Featured Member: Myra_Lee

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



I am originally from Adelaide, Australia but moved east to Melbourne about 5 years ago where I live with my boyfriend, 2 cats and dog.





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



My grandmother was a dress maker in the Philippines and she and my mother and auntie would sew me clothes when I was little. I dabbled in a bit of hand sewing when I was much younger but didn’t learn how to properly use a sewing machine until November 2007. I enrolled in an 8 week CAE beginners class and the thing I made was a pair of pj pants. I didn’t realize how difficult it is to match unsymmetrical plaid though, so that was my first big lesson!



My Mum brought over her old Elna machine for me and I have been happily sewing away at home since. The second item I made was a 1950s style dress, as part of a 3 week project class at a new sewing lounge in North Melbourne called Thread Den. Since then I did a few other classes there too like a trousers class and a beginners pattern making class to build my confidence, and have been using many of the fabulous patterns from Burda Style to start making some items on my own at home.





3. What role does sewing play in your life?



It’s my new favorite hobby and I think it’s one that’s going to last. I love projects and being able to have something to show for my efforts at the end. And I find it a great way to get my mind off work and other things – sewing is the best procrastinator! I get great satisfaction after finishing a piece of clothing I’m really happy with and being able to wear it or give it a friend to wear out. Since I have started doing more sewing I find myself thinking about the construction of clothes a lot more. When a see a dress or shirt I like, I don’t just look at the cut and the pattern, I find myself inspecting the inside and seeing how it was put together, if there’s a yoke, and getting ideas for adding detail.



I think it’s an important creative outlet for me, and also makes me feel like I’m carrying on a family skill.


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



My favourite things are finding new sewing patterns to try and thinking of ways to individualize them. I adore hunting for fabric I LOVE and inspires me to turn them into items of clothing. I recently went to Paris and Lisbon and had a great time rummaging through fabric stores there to find something special. I also love blogging my projects once they are done and sometimes joke that I am making clothes more for the blog than for me! And I love meeting other sewers through BurdaStyle, my blog and at Thread Den and finding inspiration in each other’s projects and sharing encouragement and ideas.



My least favorite thing would have to be doing all the measuring and cutting! It always takes so much longer than I think it will, and calculating measurements is definitely harder to do when you’re tired which can make an after work class a bit of a challenge! Oh and of course unpicking… Which I inevitably seem to end up doing at least a bit of each project… Hopefully I am improving and doing less of this as I gain more experience.





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



Hmm… I would really love to be able to make a well cut suit for my boyfriend – Marc Jacobs style!



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 patterns and looking at everyone’s creations and uploading my own. And the How Tos are a god send too, so helpful! I love receiving comments from other members about my creations and I love leaving comments about creations that inspire me to make my own. I’d love if were a bit easier to find other members in my area.



7. What is your motto?



I don’t really have one. But how about – find what inspires you!



Between her cute dolls and her cool clothes, myra_lee’s is a master of choosing patterns for each piece she creates. You should check out her blog, it chronicles her adventures in travels, shopping, music and of course sewing.

BurdaStyle at the Fashion Week in Berlin!

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Last weekend Benedikta and I were lucky to attend the 20 year anniversary of ELLE magazine in Germany amidst the Fashion Week in Berlin. We took the opportunity to discover the city and its great fashion spirit!

 

Dress code for the ELLE party was black tie – easy for us BurdaStyle girls! Benedikta wore the <a href:“http://www.burdastyle.com/patterns/show/165&#8221;&gt;Cate dress, I showed off our <a href:“http://www.burdastyle.com/creations/show/4724&#8221;&gt;Heidi Prom Variation.

 

On the first picture (taken by Roger Riedel) you see our new fun friends in Berlin: Julia Reinecke editor from the German urban culture blog <a href:“http://www.hobnox.com/willkommen.914.de.html&#8221;&gt;hobnox, Mary Sherpe, who documents Berlin street style at <a href:“http://stilinberlin.blogspot.com/&#8221;&gt;STIL IN BERLIN and blogs about all happenings and thoughts around fashion at <a href:“http://pudri.blogspot.com/2008/07/elle-fashion-star.html&#8221;&gt;pudri (both are in ENGLISH!), as well as Christina Haeussler from MySpace Germany, me, and Benedikta. The second picture shows the stage, you can see Claudia Schiffer and Karl Lagerfeld. We tried to talk to him, Benedikta even held on to his glove, but all to no avail, he couldn’t get inspired by open source sewing that quickly.

