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300,000 Members! Woo Hoo!


We have over 300,000 members, how crazy is that??? Remember back in the summer of ought eight we celebrated 100,000? Oh how we have grown! Keep up the amazing work, you are an inspiration to everyone on the site. We can’t wait for the next milestone, half a million members!

We're Heading West!


Carol and I are heading out to Anaheim, CA for the Craft and Hobby Associations Super Show. We are going to be checking out all kinds of crafty techniques and products. Though the show is full of awesome crafts (who knew scrapbooking was so big?!?) we will probably be spending the majority of our time in the National Sewing Council Pavillion. We are very excited to learn all the new techniques, shop a little and participate in a few make and takes. Learn more about the National Sewing Council Pavillion here.

Are any of you planning on attending the Super Show? Come meet us! We will be at the NSC Pavilion on Saturday from 10am-12pm, (booth # 929) Just ask for Alden or Carol!

Full of Pride & Prejudice


Last Spring my boyfriend & I bought a home in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. After looking at dozens of old brownstones which had been raped & pillaged over the years (i.e. modernized with cheap, synthetic materials & cheated of their original charm), we found a diamond in the rough: a modest brownstone circa 1877 with most of it’s original details intact, but desperately needing some love and tons of work. Over the months we have been reviving this old house of it’s strong points and step by step, day by day, making it more livable and improved.

Our bedroom is finally finished and so far it’s my favorite room (as I love to sleep), and we can lay in bed at night and watch films. The point of this post is that I have become completely obsessed with films which were set in the time our house was current, and Jane Austen’s novels behold the stuff of which I am fawning over: Victorian decor & Regency dress. (Though the Regency was from 1811-1820, the fashion aesthetic appears in these films more broadly via artistic license. It was the time of transition between the Georgian and Victorian eras).

Think empire waists with gathered, waterfall skirts. The dresses were modest, lacking the forced silhouette of extremely tight corsets with bursting cleavage, and underneath a simple chemisette (a side opening half-blouse) was worn, which made for a Classical look, inspired by Grecian draped gowns. Normally made from embroidered fine white lawn, muslin or batiste these dresses were primarily made in white (which can easily soil), which symbolized social status. Austen’s heroines always wear a small, cropped jacket over one of the empire waist dresses when outside, lace up leather boots and a pair of short leather gloves.

Above is a collage I’ve created of Regency dress and how to interpret that into a modern wardrobe. Our Francesca Dress offers a very similar silhouette. Enjoy!

BurdaStyle Survey


Hey all,
Over the next year, some of you might see a little pop up in the bottom of your screen asking if you would like to participate in a survey, this research is to help us get a clearer picture of our community as a whole. If you have any questions whatsoever, feel free to leave comments or shoot us an email! We want to thank you in advance for your participation and we are excited to see these results!

BurdaStyle Sewing Club Project Ideas


BurdaStyle Sewing Clubs are an amazing way to learn a variety of projects and skills in the company of equally-passionate sewers. If you are a BSC Member or Leader and looking for fun projects to complete, this post is just for you!

Help For Those in Haiti

As many of you know there has been a horrific earthquake in Haiti, the estimate is that between 45,000 – 50,000 people have lost their lives. Aide is just starting to make its way into the country and we just wanted to provide you with options to donate should you want to help out. As a truly international site, our hearts go out to all those affected by this tragedy.

Doctors Without Borders
Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international medical humanitarian organization that provides independent, impartial assistance to those most in need. The organization is committed to bringing quality medical care to people caught in crisis regardless of race, religion, or political affiliation. This is a great organization, please feel free to read on or donate

Red Cross
Since 1881 the Red Cross offers neutral humanitarian care to the victims of war and the victims of devastating natural disasters. You can donate $10 to Haiti relief by texting “Haiti” to 90999, though a faster way to get them the funds is by donating online here.

Unicef is an organization devoted to helping children trapped in the most dire situations. Donate here

To stay read up on the latest coverage from Haiti here are some good reputable sources:
NY Times Lede Blog (updated very frequently)



Sewing Vintage: Retro Foundation Garments


{image courtesy of rechappo2002 on Flickr}

Most modern women consider it a blessing that we’ve escaped the eras of the corset and girdle. Sure, shapewear still exists, but it’s purely optional now. However, many young seamstresses who sew from vintage patterns are seeking out the foundation garments of the 40s, 50s, and 60s to get a truly authentic retro look.

It’s pretty hard to avoid that controversy when it comes to this subject. I tend to disagree with those who fall too dramatically on either side of the coin, which is either 1) you’re not doing vintage “correctly” if you don’t wear the right shapewear or 2) you’re participating in the oppression of women if you do wear shapewear. A girl can’t win!

V Magazine Sizes Women Up


On January 14th, V Magazine’s size issue hits select news stands and there is already much buzz about over the argument of professional models vs. “actual, real, normal, regular, realistically (or whichever term you choose)” proportioned women.

Featured Member: loyl8


1. Where are you from and/or where do you live?
Made in the USA, but born to be a abroad. I was born in Spring Valley, IL and in 1991 my family and I moved to Arizona. After nursing school I moved to Southern California, Orange County, where I met my husband. A year ago we moved to south west Colorado and now my husband and I live in the ourskirts of Phoenix, Arizona where we are in the process of buying a house with my own sewing room…YEAH! My husband and I have many aspirations to travel the globe and maybe even settle down in some faraway place.



Until last week I’d never heard of Mademoiselle Agnès, a French television personality and fashion insider and portrayer of young, raw fashion talents. She thinks that Paris is dead for young designers seeing that it is impossible to top the gilded fashion houses of Paris, and has highlighted some of her favorite new designers in her mini-documentaries. I’ve recently watched a series of her videos she has made with the The Sundance Channel called Full Frontal Fashion. A hand-held camera follows Mademoiselle Agnès from Rodarte’s front row face-off between Tavi and the Ice Queen to Alber’s (Lanvin) somber mental state wondering where has all of the glamour, romance and class has gone in fashion? If you’ve wished to catch a glimpse of the hidden interiors of fashion designer’s studios and showrooms or have the desire to see close ups of runway shows or catch some rare interviews, you should tune in.

No matter how jaded one can get from working in the industry, or sick and tired of all of the inauthentic buzz about fashion, these 1-off videos exude a passion and intensity which makes me shiver and want to get to work! Try that for inspiration.

Challenge: Coats & Clark Pink & Red Fashion Show at the Sewing & Stitchery Expo


Hey all, so this is the longest title ever, but this challenge is super great and for a great cause!

The Sewing & Stitchery Expo held February 25-28 in Puyallup, WA is the largest consumer sewing show in the country. Coats & Clark is sponsoring this year’s charity Pink & Red Fashion Show, with BurdaStyle hosting the virtual event!

Fashion Trends


If you have a passion for sewing up the latest styles in the season’s hottest colors, then you’ll definitely want to keep tabs on 2010’s fashion forecast. Helping keeping you in the loop: Fashion Trendsetter details Pantone’s color reports, runway trends and as well as upcoming accessories; Fashionising details men’s and women’s catwalk designs (and even hair) and trends for the upcoming year; and online magazines such as Vogue, Bazarr, and Elle, just to name a few! Have a favorite? Be sure to list them here!

The Wardrobe Sewalong

Hello there and happy 2010 to you. I’ve not posted here for some time, 2009 was spent traveling Australia with the Stitches and Craft Shows to tell everyone about this wonderful creative online community we have.

As you may know i organise the Melbourne CBD BurdaStyle Club and we have decided to start regular sewalongs. At first we tossed around the idea of using one pattern and then we thought about all sewing the same garment but choosing our own pattern but some weren’t keen as they’d have to sit out those that they didn’t want to make, for example someone doesn’t like to wear trousers.

BSC Quick Project Idea: Bunting Flags


Are you a leader or member of a BurdaStyle Sewing Club? If so, this project was made just for you!

Sewing Vintage: Year in Review


Sewing Vintage: My Most Popular Posts
I hope everyone had a great holiday season and a very happy new year! I’m looking forward to all that 2010 has in store, but as the year changes over, I thought I would take a moment to look back at the most read posts on vintage sewing on my blog, Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing. I hope you enjoy them!

Tutorials were very popular! Check these out:
• How to make your own vintage-inspired half slip—no pattern required!
• I did a two-part tutorial on sewing a 50s-style full skirt, and lots of readers have made this up in no time. Here’s the first part, where you draft a simple pattern. And here’s part two, where I show you how to whip it up.


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