Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I'm Going My Own Way...

I stopped doing reviews of new pattern offerings years ago.  There are so many bloggers out there that do the reviews much better and then actually go on to make the patterns.  Patterns just seem to be inspiration to me and I tend to go my own way, but they still stir my creative juices and make me believe that there are new possibilities just over the horizon. 

So today when I saw Erica's post about the new Summer Vogues, I was thrilled and couldn't wait to get home to view the listings.  And now here I sit deflated...because there was NOTHING there for me.  I can usually find at least one, two, three or five patterns that I want from the new selections, but this time nada, zip, zippo...

And I'm sad...because I think this Kay Unger dress can be graded up to at least a size 30 ~ why doesn't Vogue?


...and this one...is a great party dress...if you only want a size 22!


But if I want to wear a bag with a square shoulders and a large cowlneck...oh and let's not forget the designer version of that look...or gathers at the neck or on the shoulders or a large v-neck, or a caftan (seriously that was the best Ralph Rucci garment they could find!) any of those patterns will do.

So what's a fashionable fat girl suppose to do?  Why go her own way!  Thank God for TNT patterns cause I won't be purchasing any of these offerings...and yet, here I sit, sad that there is nuthin for me...*sigh*

36 comments:

  1. I agree style 1183 could go up to bigger sizes. That is an interesting neckline and the bodice princess seaming would be great for fitting issues. I can't wait to see what you do with it. I'm sure, as always, you'll ignore the pattern company's tunnel vision and do your own thing with spectacular results.

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  2. I was aghast at the new Vogue patterns. Really how many people can wear a romper? I am a plus-size gal. I don't wear figure-hugging clothes. I like my garments to skim my body. Wearing over-size, gathered, baby-doll, maternity-looking, caftans and other volumous clothes do absolutely nothing for a curvy frame. Really, who are they designing for? Evidently they don't hear us! Same thing goes for RTW. Look at the styles. We're stuck in "baby-doll" land. Come on--why does everyone want to look preggie?

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  3. I just found their new offerings tonight too. You picked the ONLY two I'd consider making - the rest are, man oh man, WTF???? OK, V8648 is also great because it's got a good waistline and such versatile seaming (http://voguepatterns.mccall.com/v8648-products-11100.php?page_id=174). But the rest? ugh. Still, you KNOW you could so easily adapt your TNT pattern to make V1183 - you wouldn't even have to re-cut the bodice, just strategically apply the trim! You did it with the BWOF skirt, you can do it here.

    Yea, there's nuthin like spring! ;-)

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  4. I agree, both those patterns would look divine in larger sizes! I do think though that it's more about shape than size in some ways. I know I'd look better in the "sack" style dresses (but not that Chado caftan, what were they thinking?) than the more fitted dresses (which would look stunning on you). Another reason why patterns could span a huge size range from teeny to much bigger, so we call find the styles that suit our shape (rather than being limited to the styles that come in our size).

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  5. Just re-read my comment and the spelling is atrocious - I hope it still makes sense!

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  6. The pattern sizes many pattern co's choose seem arbitrary, and yes, leave lots of ladies out. I just ranted on my site about the cutesy craft books that come with patterns that go to: wait for it, a RTW size 12. (avg US woman is a 14).

    BTW I am a plus-size girl but I do like body-hugging stuff. :-)

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  7. I haven't looked yet, so I am shooting in the dark about this, but I bet you could make that princess lined one with the shawl collar work from a TNT and pull another pattern or two for the direction of the gathering and the collar, because you have the vision to see what it should look like and how to get there! You don't need the pattern, necessarily. It may not be exact, but how many things have you made that were inspired and really weren't exact to fit you? And still come out wonderful? Lots and lots, so don't despair, just take from those you like and make it work, because you usually do. :)

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  8. Yes it stinks, but I've seen the garments you've sewn & posted and I think it's time to leave the comfort or discomfort of ready made patterns. I see a creative future for you of your own designs. If you have TNT patterns it's just moments away. Don't be sad you will be starting a new adventure!!

    Just remember to buy plenty of muslin & paper. I go through plenty.

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  9. This Burda Plus pattern is this closest pattern I could find for Vogue 1182 Burda Plus Spring/Summer 2010. It's sad but it makes me more determined to learn how to make my own patterns.

