ooobop! review: Burda Style January 2013

Burda January 2013 cover

One might be advised to take the following review with a pinch of salt. I am ill and grumpy and should never have ventured out on this cold, wet miserable day to get hold of my belated issue. Belated, not because of any neglect on my part to pick it up sooner but because Smiths clean forgot to put it on the shelves. I think I might have got a poor sales assistant busted as a result.

My glee turned to gloom when I flicked though the first section, before I got to the checkout. The ‘Party’ section. Really? Not my kind of party. What no LBD? No slinky numbers, save the Bacofoil one. Maybe overload of purple has left me unable to think outside of the box. mmmm…. what do you think?

Burda January 2013 partyThere were a couple in this section that left me a little more hopeful. Gosh I am being so negative, soz! Strange though because I don’t really do strides or leggings but quite fancy a pair of leather ones, Given my determination to grow old disgracefully! Still not very partyish though.

Burda January 2013 party in purpleBut hang on. Here we go. This is far more up my street. A section entitled the Aenne Burda Collection. Five reinterpreted dresses and a coat from the 50’s and 60’s. And I love each and every one of them! Though I really want the button band on the pink dress to be narrower. I don’t need my midriff highlighted quite so much!

Aenne Burda collection dresses and coatLoungewear, leisurewear, sporty home knits, whatever… not really a fan of such garments. Even though I could be accused of hypochrisy as I sit here, sniffling in my sloppy pjs and age-old baggy T!

But never say never. These patterns do come in handy from time to time and they whip up quick so long as you don’t have an aversion to stretchy jersey fabrics. I’ve made a few peasant tops but I think one in a lovely drapey viscose jersey with long sleeves might be a more glamourous casual addition.

Home story loungewear

So was the glamour saved for the Plus Section as per usual? Nope! I like the green dress and the waterfall fronts of the jackets. In fact I quite like the layering and the colour palette but I might give the huggy bear waistcoat a miss!

Burda january 2013 plus section

And just in case you need a fancy dress costume…. there is certainly a mixed bag going on here!

Looks like a lot of work to pull of a Hungry Caterpillar costume but wouldn’t that be a hoot?! I always gloss over patterns like these but on closer inspection there is always a bodice or a sleeve pattern that could be borrowed. Not forgetting random dressing up days at school!

Burda January 2013 fancy dressThere are lots of lovely little crafty projects in this issue too, like detatchable collars, a bead-embroidered neck band, bejewelled bangles and shoes plus these adorable teddies made from recycled jumpers and blankets. No actual pattern for these but the instructions and inspiration is all that is necessary.

bunnies from recycled jumpersWell in case I don’t touch base before the new year, here’s wishing you all a fabulous 2013. Thank you for faithfully sticking with me and for all your wonderful comments. It is already so difficult to remember life pre-ooobop! I’m hoping to get more stealthlike in my attempt at stealing sewing time in the new year and so be much more productive. But what good would that be without having you lovely lot to share it with.

Truly Grateful.

Much Love

Janene x

ooobop! review: Burda Style December 2012

Burda december 2012

Was beginning to get a bit anxious about the late appearance of this issue on the shelves of Smiths! But was it worth the wait?…. In my humble opinion, if there is just one great pattern in there it’s worth the cover price. Two and I’m laughing. Three and it’s definitely Christmas. But more than three? Oh yes, yes yes!!

Party Fashions opens with  a great fitted jacket in black and gold. Sling it on over a pair of jeans and a T and you are so ready for the party. And check out the detail on the ‘Master Piece’ dress. Hurts my head a bit wondering how that is created. And it has 3.5 ‘difficulty blobs’ out of a possible 4  but as luck would have it, there is a step-by-step sewing course included, to help you on your way.

party fashions

I love this ‘Black Power’ dress. Shame it is obsured by the jacket in this shot but the line drawing highlights the simple lines. Would be gorgous in silk. In stark contrast, not really a fan of ruffled layered bottom halves. Only because my bottom half doesn’t need bigging up. But this little skirt is pretty with the metallic tulle lace overlay. And incredibly easy to make.

party fashions

Party Fashions wouldn’t be complete without an adornment of sequins but I can’t help but think how spiky they must be to wear. The skirt part on the black dress however is made from imitation leather scales. Now your’e talking! I don’t tend to do trousers anymore either but stretch nappa leather ones like these are luring me back!


More sequins and shine…

…. and then we are on to Christmas!!

