Featured Member: Emlj

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

I come from Sheffield, UK and after much moving and traveling I now live and work in Norwich, UK

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

Well I only just started sewing properly about 6 months ago! I tried to make a skirt a couple of years back but it was a disaster and I just gave up. I thought i’d give things another go now after I came across BurdaStyle and I’m glad I did! I think I started by making the Marie skirt

3. What role does sewing play in your life?

Oh really a big role now..it’s a bit addictive right!? I have quite an intense professional job so it’s wonderful to have a creative outlet in the evening to keep happy and sane :-) I’m forever cluttering up our living room with sewing bits and scraps of fabric everywhere!

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

Well, I just love it when a plan comes together…when you can make something that is like you had imagined it to be. I like choosing the fabrics and seeing them for the pieces and putting them together. I think my least favourite is having too many ideas in my head and not enough time or skill to transfer them to real life….and of course when things do not turn out right..and my machine…which constantly breaks and drives me crazy!!

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

I think I would just love to make something for friends and family, something quite special such as a graduation dress for my little sister. I’ve never tried any men’s clothes either so it would be nice to be able to make smart trousers or a shirt for the other half :-)

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

I came looking for free patterns originally and then discovered this whole community on BurdaStyle! I’m rather new to this whole Internet community thing so it is quite wonderful that this place exists and everyone is so willing to share knowledge and their ideas, it’s very admirable. Not quite sure what could be improved really…more patterns?! is that greedy!?

7. What is your motto?

Some days you’re the dog, some days you’re the hydrant!

Emlj has awesome creations, look at these shorts, how cute are those? For a novice she certainly has a great hand for creating.

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win A Necklace by Kristin Hanson Jewelry

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Kristin Hanson Jewelry has generously supplied a beautiful necklace inspired by nature. This necklace has a starfish, shell and a skull stung on a 42 inch leather chord (though it can be worn shorter if desired). It has a value of $55. To enter just leave your comment below by midnight (EST)

Congratulations to Susisonne on winning the Falke turtleneck.

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Interlining for Warmth

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Have you ever wished that your coat, hat, or mittens were just a little bit warmer? Or maybe you’ve found the perfect fabric for your winter project, but it’s just not quite thick enough to keep you warm? Well, the answer is interlining!

Interlining is an additional layer of fabric that goes between the lining and the fashion fabric to add warmth. This should not to be confused with underlining, which is an additional layer of fabric to add body to flimsy fashion fabrics.

Lots of fabrics can be used for interlining, but the most common ones are cotton flannel, lambswool interlining, lightweight Thinsulate <though go for something lighter than 150gsm to get a nice drape!), chamois, or even thin microfleece. Interlining can be a great place to hide recycled or ugly (but warm!) fabrics, too, as it’ll get covered by a lining anyway!

If you want to interline a hat or mittens, just cut extra copies of the main pattern pieces from your interlining fabric, but leave any cuffs or facings on their own so the interlining doesn’t show. If you’re interlining a winter coat, cut interlining pieces for the main body and sleeves only, leaving extras like collars, pockets, double-breasted section, and belts in just the fashion fabric. After constructiong the main body of the coat from your fashion fabric, attach the interlining pieces to the seam allowances on the inside, and then treat both layers as one as you construct the rest of the coat.

It may take a few extra steps to add interlining, but with all that extra warmth, you’ll be in for a toasty winter indeed!

Synchronicity

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A few weeks ago a wonderful writer named Joanna Goddard contacted me about my Dahl + Dane = True Love Always series, mentioning she had written about our declaration of love project on her daily column for Glamour magazine, Smitten. Feeling quite flattered from her efforts, I made her a custom tote bag with the initials of her beau and shortly after, with tote draped over her shoulder, he proposed! She also mentioned our project on her lovely personal blog, A Cup of Joe from which many orders came in.

This chain of events does not stop yet. Because, as Joanna stated, I had been so kind, she invited Dane & myself to her West Village apartment for a very special dinner party, curated by the infamous party planner Davin Monn, hosted for under $250 (including food, wine & incredible decorations). Her now fiance, a New York Times writer, covered the evening in the Sunday Style Section with a beautiful story (and great slide show online).

It doesn’t end yet. It is common practice for magazines to do “give-aways” to acquire more subscribers by tempting them with a great free gift. Joanna spoke to her editors at Glamour about me designing a t-shirt to be given away when one subscribes and I jumped at the idea. I had been, a-hem, asking the “universe” for projects much like this one, where I can go back to my micro-tips, markers & colored pencils and draw again! Having a Fine Arts background, I often miss drawing and surface design and have been very inspired lately to start designing prints for my textiles and a t-shirt design project is a perfect way to start. Here are some of my concepts, and now I eagerly await word from the editors.

