I don’t like to eat peas.
Apparently I used to although I was too young to remember the day I decided to stop.
Of course my Mum remembers.
One day my Uncle R visited from Australia and when Mum was dishing up dinner for everyone he asked to not have any peas. I guess I realised at that point that eating some foods must be voluntarily and I asked for no peas too and decided that I didn’t like them from then on and never ate them again. Well, that’s not entirely true, I am sure there is more to the story, probably an argument with a stubborn child who believed they had some new and fantastic knowledge about food choice and was keen to exercise it.
I have occasionally eaten peas since “growing-up”. NH eats them and sometimes I cook them for him so I eat them too. I don’t really dislike them but they are a take-it-or-leave-it vegetable option for me. I think it’s the chasing them around the plate bit that I don’t like more than the taste. If they are mixed into a meal (Chicken Fried Rice for example) or if I am given them as a guest at someone’s house I will eat them and not say anything but if I can fill my own plate I am more than likely to leave them behind.
I guess that story is a long way of illustrating my point that in life I think we often make a snap decision about something based on the opinion of others. These decisions mean we might not give something a try or when we do, we do so with the expectation of failure and a closed mind. Sometimes we just need to give something a go and make up our own mind.
Perhaps that’s a bit deep.
What I am trying to poke my unpicker at is that many people give Burda a lot of cr*p for their pattern sheets. I think the lack of love they receive online puts a lot of would-be Burda converts off.
A whole fashion magazine of sewing patterns? There must be a catch, oh yeah, you have to trace from this crazy looking sheet.
But how else do you expect them to produce a full magazine of patterns each month for just NZD$13.00?
Sorry if you think tracing is hard work, I don’t agree, and Burda isn’t really that bad.
As a member of Team Trace All My Patterns, I’ve been tracing from them for years. Obviously, even if you are on Team Cut The Patterns, you cannot, since they overlap lots of other pattern pieces.
And yes, I completely agree when they have halved the number of sheets recently to cram more patterns on each one it did make it a little bit more difficult but still, you get an edge index, 4 colours and different line types to follow. It’s not that hard once you get the hang of it. There is a method to the madness, a way to find your pattern piece within the scribbley mess of lines and after a while your eyes start following the right line and you sort of blur out the rest of the pattern sheet. I call this phenomenon “Burda Vision”, it’s magic!
I’ve even got black and white large format copies of Burda pattern sheets and I still manage to trace from them.
Ok, I’m a visual person, I admit it is possible that I might find it easier than others but, before you judge, take a patience pill and give it a go with an open mind.
There are lots of tutorials out there on “How to trace Burda” or any pattern really, I’m not reinventing anything here, we all know how to trace. I just thought I’d show you how I deal with Burda in particular, the following works for me, it’s efficient, take from this what you need and jump right in.
First thing you need to do is grab some supplies:
- My tracing medium of choice is “butter paper”, A1 sheets specifically – It’s a designer thing so don’t stress if you have no idea what that is. You can buy anything that is slightly see-through, a large stationary shop should sell rolls or large sheets of tracing paper, velum, film, they may even have butter paper too. I used to trace on cheap cooking paper from the $2 shop.
- A pencil and a couple of pens – I like to trace the outlines in pencil and mark on darts and other pattern information with pen
- Rulers for the straight lines, circle template and curves if you can be bothered
- Some scrap paper for notes
- Pattern weights (optional) can come in handy for keeping things still. Bluetack or masking tape work great too. Kittens are not recommended.
- Scissors and sticky tape, sometimes you need to stick tracing sheets together for larger pattern pieces
I’m guessing you’ve already worked out your Burda size and if not go do that now:
First we need to work out what sheet our pattern is on and which pieces we need to trace. Remember this example from my earlier post?
It was my intention to make just one item this month, the dress version of this skirt above, but I changed my mind, because I can 😉
Then I was going to trace this cardigan but I realised it is one of the “extra” patterns that is shaded in red, not the best for this example, but good for you all to know that in each issue there is an “extra” pattern that is all shaded red with no overlaps so if you want you can cut it out or better yet, photocopy it , then cut it out to preserve the other patterns it overlaps.
I am going to make this cardigan (in this cute knit) but for this example I’ll trace another pattern that I’ll also try and make instead.
My pattern is on Sheet H and I am following the red lines for size 42. I usually trace a size 40 or 42 and take in the waist as needed. I need to trace pieces 1 through 4 and piece number 8.
On my scrap paper I write all this down for quick reference and checking off. I don’t generally trace in numerical order plus and as you can see, you don’t always get a simple list of pieces numbered 1 through 8, sometimes the pattern calls for pieces 22-26 & 32. It could get confusing so I cross them off as I go.
Now that I have my pattern pieces listed and the right pattern sheet in front of me the only thing left to do is actually find each piece to trace within the mess of lines. Burda has a system, basically you find your coloured pattern pieces number along what I call the “edge index” then trace a line perpendicular across and you will hit that piece.
I might run my finger around the shape to familiarise myself with it and then I lay my butter paper over and get tracing. I refer to the mini pattern pieces in the description as I go so that I pick up all the markings and grain lines.
Don’t forget to write on those little numbers (circled in purple above) when you are disoriented by the bewildering labyrinth of Burda “instructions” they will be your map for seam construction: 1 joins to 1, 2 joins to 2 and so on…
Now we start tracing.
Bonus Curious Kiwi Tip: I always trace the largest and most complicated piece first then work backwards towards the more simple and smaller pieces, that way it gets easier and faster as you go.
You’re welcome 😉
To prove that it isn’t as hard as you think I am going to show you in real-time me tracing this Burda pattern, but in fast forward, otherwise that would be super boring, and fast forward is much more entertaining.
I was going to try to make this more LOL funny but really once I got started I just kind of got on with the tracing 😉 Also I don’t do any talking so I tried to add some great Kiwi tunes instead but YouTube doesn’t like that *sad face! Anyway, I managed to add some random instrumental track from AudioSwap (which should actually be called AudioLame)…enjoy:
…aaaand we’re done. Now I am ready to cut it out and start sewing…finally 😉
Sewing helper update: Harry is officially Harriet, or Harri for short and my little “runt” is now 10 weeks old and weighs 900 grams. She’s put on over 300 grams in 3 weeks since leaving her litter mates who were hogging all the food!
If you are wondering where my little furry helper was during all of the above, well I was hoping to get her into the video but Friday was a big day for her. Most of Saturday was spent underneath my cutting table snuggling in my scrap box.
More kitten pictures I hear you cry? Why I thought you’d never ask!
Sick of kitten pictures? Sorry, not sorry 😉 Now go
eat some peas trace your Burda patterns.