Mary Quant: Butterick Patterns

Tania Mallet wears Mary Quant and James Wedge on the cover of British Vogue, October 1, 1963
Tania Mallet wears Mary Quant (hat by James Wedge) on the cover of British Vogue, October 1, 1963. Photo: Brian Duffy. Image: eBay.

Nothing says Swinging London like Mary Quant. The pioneer of the Chelsea Look will receive a major retrospective at the Victoria and Albert Museum in 2019. (An earlier exhibit, Manchester Art Gallery’s Mary Quant: Fashion Icon, had to close early due to conservation issues.)

Design for a cowl neck minidress with mustard yellow tights by Mary Quant, about 1967, London. Museum no. E.525-1975. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Mary Quant sketch, ca. 1967. Image: V&A.

The V&A is seeking vintage Quant for the show, including garments — or even photos of garments — made with Mary Quant patterns. See here for more details, or email the curators at maryquant@vam.ac.uk. Update: submissions are now closed.

Ensemble of bolero waistcoat and skirt, Mary Quant, about 1964. Museum no. T.34-2013. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Celia Hammond and Jean Shrimpton in Mary Quant, ca. 1964. Photo: John French. Image: V&A.
Mary Quant London - Made in England for Lord & Taylor 100% PVC label at the Costume Institute
Image: Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Butterick licensed Mary Quant patterns from the mid-’60s to the early ’70s. (See my Mad Men-era post.)

Mary Quant pantdress pattern 4779 in the Butterick retail catalog, November 1969
Right: Mary Quant pantdress pattern 4779 in the Butterick retail catalogue, November 1969. Image: Etsy.

For knitters, there were also ultra-mod knitting patterns. Some of these vintage booklets are available as official reissues, like these ones from Mary Maxim. (More on Ravelry.)

1960s Patons Courtelle knitting patterns by Mary Quant
1960s Patons Courtelle knitting patterns by Mary Quant. Images: Mary Maxim.

Mary Quant and her husband were profiled in Life magazine as early as 1960. (View story here.)

Mary Quant and Alexander Plunkett-Greene photographed on Park Avenue by Ken Heyman for Life magazine, 1960
Mary Quant and Alexander Plunket Greene on Park Avenue, LIFE, December 5, 1960. Photo: Ken Heyman. Image: LIFE archive.

For his 1963 Life feature on the Chelsea Look, Norman Parkinson photographed Melanie Hampshire and Jill Kennington in these Mary Quant dresses:

Melanie Hampshire and Jill Kennington photographed by Norman Parksinson in Mary Quant's Bank of England and Eton striped wool dresses, LIFE magazine, 1963
Melanie Hampshire and Jill Kennington in Mary Quant’s Bank of England and Eton dresses, LIFE, October 18, 1963. Photo: Norman Parkinson. Image: Iconic Images.

Butterick released its first Mary Quant patterns in fall, 1964. Here’s Celia Hammond on the cover of the retail catalogue:

Butterick catalogue cover showing 3288 by Mary Quant - October 1964
Butterick 3288 by Mary Quant. Butterick catalogue, October 1964. Photo: Terence Donovan. Model: Celia Hammond. Image: eBay.

The Butterick Home Catalog hailed Quant as the originator of the Chelsea Look.

London: Mary Quant. A new group of Butterick designs by the originator of the Chelsea Look and winner o the International Fashion Award for Great Britain. Butterick Fall 1964 Quant
Mary Quant in the Butterick Home Catalog, Fall 1964.

The earliest Mary Quant patterns pre-date the Young Designer line. This dress pattern even includes the rosette:

1960s Mary Quant dress pattern Butterick 3499
Butterick 3499 by Mary Quant (1965) Image: PatternVault shop.

British copies of this dress pattern say “featured in Queen magazine.” Jill Kennington wore this and other Butterick Young Designers in what was billed as “The Queen’s first ever make-it-yourself fashion.”

1960s Mary Quant dress pattern Butterick 3716
Butterick 3716 by Mary Quant (ca. 1965)
1960s Jean Muir of Jane & Jane and Mary Quant dress patterns Butterick 3722, 3707, 3716
“How to be a self made sensation.” Right, Jill Kennington in Butterick 3716 by Mary Quant. Queen magazine, August 11, 1965. Image: eBay.