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  10. The new vogues are HORRIFYING!! The ones that could be graded up to larger sizes never are, and the rest of them would make even a tiny girl look like the side of a barn. Just bad all around! I think I'll just sew some nice vintage patterns instead!

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  11. There is a KS (3735) pattern that is exactly like the Kay Unger princess sheath with shawl collar:
    http://sewing.patternreview.com/Patterns/35165 I don't know how their sizes run, but maybe that could work for you?

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  12. Interesting choice of words; I've often wished I could deflate myself enough to make a garment pretty much straight from the envelope.

    As for the new Vogue offerings, I don't mind the loose baby doll-esque tops so much (especially for running around the house, groceries, etc), because although more fitted tops don't look too bad when I'm standing, my baby belly seems to want to fight its way out when I sit down in a tighter top.

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  13. The Pattern companies and the retail stores both seem to have forgotten that there are some curvy plus size ladies out there. I'm really sick of the styles that just hang off my bustline like a sack. Seems they for got shaping is supose to help us all have a great shape.

    I think going your own way is one of the best things us sewist can do.
    Could not agree more with what you said.

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  14. Sorry you were disappointed - there sure is some CRAZY stuff in there this time. I like the Kay Unger dresses but I honestly have umpteen sleeveless dress patterns already and probably don't need any more. Probably....

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  15. I was disappointed as well. I didn't see anything for my "must have" list. Oh well, I guess I will be sewing from my stash for a while ;)

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  16. That kaftan is BAD. Real Bad.

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  17. Those are some lame-o offerings. But you have the talent & vision to do your own.

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  18. If you didn't want to draft Vogue 1182 from scratch I would think the size 22 would grade fairly easily. It's 'all going on' in the front panel the sides (and probably the back) are fairly plain so it looks like it would be relatively easy to make adjustments there (leaving the front panel untouched.

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  19. I agree, 1183 would look terrific in any size. Now you see why I like Burda Style so much. Not that I'm a "fashionable" fat girl, but I do think Burda's plus size choices have more to offer than any of the Big 4.

    (You knew I was going to say this, didn't you?)

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  20. 1182 reminded me of several recent Burda offerings. There was a recent dress in the Plus section with the same neckline and gathered bodice in the March 2010 issue.

    I found this season's Vogue's a little disappointing myself. Despite the fact that I'm right in the middle of the sizes offered, none of the styles appealed or looked particularly revolutionary. Sad, sad.

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  21. Yeah, I agree with everyone else, pretty boring. I'm surprised at the Ralph Rucci and Michael Kors offerings . . . both of those men usually come up with nicely detailed and styled offerings, but their patterns are pretty uninspired. However, I must admit that I am a little intrigued by the caftans . . . I'm tall and have an eclectic style so I can usually get away with such items.

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  22. You are so right, both of those beautiful dresses could easily have been graded to larger sizes. These styles would be flattering to a woman of any size! I'm not a plus girl but if I was you'd never see me in those God-awful baggy tents that scream 'I've given up'.

    I was pretty disappointed in the summer offerings (because most of them are tents!) but will add the 1182 dress to my collection.

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  23. I like 1182 and 1183 that you've shown. 1186 - interesting jacket, but the pants would have to be narrowed down. 1184 - the shorts are OK. 8684 - nice seaming and sleeve/skirt options. The rest are either a yawn or WTF. Will I get any? I don't know yet.

    The problem is, if we keep buying patterns and doing our own grading up (or down in some cases), the pattern companies think they are doing a wonderful job. Even if we keep writing, I think sales have more impact than letters. I wonder if every time new patterns came out, we wrote and said "I *would* have bought xxxx, but it didn't come in my size", or "Of the patterns offered in my size this time, I didn't buy any because I don't wear sacks, rompers, or maternity dresses" and DON'T BUY, they would get the message better?

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  24. I have not been really thrilled with Vogue lately either. Do they think that mature women, the Vogue Woman, wants to wear a bag! Do they think that over sized clothing is the only thing that larger women can or want to wear? Hell no! I was so excited to see new patterns, and then I wasn't. You need work clothes, I need stylish casual clothing. Not one top was useful to me, nor was it going to be flattering either. Oh, that romper? How do you go to the bathroom in this one? it has Back buttons for goodness sake!
    I know that some women are excited by the vintage designs, but I am not and they don't seem to be able to put out modern clothing that isn't for clowns. It certainly isn't flattering at anyone with curves imop.

