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Hello, fellow BurdaStyle members! I’m super excited to be here today talking about my experience filming for the new TV show It’s Sew Easy. I can’t tell you how honored I was to be chosen for the spot, especially with so many amazing entries. I think I only squealed a little when I found out I was chosen. (Okay, I squealed a lot. A LOT.)

To prepare for the filming, I got to chat with the lovely ladies at BurdaStyle about what kind of project would make for a good ten-minute segment. I suggested the Linda skirt, with a fun added bonus technique: a horsehair braid hem that makes the full skirt stand out sassily. I love retro fashion (and blog about it all the time), so it was a natural project for me.

I got a list of guidelines about what to wear (no red, black, or white?!) and how to do my nails (natural!). I put aside my what-to-wear anxieties to begin the task of prepping for the segment. I made about 5 Linda skirts in the course of a week! The funny thing is, the more I made, the more I enjoyed making them. It got kind of Zen, you know what I mean? I ended up making one in a purple Japanese mum print that I eventually decided to wear on the show. I also made a fabulous (if I do say so myself) version in an emerald green hammered wool and silk blend that I originally bought for an evening gown.

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Linda skirts with horsehair braid hem.

The week of my filming arrived! I traveled to Cleveland, Ohio, and met BurdaStyle’s Carol Cho there. It must be said, Carol is awesome. She should be a professional showbiz manager or something. She took me out to awesome meals, made a fuss over my skirts (I thought she was going to steal the emerald green one), helped me prep, and calmed my nerves.

We got to spend a day just hanging out at the studio, getting a feel for the process. There were lots of other amazing women there filming segments and I got to watch them and learn the ropes. In a panic, I realized I needed to completely re-haul my approach and pare my entire presentation down. Ten minutes goes by quickly! It all worked out in the end, happily.

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In the green room. It’s really green!

The day of the filming (after a nervous, sleepless night, it must be confessed), I went to the studio early to have my makeup done. I have to say, this was a highlight for me. So glamorous! The makeup artist worked with my look, giving me minimal eye makeup and my signature red lips.

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Getting my mic and earpiece set up.

When it was time to go on set for my filming, I thought I might keel over from nervousness. Luckily, there were a lot of people helping me: Carol, the producer, Kathie Stull, and the amazing crew who told me I was better than Lady Gaga. (Thanks, guys.) I got through my ten minutes with only one minor stumble. The crazy thing was that you have to wear an earpiece so the producer can give you notes and count down your minutes left. No pressure or anything! At one point, she said “Don’t forget to show the piece of fabric.” Readers, I choked. Piece of fabric?! I was surrounded by those. Luckily, it wasn’t a big deal and they helped me start up again easily.

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My skirts on display. Those are all BurdaStyle photos on the wall!

Before I knew it, I’d finished my presentation. Sweet relief! I had a blast and I feel proud of how I did, thanks to all the help I had.

The show will air this summer and I can’t wait to tell you more about it as it gets closer. A big thanks to BurdaStyle for this opportunity. What an amazing experience!

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~Gretchen

Gretchen Hirsch loves vintage fashion. She’s the author of the popular blog Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing and is writing a sewing book to be released in fall 2012 from STC Craft/Melanie Falick Books. She lives in Queens with her husband and two cats.

39 Comments

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    Apr 29, 2011, 02.49 AMby amaydak

    Congratulations Gertie! After participating in your Lady Grey Sew-Along I am forever a fan. I love reading about such great opportunities happening to such a fantastic gal! :) Keep up the good work!

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    Apr 6, 2011, 12.03 PMby FabricUiPhoneApp

    Gretchen, this is great publicity for your book and blog. Videos in general are a great way to get followers since they’re more willing to watch stuff than read. Hope to see you do more videos even if it’s not with BurdaStyle. Keep up the good work.

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    Mar 31, 2011, 12.06 PMby 1sewingprincess

    Congratulations! I can imagine how stressful that might have been. But I am sure you did wonderfully. I really hope you will be able to show the video in Europe…maybe via Youtube?…just to give Burda people an idea.

