Alexander McQueen 50

Vanitas Skull by Gary James McQueen poster for the 2018 McQueen documentary - "The fearless, rebellious and extraordinary life of Alexander McQueen"
Poster for Ian Bonhôte and Peter Ettedgui’s McQueen (2018) Vanitas Skull by Gary James McQueen. Photo: Dan Tobin Smith ©Lionsgate.

Alexander McQueen would have been 50 today.

As many of you know, I started this blog with posts on Alexander McQueen, as a way to commemorate his work. His birthday is a natural time to revisit and reflect on his legacy. Since my last roundup in 2015, for the London version of Savage Beauty, I’ve posted about the designer’s 1998 Blade Runner collection. You’ll also find extensive updates to my inaugural McQueen for Givenchy series: as part of my recent blog redesign, I added additional and improved images from runway, advertising, and editorial.

Spring 2019 Designer Pattern Highlights

©Paco Peralta
Paco Peralta’s design drawing for V1619. Image courtesy Paco Peralta.

After 99 years on the newsstand, and just as stores are receiving the new designer patterns for Spring ’19, Vogue Patterns Magazine is ceasing publication.

VPM’s final issue—and the Spring release—sees the return of Thai-American model and photographer Piyawan Chitsamran, a.k.a. Piya Wan.

Piyawan Chitsamran photographed in V1614 by Tom and Linda Platt by Jack Deutsch for the final issue of Vogue Patterns Magazine
The final issue of Vogue Patterns Magazine, February/March 2019. Model: Piyawan Chitsamran. Photo: Jack Deutsch. Image: McCall’s.

The late, great Paco Peralta was promoting this pattern just days before his death. (See his design drawing at top of post.) As released, it includes the duster coat, shown in waxed polyester with a cotton poplin lining, and high-waisted gaucho pants. But as he told me, his submission also included the bias top.

Vogue 1619 by Paco Peralta (2019)
Vogue 1619 by Paco Peralta (2019) Image: McCall’s.

Zandra Rhodes is celebrating her label’s 50th anniversary in 2019. This jumpsuit with contrast binding is a Zandra Rhodes staple. The original is silk crepe de chine.

Vogue 1617 by Zandra Rhodes (2019)
Vogue 1617 by Zandra Rhodes (2019) Image: McCall’s.

The archival design, done in lipstick-print chiffon, was part of Rhodes’ second Archive collection for Matches Fashion.

Zandra Rhodes Archive II Lipstick jumpsuit in screen-printed silk chiffon. Image: Matches Fashion.

A silver version, for Fall 2018, was shot by Bridie O’Sullivan, the filmmaker / photographer behind Rhodes’ upcoming Jubilee documentary. (More at O’Sullivan’s website.)

Char Ellesse in Zandra Rhodes Party collection, Fall 2018
Zandra Rhodes Party collection, Fall 2018. Model: Charnah Ellesse. Photo: Bridie O’Sullivan. Image: Zandra Rhodes.

Badgley Mischka’s formal gown features a halter neckline with lace décolletage overlay.

Vogue 1615 by Badgley Mischka (2019)
Vogue 1615 by Badgley Mischka (2019) Image: McCall’s.

Add a beaded overbodice for a variation on the V1615 look.

Badgley Mischka’s gown with beaded tulle overbodice. Image: Badgley Mischka.

The striped dress on the back cover of the Spring lookbook is adapted from Carolina Herrera Resort ’18.

Vogue 9357 after Carolina Herrera, Vogue Patterns lookbook, Spring 2019. Image: Issuu.

The sleeveless midi dress is a Vogue Easy Options Custom Fit pattern, meaning it is adjustable for 4 cup sizes.

Vogue 9357 after Carolina Herrera (2019) Image: McCall’s.

The original is a linen-cotton denim that Vogue called “the standout material” of the collection’s casual pieces. As Nicole Phelps wrote, “Best of all was the sleeveless dress with contrast stitching, white buttons, and deep pockets.”

Carolina Herrera Resort 2018. Image: Vogue Runway.
Carolina Herrera Resort 2018
Carolina Herrera Resort 2018. Images: Moda Operandi.

Chop off the bodice for a tea-length skirt:

Carolina Herrera Resort 2018
Carolina Herrera Resort 2018. Image: Vogue Runway.

Another Vogue Easy Options design, the hi-low V9360 is Vogue’s adaptation of young London label Palmer Harding.

Vogue 9360 after Palmer Harding (2019) Image: McCall’s.

The Spring 2019 runway version—called the Streep—had dolman sleeves and a gathered back. Red latex gloves optional.

Palmer Harding Spring 2019. Photo: Luca Tombolini
Palmer Harding Spring 2019. Photo: Luca Tombolini. Image: Vogue Runway.

