Pattern puzzle: Recycled geometric denim

hyun_gun_jang_sm First thanks to Terri (Olivia Luca) who submitted this pattern puzzle.

Today’s challenge comes courtesy of Ecouterre which sponsored a recycled denim design contest. Our selection for today’s pattern was the contest second place winner. The winning entry was a bag, very well done too. Maybe some would disagree but you can play it either way. The dress was best as far as creativity is concerned but the bag -in apparel comparative terms- is more “wearable”. And that’s what Ecouterre is all about. I think it’s a great site. It hits the intersection of sustainability and fashion very cleanly without being too judgmental (other than in terms of topic selection, this is not intended as a criticism and hope it doesn’t come out that way) about neither fashion nor sustainability. But I digress.

This dress (larger view) was designed by Hyun Gun Jang. The sleeves, while perfect for this dress, are off the table because I’ve seen this style in an number of 40’s and 50’s era pattern drafting books. The skirt is another story. Having done something similar to this, I’m very curious to see what you’ll come up with for the draft of this. Have fun!

PS. My favorite contest entry was the rug. That was my idea! Except why did she have to use bleach? I’d buy that rug. Really, I would.

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  1. Kathleen says:

    ha! I poked around and discovered that the rug gal sells these on Etsy. And whadda deal! I did find this rug and I did buy this rug. Actually, I bought three of them.

    …like I always say, never say “I’ll buy that” unless you’re ready to fill out a purchase order. Or in this case, ready to plunk down paypal.

  2. Mia A. says:

    Wow, the bag (which I did like too) beat this dress? I wish I had time to do this pattern puzzle. Last year I made my son a Naruto costume and his “wig” was 3D and similar to this skirt.

  3. Terri says:


    Kathleen writes:

    >The sleeves, while perfect for this dress, are off the table because I’ve seen this style in an number of 40’s and 50’s era pattern drafting books. The skirt is another story…

    While I don’t have time to do the actual pattern, the skirt/hip shaping looks to me like it is the same construct as the sleeves, except that the circular pieces are cut apart and pieced back together with different colors. Which has the effect of making it look like different shaping. I didn’t notice it until I looked at the additional photo that Marie-Noelle mentioned above.

    It’s also much like some of the designs in the Japanese Pattern Magic books, which (if it hasn’t been noted already) has a new volume out! (The sleeve on the cover of volume 2 except sideways would be a similar concept except in a different direction and slightly different shaping.)

    PATTERN MAGIC VOL 3 – Japanese Clothes Design Book, has some fun things in knits this time!

    Olivia Luca

  4. Christina says:

    Ten Thousand Villages/Etcetera Shops (projects of the Mennonite Central Committee) have been weaving rugs out of torn/unwearable jeans (especially) and other clothing for many years. Etcetera Shops are like Salvation Army/Goodwill in that they sell donated merchandise. At Etcetera Shops, any clothing, linens, or other textiles that don’t sell gets torn into strips and woven into rugs by volunteers. (Goodwill and others usually sell the unsold clothing to rag dealers.)

    But taking torn, threadbare clothing and turning it into rugs has been practiced for centuries. Wool was the favorite for rugs before the jeans became ubiquitous (and wool is now a much less popular/common fiber.)

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