Thursday, January 30, 2014

Newsflash: March Burda and Spring/Summer Burda Plus Previews Posted

It's a double preview day - both the German and Russian websites have posted the early preview photos for the March 2014 Burda magazine and the 2014 Spring/Summer Burda Plus magazine.  Right now I am feeling like Burda is going a bit overboard with the dust ruffle sleeves, but overall there are quite a few pieces I am interested in, or at least curious to see the line drawings.  Let's take a peak:

March 2014 Burda:

Boucle jackets look like they are going to be a big trend -
there has been at least one in every issue so far this year.

I actually really love the length and cut of this version -
can't wait to see the line drawing.

Not sure how I feel about the pleated skirt, but at least it has pockets.

This top and skirt look like they are a rather basic cut,
but they show off this interesting print well.

Another design that is hard to see through the fabric, but looks like a nice basic dress.

Just finished watching Downton Abbey Season 4 -
I'm seeing the 1920s inspiration for this dress.

The ruffle shirt is pretty cute, but I am hoping we also get the shorts pattern.

The shirt is just too many ruffles - too much volume.
Multiple pairs of shorts make me think that it is a pattern though.

I think this dress is quite pretty and the shoulders are fairly interesting.
The photograph makes me afraid of participating in bouquet tosses though.

I'm assuming this is the non-wedding version of this gown.
Makes me think of a Princess Aurora/Belle mash-up gown.
And I sort of want to twirl around in that skirt.

I am assuming this is the same as the version above -
I don't know how I feel about the sheer skirt -
I do think the sleeves look quite elegant though.

I can understand the appeal of a simple wedding gown,
but this feels almost too basic.  Not sure I love where
that waist seam is hitting her.

Ooooh, a raincoat!  Or rain cape?
I want to see the line drawing on this one.

The plus designs for March look fabulous!
I LOVE this dress - a bit difficult to see the seaming around the neckline,
but could be quite fun in contrast colors.

I could do without the sleeve ruffles, but I really like this top/pants combo.

Another chic look from the Plus section.
I actually really like this top and skirt.
Burda Plus Spring/Summer 2014:

A bit hard to see with the print but my overall opinion of this dress... meh.

The shirt looks quite well fitted, but that skirt is to die for!
A total va-va-voom pencil skirt if ever there was one.

The oversized jacket is ok, and the pants are pretty nice.

A bit hard to see through the prints...
Looks like another waterfall front jacket and skinny trousers.

The sleeve ruffles are quite dramatic in the photo,
but would probably be rather annoying in real life.

I do rather like this basic sheath dress.

We've seen this before...

And this....

And this...

And this.
Seems like half of the Burda Plus magazines are re-prints of the regular Burda issues, and the other half of the patterns are new.  I got a subscription last year because some of the original designs were quite stunning, but based on the preview I might skip this year's issue.

I am actually quite more taken with the plus designs in the March issue, not to mention several of the designs in the regular size ranges.  I am actually quite excited to see some of the line drawings and the rest of the images for that issue, even though a large chunk of it will be taken up by the often less than exciting wedding gown styles.

What do you all think?  Are you excited by either of these issues?  Or are we more enthralled with the spring envelope pattern releases?  Is anyone even interested in doing spring sewing yet?  Because I can tell you that is just went from summer to winter here this week and I am far more inspired to be sewing long sleeve shirts and pajama pants than I am to be sewing spring skirts and dresses.  Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments!


As a side note - I feel as though I have been ignoring the blog quite a bit of late.  I have been doing some sewing, though about half of it has been for skating clients, but I haven't had much chance to photograph finished items.  I have also been doing a bit of reading, but haven't quite got around to reviewing any of my finished books.  At the start of the year I decided that I really needed to work towards reducing the joint pain and inflammation that have been increasingly problematic.  Considering various health problems I have had over the years I decided that trying the Autoimmune Protocol diet (AIP) would be a logical step as I try to reduce many of the inflammatory symptoms I have been experiencing.  So far I would have to say that I am seeing a good bit of improvement - reduced joint pain and clearer skin are definitely noticeable, as well as bit of a boost of energy.  However, I also feel like I have been spending all that extra energy in the kitchen.  And that time and energy have, unfortunately, been taken away from sewing and blogging.  Things are settling in a bit - I don't think I am taking quite so long to prepare vegetables as I was in the beginning - but I am still trying to figure out a good schedule so I can have time to do everything I want to accomplish in a day.  So until I get a schedule sorted out for myself I expect the blog posts will still be quite thin.  I do have finished objects to post, as well as a few new fabrics, and upcoming projects I am working on, but I don't know when I will get the photography and such finished.  I feel a bit bad that I haven't been quite as up to date on posting as I would like to be, but, then again, I also feel like I needed to take the time to focus on improving my health, so I think it is a worth while trade-off.  I suppose all this is to say - I have things coming on the blog, I just don't know when they are coming.  I also suppose this is what one gets for reading George R. R. Marten - apparently his writing style is contagious.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Blogger Meet Up and Lofty Fabrics