 

Also part of the week was the launch party of GLAM in Germany (our ad network that is helping us to make some money!) where our friends from the German fashion blog <a href:“http://www.lesmads.com/&#8221;&gt;LesMads Jessica Schwarz and Julia Knolle hung out as well. Julia is the new editor-in-chief of the <a href:“http://de.glam.com/&#8221;&gt;GLAM portal, congrats!

 

Benedict who films for Fashion Lab back stage at fashion shows was also present with his phone, check out what I had to say in this <a href:“http://www.fashionlab.de/2008/07/glamour-uberall-berlin-fashion-week-partys/&#8221;&gt;video (videos all in English). I also met Mahret Kupka who is behind <a href:“http://fartguide.blogspot.com/&#8221;&gt;f&amp;art

 

In the offline world, I became fan of some fun independent designer stores, walking aroud Mitte (check out <a href:“http://www.andreasmurkudis.net/&#8221;&gt;the stores of Andreas Murkudis, beautiful but pricey.) My new favorite store with affordable and great clothes is in Wedding and named <a href:“http://www.styleserver.de/&#8221;&gt;STYLESERVER. You can order online, and MUST if you visit Berlin! They carry among many <a href:“http://www.cneeon.de/&#8221;&gt;C.Neeon and <a href:“http://www.lalaberlin.com/&#8221;&gt;Lala Berlin, nice!

How To Find The Stretch In Your Fabric

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There’s nothing more heartbreaking than creating a gorgeous knit top or dress only to try it on and find that it doesn’t fit. The problem? Not enough stretch to your fabric. This article that appeared in Craft Stylish will help you tell if your fabric has enough stretch for the pattern you’ve picked out.

Sew Many Ideas

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BurdaStyle is busy, busy, busy. Things have been crazed around here lately with all the travel and ideas and production that’s been going on. The office certainly has been a buzz with creativity. Last week we had lots of meetings talking about everything from events, to blogs, to site design, to advertising; our board was just full of ideas! What this means is a lot of great stuff coming up for BurdaStyle and this community. We are so excited, we just want to tell you all about it, but then where would the surprise be? We will reveal one surprise; keep a look out for the week’s pattern. I know that this happens every week so it’s not really a surprise but what is the surprise is the fact that it is a member-designed pattern. On that note we will leave you wondering what else could possibly be coming up. Keep your eyes peeled, have a great week and enjoy!

Summer Interns!

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At BurdaStyle we employ interns throughout the year. Before we know it they become a part of the team and a member of BurdaStyle’s everyday life. At any moment you can see interns participating in every aspect of the company, from the design and sewing to everything computers. Above you will see a photo of the Summer 2008 BurdaStyle team, with all our interns as well as our permanent and part time staff. From left to right it goes: Nora A., Nora K. (graphic design intern), Alden (Marketing and Community), Benedikta (co-founder), Kyla (our community expert), Gail (our new office help), Samantha (intern), Lucy (production and community intern), Jessie (editorial content intern), and Layla (production and content). Unfortunately Rebecca, Alba, Katie (production interns) and Hikaru (graphic design) weren’t there for the picture.
 

If you would like to be a member of our BurdaStyle team in Brooklyn, New York, please contact us!

Hanker-'tude – Use a handkerchief to twitter your mood!

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 Last week, I wrote a story on Kate Hartman’s Soft Circuits Class at NYU’s ITP) program. I was also teaching at ITP this summer, leading a class called Introduction to Physical Computing. Intro to Phys Comp, as it’s called for short, is a class where students are taught to make basic circuits and to use the Arduino microcontroller. While the class doesn’t concentrate on soft circuits, more students have been making them as innovative flexible conductive materials have become increasingly available. I thought I’d share a fun soft circuit project that came out of my Intro to Phys Comp class by Shirley Palma, who is currently working towards her masters in Computer Science at NYU.

