Learn How SIMPLE
Digital Patterns Really Are!

Sign Up to Receive
The Ultimate Guide to Digital Sewing Patterns eBook + a FREE Skirt Pattern!

Letter From the Editors: Busy Week!


It’s a busy week over here at BurdaStyle, and perhaps a busy week for you as well, if you’re taking part in the Sewalong Minichallenge! If you haven’t decided yet, you’ve still got sometime. The deadline is next Friday though, so don’t be too fickle! We can’t wait to see what Sidonie variations you can come up with!

Sewing Universe News Feed: 3 March 2008


Natalie Zee Drieu of Coquette and Craft Magazine fame will be moderating a special panel at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas next weekend. The panel, called, “High-Tech Craft: Why Sewing and Knitting Still Matter” will feature a great group of women who are “forging new ground in merging fashion, arts, and crafts with new technology.” If you’re in Austin or heading this way for SXSW, don’t miss this one.

Nikkishell: Pattern Copyright


I have recently been wondering about the copyright of patterns and decided to look into it further and share with you what information I found. I by no means think I’m an expert on this subject; actually I’m very far from it and encourage you to comment and share your own knowledge on the subject.

Copyright protects a designer’s work from the moment it is created until 70 years after the last surviving designer’s death, 70 years!!! Designers are making a living from their work so by purchasing their patterns you are supporting them and the fact that they are selling their work indicates they expect people to use the patterns and make items from them. This means they are giving you permission to use it but for personal and domestic use only, they are not to be used for your own personal gain, i.e. making a profit.

When can you use a commercial pattern to make a profit? One way is when sewing custom garments for customers but you must buy one pattern per person; you can not use the same pattern for multiple customers. The pattern can be reused for the same customer though if they require more than one garment from the same pattern. Another way is to license the patterns for which you will pay a fee. To do this you must contact the publisher for permission or the creator and they will inform you as to whether they allow this and what the requirements are. The same goes for out of print patterns, get in touch with the publisher and ask permission, I know I have a few I would like to share with you all so I will be getting in touch with the appropriate people and will go from there.

Information, styles, techniques and methods are not covered by copyright. So by using a particular sewing technique created by someone else or creating something in the same style as someone else has etc you will not be infringing copyright.

Now as you know BurdaStyle is an open source website. What does this mean? Well, Burda is the first established pattern publisher to release its designs without copyrights; this allows members of the public to market their BurdaStyle creations in limited editions. Remember, limited editions!! The patterns are not to be used for mass production nor are the patterns themselves to be reproduced and sold.

Since I’m no expert pattern maker I find this to be a fantastic concept as it allows me to sew garments to sell without having to go through the whole pattern making part of the process. I have been working on a limited edition of denim Sidonie skirts to sell in a local store and in my online store if I ever get it up and running (so many things to do, so little time in which to do them!). It’s a great way for me to use my skills and make some extra money at the same time.

Are you using BurdaStyle patterns to make a profit? Tell us about what you are making and how you are using the patterns in the new thread I have created. And as I said at the beginning of this post, please contribute your thoughts and knowledge on the copyright subject here in the forum. It’s a topic we should all know about, especially if we intend to make money from what we create. I have discovered a lot of people don’t know much at all about copyright and I’d like to prevent them from getting into any trouble by sharing what we know.

Copyright symbol in image found here

Sewing Universe News Feed: 2 March 2008


When spring hits, I always take a second to re-evaluate my closet. Every year, I find that while my wardrobe is large (the nice thing about sewing is that you can whip up a top or pants in a moment’s notice), it doesn’t really coordinate. You see, I sew on a whim…. when I find a style or fabric I like I immediately put it to use without thinking about how it will work with other garments in my closet. Consequently, I’m going to try something new – something that has been floating around magazines and the internet for years, but I’ve never taken the time to try. This summer I’m “Sewing With A Plan” (SWAP).

The idea of the SWAP originated in Australian Stitches magazine (Vol. 5 Issue 2) and discussed how to make items that you are able to mix and match together to make simple, yet flexible wardrobe combinations. This idea has gotten so popular that numerous websites have competitions (Timmel Fabrics started this contest 5 years ago and it’s grown into an international event!) where readers vote on their favorite combinations. The premise is simple, create 11 garments (which should give you 48 wardrobe combinations): 2 pairs of pants, 2 skirts (one solid one in a print), 2 tips (one solid one in same print as skirt), 4 tops that coordinate with the solids, and a solid color jacket. So, my question is – who’s with me?

For more on the article that ‘started it all’ read here

How To: Stay Sharp!


Did you decide to make the Paper Bag Sidonie or add a Center Back Seam and Slit to the Marie skirt? When it comes to hemming something with a slit, there are a few options. You might find just folding the hem in and topstitching works for your creation, but if you want to give it a clean finish, try a mitered hem. And the techniques in this How To make it extra easy! Make a nice sharp corner, and keep your mind sharp as well, by freshening up with some of these other basic How Tos!

Sewing Universe News Feed: 29 February 2008


Fabric stashes – no matter how big or small – can get unruly in a hurry. Feathered Fibers has a great tutorial on how to easily and neatly fold your stash so your pieces can fit into a bookshelf like … well, books! I love the results, and can only dream of having such a beautifully folded stash.

BurdaStyle in the Daily News


EXTRA EXTRA! Read all about us!

We hate to toot our own horns, but did you see the awesome article about BurdaStyle in yesterday’s New York Daily News? Well, here’s a little tidbit bit.

