Diana Ross for Simplicity

Dress coe - ultra glam - sequins, beads & feathers - Diamond Diana Family & Friends 75th Birthday Celebration
Diamond Diana Family & Friends 75th Birthday Celebration, March 26, 2019 at the Hollywood Palladium. Image: Twitter.

Diana Ross turns 75 today. The iconic singer is celebrating tonight with a special show at the Hollywood Palladium.

Diana Ross, Ross (1983) Image: Discogs.

In the 1980s, home dressmakers could buy official Diana Ross sewing patterns from Simplicity. The looks range from glam colour blocking to office chic.

Simplicity 5873 by Diana Ross - Simplicity April 1983
Diana Ross on the cover of the Simplicity retail catalogue, April 1983. Image: eBay.
1980s Diana Ross pattern Simplicity 6326
Simplicity 6326 by Diana Ross (1983) Image: Tracee Ellis Ross / Pinterest.
1980s Diana Ross Designs pattern - Simplicity 6203
Simplicity 6203 by Diana Ross (1983) Image: eBay.

Happy birthday, Ms. Ross!

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.