Featured Member: Podge

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was Born and bred in Manchester England, I discovered the true essence of Manchester in my teens and have loved it ever since.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
The first thing I made was clothes for my cat when I was eight years old. She used to make horrendous noises and walk backwards to try and get away from my creation but I’d just think that maybe it needed something extra, maybe a bonnet. I come from a very creative family, my mother is a seamstress by trade and she was always either sewing, knitting or crocheting and my father was an avid painter. I have always been creative and into making things but it kind of took a backwards step and everyday life took over, until that is I was given a sewing machine for Christmas 2007 by my beloved husband and soon after I discovered BurdaStyle and I’ve been hooked ever since.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
A happy release from the stresses of everyday life, I hate having to find time to sew, I would love to sew every day and I would love love love to be able to create something that i have designed. I enjoy following patterns and i love seeing the end creation but you see so many people on this site that have come up with amazing designs, I am always inspired to create something of my own but it never works. I always end up copying someone else’s idea, I just wish I could come up with something to inspire others.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
My favourite thing about sewing is seeing your creation come together and just feeling free from the world, I love taking my sewing machine table out into the garden and sewing in the sunshine. My least favourite thing is transferring all the pattern lines onto your chosen fabric, I usually end up skipping this part and just stick pins where the lines should be, but then as you sew the pins end up falling out and you then have to go back to putting your half sewn garment back onto the pattern piece in order to find out where the lines should be. I usually then end up hearing screams from my husband as he has stood on the pin that has fallen out!! Oooops!!

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
I would like to make something for my husband, he is a big muscley guy and he finds it hard to find clothes to fit him. He has a 20 inch neck and a 56 inch chest so I’m afraid the items for men on the site won’t go near him. When I am a little more experienced I will try to make a pattern from his measurements and hopefully make him something he will be willing to go out in public in. So watch this space………..

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
love looking at everyone’s creations and I wait patiently (well I try to be patient!!) every Tuesday to see what the new pattern will be. I check the site at least 3 times a day to see what has been posted. I love the community feel of the site and that we are all like minded people. The site is great and is everything you could ever want or need from an open source sewing site, the only thing that I would like to see, is when you are searching for something, whether its a member or a pattern, it would be nice not to have to know the exact name, and the search engine could say, we couldn’t find anything that matched but we found this that is spelt similar. My favourite part of the site is the Creations and the blog, I like to see what people are doing and i love it when there is someone asking something that I can help with, or maybe I’m having the same problem and some one has posted an answer. I also love the way that members link to other items, whether its something they have used for inspiration or whether it is a blog or tutorial. I have found so many inspirational sites from doing this and I love it.

7. What is your motto?
Love life and be happy!!!

Her embroidery is awesome, and her skirts, dresses and bags are incredible too you have to check out Podge’s creations also make sure to check out her blog too!

Renegade Craft Fair San Francisco

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Hey everyone!

We had an absolute blast at the First Annual Renegade Craft Fair San Francisco. The fair took place this weekend at Fort Mason’s Pavilion. As anyone who attended can tell you, it was super busy, so busy that we didn’t realize that we were right near the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz until early evening on Saturday (the jet lag might have had something to do with that too). We had great booth neighbors, positioned between CraftStylish and VenusZine. Amy of VenusZine so kindly supplied us with much needed lemonade during our time of need, and Michaela and Jessica of CraftStylish were the perfect conversationalists during the slow times. When we finally did get to stroll around we checked in with or friends from Brooklyn, Etsy (represented by Pete, Anda and their gorgeous little drool machine Sidone) and ThreadBanger (they were so busy giving away a sewing machine, we didn’t get to spend much time chatting).


 

The highlight though was meeting so many members. It really was the best feeling to have one of you come up and tell us that you love our site. It was also nice to get feedback from you, thank you for all your suggestions and know that we have taken them to heart and discussed them in a meeting yesterday. I must say California was a very welcoming city. One surprise was the temperature; having to wear a sweater was certainly a welcome change from sweltering New York. Over all a great trip, check out our Flickr page to see pictures. Thanks for stopping by our booth!

Sewalong Minichallenge #2!!!

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It’s here again! The BurdaStyle Mini challenge, a fast paced sewalong with a prize!

Starting today the 13th of July you have 2 weeks to make and upload your own version of the Anda dress to the site to be in with a chance to win some special secret sewing treats and BurdaStyle goodies!

RULES:

• You need to be a registered member to take part.

• You must use the Anda dress pattern.

• You must upload your creation into the new ‘Mini Challenge’ category by July 27th.

• When you upload your creation you must give a detailed description of how you made your version of the dress, the alterations you may have made and materials used etc.

• How-to’s and pattern alterations are encouraged and may earn you Brownie points!

The mini challenge will be judged by you the members. Voting will start on Tuesday the 29th of July, more details about how to vote will be given at a later date. When voting you should take the following into consideration:

• Creativity and variation

• Difference in appearance from original

• Skills and techniques used

• And of course your favourite!