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  25. I just came across your blog! Love it and thanks for all of the wonderful info!

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  26. I get the same feeling when I shoe shop. All these wonderful shoes and the sizes stop at 11B. I am tall and have a long, slender foot. I HATE shoe shopping. Unfortunately, I can't make my own shoes.

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  27. I couldn't believe how awful the new Vogues are. Yuch, did we not learn in the seventies about cafatans. Come on.

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  28. It is like Vogue has something against larger sized ladies. They should hire you to design and advise and make patterns accordingly. No telling how much their sales would increase if they did that. :)

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  29. Carolyn, I think I can feel your steamin' coming through the internet!

    I agree that both these patterns are highly adaptable for a variety of sizes, though I do have a bias in that I think Vogue 1182 is a bit more special. I also agree that given your skills, you could just continue going your own way.

    If you do, I wish you'd turn 1182 on its ear a bit. I know they show it in a fancy Teeth In, Shoes On material but I also love this type of style WITH sleeves and in stretch tropical wool. [Or--minus the collar--in a substantial knit...and yes I know you don't do a ton with knits but I had to put it out there, ha.]

    Have you thought about doing more of a sarong-style dress for spring/summer...with no need to go the tropical print route?

    After I had one made for me, I discovered they are pretty in this season and they are super-flattering on so many body shapes.

    *** I don't mean to self-promote, and feel free to edit this out if you like! *** If you are debating, I pulled together some RTW images -- miraculously sold in and modeled by a relative diversity of sizes -- to try to get others to join me in sarong love.

    http://buildingacolorfullife.wordpress.com/2010/03/01/sarong-song-dress-pt-1/

    Despite Vogue's lemons, I know you'll make some fabulous lemonade...will look forward to seeing what you end up wearing!

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  30. Carolyn I've been sending you emails whenever i find a site that has some patterns you may be interested in. Check out Melody's site: FashionistaFabrics. I guarantee you'll find something there you'll love.
    Angela

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  31. I think 1182 could fairly easily be upgraded to a size that fits real people, and it would truly be a flattering dress on SO many sizes, not just the small ones! All the emphasis is on the face , shoulders and neck, and it just skims the body.

    I think the only problem you might have would be getting the armscye just right, but I think it could be done since it doesn't have sleeves that would also require a rework.

    But I'm with you on the rest of the new Vogue stuff-a big ol' "meh" is what came to mind for me. (dang, for my first comment here I sure did put my two cents worth in!)

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  32. I wasn't all that impressed with the summer offerings. There was just nothing there. I decided I have lots of other pattern options in my collection. But it was disappointing and I feel your pain!

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  33. Oh Carolyn! I love you!! :D You're gonna have to learn to love tracing and get thyself a BWOF (er, BS now?) now! I do love my Burda mag.

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  34. I feel your pain Carolyn. Both of those selections are lovely and I think, very flattering for the plus-size lady. I looked through the new book last weekend and I have always wondered why Vogue patterns offered so little in the way of cute plus-size. And I don't even have the skills to grade patterns up (yet), so even if I wanted to, I couldn't. I'm *sighing* along with you.

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  35. The lack of decent plus size sewing patterns drives me utterly bananas. I go through bursts of sewing, and what usually kills my enthusiasm is the difficulty finding something that fits my body *and* is something I'd actually like to wear.

    I know that most people have to do pattern tweaking, and the patterns don't fit anyone perfectly the first time out. However, tweaking a pattern to fit better is *not the same* as having to completely regrade/resize a pattern so it will get around your body before you can even get to the stage of making it fit better. ARGH.

    And of course Im also not very happy about how there are two dress forms which come in plus, and that I would need to special order a form. Or that when I've talked to places that offer sewing instruction in my area, the instructors have zero experience with plus size sewing, or that ARGH.

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  36. With the exception of a couple of the dresses, it was a pretty awful showing this time. My mom is plus-size and neither one of us can figure out why they push clothing that resembles a bag on plus-size women. It just seems silly and does nothing for one's shape. I'd be frustrated if I were you, too. However, I have to agree with one of the other commenters - I think it might be time to try your hand at creating new designs based on your TNT patterns. I think you could come up with some really lovely stuff and I, for one, would be really excited to see what you would create. :)

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