Boy am I excited about this coat. I was given a decent length of a lime green/chocolate shot silk/wool mix fabric. Quite heavy. Probably intended for furnishing. Certainly not dressmaking. But I instantly had visions of classy and totally original coat. Have been looking for the perfect one. And now, as if by magic, I think I have found it! Just praying there is enough fabric!

burda 12 2012 coat

Not sure if I am suited to the following look, though I think the skirt is very interesting. Perhaps its the distraction of the 1D lookalike in the photo. I do however, reeeaaallly like that little girl’s shift dress. And love that it is actually in my daughter’s size. More often than not, the kids patterns are either too small or too large and I’m far too lazy busy for pattern grading!

girls shift dress

Again. I’m not feeling the puritan look but the jacket with the retro peplum and the little girls coat is totally up my street!

puritan look

The whole sweet angel and tweed look is maybe pushing the boundaries of sweet. Verging almost on sickly, I’d say! I can hear Mr  and Master Ooobop! roaring with laughter as LMO and myself prepare Christmas lunch in such puritanical stylee. The fact that LMO would howl with protest if every I tried to dress her like this is a sure thing too!

angel dress

A good teddy bear pattern always comes in handy as a gift for a small person. Or even a grown up! I do enjoy sewing toys just as much but so far haven’t strayed from the path of Tilda makes. Burda have even included the corochet pattern for the lovely shawl they are sitting on. Oh please don’t get me side-tracked!

teddy pic

I keep coming back to this dress. It’s not instantly my thing but I love how the seam joins have been highlighted in white. Definitely a conversation piece. I quite like the waiscoat too but they can keep their billowy sleeves!


There’s a Master Piece jacket and coat pattern for the smalls too. Very classy. I’m sure I could talk LMO into that jacket, if it meant she could keep her Doc Martens on too!

kids coats

There’s a fun Street Style section with some clever twists on casual using wool. Makes for a more quality look than with the usual jersey. But I have glossed over that because I don’t really do casual street!

This dress certainly makes a ‘Grand Entrance’ when you turn to this spread. Works great as a short dress but soooo elegant as a full length evening dress. It’s made in silk crepe here. Imagine how luxurious it would feel too!

grand entrance dress

In stark contrast I fear the blue shiny combo on the left is a bit wrong! Luckily there is a pleasant distraction opposite! I really like the simple cut of this dress. A variation of the black dress at the beginning. But with the addition of long sleeves and an overlay of floaty chiffon it is transformed into  and enchanting swoosh of loveliness! I do have a little issue with how the neckline seems to be pulling though. Anyone know why this might be happening?

chiffon dress

Here’s a couple of real simple to put together outfits. Well, Im sure the jacket is a little trickier but I do  think it would be worth any amount of hassle to be snuggled in wool velour. The gathered collar and three-quarter sleeves are gorgeous features. Rose and gold is quite a sophisticated colour combo too.

easy patterns

Oh and here we are. My favourite bit! The Vintage pattern. A very stylish French couture look. Though I like a nice bouclé fabric, especially one with a metallic thread, I think that gorgeous design feature at the front bodice is lost. If or rather when I get round to making this beauty I will definitely be employing a plainer wool fabric and keep it closer to the original.

vintage pattern

There’s  a few treats in the plus section. Not least of all this hot LBD. Flattering sweetheart neckline and some glamourous gathering at the hip. Oh to have those curves!

plus section

Well that just about wraps it up for the clothes section but there are lots of extra crafty projects too, just to get you in the spirit of the season!

Thanks for swinging by. Hope you get some sewing in over this busy time. Till next time, toodlepip! xxx

ooobop! review: Burda Style November 2012

Burdastyle magazine november 2012

A little later than usual but I do hope that November 2012’s Burda Style magazine serves to whet your appetite and make your sewing list longer all the same!

I’m going to jump straight to the Vintage pattern because that is exactly what I did in the shop and it is so totally my favourite and my best! I do like it in black but I also like its original floral form. Such style in the fifties! Bring it back, I say!

burda november 12 vintage

Lots of lovely misty neutrals in the first section this month. I am quite surprised to see a floaty batiste dress (top left, below) considering the chill factor but I like it all the same, especially styled with boots and the faux fur waistcoat. I am also tempted by the blouse, centre bottom row. Batiste with a metallic print…. not sure I will stumble across that fabric choice in the Goldhawk Road, but always worth an ask! It’s got 3/4 raglan sleeves and bust darts so its simple but not completely shapeless.

The trousers (bottom right) are nagging me to attempt my first pair of trousers. These ones have hip yoke pockets and are ankle length to display some fabulous show-off shoes!

art of fashionNext up is the Gem Colours section. You may have already have seen some of these patterns on the Burda web site. They were quick to go up this month.

This jacket or ‘blouson’ as its called here, would present such a rewarding project. Having just completed my first proper jacket I’m itching to employ some more tailoring techniques and this one looks like it could present a few more. Its got some beautiful hand stitching going on which gives it such a professional finish.

Gem colours

Undertones of the 70s with oranges, purples and browns are the order of the day for Gem Colours. I’ve not worked with crèpe de Chine before but I think the first dress (below, top left) would be a great place to start. It’s semi-fitted and has a wide neckline, with broad sleeves that taper into slip on cuffs. Perfect for those bloaty days or when you just want to throw something over a pair of leggings or sturdy coloured tights before flying out the door.

gem coloursTwo Sides of Me is an interesting section this month. I like the dress!