Here Moyra Swan models a mod scooter dress. Suggested fabrics include linen, jersey, lightweight wool, and knits.

1960s Mary Quant dress pattern Butterick 4578
Butterick 4578 by Mary Quant (ca. 1967) Image: PatternVault shop.

This jumpsuit or playsuit came with a matching mini skirt — “the latest put-togethers”:

Butterick 5404 by Mary Quant (1969) Image: Etsy.

What to wear with a Mary Quant mini dress? Why, go-go boots, of course:

1960s Mary Quant dress pattern Butterick 5475
Butterick 5475 by Mary Quant (1969)

By 1970, a Quant jumpsuit was more fluid, with a pointed collar; this pattern also includes a maxi-length cardigan. The catalogue gives a better view of the inflatable chair:

1970s Mary Quant jumpsuit and cardigan pattern Butterick 5857
Butterick 5857 by Mary Quant (1970) Image: Etsy.
Mary Quant's Butterick 5857 jumpsuit in the Fall 1970 catalogue
Mary Quant’s Butterick 5857 jumpsuit in the Fall 1970 catalogue. Image: tumblr.

Mary Quant in a more romantic mode means a sheer tunic worn with knickers. View B is a maxi dress.

1970s Mary Quant pattern Butterick 6256
Butterick 6256 by Mary Quant (ca. 1971)

After 1971 or so, Butterick Young Designer patterns had illustrations, not photos. This Mary Quant dress dates to circa early ’73.

1970s Mary Quant dress pattern Butterick 6916
Butterick 6916 by Mary Quant (ca. 1973) Image: Etsy.

Have you made anything from a Mary Quant pattern?

Maren Greve in Butterick 4128 by Mary Quant, 1966
Butterick 4128 by Mary Quant, Butterick catalogue, October 1966. Model: Maren Greve. Image: Instagram.

Sewing and Smoking

Cheryl Tiegs in a 1975 Virginia Slims / Vogue Patterns sewing ad
Detail, Virginia Slims advertisement, 1975.

Today is World No Tobacco Day. Here’s a look at a Virginia Slims ad that ran in Vogue Patterns magazine.

The mid-’70s ad—with the famous You’ve come a long way, baby slogan—contrasts the fashionable, contemporary Cheryl Tiegs with the Edwardian “Mrs. Florine Knauff,” caught smoking during a fox hunt. Along the lower left-hand side, the caption reads, Fashions: Vogue Patterns.

Virginia Slims ad feat. Cheryl Tiegs, Vogue Patterns 1975
Virginia Slims advertisement in Vogue Patterns, January/February 1975.

Doesn’t Tiegs’ green dress look a lot like Emanuel Ungaro’s goddess gown?

1970s Emanuel Ungaro green gown with shoulder streamers - Vogue Paris Original 1135
Vogue 1135 by Emanuel Ungaro (1974)

The popular design was reissued in 2001 (as V7521).

A handful of ’70s Virginia Slims ads credit Vogue Patterns, most notably this Yves Saint Laurent couture pyjama, as worn by Beverly Johnson:

Beverly Johnson wears pyjamas made from a Vogue Pattern - Virgina Slims "You've come a long way, baby" ad, 1973
Virginia Slims advertisement, 1973. Image: Stanford Research into the Impact of Tobacco Advertising (SRITA).
Yves Saint Laurent Spring 1973 haute couture printed pyjama pattern - Vogue Paris Original 2912
Vogue 2912 by Yves Saint Laurent (1973) Image: Paco Peralta.

There were even promotional Virginia Slims sewing kits. This one contains FDR-made upholstery needles:

Virginia Slims needle pack cover. Image: Etsy.
Pack interior: We hope you enjoy this assortment of quality all-purpose sewing needles compliments of Virginia Slims
Virginia Slims needle pack. Image: Etsy.

Click the Beverly Johnson ad to learn more about SRITA, Stanford’s tobacco advertising project.

Gnyuki Torimaru (Yuki): Style Patterns

Diana, Princess of Wales, wears Yuki to a banquet hosted by Emperor Hirohito in May, 1986
Diana, Princess of Wales, wears Yuki to a banquet hosted by Emperor Hirohito in May, 1986. Image: Pinterest.

Gnyuki Torimaru, or Yuki, is most famous for dressing Princess Diana on her 1986 state visit to Japan. But his licensed sewing patterns date to the year before.

