Monday, December 24, 2007

Love the Man Look

The man look became big in ladies’ attire of the 1930’s at first for business wear to ‘indicate seriousness of intent’ (Stella Blum, Everyday Fashions of the Thirties), but also filtered into other ladies' day and evening wear. The man look never goes out of style and even if it did, my wardrobe would still include it!

Pattern SE30-1210 is a super rare pattern which is the earliest ladies’ street trouser pattern I have ever found.
I think the rendered model in the center of the pattern art resembles Marlene Dietrich (who alongside Katharine Hepburn popularized ladies’ wide leg trousers during this decade).

Click here to see pieces a customer made from the pattern.  As Nick indicates in his entry, the top-stitching at each trouser pocket is a distinctly German detail in men's tailoring.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Mixing It Up!

Over the last couple of years, I have shifted from sewing styles devoutly from vintage patterns to sewing them with contemporary twists, but I continue to appreciate and respect original vintage pattern styles in their purest form.

In experimenting with contemporary from vintage patterns, I have also begun to coordinate hand knit and crocheted projects with garments I have been sewing all this year.

In this project, I mixed feminine and masculine attributes. Since I re-entered the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State this fall, I have taken it all a step further by adding a dash of architectural perspective to my garment work. The result is a fresh culmination particularly in this corset ensemble!

As for the details:

The shirt (yes shirt, not blouse!) is from current Vogue pattern 8287. I tailored it in Swiss pima cotton satin batiste and stitched it using machine-felled seams for masculine-style detailing. I have it heavily starched at the cleaners which assists in maintaining the masculine integrity as well as stabilizing the un-linked French cuffs.

For the shirt, I used the inside method of inside flat-felled seam construction per Vogue 1975:

The Skirt I modified from a circa 1945 Vogue pattern in silk and rayon Chinese brocade.

The Corset is based on a design in Vogue Knitting Holiday 2004. I substituted the original pattern's yarn recommendation (Karat, by Skacel) with Alchemy Yarns of Transformation bamboo in pewter and rather than the plastic feather boning Vogue advises, I used my 1/4" spiral steel boning. The bamboo yarn is crocheted around each bone and the infill is patterned in Tunisian Simple Stitch.
Of course, the satin ribbon lacing is 100% silk!

Machine Felled details:

Brocade detail:

This ensemble is on here: