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Life's Mixed Bag
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Samsally



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 6314

PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, most of the vintage patterns I've come across have usually been through a theatre department, to be honest. Depending on the department, they may not care if you ask to make copies, but ultimately it really helps to be friends with someone.

Alternately, I do know a few pattern companies will have vintage collections where they reprint old patterns (vogue comes to mind, sadly not cheap but you can find really good sales sometimes). I'm not sure what their men's selection is really like, to be honest, I can do some recon some day and find out though, usually when I'm buying commercial patterns it's for myself and I gravitate towards dresses I'll never wear outside of special circumstances.

When I'm pattern hunting I will usually wait for them to go on sale, then buy up anything even vaguely interesting. I now have a super ridiculous box of patterns that are normally $20+ that I didn't spend more than $2 on each one. The sales usually have a quantity limit, so I'll just snap up what they let me and wait for the next sale, lol.


Really though costume departments are totally where it's at, not only do they have the best ancient patterns, but they have everything you need to copy them. And yes, they definitely have men's patterns as well as women's cuz we gotta throw period dressed dudes on stage just as often as the ladies.

That pattern you're interested in would be a good one to start learning a few of the more tricky things you're likely to come across. The collar's gunna be the trickiest part, probably, and as you already know pockets are kind of difficult. (Though if memory serves, that style may be easy to just leave off the first time you do it) It's a very versatile style and if you can master it I think you'll get a lot of use out of it. I'd recommend starting with really simple cotton or muslin fabric because those are the easiest to learn on in my experience. Muslin is less likely to look awesome when done, but I almost always try to learn a pattern with muslin (or the cheapest ugliest cotton, whichever is less money at the time) at first because it's cheap and I don't feel guilty writing all over it if I need to make alterations.
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jwing



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just took a class in "Fitting Patterns for the Beginner" at the SewExpo in Puyallup and the teacher pretty much said what samsally and mouse have said. She also recommended tissue-fitting - cut out the pattern tissue (although I tend to trace the patterns onto lightweight interfacing so I don't have to cut the original tissue), pin the pieces together (and another class I took this weekend taught me about pin-sewing -- use the pins like basting stitches, not like staples (if that doesn't make sense, say so and I'll take pictures), and try it on. There's an order as to what you check - back first (do you have a dowager hump, wide/narrow shoulders, wide back, etc). If the pattern doesn't reach your center back, you'll have to cut the pattern and add more tissue until it does. Then pin it again and check the front - does it hit the center front? Depending on your shape, you'll have to do a FBA (full bust adjustment) or bring the darts lower, or move them around. Once you get that all fixed, then you check the length.

Once the tissue fit is how you like it, cut the fabric and fit it before you sew. Pati Palmer (of Palmer/Pletsch, check 'em out) pointed out that different fabrics hang differently. If she's making the same shirt out of rayon vs cotton, she knows to make adjustments to the darts for each type of fabric.
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Samsally



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, also make sure you're wearing the undergarments you plan to normally wear with it when you are doing fitting stuff. A binder is going to seriously affect how something fits, and while you could still wear a loose shirt like that with or without one, it's good to know what it's altered for and what it would look best with.

So many people forget this. For people who wear bras on the regular even the specific bra affects fit in a major way. For some styles it really doesn't matter much, but for anything even remotely form fitting it's worth keeping in mind.
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Ennis



Joined: 09 Jun 2013
Posts: 682
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
Well, most of the vintage patterns I've come across have usually been through a theatre department, to be honest. Depending on the department, they may not care if you ask to make copies, but ultimately it really helps to be friends with someone.

Alternately, I do know a few pattern companies will have vintage collections where they reprint old patterns (vogue comes to mind, sadly not cheap but you can find really good sales sometimes). I'm not sure what their men's selection is really like, to be honest, I can do some recon some day and find out though, usually when I'm buying commercial patterns it's for myself and I gravitate towards dresses I'll never wear outside of special circumstances.

When I'm pattern hunting I will usually wait for them to go on sale, then buy up anything even vaguely interesting. I now have a super ridiculous box of patterns that are normally $20+ that I didn't spend more than $2 on each one. The sales usually have a quantity limit, so I'll just snap up what they let me and wait for the next sale, lol.

Aw man that sounds awesome, it seems like patterns are never that cheap here and only rarely go on sale.

Samsally wrote:
Really though costume departments are totally where it's at, not only do they have the best ancient patterns, but they have everything you need to copy them. And yes, they definitely have men's patterns as well as women's cuz we gotta throw period dressed dudes on stage just as often as the ladies.

Maybe I should join a theatre company XD If they had good Victorian patterns I would probably die of happiness. If I could get away with it (and had the clothes) I would dress in Victorian period fashion several times per week.

Samsally wrote:
That pattern you're interested in would be a good one to start learning a few of the more tricky things you're likely to come across. The collar's gunna be the trickiest part, probably, and as you already know pockets are kind of difficult. (Though if memory serves, that style may be easy to just leave off the first time you do it) It's a very versatile style and if you can master it I think you'll get a lot of use out of it. I'd recommend starting with really simple cotton or muslin fabric because those are the easiest to learn on in my experience. Muslin is less likely to look awesome when done, but I almost always try to learn a pattern with muslin (or the cheapest ugliest cotton, whichever is less money at the time) at first because it's cheap and I don't feel guilty writing all over it if I need to make alterations.