Born in Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan, Gnyuki Torimaru (b. 1937) studied architecture in Chicago before settling in London, where he attended the London College of Fashion. He launched his own label, Yuki, in 1972, after stints at Norman Hartnell in London and Pierre Cardin in Paris. (For more, see Suzanne Kampner, “Out Goes Majolica, In Goes Nothing.”)

Yuki London label ca. 1986
Image: Vintage Fashion Guild.

Visitors to the Boston Museum of Fine Art can see his blue, pleated gown and other designs in the museum’s extensive Yuki collection.

Blue gown with beaded panels by Gnyuki Torimaru (Yuki)
Gown by Gnyuki Torimaru. Image: Boston Museum of Fine Art.

Torimaru made his name in the 1970s with his draped jersey gowns. Jerry Hall’s cream Yuki gown, seen on the cover of British Vogue and in Barry Lategan’s editorial, “Dare the Ritz,” has a hem that doubles back as a hood. The Boston Museum of Fine Art has a silk version; model-turned-actor Gayle Hunnicutt donated her carnation version to the V&A.

Jerry Hall wears Yuki on the cover of British Vogue, July 1976. Photo: Barry Lategan
Jerry Hall wears Yuki on the cover of British Vogue, July 1976. Photo: Barry Lategan. Image: Pinterest.

Hunnicutt wore two Yuki pieces in her 1973 British Vogue editorial. The second, low-backed gown is carnation jersey, cut in one piece. She later wore it to a ball at Windsor Castle.

Gayle Hunnicutt in Yuki, British Vogue, October 1973. Photo: Henry Clarke
Gayle Hunnicutt in Yuki, British Vogue, October 1973. Photo: Henry Clarke. Image: Pinterest.
VogueUK 1Oct 1973Yuki
Gayle Hunnicutt in Yuki, British Vogue, October 1973. Photo: Henry Clarke. Image: Youthquakers.

Yuki also designed the costumes for Frank D. Gilroy’s romantic comedy Once in Paris… (1978), which starred his client, Hunnicutt.

Embed from Getty Images

Style Patterns’ earliest designer series includes two Yuki designs. Both dresses, one a voluminous one size fits all, showcase his trademark draping.

1980s Yuki dress pattern Style 4489
Style 4489 by Yuki (1985)

Misses’ Dress in Two Lengths: Dress is gathered from yoke. Draped sleeves are raglan. Opening is button loops. All edges are topstitched. Suggested fabrics—Fine silk or synthetic jersey, lightweight silk types, lightweight crepe types, crepe de chine, georgette. One size.

1980s Yuki dress pattern Style 4490
Style 4490 by Yuki (1985)

Misses’ Dress in Two Lengths: Dress has fitted under-bodice with draped front and back, which is gathered on padded shoulder and forms fluted sleeve. Skirt is slim with centre back split on full length version. Suggested fabrics—Fine silk or synthetic jersey, lightweight silk types, crepe types, crepe de chine.

Click the Style Patterns tag for more British designer patterns.

Yuki gown featured in Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950
Yuki gown featured in Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950 (V&A, 2012) Photo: David Hughes. Image: The Cut.

Spring 2018 Designer Highlights

Catherine Nako wears a Tracy Reese dress at Red's Jazz Shoe Shine Parlor, Detroit. Photo: Ray Rushing
Catherine Nako wears a Tracy Reese dress at Red’s Jazz Shoe Shine Parlor, Detroit. Photo: Ray Rushing. Image: Instagram.

Have you seen the new designer patterns for Spring 2018?

Badgley Mischka are celebrating their fifth wedding anniversary this March, so it’s a treat to see their work on the cover of Vogue’s Spring lookbook. (Click their portrait for my 2013 Just Married post.)

Badgley Mischka Key Lime cape dress V1579 - Vogue Patterns Spring 2018 lookbook
Badgley Mischka dress V1579 on the cover of the Vogue Patterns Spring 2018 lookbook. Model: Ana Kondratjeva. Image: Issuu.

1990s Badgley Mischka photo

The Spring collection also marks the return of Tracy Reese. (The Detroit native was last seen in Vogue Patterns in 2016.) The new Reese design is a dress with contrast yoke and sleeves—great for those matching sheer/opaque print combos:

Vogue 1578 by Tracy Reese
Vogue 1578 by Tracy Reese (2018) Image: McCall’s.

