to put the scissors in the fabric, this is IT, no turning back and changing my mind from this moment on, a particular piece of clothing is being born here and now! Sewing the pieces toghether is ok, but I already start getting impatient to see it ready. After the first fitting I kinda loose interest, I already know how the end result is supposed to look like, it’s ready in my head; the very end – correcting the fit, putting in lining, buttons is a pain in the …, I really have to disciplin myself to get anything ready. That’s why I need to have more projects ongoing in parallell, between 3 and 6 is usually ideal (when I have more nothing will get ready within a reasonable time).

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

I am already making some things for my family (husband and daughter), but only from ready patterns so far; I would like to make personalized block patterns that fits them and make my own designs according to their ideas, i would like to be able to make EXACTLY what they want.
I am dreaming of doing it even on a larger scale, I would like to be the tailor of the village if I would live for a couple of hundred years ago, make tailored clothes for more people, many people with different shapes and sizes and … Are time travels really impossible?
After retirement I would like to have a small tailor shop (but let’s get realistic, in these days nobody wants to pay for handcraft; also with each generation the tolerance for badly fitting clothing increases as long as it’s the latest hot fashion). Earth calling, earth calling! … Ok, landed.

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

Inspiration, fresh ideas. Food for my ego. I’m not in for the free patterns really (I subscribe to both BWoF and Knipmode and started making my own patterns lately), but they are a nice extra, a complement.

The bug problems are ennoying and I’m not so much for the advetisements either, although I understand the need of keeping the site going.
I like very much the idea of sharing, I think it’s great that we start having other members than the Burdastyle team sharing their patterns (Lauriana, Mlssfshn, looking forward for JJ’s).

7. What is your motto?
Be yourself, there are enough others.

An extra – my friend Claes’ (this is so fun, I have an akward sense of humor)
Cheer up, the worst is yet to come!

Learn more about Lilo and see the many creations she’s made for herself, her daughter, and even her husband by viewing her member profile!

Featured Member: Lauriana

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I live in the Netherlands, in the city of the Hague (Den Haag in Dutch)

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The real first thing must have been some kind of ‘garment’ for a doll, Barbie or stuffed animal toy, but I don’t know what anymore. However, I vividly remember the first items of clothing I made. Those were trousers with a side zipper and an long tunic style blouse I made when I was 14 years old. My mum used to sew a lot back then, so she could give me instructions about the zipper etc. Still, it wasn’t a very succesful project: the shirt fabric was to stiff so it looked awful and the zipper in the trousers would alway bite the flesh of my hip.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Quite a big role, at the moment. For the past two years, I’ve been making a lot of my own clothes and after joining a once a week sewing and pattern making course last winter, I’ve become even more obsessed. I used to make clothes from Burda and Knipmode patterns, often altering them to my liking but the lessons I took allowed me to follow my own ideas and have all my patterns perfectly sized for me. I now make all my own clothes and some for my boyfriend and family if they want. I’d love to get better and faster still, so I could do this professionally

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite things are designing things and the sewing itself, seeing a garment take shape. I used to hate things like hemming, but after learning how to iron hems and seams in shape, use bias fold tape and sew things like that by hand, I actually find myself enjoying finishing my creations. My least favorite things are (sometimes) cutting fabric and definitely putting in snaps and grommets with a hammer. Oh, and because of a problem with my sewing machine, sewing stretchy knits is really tricky for me, and I would like to use those a bit more and make lingerie.

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

I would love to offer made to measure clothes and pattern to people with all kinds of shapes and sizes. I love tailored clothes and I think they should be available to everyone but I know how difficult that can be if you’re nowhere near ‘standard sizing’

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

I love Burdastyle as an endless source of inspiration. There are so many original creations and how to’s posted all the time! I also enjoy the patterns, even if it’s often just to learn more about
pattern construction. Where that’s concerned: I think it’s great we can all have a say about what patterns we want on the site.

What I think could be improved (other than those bugs we all know and hate) is the rate at which things are posted about contests, design calls and things like that. I absolutely love the fact that there are design calls but we are still waiting for the sweater dress and JJ’s shirt to be posted as patterns. I understand those things take time, but I would like some updates while we’re waiting.

7. What is your motto?
Now that I have to think of it? Well, what about: ‘Failure is always an option, but success doesn’t hurt’ ;)

Editor’s Note: We understand that it must seem like ages have passed since the competition entries make it to the site. We will try to keep you updated through the whole long process for future submissions, and are very happy to announce that both the submissions from the first contest, Malissa’s Sweatshirt dress and JJ’s ruffle blouse, will both be posted in the next two weeks! The reason there is such a delay in posting the patterns after the contest is due to all the steps in our production process, which takes almost 3 to 4 months, after you consider the draping, pattern making, grading, digitalizing, sample sewing, photo shoot location choosing, model fittings, photo editing, and phewww, I’m exhausted already just listing it. . .
But thanks for the advice Lauriana! We will try to keep everyone more informed along the way! Learn more about Lauriana and see some of her awesome creations by viewing her member profile!

Featured Member: fashion1

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

I´m born, grew up and still live in Dresden (Germany). I love this city! I made my job training as an occupational therapist here and worked for three years in this job. now I´m waiting for a retraining in the next year because I can´t work any longer in this profession (I must not carry heavy things…) I hope my hobby becomes a profession :)!!!

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

I grew up int the GDR (east germany). nice clothes were scarce and expensive. so my mother sewed for our family (for her, my dad, for my sister and me). my sister, too, began sewing clothes for her dolls and later for herself. and then I also began sewing. I think the first thing I made is a quilt and a pillow for my doll. then from old shirts skirts together with my sister ;). In my youth i had first tried working with patterns and real fabrics, but I did not actually wear many of them, because the result wasn´t so good ;P! I gave up on that for a while. And when I began to work I did not have much time for it.
But now…in January 2007 i tried again and was very happy that it was a success! And I can´t stop, like you seeing here on this side!!!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?

At the moment it plays a very big role! I have much time for it and use it for sew a lot. I want to improve my skills to prepare me to be trained at a fashion school, hopefully.

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

I love to see how a project goes to the end, see it finished. Wearing it and getting compliments for it ( Who wouldn’t like that ;P). What I really don´t like is to copy patterns and cut the fabric pieces out. For me it´s very annoying. Also when something doesn´t work in the way I want it to work.

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

I like to sew clothes for my friends and family. It´s very nice to see them smiling and happy about the things I´ve done for them. What I would to sew are historical and film costumes. When I saw those costumes that made by mellu and paranoire I wish I could make this, too!
I also have some plans for my future which have a lot to do with sewing and pattern making for other people…

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

I really like to get much inspiration from other members’ creations. Also the free pattern downloads and how to´s! It´s great to have a forum for these things and to communicate with other members. And get feedback on my creations is a very good thing!
What should be improved are the things that don´t work on this side (the problems are listed in the forum). I know that´s not so easy as we thought but with the time it´s very frustrating. Hope you get a handle on this, because I love burdastyle :) and it would be nice to use it without any trouble!

7. What is your motto?

I did not use to have a motto, … but now: Never give up!

Featured Member: PinkHibiscus

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born here in the US, but I grew up in Taiwan. I came to the US for graduate school 4 years ago, now I reside in Ithaca, NY.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
It’s hard to recall exactly what I made first, because I started making things when I was really small. This was mainly because of my mom. She had a major interest in crafts and sewing and was a crafts teacher when I was small. We order stuff animal kits together and do sew alongs at home with her. So I would say the 1st thing I made was probably a stuffed animal of some sort, and it was all done by hand sewing. Funny thing is, I did a stuffed animal in my high school crafts course by hand sewing, and the teacher suspected that my mom had helped me sew it with machine…Should that be a good thing or bad?^^So during free time, I learned how to quilt and took on some handbag projects. Just recently, I started sewing garments because my sister left some old clothes. I did some reconstruction projects and eventually turned to sewing from patterns.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Since I took up sewing (garments) by machine this summer, it has been a stress reliever for me that helps me relax, focus and feel accomplished.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite thing about sewing is probably seeing pieces come together and form a beautiful shape, and learning some new techniques from every project. My least favorite thing about sewing is “finishing” the garment, that refers to hemming and zig zagging the edges.

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

I would probably want to make a nice dancing dress for my mom when I am more skilled. She now takes a lot of interest in dancing whether social, international or cultural, so she gets custom made dancing dresses from a local seamstress. I wish one day I can design her dress too.

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

I visit burdastyle for inspiration, pattern and to learn sewing techniques. The creators have an eye for style and always bring out really eye-catching patterns. Other than free patterns, the best thing of this site is the established illustrated how-tos, everyone does a great job explaining a technique they want to share, I want to thank you all! I think other than the creation uploading “bugs” that have been bugging us, what I would like to see is probably more activities such as contests that can engage members to feel involved. (and to see the results of the contests!)

7. What is your motto?
Be creative and sew through life!

Learn more about PinkHibiscus and see some of her awesome creations by viewing her member profile!

Featured Member: Brooke Noelle

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I’m originally from Portland, Oregon, located in the beautiful
Northwest. I moved out to New York to attend culinary school and
hopefully become an accomplished cake decorator. I’ve lived in
Brooklyn for almost 3 years now, and I love it. I reside in historic
Bed-Stuy, in a brownstone with my partner, Mike, and our two comical
felines.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
I took sewing classes when I was very young, an early sign of the
project mania to arise in my later years. My teacher took pictures of
me with every single finished project, which I still have in a photo
album back home. Some of my earliest masterpieces include a denim
tote bag, fabric dolls, and a hideous sweatshirt covered in neon
numbers. I dropped sewing to pick up crosstitch and didn’t come back
to it until just a few months ago. I’m glad I did!

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Sewing plays an important role as a stress relief and creative outlet.
As forementioned above, I’m a bit of a project maniac, and I take
great pleasure in having new things to create, and I love learning
something new. Now that I’m not in school, I like to spend all my
spare time learning a new crafts. And there’s no better feeling than
when you wear something you’ve made and get a compliment on it!

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favorite thing is that I can pick out a pattern, visualize it in a
different way and be able to make it (potentially)! My least favorite
thing about sewing is when I get lost and frustrated. But I know it
comes with the territory, and I’m pretty used to it, being a self
taught knitter.

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

I would have to choose a matching apron, potholder, dress set for
Julia Child, who is my complete hero. She started her life later than
most people and made so much out of it. It teaches me to never give
up, and always remember that you’re never too old to learn new tricks.

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

I always log in to the site to check out everyone elses creations, it
keeps me motivated and provides me with ideas and inspiration, I love
it! I think the site works really well. Maybe provide more links to
other sites, places to get fabrics or notions, blogs, etc. Another
thing that would make it flow better was if you could click on
someone’s picture and go to their profile, so you don’t have to search
for them. Otherwise, I like everything about it, and tune in everyday
for updates and new patterns.

7. What is your motto?
“Everything in moderation, including moderation.” -Jacques Pepin

Learn more about Brooke and see some of the amazing cakes she’s made by seeing her member profile and her photo blog here.

Featured Member: Lifje

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

I’m from Denmark and right now I live in Copenhagen. But I’ve lived all my life with my parents in a farm in the middle of nowhere.

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

The first thing I made…that’s a looong time ago. I think it must have been some knitted christmas present for my parents. I spent most of my childhood in my grandma’s house where she tought me how to sew, knit and all that kind of stuff. In the Danish school you have lessons of sewing when you are about 10 years old. So that’s when I learned how to sew on a sewing machine…though one day I sewed into my finger and that scared me from touching a sewing machine for some years :P

What role does sewing play in your life?

I love making things…I love to draw, to sew, to knit, to play the piano, to make bracelets…almost anything that I can make with my hands.

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

My favorite thing is to see my ideas take shape…at the same time that’s what I hate the most. . . when I have these great ideas in my head of what I want do and then it just doesn’t work.

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

Don’t really know. . . I love to make things for people. It makes me really happy! It also makes me feel good when people ask me to make this and that for them. . .a lways nice when people like your work.

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

I look at other peoples creations, at the patterns and at the how tos. I like to get inspired and get feedback on my things. I never use patterns but it would be fun to try some day.

What is your motto?

No motto…and I don’t want to make one up just to have one :P hehe!

If you want to learn more about Lifje, check out her awesome member profile

Featured Member: Elainemay

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

I’m originally from New York, but have moved around quite a bit and currently live in Aachen, Germany. I can walk to Belgium and the Netherlands in half an hour from my apartment!

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

I started sewing dresses for my Licca doll at the age of about 6
(sound familiar?). My mother dressed me in the ugly hand-me-downs of a very frumpy family friend and the other kids made fun of my clothes :) I lived vicariously through my dolls by constantly making ball gowns for them. Since then I’ve mostly sewn craft projects and occasionally clothing that almost always looked homemade and didn’t fit well because I’m so short and skinny. I only started sewing clothing “for real” a few months ago, when I met my friend Johanna who makes beautiful, stylish clothing for herself. She showed me her clothes and introduced me to Burda Modemagazin (aka. Burda WoF), and I decided it was time to learn to sew using proper techniques and methods.

What role does sewing play in your life?

To be perfectly honest, in addition to being a fun and addictive
hobby, sewing pads my ego and my vanity. Regardless of whether I’m sewing for myself or others, when something turns out well, it makes me feel like I am AWESOME (I hope everyone feels that way when they make something nice.) And it allows me to treat myself to luxurious, well-fitting clothing while feeling productive rather than guilty- you don’t get that from shopping for velvet coats at the mall :)

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

I like most aspects of sewing, but I especially appreciate the stage in sewing a garment when it starts to bear a real resemblance to the thing I designed in my imagination. That first glimpse of the object I’d previously seen only in my head is very satisfying. My least favorite thing is laying out the pattern pieces and cutting the fabric. I don’t know why it annoys me so much. Maybe I’d like it better if I had a rotary cutter. Or someone to do the cutting for me :)

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

I love seeing my family and friends wearing things that I’ve made for them, but if we’re talking about fantasy, I’d want to make ornate tutus for the New York City Ballet in the luxurious and uncompromising style of the legendary costume designer Karinska.

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

I troll the creations for inspiration – I get so many ideas for things I want to make by seeing the fantastical designs from ParaNoire, the elegant, wearable pieces from Jj and Lilo, the playful and trendy designs from Myk, and so many other talented and creative hobbyists. I always see a detail or a line or a color in people’s creations that I want to steal to use in my own sewing, and that I would never have thought of myself. I know you can’t judge people by the way they dress, but I also feel like I get to know and appreciate the other community members in a way by seeing the products of their imagination and what they have to say about them, so that is a nice unexpected bonus. And although I have not yet had the chance to make a BurdaStyle pattern, I also love the philosophy of BurdaStyle; what a resource to have such stylish and wearable patterns available to anyone- I download all the instruction PDFs and imagine how I’d make them if only I had more time! What should be improved? I don’t know… you could all drop by my profile page and post a hello—I think I’d like that :)

What is your motto?

My sewing philosophy is that if I’m going to expend the time, effort and resources to make something, it should either be something spectacular and uncompromising, or a huge blazing failure (preferably the former, as the latter is expensive and wasteful). I know I should make practical, pretty things, but I never have an urge to sew a cute cotton tank top as a quick afternoon project even though I’m sure I’d use it a lot!

If you want to learn more about Elainemay, check out her beautiful member profile

Featured Member: Myk

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

I’m from the Philippines. I live in Manila but I come from a small city called Baguio – the only area in our tropical country that reaches around 8˚C.

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

My mother got tired of me pestering her while she was sewing, tinkering with her stuff, asking her the where, what and why of all parts in the machine – that as soon as my legs were able to reach the pedal on our old singer machine I was taught how to sew. I started out with doll clothes and simple stuff for my “play” kitchen like place mats and small curtains. The first thing I made for myself was a tote bag for school. I advanced to alterations of hand-me-down clothes. I stopped sewing since I’ve been busy with work, but after a decade of office tasks, I got tired and decided to take a break. A month ago, I started a basic certification course in pattern and dressmaking.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?

Right now, it’s what’s keeping me busy. I’m an insomniac and this is what I do to make me sleep :) . It’s turning into an obsession! I plan to take up fashion design. It’s nerve wrecking to think that at this point in my life, I’m switching careers…but what the heck – 30 is the new 20 :) .

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

I don’t like ripping/decontructing seams. This is the one thing I hate but can’t do away with. I wish there’s a way I could just zap the stitches off. I also don’t like layouting the patterns on cloth because I get bored with endless pinning especially with very soft fabrics.

I love making, altering and merging patterns…and shopping for fabrics – I spend hours and hours mesmerized in rolls and rolls of textiles!!! I really don’t like to iron clothes but right now, it’s becoming a habit.

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

I would really want to make the perfect denims for me and people like me who have irregular waist to hips ratio (small waist big hips!) :) .

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

BurdaStyle is my caffeine website! It has been a part of my daily routine. Thank you editor for coming up with this baby!! I look forward to the following week when the new patterns are uploaded. I hope we could search for creations via category – like all dresses, tops, etc. Also if we could search for people within our area so we could get acquainted and meet :) .

If you want to find out more about Myk, check out her member profile. See shares her skills in a How To where you learn how to merge the Tara top with the dolman pattern. Check this out here.

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