It’s November! It’s Burda magazine, aka “Burda Style” or “Burda World of Fashion” to us old-school sewists (shout out to my old-school sewists!)! I’ve run out of ways to introduce pattern magazines anymore so let’s just skip over this intro and show you my picks, shall we?? 😂
When we were in France in September, I took to opportunity to scour through the sewing magazine section of a large provincial supermarket, and I was pleased to see that they had not one but two issues of Fashion Style, the French translation of my old-time favourite Dutch pattern magazine, KnipMode.
The August issue was a bit too summery for my tastes, but the other one had loads that jumped out at me straight away, so I bought it in a heartbeat. Back when I subscribed to KnipMode, there used to be 2 or 3 issues a year that would come with an extra, smaller, supplement magazine, and I’m guessing that what I’ve bought here is a compilation of all the supplement patterns from the past year or so (but perhaps a Dutch reader can confirm/deny?).
In any case, let’s take a look inside and see why I was excited enough to buy it!
Wow, what a whirlwind few weekends I’ve had recently! I’ve barely cleaned up from the Great British Sewing Bee Live show and suddenly I found myself jetting off to northern Portgual to run up and down some mountains in the unseasonable heat! I’ve written up a full race review on my running site, but it may interest some of you to know I wore the cycling shorts pattern from my book for the race, too (minus the padding and silicone elastic hems, of course!).
It might also interest those of you in the southern hemisphere to know that there’s a new activewear fabric store in Australia – Sew Active Fabrics – and they’ve got a bunch of wicking prints, too. I’ve got a few of their fabrics to road-test over the next few weeks, but you can save 10% with code LAUNCH10 til the end of November if you want a sneak peek for your spring and summer activewear makes.
But enough about me – let’s look inside the latest issue of Burda magazine and see what delights await us!
While we were relaxing in the Loire Valley in France a few weeks ago, I took the opportunity to hit up some of the big hypermarchés’ magazine sections and flip through all the sewing magazines! I saw the usual suspects like Burda, Elena Couture, and Fait Main but also a fair amount of new(ish) ones, too. I was unimpressed by the several magazines which simply reprint Big Four patterns (I understand the economics, but I’m not tempted in the slightest), but excited to see Fashion Style (the French language version of KnipMode, which I’ll share in a future post), and also Couture Actuelle, the French language version of Patrones, and of course, La Maison Victor!
I’ll be honest with you – I wasn’t expecting to review this issue. I’ve subscribed to Burda for years now (and bought sporadically before that), but I’ve been increasingly been disgusted by their wasting an entire issue on dirndl dresses every September, which are a waste of my money, tbh. So when I got a notice that my subscription was ending with July’s issue, I thought “a-ha! I’ll outsmart you this year, Burda! I’ll buy August on the newsstand, skip your awful Dirndlpalooza issue, then re-subscribe with October!”
So I bought August (which was the best issue of the issue so far IMHO!), and then I tip-toed to the newsstand on my lunch hour last week to look through September… and no dirndls! Hurrah! A regular issue for September for the first time in at least five years! (Seriously though, if you want to sew your own dirndl, more power to you, there are loads on Burda’s site to help you with that.) I’ll still probably buy October from my newsstand just in case, but I think we might’ve escaped with much more usable patterns this year, hurrah!
oh. my. gorgeousness! Are you ready for, what’s in my humble opinion, the best Burda issue of the year, or possibly even the past few years? Seriously, there are SO many patterns in here that I want to make immediately that I can hardly stand it! In my eyes, I’d have to go back to the Japanese-style feature in June 2014 to find as many designs I’m utterly crazy about! But don’t take my word for it – let’s show you some of my picks!
It’s been a while since I had a Patrones magazine to share, but I kept an eye out for them while we were in Malaga last month. Eventually I found one on a newsstand in the centre of Malaga, but they certainly weren’t as easy to find there was they were in Argentina, which is more than a little odd considering it’s a Spanish magazine. It comes sealed so the pattern sheets don’t get separated or lost (as they’re not stapled in place like Burda), but it also means you can’t peek at the styles before you buy.
Anyway, if you’ve been following along with my reviews over the years, you might recall that they used to do knockoff patterns of seriously high fashion designers, then there was a fallout and they stopped being able to name any non-Spanish designers (so no more Gucci, Prada, Paul Smith, etc), and around the same time they also started to produce compilation magazines made up of a bunch of old patterns and photos lumped together. The only way you could tell the difference between the latest styles and the “latest” compilation was to look at the issue number, as the “new new” were in the 4-500s and the “not really new” had very low issue numbers.
If you’ve followed this site for any length of time then you’re probably already aware of La Maison Victor magazine, as I’ve been buying up issues whenever we’ve travelled to France over the past few years. It’s a Belgian pattern magazine, which started off as quarterly in the early days, expending to 6 issues a year and publishing in French, Dutch, German, and now… English, too!
This is super exciting because I love La Maison Victor‘s aesthetic – definitely more like a fashion magazine than a sewing magazine, and unlike some *cough* Burda *cough*, each of the patterns has incredibly well illustrated instructions, so they’re suitable for beginners, too.
We may be in the peak of summer here in the Northern hemisphere, but in Burda’s world July is the last of the summer issues, normally full of floaty beach wear and rectangles-masquerading-as-clothing but there’s surprisingly a lot to like in this issue, too…
No sooner had I shared my picks from the May issue and suddenly June turned up in my postbox! The cover declares this to be the dress issue, and with my proclivities towards separates, I wasn’t expecting much (especially since it’s a summer issue!), but there were a few treats inside…