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We continue our series introducing you to the talented BurdaStyle members who created variation garments for The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook and giving you a first hand look at their creative and technical processes. This week, meet Chie Duncan (aka: Vivat Veritas) who put her own fresh spin on our classic Bag Pattern.

Hello! My name is Chie, and I have been a member of BurdaStyle since April 2008. I found out about BurdaStyle immediately after I got into sewing clothes. I searched “free patterns” on google and ended up on the BurdaStyle site. Shortly thereafter I was hooked. I spent hours looking through the different patterns and very soon found my way to viewing other people’s creations. I have been a faithful BurdaStyle girl ever since. Needless to say, I was thrilled when asked to be included in BurdaStyle’s very first book! It is such an honor.

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If you look at my page on BurdaStyle you will see that I love dresses, both making and wearing them, so my first choice was to sketch a dress variation. I came up with a couple of different designs based on my signature open-back dress. As a fun afterthought, I also decided to sketch a bag variation. I have no prior experience with bag making, but I do love them almost as much as dresses and thought why not give it a shot. The whole process was really new to me, but stretching yourself and learning new things is half the fun of the creative arts like sewing and design!

When I began sketching for the bag variation, I had a diaper bag in mind. At that time, my husband and I were starting to think about having a baby, so I took the opportunity to see what I could create in the area of a mommy/diaper bag. I wanted to create a piece that I considered both practical and stylish, however I also needed it to be versatile in its look. The original bag pattern is nice and big, but I thought it lacked a few things like pockets – I don’t think you can ever have enough pockets in a bag. I also added detachable shoulder straps, thinking it would be useful to be able to be hands-free when you are holding a baby. Now that I am a mom of a 6 month old, I really know how important it is to be able to throw a bag over your shoulder and forget about it when you have other things in your hands to worry about!

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Also in mind when sketching for the bag was the style element. Most bags that moms use are way too “momsy”. I chose a navy blue suede fabric not only because it’s chic but also because it hides stains well. Additionally, I added a gold color clasp for attaching and detaching the shoulder strap. This small detail gives it a more lively and urban look.

I am very excited for the book launch so I can try out other contributors’ variations. I am particularly looking forward to the jacket/coat variation. I have yet to make winter wear of this kind and am eager to try out what that contributor came up with!

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