I've actually had a little experience with pockets. The waistcoat I'm currently making, I created the pattern from a waistcoat I had custom-made for me (did I already mention this? I can't remember) and it has three pockets, two down the bottom and one breast. I sort of am doing a practise one, we had a whole lot of black material and no muslin so it was better to use that than go spend money. But anyway, first pocket I accidentally put the front bit the wrong way, which you can't tell from the outside but means you can feel the raw edge on the inside. Second pocket I realised that the way I was cutting the hole then stitching the front flap meant I was always going to have awkward tiny raw edge tufts showing a little bit down the bottom, so by the third and final pocket I did everything the right way, sewed the flap then clipped to the corners and it all looked much more professional. I'll show you photos of what I mean when I'm done. The point was I have at least a little experience with pockets, so my main worry is stuff like collars and sleeves.

jwing wrote:
I just took a class in "Fitting Patterns for the Beginner" at the SewExpo in Puyallup and the teacher pretty much said what samsally and mouse have said. She also recommended tissue-fitting - cut out the pattern tissue (although I tend to trace the patterns onto lightweight interfacing so I don't have to cut the original tissue),

The woven or non-woven kind?

jwing wrote:
pin the pieces together (and another class I took this weekend taught me about pin-sewing -- use the pins like basting stitches, not like staples (if that doesn't make sense, say so and I'll take pictures), and try it on. There's an order as to what you check - back first (do you have a dowager hump, wide/narrow shoulders, wide back, etc). If the pattern doesn't reach your center back, you'll have to cut the pattern and add more tissue until it does. Then pin it again and check the front - does it hit the center front? Depending on your shape, you'll have to do a FBA (full bust adjustment) or bring the darts lower, or move them around. Once you get that all fixed, then you check the length.

Wow, intense. So the pins go in-out-in-out-in-out, is what you mean? And you pin together all the pieces so it kind of resembles the finished garment? I'm not exactly making anything so tight-fitting it needs that many darts though, it looks like it's women's wear that has to be pretty exact since there isn't much wiggle room in stuff like fitted dresses/blouses.

jwing wrote:
Once the tissue fit is how you like it, cut the fabric and fit it before you sew. Pati Palmer (of Palmer/Pletsch, check 'em out) pointed out that different fabrics hang differently. If she's making the same shirt out of rayon vs cotton, she knows to make adjustments to the darts for each type of fabric.

Is there an article on this? The extend of my knowledge of fabric hang is basically "the thicker it is, the stiffer it is". I would have thought the darts would be the same but the shirt would just be a different stiffness or something.

Samsally wrote:
Oh, also make sure you're wearing the undergarments you plan to normally wear with it when you are doing fitting stuff. A binder is going to seriously affect how something fits, and while you could still wear a loose shirt like that with or without one, it's good to know what it's altered for and what it would look best with.

Since I wear a binder all the time (and therefore more than is healthy) that isn't really a problem haha.
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Snorri



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 10878
Location: hiding the decline.

PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2014 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel sorry for all you weirdly proportioned people. I can find clothes that fit.

Only I always shop way too late in the season so all the clothes that would fit me are already sold out. I went shopping for a new winter coat last month and it took hours to simply find a coat in my size. Sure I went shopping for a winter coat in February but why don't they just stock less coats for obvious giant human beings and more normal sized people? I know The Netherlands is a country of giant freaks (seriously) but come on.


Still, advantage is 50% off so that's a plus.
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Yinello



Joined: 10 May 2012
Posts: 2638
Location: Behind you

PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Snorri, as a half-Asian in Holland, I know your pain well.
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Jinx



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 3615
Location: America, fuck yeah!

PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:

...

Look, I really like talking about sewing apparently.


I'm shocked, shocked!, to learn that Samsally likes talking about sewing.


;-)
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WheelsOfConfusion



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 12070
Location: Unknown Kaddath

PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well you don't have to needle her about it.
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Jinx



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 3615
Location: America, fuck yeah!

PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, that joke was just tailor made for this situation, wasn't it?
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Echo



Joined: 18 Jul 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well it had me in stitches.
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mouse



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

that looks like a great basic pattern, Ennis! full of nice details that once you get experience with will let you make all kinds of great stuff.

i will be interested to hear if there is a source for genuine victorian patterns. they should actually be easier to make fit, people were quite a bit smaller back then (one of jack the ripper's victims was called "long liz" because of her height - she was 5'2").

let us know how it goes! and ignore the pointed comments from all the so-and-so's here.
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Samsally



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sometimes I really wish time travel existed just so I could terrify masses of tiny people. (I am 5'9")

I would totally join the circus and take up weight lifting.
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Ennis



Joined: 09 Jun 2013
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mouse wrote:
that looks like a great basic pattern, Ennis! full of nice details that once you get experience with will let you make all kinds of great stuff.

i will be interested to hear if there is a source for genuine victorian patterns. they should actually be easier to make fit, people were quite a bit smaller back then (one of jack the ripper's victims was called "long liz" because of her height - she was 5'2").

let us know how it goes! and ignore the pointed comments from all the so-and-so's here.

I don't think people could resist joining in on the puns XD

I found a similar pattern to the Colette one from McCall's here, I wonder if I should start with this one instead. It's mostly because I know I can buy it in stores and it's cheaper. The only thing is, I'm not sure how they work the whole "mens cut womens cut" thing with the sizes. Ideally there would just be slightly differing lines on the one pattern piece, but there's a chance they could be completely separate and the mens sizes only start at 34 chest instead of ~30, which would kind of defeat the purpose of getting a unisex one because it looked like the smallest size would fit me. (As opposed to the purely mens ones which always start at 34.)

I'm going to start a new thread to show what I've done of the sample waistcoat I made. Also so it doesn't clog up this thread and we can have one just for sewing Smile
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Jinx



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
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Location: America, fuck yeah!

PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mouse wrote:

let us know how it goes! and ignore the pointed comments from all the sew-and-sew's here.


FTFY
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mouse



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i wanted to see who would pick up on that. some of my puns are apparently too subtle.

i still think "oh ewe of little faith" deserved a better reaction than it got.
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