Nicole Lyn Lesce from the New York Daily News writes:

"Meet Brooklyn’s fix-it fashionistas
You don’t have to be Michael Kors or even “Project Runway” fan favorite
Christian to personalize your wardrobe. Brooklyn’s Burdastyle fix-it girls
share tips on how to turn your tattered old duds into customized couture."

For the entire article, click here.

Mini Challenge Sewalong!


Join the first BurdaStyle Mini challenge, a fast paced sewalong with a prize!

Starting today the 29th of February you have 2 weeks to make and upload your own version of the Sidonie skirt to the site to be in with a chance to win some special secret sewing treats and BurdaStyle goodies!


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

• You must use the Sidonie skirt pattern.

• You must upload your creation into the new ‘Mini Challenge’ category by March 15th.

• When you upload your creation you must give a detailed description of how you made your version of the skirt, 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 18th of March, 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.

Sewing Universe News Feed: 28 February 2008


Fashion can influence the way we dress, and the way we see our bodies. There’s always been arguments around the fashion industry’s unrealistic vision of how thin models should be. bits and bobbins points us to an article in the Wall Street Journal that covers one model’s obstacles to working after gaining five pounds. The article goes on to explore deeper issues of how body size and fashion work together. From the article: “So we have bodies being formed to fit clothes, rather than clothes designed to fit bodies.” Read the entire article

http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB120415888096598181.html?mod=%28_pageid_%29_leftbox”>here. [via]

Featured Member: Stepanka


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

I am from the Czech Republic, currently living in Sydney, Australia.

Sewing Universe News Feed: 27 February 2008


One Garment, Lots of Looks

Whether you’re purchasing clothing or making a garment, it’s always important to think about the ways you can wear your clothing – especially when you’re investing money into expensive fabrics. Now there’s a way to expand the looks you create, convertible clothing! There are several ready-to-wear designs available for sewing inspiration: Max Studio’s 8-way tube top – the rouched silk allows you not just wear this as a top, but also a skirt and Calypso’s satin wrap dress. For a quick tutorial on making your own version of the Calypso, check out this tutorial available at rostitchery.

Sewing Universe News Feed: 26 February 2008


This weekend, more than 30,000 people are expected to visit the Sewing and Stitchery Expo in Puyallup, Washington – just south of Seattle. With seminars, exhibitors, celebrities and shopping, it’s no wonder so many people flock to the event. Will any BurdayStyle.com members be able to attend? Let us know in the comments!

Nikkishell: Jorinde blazer plans and sew along update


Have you seen the newest pattern?

Jorinde is going to be just perfect for my Autumn/Winter wardrobe and I have my muslin cut out all ready to sew up! I do plan on making changes though. Instead of the flap pockets I am going to give my version bound pockets. A bound pocket looks like a large bound buttonhole from the right side, see the picture above. Making bound pockets can take some patience and a little practice which is why I have uploaded a

step by step how-to. I suggest you practice a few times on scrap fabric before attempting to try this on your intended fabric; we don’t want any tears now do we? I may also consider changing the collar but I will wait until I have my muslin sewn up before I decide on that.

As much as I like the wide-rib cord that BurdaStyle have used I have decided to go with the 100% wool olive tweed you see in the sample above. I want it to be plain enough so it will go with many of my outfits. There won’t be any elbow patches on my version and I’ve yet to decide on my button choice, this will probably be decided once the jacket is finished. I may take a trip to the button shop in the City where they will help me find the best match. They have an abundance of delicious vintage buttons there, I’m sure to find something.

This week marks the end of the

JJ blouse

sew along. I still haven’t managed to finish mine but I do have a few days left before February is over! This past week I have given in to taking much needed naps in the afternoon instead of sewing, I figure I need the rest more than I need the JJ blouse at the moment. I am impressed by the many versions that have popped up on the site though which you can see in the

creations section of the site. You can also read all about what each member thought about this pattern and any changes they made etc in the


The next sew along will be the

Nichola pants; they were by far the most popular vote. I personally won’t be taking part in this sew along since I plan on having a baby in the next few weeks, plus I think I should wait until I’m back to a regular pre-pregnancy weight before attempting these since they are quite fitted. I have started a

new thread in the forum for this sew along and the same applies as all the others, tell us your plans, fabric choice, pattern changes you may make etc. Feel free to ask questions and give tips too.

Oh and I just wanted to let you know that all of the maternity alteration how-to’s I have made throughout my pregnancy have been organized into

their own category, if by chance you need them!

Letter From the Editors: Sharing Secrets


Secrets, secrets, are no fun. . .

So BurdaStyle is going to share some secrets with you! We’re sure everyone is curious how the patterns turn from muslins in our Brooklyn studio or illustration submissions from one of our design calls, into Print at Home PDFs for everyone to download on BurdaStyle. Well, its actually a pretty long, detailed process, involving a lot of talented people and lot of work!

Sewing Universe News Feed: EXTRA News Flash!


The folks at the Stitch Lounge in San Francisco are working on an article for Etsy’s Storque magazine about handmade weddings. If you worked on DIY wedding projects at the Stitch Lounge, email hope@stitchlounge.com with photos and a short description of your project. There’s a time crunch, as the deadline is tomorrow (Feb 26) so send the projects pronto!


  • Editors' Pick
  • Pattern Collections
  • BurdaStyle Academy
  • Burda Challenge
  • Backstage Report
  • Fashion & Trends
  • DIY to Try
  • Tips & Techniques
  • Member Highlights
  • Sewing Projects
  • Outta Town
  • Contests & Competitions
  • Archive
  • Guest Columns
  • Videos
  • Meg's Magazine Mash Up
  • As Seen In
  • Podcast
  • Holiday