Open source. . .sewing?

The more art/craft shows I go to, the more I realize there is a trend wheel turning here. We’ve raised up among us a Wal-Mart nation, for better or worse. Buying decisions are often made on price alone. Innovation and creativity takes a back seat to cheap, which is not only in the front seat, its in the driver’s seat.

Along comes a company that takes an old-fashioned idea–sewing your own clothes–and  brings it into the 21st century. Burda Moden is a pattern company well known in Europe, especially in areas where trendy clothes aren’t carried in every store. In Cold-War Europe, East German women had a chance to dress in style with these patterns.burda mode pattern

Now Burda Moden has evolved into BurdaStyle, a website that has done away with copyright, encourages clients to download patterns, print them on recycled paper, change them, post the results and any tips for inventive sewers. BurdaStyle is in New York, and run by two German women.

“My generation’s problem is not a lack fashionable clothing, but the excess of mass consumption products,” said Nora Abousteit, the hobby sewer of the two women. “We aim for conscious consumers who want to make their own unique clothing items.”

“Instead of opposing the removal of copyright,” Burda “drew a parallel between sewing patterns and the music industry,” she said. “He said we should not make the same mistakes as record companies did with copy restrictions.”

New ideas. New trends. Ideas that no one ever thought could happen. And it started in the hobby/craft area.

–Quinn McDonald is a certified creativity coach. She first saw this story in the International Herald Tribune.  Her own work is at