Free Designer Pattern: McQueen Dress

Akuac Thiep photographed by Nick Knight in Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton
Akuac Thiep in Alexander McQueen SS 2020 by Sarah Burton. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

In memory of Paco Peralta.

SHOWstudio’s latest Design Download is an Alexander McQueen dress.

Back view: Akuac Thiep photographed by Nick Knight in Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton
Akuac Thiep in Alexander McQueen SS 2020 by Sarah Burton. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

A current-season design, it was the opening look in Sarah Burton’s Spring 2020 collection for McQueen.

Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton
Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton. Model: Vilma Sjoberg. Image: Vogue Runway.
Detail, Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton
Detail, Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 by Sarah Burton. Image: Vogue Runway.

This romantic collection drew comparisons with the couture, featuring reworked old patterns and past-season fabrics, as well as Irish linens, damask or beetled, fine wool suiting from the north of England, and hand embroidery worked by the entire McQueen studio.

“I love the idea of people having the time to make things together, the time to meet and talk together, the time to reconnect to the world.” – Sarah Burton

The dress re-envisions its show-opening counterpart in Alexander McQueen’s Eshu, named for the Yoruba trickster god and presented 20 years ago in a disused Hitchcock studio. (See Suzy Menkes, “London Crowns Its Fashion Kings,” and Savage Beauty.) As SHOWstudio notes, Burton’s “articulated puff-sleeve dress [is] a reimagining of the Autumn/Winter 2000 Eshu dress, originally crafted in calico with a focus on the silhouette.”

Alexander McQueen Fall 2000 - Eshu
Alexander McQueen Fall 2000 (Eshu). Image: Vogue Runway.

Steven Klein photographed Björk in a denim variation for Vogue’s September issue:

"A Brave New Björk," Vogue September issue 2000
Björk in a distressed denim dress from Eshu, Alexander McQueen FW 2000, Vogue, September 2000. Photo: Steven Klein. Editor: Phyllis Posnick. Image: bjork.fr.

In the same issue, the designer portfolio opens with a group portrait of McQueen and his team for Eshu, including model Liberty Ross, Isabella Blow, jeweller Shaun Leane, and the young Sarah Burton.

"How Many People Does It Take to Design a Dress?" Alexander McQueen and team, with Sarah Burton, near right, and Liberty Ross and Isabella Blow in looks from the Eshu collection, photographed by Annie Leibovitz. Vogue, September 2000
Alexander McQueen and team, with Sarah Burton at near right, Vogue, September 2000. Photo: Annie Leibovitz. Editor: Camilla Nickerson. Image: Vogue Archive.

Burton’s dress makes repeated appearances in the Spring 2020 campaign:

Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 ad campaign. Model: Felice Noordhoff. Photo: Jamie Hawkesworth. Art direction: M/M (Paris). Image: Alexander McQueen.
Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 ad campaign. Model: Vivien Solari. Photo: Jamie Hawkesworth. Art direction: M/M (Paris). Image: Alexander McQueen.

Also worn by Imaan Hammam in Masha Vasyukova’s campaign video (music by Isobel Waller-Bridge):

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

Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the dress pattern (18 pieces)

Size: Sample size. Update: Model Akuac Thiep is wearing the sample size. She is 5’10” and wears a size 8/36. (34″ bust | 25″ waist | 35″ hip) Source: Nevs Models.

Notes: Prints on 220 A4 sheets.

Notions: Back zipper.

Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 campaign
Alexander McQueen Spring 2020 ad campaign. Model: Vivien Solari. Photo: Jamie Hawkesworth. Art direction: M/M (Paris). Image: Alexander McQueen.
With thanks to Emily Knight.

Patterns in Vogue: The Leather Forecast

Linda Evangelista photographed in V1175 at Stansted airport by Nick Knight, 1994. Editor: Camilla Nickerson.
Linda Evangelista at Stansted Airport, 1994. Photo: Nick Knight. Editor: Camilla Nickerson.

Nick Knight once photographed Linda Evangelista at London’s Stansted Airport in a Vogue minidress.

The pattern is Vogue 1175, a 5 Easy Pieces pattern, cut from white leather from Mystic Leather, NYC.

White looks right against a steely sky or industrial machinery…

Long synonymous with rough and rugged images, leather is being transformed into sleek, sexy shapes with a body-conscious fit (Left: Vogue Patterns; right: Marc Jacobs for Birger Christensen.) Vogue, October 1994 Photo: Nick Knight.
Linda Evangelista in “The Leather Forecast,” Vogue, October 1994. Photo: Nick Knight. Editor: Camilla Nickerson.