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    Mar 31, 2011, 09.02 AMby suribabe

    Congrats and well done. I’m sure it will be a fantastic show.. Dont think we can watch it from the UK.

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    Mar 31, 2011, 07.24 AMby flowergirl22

    i know tv is scary,, but you are looking great girl,, and go girl, dont let anyone put you off,, wow,, all theese hours in make up must be great,,,, and all you can teach about sewing,, good for you

    dont let anyone put you off

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    Mar 31, 2011, 07.07 AMby frkbustad

    You are so gifted, Gertie! Look forth to see the program (I will manage, although I live in Norway…). I bet you look awesome on TV!

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    Mar 31, 2011, 03.09 AMby gertie

    Thanks so much for the lovely comments! They mean the world to me. I know that the show will air on PBS sometime this summer, but I’m still waiting to hear details beyond that. We will keep you updated when the show is scheduled! xoxo

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      Mar 31, 2011, 06.17 AMby Daniel Parker

      I am so excited for you!! I think you are darling and I feel like I would be friends with you in real life if we lived closer, WORK that red lipstick and congrats peace love and fashion -Dan :)

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    Mar 31, 2011, 02.42 AMby lizajane09

    You are a great teacher! I know this because I learned so much when I did your Lady Grey sew along. Congratulations! You deserve it.

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    Mar 30, 2011, 09.14 PMby cweeks

    Yep you rock that really is all there is to say about it ;)

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    Mar 30, 2011, 06.43 PMby tspoon-1

    thanks for sharing your experience! can’t wait to see the show… :)

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    Mar 30, 2011, 03.47 PMby missgemini

    Congratulations, Gertie. You deserve all your success.

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    Mar 30, 2011, 03.37 PMby tashmopolitan

    I’m SEW jealous! Congrats! That sound awesome!

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    Mar 30, 2011, 03.16 PMby Peter Lappin

    Congratulations, Gertie! You look terrific!

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    Mar 30, 2011, 01.07 PMby ladyshape

    Well done! You look amazing. I am going to go and check out your blog right now. Congratulations from sunny Scotland.

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    Mar 30, 2011, 11.09 AMby Petra Vorschneider

    Gongradulations! I wish we could get to see the show in Germany!

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    Mar 30, 2011, 08.33 AMby beastofcotton

    You look amazing! I wish we got PBS in Austrailia. Can’t wait until the book comes out.

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    Mar 30, 2011, 02.50 AMby caramia-made

    Congratulations Gertie! You’re an amazing inspiration to many, myself included! Looks like I’ll have to get cable this summer so I can watch the show… Or will it be shown online for us Canucks to watch?

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    Mar 30, 2011, 02.08 AMby sewsweetviolets

    Great choice. I like your blog. I think you will be a big hit.

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    Mar 30, 2011, 01.55 AMby nessys

    Gertie – you are the Bee’s Knees! Love your look, your blog (one of the most technically helpful, and thought provoking blogs on the net) and this behind the scenes (or seams – my little joke…)! I wonder if there is some way I can view the show here in Australia? Would love to see it – is it going to be down-loadable on the net somewhere?

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    Mar 30, 2011, 01.46 AMby baral

    What a fun time you had, thanks for sharing

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    Mar 30, 2011, 01.09 AMby blackpearl

    Oh Gertie you are just adorable. I love your blog and that you are trying so many new projects, it’s inspiring.

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    Mar 29, 2011, 11.11 PMby Squirrelchicklet

    Wish we could watch you in the UK! Looks like a great programme

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    Mar 29, 2011, 09.21 PMby robiedodson

    Congratulations!!! I can’t wait to see you on the show!

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    Mar 29, 2011, 09.20 PMby robiedodson

    congratulations!!! i can’t wait to watch you!

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    Mar 29, 2011, 09.20 PMby robiedodson

    congratulations!!! i can’t wait to watch you!

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    Mar 29, 2011, 09.14 PMby Seeks Corey

    Awesome! Glad you won, as I couldn’t imagine a better winner. :D

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    Mar 29, 2011, 08.54 PMby Gabriele Yorlano

    Congratulations! The links for your blog don’t seem to work. In case anyone else is looking try: www.blogforbettersewing.com

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