Sew Today’s latest issue tipped us off to Reese’s comeback:

Ana Kondratjeva wears Tracy Reese on the cover of Sew Today, February 2018
Tracy Reese dress on the cover of Sew Today, February 2018. Model: Ana Kondratjeva. Image: sewdirect.

The dark floral was a signature print in her Fall 2016 collection, where it could be seen on dresses, sheer blouses, and a long, cuffed skirt:

Tracy Reese Fall 2016 collection
Tracy Reese Fall 2016 collection. Image: Vogue.com
Tracy Reese Fall 2016 collection
Tracy Reese Fall 2016 collection. Image: Vogue.com.

Reese was inspired by Detroit for this collection, and she opened her presentation with a short film starring local model Catherine Nako:

The film stills are by Detroit-based cinematographer Ray Rushing.

Catherine Nako in Tracy Reese Fall 2016. Photo: Ray Rushing
Catherine Nako in Tracy Reese Fall 2016. Photo: Ray Rushing. Image: Instagram.

Bonus: I published my Winter/Holiday post before the McCall’s Winter release, which included two Nicole Miller patterns. This asymmetrical top and flared trousers look to be from the Spring 2017 collection:

2017 Nicole Miller top and pants pattern McCall's 7692
McCall’s 7692 by Nicole Miller (2017) Image: McCall’s.
Nicole Miller Spring 2017 collection
Nicole Miller Spring 2017 collection. Image: Vogue UK.

Miller’s Gladiator gown uses contrast binding to punctuate the classic goddess dress. (Still available in white from the designer’s retail site.)

2017 Nicole Miller Gladiator goddess dress pattern McCall's 7685
McCall’s 7685 by Nicole Miller (2017) Image: McCall’s.

The original was silk chiffon.

Nicole Miller's Gladiator gown in orange silk chiffon with pink trim
Nicole Miller’s Gladiator gown. Image: Rent the Runway.

See you in the arena!

Free Designer Pattern: Alyx Pleat Dress

At the V&A in the Alyx pleat dress. Photo: Britt Lloyd. Model: Jazzelle Zanaughtti
At the V&A in the Alyx pleat dress. Photo: Britt Lloyd. Model: Jazzelle Zanaughtti. Image: SHOWstudio.

The new Design Download from SHOWstudio is an Alyx shirtdress. Alyx was founded in 2015 by Matthew M. Williams, a well-connected American designer now based in Ferrara, Italy. (For more, see Emilia Petrarca, “Kanye West and LVMH-Approved: Meet Designer Matthew Williams” and Matthew Schneier, “Matthew Williams, Renaissance Man.”)

For the Alyx Fall 2017 collection, Williams was inspired by Berlin fetish clubs. The pleat dress was shown in two versions—black leopard print:

Siouxsie Leenaars in Alyx Fall 2017
Alyx Fall 2017. Model: Siouxsie Leenaars. Image: vogue.com.

And silver lamé:

Siouxsie Leenaars in Alyx Fall 2017
Alyx Fall 2017. Model: Siouxsie Leenaars. Image: vogue.com.

For more views see the Alyx retail site (silver | black).

Watch a video of Williams discussing a piece from the Alyx Spring ’18 menswear collection:

This year’s competition prize is an Alyx catalogue shot by Nick Knight. (Season unspecified.)

Alyx Natural Order catalogue (Fall 2016) photographed by Nick Knight
Alyx Natural Order catalogue (Fall 2016) photographed by Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

As before, the pattern download comes in a choice of A4 or A1 sheets, each with a test line to check the scale.

Pattern pieces for SHOWstudio's Alyx design_download
Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the dress pattern (22 pieces)

Size: M

Notes: The original was silk. Skirt has bagged lining. Calls for fusible interfacing for the collar, cuffs, etc.

Notions: 3 small buttons, 7 smaller buttons + additional for concealed skirt closure; contrasting thread for edge stitching, bar tacks, piping, and belt loops.

Stay tuned for the submissions gallery: the contest closes March 30th, 2018. (Deadline updated.)

Update: View the submissions gallery here.

Paco Peralta: Vogue Patterns

Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1567 top and skirt pattern
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1567 ©McCall’s/Paco Peralta.