Add some asymmetry to the hemline and you have the Split and Super shirts:

Image: Palmer Harding.
Image: Palmer Harding.

Roland Mouret’s navy Barwick dress was worn by a certain duchess. Vogue shot its adaptation in Mouret’s trademark Peppermint, but the envelope shows the navy dress front and centre.

Vogue 9355 (2019) Adaptation of Roland Mouret's Barwick dress, worn by Meghan Markle V9355
Vogue 9355 (2019) Version of Roland Mouret’s Barwick dress. Image: McCall’s.

The Barwick dress, from Resort 2018, is still available from the designer website (link). The original is double wool crepe.

Barwick dress, Roland Mouret Resort 2018. Model: Shujing Zhou. Photo: Maria Ziegelböck
Barwick dress, Roland Mouret Resort 2018. Model: Shujing Zhou. Photo: Maria Ziegelböck. Image: Vogue Runway.

The same front neckline is seen in Roland Mouret’s Noblethorpe dress:

Noblethorpe dress, Roland Mouret Resort 2018. Model: Shujing Zhou. Photo: Maria Ziegelböck. Image: Vogue Runway.

For a more faithful copy, adjust the back neckline and add an exposed zipper.

Back view of Roland Mouret's Barwick dress
Back view of Roland Mouret’s Barwick dress. Image: Roland Mouret.

Finally, although Cynthia Rowley is absent from Simplicity’s Spring release, the company has reissued a late 1940s stole dress from the Simplicity Designer’s Pattern line.

1940s vintage reissue Simplicity 8876 (2019)
Simplicity 8876 (2019) Image: Simplicity.

The original fabric suggestions were: Silk, rayon or wool jersey; silk or rayon crepes; monotone or figured pure silk; taffeta; faille.

1940s stole dress pattern Simplicity Designer's Pattern 8108
Simplicity 8108 (1949) Image: Etsy.

In memoriam: Karl Lagerfeld

Esther de Jong in Chanel haute couture by Karl Lagerfeld, Fall 1997. Photo: Karl Lagerfeld. Editor: Amanda Harlech?
Esther de Jong in Chanel haute couture by Karl Lagerfeld, Fall 1997. Photo: Karl Lagerfeld. Image: jalougallery.

Farewell to Karl Lagerfeld. Prolific, influential, and above all, iconic, the designer — who had a lifetime contract with Chanel — was working to the last.

Read the couturier’s Vogue obituary. (Tim Blanks; German Vogue.)

Patterns in Vogue: Pillow Talk

Dorothea McGowan in breakfast coat Vogue 9774, 1960 - "fresh, frothy, delicious - almost Victorian in feeling, even to the pale ribbon sash."
“Fresh, frothy, delicious” – breakfast coat worn by Dorothea McGowan in Vogue, May 1, 1960. Photo: Leombruno-Bodi.

This Galentine’s, a midcentury slumber party.

Leombruno-Bodi photographed three models, including Nena von Schlebrügge and Dorothea McGowan, in airy loungewear made from Vogue patterns.

Vogue 5032 and 9774 in Vogue, May 1, 1960. Photos: Leombruno-Bodi.

Left: Red polka dots printed on white cotton: brief panties, a top swung briskly from red ribbon shoulder straps. In Crown Soap n’ Water fabric. Centre: Candy-striped silk, slipping into a perfect fall from narrow, softly bowed ribbon straps. Pink and orange stripes skimming white silk; the ribbon, orange. A.P.Silk fabric. Right: White cotton batiste, embroidered with white medallions; single touch of colour, the trailing, sweet-blue ribbon. Emanuel Roth fabric. All ribbon by Century.

The patterns are Vogue 9774 and 5032, a ruffled breakfast coat and nightgown / short pyjamas and nightcap.

Late 1950s-early 1960s lingerie patterns Vogue 9774 and Vogue 5032 "Very Easy to Make"

Pattern images: Vintage Pattern Wiki, Pinterest.

In memoriam: Paco Peralta

Paco Peralta's drawing for V1567 ©2016
Paco Peralta drawing for Vogue Patterns in black and red, his favourite colour combination. ©2016. Courtesy Paco Peralta.

Paco Peralta, the beloved Spanish couturier and mentor to the online sewing community, died on Saturday in Barcelona. He was 57.

Adéu, Paco, dear friend. You will be greatly missed.

Francisco Peralta Rovira, known as Paco Peralta, born February 1, 1962, Huesca, Aragon, died February 2, 2019, Barcelona.

Milliner Cristina De Prada photographed by Germán Saiz in Paco Peralta's designs, 2013. Right: with Stephen Jones, Mabel Sanz, and Fátima de Burnay
Paco Peralta’s close friend, the milliner Cristina de Prada, wearing his designs in a 2013 millinery feature for S Moda. Photos: Germán Saiz. Images: El País.

