Vintage pattern post #5

This refers to previous postings, the complete list appears at close.

Re: 24001. I’ve sewn my first dummy out of this green rayon I forgot I had. Here you can see it on the mannequin.
And here’s a picture of me wearing it and vainly trying to get a decent photo. I must get a tripod.

Fit-wise I’d say it works okay (it’s based on a known block 21702). Style interpretation seems pretty close with two exceptions: I think the hem edge style line of the longer side could be shortened a bit and I want to move that flange over a hair, moving towards the center of the chest. Engineering-wise, I’m very dissatisfied with the finish of the top (neckline) of the flange and I’m dissatisfied with the look/body of the flange itself. I don’t know how to describe what I mean. I want the flange to have more form and definition; the word corpulence comes to mind. In real life, it looks like it’s sagging and sad. I’ve fixed all these things in the corrected pattern. You recall the first pattern (from a draft) looked like this:

Well now that I have a prototype (the green thing above), I can make corrections to this first draft, rendering my second pattern shown here:
Since this picture is too small to see any marking details (to make production ready, conforming to all conventions patterns) I’ve uploaded the full size file of this photo. It’s 831 kb and you can get it here. As a matter of fact, I’ve uploaded full size photo files of the block front (806kb), the block back (836 kb) if you’re trying to learn about industrial pattern conventions. If you have any questions about the color coding, schematics or markings that is not explained below, please leave a comment.

Now I’m not very happy with the flange, I do like the side panel gusset detail that feeds the flange as shown here. This should be soft looking rather than abrupt.
Regarding the flange that I’m unhappy with. Obviously a stay is needed but the one in the proto isn’t good enough. I’ve decided to cut it out of horsehair canvas on grain -canvas should nearly always be cut bias if you can afford it, like the whole fronts of jackets and suits. Now that’s a couture secret none of those experts seem to know to mention. It’s so much lovelier. Things roll in a gentle way that lacks definition. Back to cutting the canvas on grain and why. I need the greatest amount of rigid under structure I can get, with the lightest load possible. Here you can see that the new stay pattern is smaller than its inset area. 24001_stay.jpg
Here you can get the full size file (812kb).

The pattern piece I’ve made to show you here isn’t the one I’ll actually use myself -although this is most definitely text-book correct- but I’m not going to bother with an explanation of why mine will be different if nobody’s gotten at least this far. It’s rather complex and if you haven’t gone to the bother of working up the sample, why should I? People are always saying nobody will give them “industry secrets” but they fail to realize they have to prepare themselves in steps preceding, otherwise they won’t understand the whats, whys and hows of the “secret”. It’s only a secret if you don’t commit to the investment of getting to the point to appreciate it.

Now, considering the collapsing of the flange itself -as a design effect- this just looks a little too limp for my taste. I’m going to fuse or otherwise stabilize the flange area of the shell piece itself. Tomorrow I’ll be cutting my second prototype out of the new pattern I’ve shown here.

Previous entries:
Vintage pattern design contest
Vintage pattern design update
Re-inventing Vionnet & 24001 draft
Vintage pattern post #4
Vintage pattern post #5

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  1. kathleen says:

    This is a compilation and crude importation of all the comments posted at the original site for this document. Feel free to add your comments

    4/12/2005 09:51:35 PM Jess said:
    This looks really good. Will you put sleeves on it? I don’t think it needs them actually, it’s very deconstructed looking and it’s very NOW without them.
    I started on it and just drawing the basic bodice was a challenge. That’s how much of a beginner I am, ugh.
    There’s two new posts in my blog that you’ll probably get a kick out of and like to rip to shreds.
    but I think my seam allowance entry is kind of clever or maybe it’s not a new idea?

    4/12/2005 10:02:17 PM Kathleen said:
    hi Jess
    I guess I won’t put sleeves in this for now anyway. Summer’s coming and one of my best features is my arms so this would play that up. I appreciate your comments. You really think it’s “now” when it’s so old? Heaven forbid I actually end up fashionable; it’d ruin my reputation ;-)

    I’ll look at your posts tomorrow. I don’t mind blogging you. Fun fun, no?

  2. Alissa says:

    I wouldn’t have the least idea about how to approach your contest, but I do have a copy of the Kirke book. (I bought an advance copy when the first notice appeared in Threads that it was going to be published–I called Betty Kirke and asked her how I could arrange to buy one, since it was being published in Japan…) At any rate, one of the features that I particularly liked about your original drawing doesn’t appear to have been translated to your draft. The high back neck, coming down to a folded draped line on the side opposite the “flange.” Between the effect of the high neck down into the flange and the fold in the drape on the other side you end up w/ a squarish neckline that is very attractive. (If you look at the “negative shape” of the neck in the drawing, you’ll see sort of a child’s base-of-a-tree shape.) Your current neckline is much more open in the front and the back looks like it must be much lower than the drawing appears to be. Was this the effect you intended? The negative space ends up being a very different shape…

    Just curious. I’m enjoying following your progress. And very much enjoyed seeing your previous Vionnet-inspired dress, which appears to fit you beautifully.

  3. KESimmons says:

    Dear Kathleen,

    I have read your postings on the vintage pattern and think I know why you are dissatisfied with the limpness of the flange. By basing your pattern on the Vionnet dress you have changed the basic grain of the entire bodice section. If the CF of the pattern were left on straight of grain the flange would also remain on the straight while all the gathering would then be cut with a bias edge. The gathering would then be soft and rounded while the flange would retain a certain stability. Check your Hillhouse and Mansfield and I think you will see what I mean. Of course the post I to which I refer is months old and all this may be long resolved.

  4. Kathleen says:

    I know what you mean Ken, totally but I’m so entranced with the beauty of bias that I won’t give up so easily. I’d rather give it one more go because I think I can make it work with the right kind of stabilizer. I’ve done enough work with bias to know that if I can keep it on bias, the dress will fit a wider range of body types than it would fit if cut on grain. I did recut this pattern and still haven’t tested the new version but I guess the jury will still be out on that until then. My shop is a total mess from the move :(

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