Paco Peralta has seen some major milestones lately. Last fall, the Barcelona couturier became Vogue Patterns’ first Spanish designer in half a century, and this year his blog, BCN – UNIQUE Designer Patterns, is celebrating a decade online. (Like Toronto’s YYZ, BCN is both the airport code for Barcelona and shorthand for the city itself.)

The licensing deal brings a new audience to Peralta’s precision-cut designs. Peralta himself was already a pillar of the online sewing community, both for his fine sewing tutorials and as a purveyor of couture patterns, all hand-traced in his studio not far from Gaudí’s Sagrada Família basilica.

Born in Huesca, Aragon, Peralta studied at Barcelona’s Institut Català de la Moda before apprenticing in some of the city’s couture ateliers, who kept alive the traditions of Balenciaga and Rodríguez. He became interested in commercial patterns in the 1980s, when a friend gave him a copy of Vestidal; his first pattern purchase was a Vogue Individualist design by Issey Miyake.

1980s Issey Miyake coat pattern Vogue 1476 by Issey Miyake (1984)
Vogue 1476 by Issey Miyake (1984) Model: Ariane Koizumi. Image: Etsy.

Peralta may also be the world’s foremost collector of Yves Saint Laurent patterns, and his blog doubles as a window into this private archive. As regular readers of this blog will recognize, any high fashion sewing history owes much to his work.

Yves Saint Laurent Vogue patterns: Vogue 1557 Mondrian dress; Vogue 2598 suit 1971
Couture designs from Yves Saint Laurent’s Mondrian and Libération collections. Images: Etsy / Paco Peralta.

Vogue Patterns introduced Peralta with two designs in last year’s holiday issue. (Click to enlarge.)

Paco Peralta feature in Vogue Patterns magazine, Dec/Jan 2016-17
Introducing Paco Peralta, Vogue Patterns, December/January 2016-17. Photo (L): Eric Hason. Image: Issuu.

You can skip the buttonholes with this short-sleeved jacket: it has a midriff inset instead. For the original ensemble, Peralta used a double-sided Italian wool twill-crepe for the jacket, wool-cashmere for the trousers, and for the shirt, a sturdy Egyptian cotton.

Vogue 1526 by Paco Peralta
Vogue 1526 by Paco Peralta (2016) Photos: Eric Hason. Image: PatternVault shop.
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1526
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1526 ©McCall’s/Paco Peralta.

Peralta also used Italian satin-backed wool twill-crepe for his wrap skirt and coat-length jacket. The latter sports a tuxedo-style shawl collar, while the pussy-bow blouse, made in silk crepe de Chine, has French cuffs:

Vogue 1527 by Paco Peralta
Vogue 1527 by Paco Peralta (2016) Photos: Eric Hason. Image: PatternVault shop.
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1527
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1527 ©McCall’s/Paco Peralta.

This tunic and pants ensemble was the summer bestseller. The long version is a heavy linen, while the short, gaucho version is a lightweight silk/rayon. Both have silk organza insets.

Vogue 1550 by Paco Peralta
Vogue 1550 by Paco Peralta (2017) Photos: Tim Geaney.
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1550
Paco Peralta sketch for Vogue 1550 ©McCall’s/Paco Peralta.

For the holiday season, mix and match with party separates: a dolman-sleeved top and winter-weight handkerchief skirt, shown in cotton knit and silk-viscose duchesse satin.

Vogue 1567 by Paco Peralta
Vogue 1567 by Paco Peralta (2017) Photo: Tim Geaney.
Image: McCall’s.

Coming soon: even more Paco Peralta designs exclusive to Vogue Patterns.

With thanks to my friend, Paco Peralta.
Tany's tartan V1567 by Paco Peralta with sew-in labels
Image: Tany’s Couture et Tricot.

In memoriam: Hervé Léger

Alexandrina Turcan in Hervé L. Leroux Resort 2017 photographed by Desiree Mattsson
Hervé L. Leroux Resort 2017 photographed by Desiree Mattsson. Model: Alexandrina Turcan. Image: Desiree Mattsson.

Farewell to the great Hervé Léger. I wrote a brief tribute to the late designer for FASHION magazine.

To learn more about Léger’s work for Guy Laroche under the name Hervé L. Leroux, and the commercial patterns from his tenure, see my series.