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win A Falke Turtleneck!

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FALKE is giving one member a beautiful black long sleeved turtleneck. Falke is known for their quality in production and materials. This turtleneck is made of rich cotton and crafted without a seam. This medium shirt fits heights 5’1”-5’6” and is valued at 129 euros ($177!)

Just leave your comment below (by midnight EST) to be entered to win!

Congratulations to untriedfilly on winning the KIND 8-pack Gift Capsule.

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New Feature: Slide Shows!

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We have great news! For one, as some of you may know, we are working on a new site design, and that is only some months away (3-4 months to be exact). Better news is that we have a little preview in form of a new feature: slide shows!

Amongst those photo albums you will find featured members and their sewing rooms and a little peak at the remaining patterns in Collection 8. Check out all the albums and come back for new albums every week!

oh, and, don’t forget to let us know what you think, leave a comment below!

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win a Kind Bar 8-Pack Gift Capsule

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Our friends at Kind, have graciously donated a variety of delicious and healthy bars to give you energy and sustenance during those long nights of sewing. The 8-pack gift capsule is 20 inches tall , filled with goodies and can be reused as a bank when you have finished all the bars! Just leave your comment below by midnight (est) to be entered to win.

Congratulations to honolulukelly on winning the Lebkuchen Schmidt Gingerbread!

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Holiday Giveaway Calander: Win Lebkuchen Schmidt Gingerbread!

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Because we had such a good reaction to the gingerbread, and we hate to disappoint everyone, we are offering you another gingerbread prize! This delicious Lebkuchen Schmidt gingerbread is full of sugar and spice and everything nice! To enter, just leave your comment below by midnight (EST)

Congratulations to qsogirl on winning the sewing kit!

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Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win a BurdaStyle Sewing Kit!

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BurdaStyle has created the most useful gift ever! I know, it’s quite an accomplishment, but we have done it. This handmade sewing kit is made of soft brown leather and comes with needles, buttons, safety pins, and the smartest way to carry a lot of thread, a braid. Once you have this kit, you will never want to leave home without it. To enter, just leave your comment below by midnight (EST)

Congratulations to cfederer

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Safe sewing for kids

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I don’t have any children myself, but I recently did my first kids sewing whilst making gifts for my niece and nephew. Sewing for children isn’t just about sewing smaller garments – there are some important safety concerns to consider as well as well!

  • Be aware of choking hazards – never use ribbon or neck ties – go for velcro (with the soft side facing the body!) or snaps instead that will break away if they get caught during play.
  • If sewing for babies or very small children, never use buttons (for closures or as eyes on stuffies) as they can come undone and will also be a choking hazard.
  • Use robust stitching when making clothing – use a small stitch length or a strong 4 thread overlock on your serger to make sure those seams don’t blow out on the playground.
  • Non-flammable pyjamas – make sure the flannel you buy is marked safe for children’s sleepwear. Pyjamas should fit snugly, as loose-fitting garments are more likely to catch light in the event of a fire.
  • If you need to fit a work in progress on a child, remember to use safety pins instead of straight pins so they don’t get jabbed taking it off!

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win Amy Butler's Sew-It Kit!

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With 15 simple sewing projects for around the home, Amy Butler’s Sew-It Kit from Chronicle books is an awesome thing to have. The kit comes with 7 patterns, an instruction booklet, enough fabric and thread to make the tissue box cover project and much more. So if you want to make anything from floor pillows to a leather-handled shoulder bag, this kit is for you! Just leave your comment below by midnight (EST) to be entered to win.

Congratulations to nenasew on winning the Printenbox!

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Fair is fashionable

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Last time I advocated home-made clothing for the environment’s sake, today I will tell you that buying clothes overseas can contribute to the livelihoods of those who need it most. I am not talking about so called “sweatshops” – synonym for inhumane working conditions that have stained brand names like Nike, H&M, Gap. I want to tell you about fashion that can have a big impact for the better in a number of people’s lives.

Take the story of <a href = “http://www.bibirussell.org/bibi_gallery.html&#8221;&gt; Bibi Russell, ex-top model from Bangladesh who featured in Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and Cosmopolitan and modeled for Yves Saint Lauren, Lagerfeld and Armani in the 70s and 80s. In the 90s she returned to her native country where she opened her own fashion company that is currently employing some 35,000 women across Bangladesh. Yet, that’s not enough, just recently she launched Bibi for WE a brand that will design and produce bags employing women with HIV/Aids in Cambodia who are stigmatized in their communities and have to fight for work and health treatment. Check out some of Bibi’s colourful designs which are based on Bangladeshi traditional techniques, and textiles on <a href = “http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmq2ADAoUqc&#8221;&gt;You tube.