Free Designer Pattern: Iris van Herpen Dress

Hacking Infity - Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Photo: Frederik Heyman
Hacking Infinity – Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Model: Iekeliene Stange. Photo: Frederik Heyman. Image: Iris van Herpen.

SHOWstudio’s latest Design Download is a dress by Dutch wunderkind Iris van Herpen.

Iris van Herpen’s Hacking Infinity dress. Model: Bethany Sophara Robbins. Photo: Thomas Alexander. Image: SHOWstudio.
Iris van Herpen dress photographed by Thomas Alexander for SHOWstudio, 2018
Iris van Herpen dress, FW15 rtw. Model: Bethany Sophara Robbins. Photo: Thomas Alexander. Image: SHOWstudio.

The sheath dress is from Hacking Infinity, Iris van Herpen’s Fall 2015 ready-to-wear collection, which explored the idea of terraforming. (Read more at the designer’s site, or see Suzy Menkes on her 2015 studio visit.) The collection’s leather and 3D-printed shoes are by Noritaka Tatehana.

Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 rtw look 12 - SHOWstudio design download
Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Photo: Kim Weston Arnold. Image: Vogue Runway.
Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 ready-to-wear. Image: firstVIEW.

Science, technology, and science fiction are strong influences for Van Herpen, and Vogue’s reviewer cited Paul Verhoeven’s Total Recall as an intro to the terraforming concept. Several looks referenced the stillsuits from David Lynch’s Dune.

Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW
Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Photos: Team Peter Stigter. Images: Iris van Herpen.
Hacking Infity - Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Photo: Frederik Heyman
Hacking Infinity – Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Model: Iekeliene Stange. Photo: Frederik Heyman. Image: Iris van Herpen.
Chani (Sean Young) in David Lynch’s Dune (1984) Costume design: Bob Ringwood. Image: Pinterest.

The plissé material, seen in the SHOWstudio piece, appeared both as one element in a mix, and for entire garments in black and bronze.

Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Images: firstVIEW.

For Fall 2015, Van Herpen developed a fine, metallic fabric woven from silk and stainless steel. The translucent silver material was coaxed into “a sheen of nebula-like colors” with heat and hand-burnishing. Plisséed and pleated into circular forms, it evoked planetary bodies and infinity.

Detail backstage at Iris van Herpen’s Fall 2015 show. Photo: Morgan O’Donovan. Image: Facebook.
Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW
Iris van Herpen Fall 2015 RTW. Photos: Team Peter Stigter. Images: Iris van Herpen.
Hacking Infinity FW15 Iris van Herpen dress photographed by Juergen Teller
Iris van Herpen dress in T Magazine, April 2015. Photo: Juergen Teller. Image: Iris van Herpen.

The pattern download comes in A4 sheets, with a test line to check the scale.

Iris van Herpen SHOWstudio dress pattern diagram
Iris van Herpen dress pattern diagram. Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the dress pattern (34 pieces)

Size: 38

Notes: Prints on 100 A4 sheets. Plissé panels are hand-sewn to base dress.

Fabric recommendations: Plissé panels: plissé or printed fabric on a cotton base fabric. Stretch fabric is recommended for the skirt. Straps & facings: silk, non-stretch fusible interfacing. Lining: silk or cupro.

Notions: Back zipper.

The competition is still open. Will you be entering?

Outlander Costumes

Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in "Not in Scotland Anymore" Outlander s2 e2
Promotional image for Outlander, season 2 (2016). Image: Starz.

In honour of Burns Night, a guide to Outlander patterns.

Outlander is now in its fourth season; it’s been renewed for two more. Adapted from the popular series by Diana Gabaldon, the time-travelling romance has plenty of source material: Gabaldon is currently working on her ninth Outlander book.

Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in "The Devil's Mark" Outlander S1 e11
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15). Image: Harper’s Bazaar.

Sunday’s season finale will be the last episode to feature costumes by Terry Dresbach. Trisha Biggar is the new costume designer for season 5. Biggar, who is from Glasgow, is best known for her work on the Star Wars prequel trilogy.

Scottish costume designer Trisha Biggar's Dressing a Galaxy: The Costumes of Star Wars (2005)
Trisha Biggar’s Dressing a Galaxy: The Costumes of Star Wars (Abrams 2005)

In 2017, Simplicity’s unofficial Outlander patterns prompted Dresbach to take down her website. (It’s back now.) The next year, McCall’s started releasing official, licensed Outlander patterns.

Simplicity

Fall Through Time - Simplicity Outlander costumes by American Duchess
Fall Through Time – American Duchess’ Outlander costume, Simplicity 8161. Image: Simplicity.

Simplicity’s adapted-from-Outlander patterns are by American Duchess, a historical costuming company based in Reno, Nevada. The three patterns are based on Claire’s costumes in seasons 1 and 2: 18th-century Highland dress and an unusual court gown. There’s also a free pattern for her crocheted cowl.

Claire Fraser dress pattern - Simplicity 8161 by American Duchess (2016)
Simplicity 8161 by American Duchess (2016) Image: Simplicity.
Claire's underthings pattern - Simplicity 8161 by American Duchess (2016)
Simplicity 8162 by American Duchess (2016) Image: Simplicity.

It was this version of Claire’s red dress that caused such consternation online. Claire wears the original during her visit to Versailles in “Not in Scotland Anymore,” the episode that earned Outlander its first Emmy nomination for costume design. It was also seen in promotional materials for season 2 (see top of post). The pattern is still in print, but as with Simplicity’s Game of Thrones patterns, the colour was soon changed to a less provocative teal.

A pattern version of Claire Fraser's scandalous red dress - Simplicity 8411 by American Duchess (2017)
Simplicity 8411 by American Duchess (2017) Image: Simplicity.

McCall’s

McCall’s started licensing official Outlander patterns in 2018. (Company founder James McCall was a Scottish immigrant, and McCall’s UK — McCalls Ltd — is not a pattern company, but a Highlandwear outfitters.) McCall’s Outlander patterns cover both women’s and men’s costumes, with many available as instant downloads. For the first few releases this meant Claire and Jamie Fraser, or 18th-century Scottish highlander garb.

Outlander costumes M7736 and M7735 in McCall's Spring 2018 lookbook
Outlander costumes M7736 and M7735 in McCall’s Spring 2018 lookbook. Image: McCall’s.
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15)
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15). Image: Starz.
Outlander season 2's shirtless and kilted MacKenzie men
Alternate look for kilt M7736. Image: Starz.

Next came the couple’s wedding clothes: Jamie’s frock coat and Claire’s wedding dress.

Outlander costumes M7762 and M7764 in McCall's Spring 2018 lookbook
Outlander costumes M7762 and M7764 in McCall’s Spring 2018 lookbook. Image: McCall’s.
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in "The Wedding," Outlander s1 e7 (2014)
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15). Image: Starz.

Outerwear was the focus of the Summer release, with patterns for Claire’s fur-trimmed riding jacket and Jamie’s leather coat.

Outlander costumes M7792 and M7794 in McCall's Summer 2018 lookbook
Outlander costumes M7792 and M7794 in McCall’s Summer 2018 lookbook. Image: McCall’s.
Claire Randall (Caitríona Balfe) goes riding in Outlander, season 1 e4
Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15). Image: Terry Dresbach.
Scottish laird Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15)
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) in Outlander, season 1 (2014-15). Image: Starz.

Jamie is still wearing the coat in season 2, when he joins up with Bonnie Prince Charlie. Dresbach suited the latter not in the Stuart, but the MacQueen tartan.

Bonnie Prince Charlie and Jamie Fraser in "Prestonpans" Outlander season 2 episode 10 (2016)
Charles Stuart (Andrew Gower) and Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) in Outlander, season 2 (2016). Image: Starz.

This fall, we finally saw a costume for British officer Jonathan “Black Jack” Randall, plus Claire’s blue riding jacket-and-waistcoat combo from season 3’s Emmy-nominated episode, “Freedom & Whisky.” The title is a Burns quote, and the episode sees Claire sewing the outfit herself, for time travel. A costume book lies open by her sewing machine, and her ensemble looks to be based on a memorable riding habit in Janet Arnold’s classic, Patterns of Fashion.

Outlander costumes M7823 and redcoat uniform M7824 in McCall's Early Fall 2018 lookbook
Outlander costumes M7823 and M7824 in McCall’s Early Fall 2018 lookbook. Image: McCall’s.
Tobias Menzies in his redcoat uniform as Outlander's Black Jack Randall
Black Jack Randall (Tobias Menzies) in Outlander. Image: Starz.
Snowshill Manor riding habit in Patterns of Fashion 1: Englishwomen's dresses and their construction, c. 1660-1860, by Janet Arnold
The Snowshill Manor riding habit in Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion 1 (1964). Image: Pinterest.
Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) and Claire (Caitríona Balfe) in Outlander, season 3 (2017). Image: Starz.

This year, McCall’s Outlander patterns caught up to the show with this caraco jacket and skirt. The jacket looks to be one of Claire’s remade outfits, courtesy of Jamie’s aunt Jocasta.

Outlander costume M7916 in McCall's Early Spring 2019 lookbook
Outlander costume M7916 in McCall’s Early Spring 2019 lookbook. Image: McCall’s.
Claire (Caitríona Balfe) and Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) in Outlander, season 4 (2018-19)
Claire (Caitríona Balfe) and Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughans) in Outlander, season 4 (2018-19). Image: tumblr.

Slàinte! To freedom and whisky.