I have been a bit of a bad blogger.  Well, lazy at least.  A few weekends ago Elizabeth of SEWN suggested a bit of a blogger meet up in the LA garment district.  I thought it would be fun to go before I have to start running around looking for skating costume materials (oh man you guys it just got real - costume orders are picking up right about now - how is it only January and I already feel like I am in the weeds???).  I was able to meet a few fabulous LA sewistas, as well as the little boy who lives with Elizabeth and all her fabulous sewing machines.  Being the terrible lazy blogger that I am, I didn't actually take any pictures of LA or the meet up.  But I do have pictures of fabric.  Of course.

First stop was Michael Levine's - where I did a bit of guilt buying.  See, I was supposed to finish my sister's coat for Christmas.  And we have a muslin!  But actual construction of said coat hasn't really started yet, so I feel a bit bad.  Also, my recent adventures in the land of sewing home dec has me believing that pillowcases are the best gift ever.  So I bought some cute cotton prints to make a few more holiday gifts...

Cameras!  My sister majored in photography, so she has a thing for weird looking cameras.
Also, sparkly dots because, um, pretty.
I got a few other things  there as well - but they are going to be for a special project (part of my fantasy sewing plans for sure), so I don't want to show the fabrics off yet.  People who were at the meet-up know, but I don't want to spoil the surprise in case I can't get it done in a timely manner.  Ideally I would like to get it finished by the end of March, but with skating orders picking up... I can't be sure.  I can give you a bit of a hint though - it involves frozen fractals.  I am still looking for a few embellishments, but I was able to find all the fabric I needed to work on the sewing part of the project.

Next stop: The Loft.  Bins and bins and bins of remnant fabrics.  Everyone had fun digging, though I don't think anyone left with as much poundage as usual.  It is always a bit of a hit or miss in there, but I did manage to find several pieces to bring home:

Blue poly peach skin for a shirt muslin, and several knit prints.
We had fun visiting a lot of other stores in the city - I even went to several that I had never been in before!  I didn't get much fabric from the other stores (well, a few things for my special secret project) There are definitely places I would go back to again if I were looking for garment fabrics though.  There were lots of fabrics I really liked, but nothing that I absolutely loved enough to take home with me.  At least, not this time.

We had a lovely lunch at a local taco place and discussed everything from school to sewing to books to kids and driving.  It was a fantastic day of shopping and making new sewing friends.  I am so happy I was able to go - it was tons of fun and I would love to do another blogger meet up again!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Newsflash: Burda Spring/Summer 2014 Patterns Announced

Although Simplicity was quite slow in posting their own spring collection, they managed to get the new Burda envelope patterns up before I could find them on the German website!  These releases are always have a wide range of pattern types - from fancy gowns to swimsuits.  It always seems to be a mixed bag of hits and misses, but overall I would say there are some pretty decent patterns this time around.  I don't know if there are any super-wow stand-outs, but there are certainly a lot of strong designs.  Let's take a look...


BD6898 - I LOVE the short jacket (view A).  Super classic.

BD6900 - I really like the shorter coat (view B).
Not sure how I feel about the loose line-drawing,
but I love the way view B looks on the model.

BD6901 - The gathered peplum jacket seems to be a big trend for spring.
Not sure I am in love with this style for me, but definitely a cute jacket for spring.

BD6921 - I am liking the flair of the hem on this jacket.
The cropped version is cute too!

BD6953 - This is probably my favorite jacket pattern in the release!
Sadly, is for petite sizes, which means more work for me if I decide to get it.


BD6899 - Not a fan of the boxy jacket, but the sheath dress is quite nice.
Don't really need another sheath dress pattern.  But I like that this one has a back vent.

BD6915 - I'm a bit torn on this shirt dress pattern.
I like the model photos, but I don't know how the
side panel gathers would translate in real life.

BD6916 - I like the way they used the stripes to highlight the design.

BD6917 - I like these dresses, but I feel like I have seen the neckline
on view A before, and I don't know how I feel about the hip flaps on view B.

BD6918 - I could see this being a nice dress for a summer picnic.
Not particularly exciting, but practical for a warm day.

BD6920 - Pretty!  I like all of the options for this dress, including the plain one.

BD6919 - Looks like a nice quick-to sew, easy to wear knit dress.

BD6929 - I know the maxi dress is a thing, but I am not excited by the muumuu.

BD6930 - This short party dress is nice, but a bit plain.

BD6934 - Easy knit tops and dresses.  Meh.

BD6939 - I would love to see the pattern for the skirt of view B.
View C seems very 80s to me though.

BD6940 - I love the way view B looks on the model - so elegant!
Not sure I am in love with the line drawings on any of these though.