But it is not only, fashion icons that can make a difference <a href = “http://handcraftingjustice.cedris.org/index.php&#8221;&gt; Handcrafting Justice , a New York based NGO is supporting women from around the world by creating a virtual market place in which they can sell their handcrafted products for a fair price.

BurdaStyle members can make a difference too! Check out the fantastic Bra that ashchaser donated to the American Cancer Foundation and pinkerton1996’s <a href = “http://www.burdastyle.com/creations/show/15084&#8221;&gt;Christmas Decoration from Project African Wilderness.

And if you want to make a difference too, why don’t you contribute a Bow Tie to the Pink and Black Tie Gala of the <a href = “http://www.burdastyle.com/blog/show/723&#8221;&gt;American Cancer Society or by a Christmas present at Handcrafting Justice.

p>P.S: Anybody said eco lacks style? Check out those fantastic wallets made from recycled ties and for more stylish consciousness visit the Sustainable Style Foundation.

Fotos courtesy of www.bibirussell.org.

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win Delicious German Gingerbread!

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What holiday would be complete without some kind of gingerbread? This traditional soft German gingerbread has a long history, dating back to the 14th century (though we assure you this is quite fresh). To enter to win this delicious treat, just leave your comment below by midnight (EST)

Congratulations to Minnietheminks on winning the Ledthread Obi belt!

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Featured Member: fraufröhlich

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

I was born in Vienna Austria and am back living in Vienna Austria

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

The very 1st thing I made was an old baby sock of mine I decorated with a few stitches in light blue wool with a very thick needle. I must have been 4 years old or so. my grandmother was a seamstress and my mum had a huge drawer with needles, buttons, threads, wool, fabric scraps, felt flowers and so on. luckily I was allowed to go in and out of there as my heart desired – it was sort of mine after a while. my mum had 2 left hands when it came to knitting and sewing. so I also taught myself crocheting and knitting when I was about 6. I sewed skirts and curtains for my Barbies until finally at age 11 we were doing a skirt in school. after that my mum decided it was time to unpack my grandma’s old sewing machine. and that was the stepping-stone for my future. at age 15 I attended a fashion school and graduated age 19.

3. What role does sewing play in your life?

sewing plays a very big role in my live. it always did. I am always looking at clothes: how the seams are done and new sleeves solution. I do it all the time, during the television, on the street even in my daughter’s school. it is something I cannot stop doing. if someone would take me away from sewing I think I would wilt like a flower.

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

my favorite is that I can work with different materials, colors and transform a female body into a stunning woman. I can transform ideas myself whenever I want to. the least favorite thing is that I have so many ideas coming in my head that I am not quick enough to see the finished project as fast as I would like to. I guess I am a bit impatient ;)

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

I love making clothes for you, you and you if you are a girl or woman.
there is no special person I would want to see in my clothes, cos I think there are enough famous and rich designers already who let stars shine. whoever would want to wear something I made is heartily welcome, famous or not. I love dresses.

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

on your site I am looking for pattern techniques and, as always, inspiration. I would also love to help others; one problem is only that all the talent I have in sewing and designing I very much lack in computing. so I cannot picture myself making a how to or uploading a pattern. I have two left hands and no brains for that ;oD I don’t think there is anything to improve since I am absolutely happy with what you have done for everyone but it would be cool and I guess helpful though if BurdaStyle would have some kind of information point, were young designers could ask for things like “how do I take the next step” or “how do I best get organized to find a shop which will sell my clothes” or “where are the next trade shows /exhibitions in my location” (for example I as a member could give the information that in April 2009 there is “modepalast” in Vienna, which is a 3 day exhibition for young designers to present, sell & market their creations)

7. What is your motto?

my motto???? life is great and it gets better with every day. I also really like the fact that every day we are getting up, we get a new chance to make things better or different.

I would dare to say that fraufröhlich is one of, if not the most prolific member on BurdaStyle. Her simple-chick creations are so interesting and soothing. It has been a lot of fun watching her work progress. Wanna get to know her better? Take a look at her sewing room and fabric stash Check out her site for more information (it is in German but with be translated soon)

Holiday Giveaway Calendar: Win an Obi Belt from Ledthread!

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Every time she post one of these on the site, she gets tons of requests. So here it is, Ledthread has generously donated the beautiful leather Obi belt, pictured above, to the holiday giveaway contest. Just leave your comment by midnight (EST) to be entered to win.

For all those not lucky enough to get picked for this awesome prize, check out her shop to buy your very own belt.

Congratulations to redbean009 on winning the Singer Rolling Sewing Machine Tote Bag.

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