• You can vote once only

Are you up for the challenge? Get creative, dig out those sewing technique books and teach yourself something new while you’re at it, show us your talent and skills!

For official rules, please see here .

MixTape Issue 5 available for presale!

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Most of you know our wonderful Nikkishell, her great Sew Alongs and even her Mini Challenges but what you may not know (though you should) is her great craft magazine MixTape. If you haven’t been following the zine, you should. The MixTape zine talks about all the great projects that are being done, news in the craft world, book reviews, how MixTape is doing, what will be coming up next and much, much more. The 5th issue of MixTape features articles like:
 Sunny Buick Interview, Lowdown on Lino, 
10 ways to green your kids birthday, 
book reviews, 
Crafty Lady Profile “Claire” aka loobylou 
and tons more! This issue is now available for presale! So, go to the site, read the blog and catch up on past issues
or get your copy of the newest MixTape today!

BurdaStyle Writes for Etsy's Blog the Storque

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BurdaStyle has proclaimed that it is the season for fairy tales. We have trolled the pages of Etsy finding dresses fit for today’s princesses. Would you say Cinderella is emo? Was sleeping beauty a mod goddess or was she a 60’s housewife? Check out our article in the Storque on Etsy and decide for yourself.

Featured Member: Bloom

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1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
I was born in Shizuoka, Japan, the city known for Mt. Fuji. Currently, I am living in the US.

2. What was the 1st thing you made? How did you start sewing?
When I was a 2nd or a 3rd grader, I made my first flared skirt from a pattern. My mom was (and still is) a great sewer and so I fell in love with sewing before I could remember.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?
Stress reliever! Finding beautiful fabrics also nurses my stress.

4. What is your favorite and what is your least favorite thing about sewing?
Favorite – sewing with machine.
Least favorite – blind stitching.

5. If you could make something for anyone who would it be and what would you make?
If I have enough skills, I would love to make men’s suite for my hubby.

6. What are you looking for on our site? What do you think should be improved and what do you really like?
I enjoy sharing creations with others. So fun to be able to see what others are making because it is very inspiring! This website is perfect!

7. What is your motto?
Life is short, enjoy, take it easy!

Bloom has quite an eye for creating clean lines out of fun fabrics. You have to check out her awesome skirts (Vintage Wool Marie,Jazz Concert Skirt,Gold Funky Marie,and finally her Red Wool Michelle) The creations just keep coming and they are wonderful. Keep up the great work!

Soft Circuits Workshop Project Presentations

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I recently was invited as a guest critic for final project presentations of ‘Soft Circuits Workshop’, a class at NYU’s ITP program that was taught and developed by my colleague Kate Hartman.

BurdaStyle is Going Across America!

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We are so excited. As we said yesterday in our Letter From the Editors, we have big plans this weekend.

BurdaStyle will have a booth at the first Renegade Craft Fair in San Francisco. It will be July 12 and 13th from 11 am to 7 pm, at the Fort Mason Festival Pavilion. Admission is free so you have no excuse not to show up. We will have lots of goodies for all of you that stop by; really cool buttons, stickers and more. We will be there with fellow Brooklynites and friends from <a href"http://www.etsy.com/&#8220;&gt;Etsy and ”http://www.threadbanger.com&quot;&gt;ThreadBanger along with over 300 other vendors! If this Renegade is anything like the ones in Chicago and Brooklyn, it will be incredible. If you are in the Bay area shoot us an email and come stop by our booth. We are excited to meet everyone from the other coast.

All of you in the mid-west do not fear, we are not ignoring the central time zone. Nora will be in Chi town at the American Sewing Guild annual conference. It is being held at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare and it should be a bunch of fun. If you are around make sure you find her among the crowd.

Have a great night and see you this weekend (hopefully).

Technical Drawing Contest- Win $50!

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That’s right, we felt it was time for another contest. Get your pen and pencil out, warm up your hand, pull out the paper. We are going to be looking for your best technical drawings. As some of you may have noticed, there is no technical drawing associated with the Alison swimsuit. We thought it would be a great opportunity for all of you out there who are not only a whiz at the sewing machine, but also have the sketching skills of DaVinci, to showcase your talents. We are excited to see all you multitalented members out there. You have until the 18th of July to send us your best technical drawing of the Alison swimsuit. The winner will receive $50! So send’em in to us at team@burdastyle.com and good luck!

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