BD6942 - Nice simple lines, but a bit dull.

BD6941 - I am torn because I think this is a bit boring,
but I also think it would be a very flattering style to wear.
BD6943 - I really like this one shoulder style though.
I am a sucker for a one shoulder gown.

BD6944 - View A is just too much fabric, but I do rather like views B and C.
I like the diversity that comes in a single pattern.

BD6945 - I think the shirt dress is really classy.
This pattern is in the Burda Plus size range.

BD6946 - Another good Burda Plus pattern.
View A looks like a great wardrobe addition.

BD6947 - I like this dress in the shorter length.
(Another Burda Plus pattern).

BD6948 - This looks like a great pattern in the Plus sizes.
The dress (view C) is cute, but the cardigan (view A) looks fantastic!

BD6908 - I guess the oversized top is a thing right now.
Seems like all the pattern companies have at least one of these in their spring lines.
This one is going to be a pass for me.

BD6909 - This more fitted button down top is another story.
I like the collarless options, and the tunic-length would look great with a belt.

BD6910 - Love this pattern!  I could see myself wearing the top and the dress.
Especially love view A - it looks very much like a RTW top I already own and love.

BD6911 - I also really like this twist front pattern.
Another pattern where I could see myself using all of the views.

BD6912 - Meh.

BD6913 - I can see this being very comfortable to wear during summer.
Might be a bit boxy for my taste though.

BD6914 - The dresses are kinda blah, but the top could be a great piece for layering under jackets and such.

BD6922 - I find myself oddly drawn to view C.
Not so impressed by the other views on this pattern though.

BD6923 - Is this Burda's response to the Renfrew?

BD6924 - I'm thinking BBQs and square dancing.
And that I wouldn't leave the house with that much of my abs showing.

BD6925 - Lots of knit top options.
View E looks suspiciously like the pattern from last November...

BD6950 - A Burda Plus tunic top.
I actually like the way they styled the long version over the dress.

BD6897 - I really like these basic shorts.
Maybe just because I really need shorts.

BD6906 - Not a fan of the giant pointy waist band,
but I do like the drapiness of those pants.
Maybe I should do drapey pants.

BD6907 - These pants have a bit too much going on on the hips.
Mine are wide enough on their own, thanks.

BD6926 - Jeggings!
Yup, Burda went there.

BD6938 - Drawstring pants.  For those super extra lazy days.

BD6951 - Skinny jeans in the Burda Plus sizes!

BD6952 - And a more classic trouser as well for the Burda Plus line.

BD6902 - I never know what to think about button front skirts.
I like view B, but I always fear a wardrobe malfunction.

BD6903 - I like this skirt pattern.  Floaty and pretty!

BD6904 - Circle skirt.
Cute, but I have a lot of similar patterns already.

BD6905 - Skirt with front pleat.
Is ok, but nothing I haven't seen in the magazine.

BD6928 - Dang those things are short!

BD6965 - Psychedelic man!

BD6966 - I like the wide legged trouser,
but I am not a fan of a center back seam zipper.

BD6967 - I am always oddly drawn to these fluffy sleeved tunic tops.
Even if I know I look like a crazy poet if I wear them.

BD6968 - Ooooh!  I really like the top of view A!
Would be fantastic for layering under a jacket of wearing on its own.

BD6931 - Men's shirt pattern.
There are front darts for fitting, and a few collar options.

BD6932 - I like the longer version of this men's coat pattern.
The shorter version feels a bit plain for menswear.

BD6933 - Skinny legged men's trousers.
Don't know that this is a style for everyone, but nice to have the pattern option?

Maternity & Other:

BD6957 - Looks like a decent maternity top/dress pattern.

BD6958 - A button-down maternity shirt!
Probably not as comfortable as a knit top, but a great pattern
for someone who needs a more formal maternity wardrobe.

BD6963 - Swimsuit pattern.  Pretty basic.

BD6964 - A slip pattern.  Might be good to be able to make your own
slips out of knit material, since so many other patterns are designed for wovens.

BD6960 - A doll clothes pattern.  The top/pants combo is pretty cute.
Magazine Re-Prints:

BD6969 - Hmmm, I have this shirt.
Reprinted from May 2013.

BD6970 - This dress was totally from April 2013.

BD6973 - Remember this dress/skirt from last February?

BD6974 - This was another popular pattern from last February.
I made this dress, and there were a lot of tops popping up on pattern review.
Whew!  That's a lot of patterns!  There were quite a few that I am going to pass on, but I have at least a couple of jackets and dresses that are staying on my radar.  I have another bunch of pattern I am debating over.  I like them, but I probably don't need them.  Hmmmm.  So, what do you all think?  See anything that knocks your socks off?  Or did we get all the good patterns in last year's magazines?  What do you think about the picks for the vintage reprints?  And who wants to host the Burda Jeggings Sew Along?  Feel free to discuss the hits and misses in the comments!