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The Joys of Vintage Sewing Machines

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A few months ago, I received an email from an enthusiastic Male Pattern Boldness reader, telling me I had helped convince her to buy a vintage Singer straight-stitch sewing machine. I’d been spreading the word about vintage sewing machines on my blog since the beginning, but I never thought anybody was actually paying attention!

I’d like to share some of my enthusiasm for these machines with all of you here at BurdaStyle today. Here are my TOP TEN REASONS TO GIVE A VINTAGE MACHINE A TRY.

Sew Vintage: Feedsack

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I thoroughly enjoyed writing last week’s history piece on mother-of-pearl buttons. So much so that I thought I would write another vintage/history post this week on the always glamorous topic of …wait for it…feedsacks.

Featured Member: dixiediy

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In celebration of this week’s SXSW events in Austin, Texas – we are excited to profile a BurdaStyler and an Austin native!

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

I’m from Austin, TX and right now I’m a video editor for a website but I like to make sewing and designing more of a full time gig.

Hello Fashion! Enter the EVOQUE Fashion Awards for the Chance to Have Your Designs Produced and Sold Worldwide!

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Garmz is a fantastic crowdsourcing site that gives burgeoning designers and fashion fans the potential to have their sketches brought to life and sold at no cost to the designer (how amazing is that!?). Submitted sketches are voted on by the Garmz community with the winning designs put into production and sold through the Garmz webshop. As if that opportunity alone wasn’t cool enough, Garmz has now partnered with Land Rover to offer aspiring designers the chance to have their sketches or full collections produced and sold, plus showcased in a runway presentation at the EVOQUE Launch Party in Berlin with the EVOQUE Fashion Awards!

Comment to Win with Snoozer Loser!

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Connect with BurdaStyle on Twitter or comment on the blog to win 3-5 yards of fabric from Snoozer Loser!

Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami Relief Efforts: How You Can Help

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As an international community filled with unique members from New York to Tokyo, we were devastated to learn about the tragic events that befell the country of Japan and the Pacific region this past Friday. One of our own – our amazing graphic designer Hikaru – is from Japan and still has family there. Our hearts go out to all our members in the area and anyone effected by last week’s earthquake and tsunami. Want to help? See ways you can aid in the relief efforts after the jump.

Behind The Scenes: A Musical Video of Our Recent Photo Shoot!

We love surprises and this one is great! At our last photo shoot, we didn’t know it, but there was a behind the scenes video being made by our photographers at WET PAINT Photography, that we just got surprised with! Check out the quick recap of the most recent BurdaStyle photoshoot and a huge thanks to Victor and Jonathan!

BERNINA Presents the Show Us, Don't Tell Us - Brand Ambassador Competition

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BERNINA USA is looking far and wide for three US-based Brand Ambassadors to experience and help spread the word for their new BERNINA 3 Series machine, so BurdaStyle has partnered with BERNINA on a competition to help find the best candidates for the job! But have no fear, this contest is international! BERNINA still wants to show some love to our community outside the US, so we made this a two-part competition.

We want you to Show Us, Don’t Tell Us: How do you express your love for sewing?

Over 25 Capes + Patterns To Make One!

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Who doesn’t love to make a dramatic entrance in a flowing cape? If you’re unsure about fitting a cape into your wardrobe, read on, you may fall in love!

Pictured above: Lindsey Thornburg’s Pendleton Mini Cloak Jackets.

BurdaStyle in Austin : Etsy Crafternoon & Texas Style Council Conference Day 2

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Well it’s day 2 here in Austin and today the Etsy venue opened up on E. 6th St. and we were there to join in the fun and do some amazing make & take projects! Thanks to the Singer Co. & The Martha Stewart Show how-to on upcycling t-shirts into grocery bags, and our friends over at Threadless, we were able to teach tons of SXSW attendees how to sew!

BurdaStyle in Austin: The Swap at Texas Style Council Conference

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Ever find yourself with that pile of old clothes you don’t wear anymore, or that old purse you’re never going to use again, but don’t want to just give it away without something in return? Well, let us introduce you to Swap.com! The amazing people behind Swap hosted an event in Austin tonight at the Texas Style Council Conference and we were there to sponsor it and join in the fun! Check out the rest of the action after the jump!

BurdaStyle in Austin : SXSW Interactive Day 1!

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Well it’s Day 1 of SXSW Interactive and we are already having the time of our lives! Austin is sunny and warm which makes us VERY happy. Such a nice break from the winter still lingering in NYC. :D We’ll be live tweeting from SXSW for the next two weeks so make sure you’re following us on twitter to get all the updates. AND don’t forget to tweet at us and hashtag #BurdaStyle2Austin to stay in the convo! Check out what we did today after the jump!

The Tunic: Minimal vs. Bohemian

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The tunic is a great staple piece for any wardrobe. Whether you keep it low key or play more on the flashy side, chances are you can find a tunic style that suits your every mood. Tunics are also quick projects that provide a great basic template to really express your individuality and creativity – make it in a beautiful print, simple cotton or add your own finishing touch with beads and applique – there’s really no limit to the ways you can customize a tunic to make it truly your own.

Spring is right around the corner (and I can’t think of a better season to bring out this style) so check out great ideas for tunic projects – both wild and tame to get you in a creative mood!

Whither the Convertible Collar Shirt?

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One of the many delights of learning to sew has been experimenting with old patterns and recreating the popular styles of yesteryear.

One of my recent Etsy finds was a vintage 1939 men’s shirt pattern with a convertible collar. Convertible means that the shirt can be worn either with the collar buttoned on or with just the collar band. For the record, according to shirt guru David Coffin, the collar band is what you see on a shirt with no collar. The collar stand is what supports the collar on a shirt that has one. So for this 1939 shirt, I’d be making both a band and a stand.

Mother of Pearl Buttons: A Uniquely American Triumph

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I love mother of pearl buttons. Over the years, as I was searching for samples, I began to learn the fascinating story of their rise to popularity and the uniquely American slant to their success. I thought I would share that with you today.

Examples from my book Button Ware

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