Two sides of meNot too sure about the boyish looks. Bit boyish for me to be honest! But I’m quite drawn to the blouse on the left. Not my usual style but I like the idea that this could be whipped up a couple of hours before a theatre date! It is made of stretch silk satin here. Much like my pin up pants, so I bet it feels gorgeous on!

Two sides of me

I kind of flicked past the Knits section to get to the Kids. Nothing against knits, honest, and I feel bad now for not including them. But they just seemed like staple loungewear. And I need to avoid making stuff that everyone is going to think is from ‘Primani’!

But… there is some totally cool kid stuff as usual. Keeping the neutral theme and mixing up metallics and matte. Lovely textures and fun, chic designs that will even fit Little Miss Ooobop!… hoorah!!

Burda Kids november 12And a Burda mag would never be complete without some hot plus-size gorgeousness. My picks this month are very vintagesque. Creature of habit, moi?! Very elegant and sexy and perfect for a hot wintry date!

plus sectionAny faves? Any dislikes? Feel free to share your thoughts!

The audition dress!

V8280 audition dress

I made this dress last weekend to wear to an audition on Friday. I’m afraid I can not speak of the adventures it had or the reaction it got as I am sworn to a confidentiality agreement so I can only tell of the making of the dress itself!

V8280 Roland Mouret dress

I’m sure, for most of you lovely sewing people out there, you have already guessed it to be the Roland Mouret knock off by Vogue – pattern no V8280 – the Galaxy Dress. But perhaps it wasn’t instantly recognisable without its signature sleeves.

V8280 galaxy dress

On reading lots of reviews about how the sleeves would be best placed on a pitch against the New York Giants, I did run up a quick toile to test out their outrageousness. I wasn’t too scared by them but I wanted this dress to be right and not feel too self-conscious in it! So I went for Vew A. It looks a bit boring on the envelope but I do believe this is probably the classiest dress I’ve made to date.

v8280 sewing pattern

Might have something to do with fabric choice though. I’ve come to realise that the longer I keep up this sewing lark, the more choosy I’m getting about quality of materials. For sure I still love a charity shop find but in truth, nothing beats shopping specifically for the most appropriate fabric. I needed to impress with this dress so it had to be good stuff. I chose wool crepe and silk lining. Oh what luxury! I have really started something now! Just look at the texture in that wool…

wool crepe texture

I love the way that it pressed so beautifully yet didn’t crease too much when it was worn.The wool crepe was £15.99 and the silk lining £6.99 a metre from one of my favourite fabric shops in the Goldhawk Road. Probably my most expensive make, around £42 in total but the blow was softened after I checked the prices of similar wool and silk in Berwick Street, London…. more like £30 – £80 a metre!!!!

If I’d have had the time, I would have made a full toile to check the sizing properly. I overestimated the sizing of the bodice and ended up taking it in by 3 inches under the arms. I will definitely take it down a size next time. And oh yes, there will be a next time!

This is also my first experience working with a modern Vogue pattern. I have heeded the warning of others about their ‘vague’ instructions, but I found this one to be very simple to put together. Bearing in mind I didn’t go for the sleeves!

Once you get the hang of the ‘flanges’… lol – or once you get used to calling them ‘flanges’ – it will all make perfect sense. And they do help to create a very flattering neckline. I chose the sweetheart neckline just because I think its more feminine and reminiscent of  glamourous ’40s ladies.

sweetheart neckline

Working with this fabric was a dream and made inserting a zip and lining up darts and seams, a breeze.

v8280 back view

invisible zipper

There were no instructions to fully line the dress, only to line the bodice. But from past experience I know I will never get away with an unlined skirt. My biggest fashion blunder was to take my coat off in the entrance to a party only to find out my unlined dress had ridden all the way up to my armpits. The worst (or most life-saving moment) of that was that another guest had to tell me. Otherwise I’d have strutted my stuff onto the dance floor like a complete fool, outdoing any Bridget Jones moment! And so I cut the lining, the same as the skirt but with an additional half inch added to the side of each piece. I sewed the back seam from the zipper opening to the top of the vent and the side seams but didn’t make the darts. I pinned the waist of the lining to seam allowance of the skirt section, first pinning at the side seams, then to the back openings, with one pin at the centre front. I then folded pleats at the dart positions and pinned those in place before sewing to the seam allowance all round.

I’m not entirely sure this was the best way forward. There may be more professional ways of doing this but it worked, for me, anyhows!

I bound the hem with bias tape and machine hemmed the lining. Tricky old stuff, silk lining. Seems to carry far more static than poly lining, when ironed. But boy does it feel good! Raising one’s own standards is very amusing!!

bound hem

And all that is left to say is thank you once again to Mr Ooobop! for being amazing in every way. Not only does he dutifully take lovely photos for me, he is the most amazing support for my often waining morale and makes me so happy… gush gush!

He will insist on a leg shot though!

side detail on tights