Patterns in Vogue: Courrèges Edge

Kate Moss in "Courrèges Edge" by Nick Knight, 1995.
Kate Moss in “Courrèges Edge.” Photo: Nick Knight, 1995.

Today we’re used to a firm division between fashion magazines and sewing magazines. But for several decades after Condé Nast sold Vogue Patterns, editorials featuring sewing patterns could still be seen in Vogue magazine—editorials with the same models, photographers, and fashion editors as Vogue’s high fashion shoots. This post is the first in an occasional series on these editorials.

Launching the series is “Courrèges Edge,” a 1995 editorial photographed by Nick Knight and showing Kate Moss in clothes made using patterns from Vogue and Butterick. The shoot covers the Sixties trend with all-white, Courrèges-style looks while playing with the theme of surveillance.

Update: Nick Knight used video footage from the shoot—his first with Kate Moss—in his second fashion film, The More Visible They Make Me, The More Invisible I Become:

Here, Kate Moss’ leather jacket is Vogue 9076; the nylon dress on the right is Butterick 4048:

Vogue, August 1995. Photos: Nick Knight. Fashion Editor: Camilla Nickerson.
Vogue, August 1995. Photos: Nick Knight. Fashion Editor: Camilla Nickerson.

Below, Vogue 9170, a coat dress pattern, is shown made up in white leather, and Butterick 3999, sold as a top, is made in silk and worn as a mini dress:

Vogue, August 1995. Photos: Nick Knight. Fashion Editor: Camilla Nickerson.
Vogue, August 1995. Photos: Nick Knight. Fashion Editor: Camilla Nickerson.

In the back of the magazine, readers could find technical drawings and further details on the patterns used, all “edited by Vogue”:

In This Issue, Vogue, August 1995.
In This Issue, Vogue, August 1995.

Free Designer Pattern: Stephen Jones Hat

Erin O'Connor in a Stephen Jones hat photographed by Nick Knight for SHOWstudio
Erin O’Connor in a Stephen Jones hat. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

Royal Ascot begins tomorrow. What better way to celebrate than with a free designer millinery pattern, for a Stephen Jones hat called “Nice Package”?

The hat pattern Stephen Jones recently shared with SHOWstudio was released in early 2012, on the last day of the Paris couture calendar. An exaggerated beret inspired by his lilac hatboxes, the original hat is lilac moiré with a sparkle-embellished, pink satin bow. Here’s a colour photo:

Stephen Jones hat photographed by Peter Ashworth
Photo: Peter Ashworth. Image: Stephen Jones.

The design was drawn from Stephen Jones’ Fall/Winter 2011 collection, Topsy Turvy, which also included a stiletto take on Schiaparelli’s shoe hat. Here is a collection image from the milliner’s website:

Stephen Jones AW2011
Stephen Jones Fall/Winter 2011. Image: Stephen Jones.

SHOWstudio’s image gallery gives “aesthetic hints” on the assembly (click for more):

Erin O'Connor in a Stephen Jones hat photographed by Nick Knight for SHOWstudio
Erin O’Connor in a Stephen Jones hat. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.
Erin O'Connor in a Stephen Jones hat photographed by Nick Knight for SHOWstudio
Erin O’Connor in a Stephen Jones hat. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.
Stephen Jones hat pattern at SHOWstudio
Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the hat pattern

Recommended fabrics: For hat: crisp fabrics with body and a slight stiffness such as faille, taffeta, gazar, or firm velvet. For lining: softer fabrics.

Notions: 0.4 m ( about 16″) of 5 cm (2″) satin ribbon; #5 (2.5cm) petersham ribbon; elastic (optional).

Trimming: 0.65 m (about 26″) of 5 cm (2″) ribbon; small sequins, sugar beads, and diamantés for bow embellishment.

U.K. milliner Sharon Bainbridge has made a version of the SHOWstudio hat; read her process post here.

Free Designer Pattern: Junya Watanabe Dress

Gemma Ward in Junya Watanabe, photographed by Nick Knight
Gemma Ward in Junya Watanabe, 2005. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

To celebrate this week’s opening of PUNK: Chaos to Couture at the Costume Institute in New York, I’ll be posting about two free patterns for punk-inspired designs. (Kristen McMenamy called last night’s Met gala “a costume party for punk”; see Vogue’s red carpet coverage here.) First up is an example of Junya Watanabe’s “heavy-duty couture”: the dress pattern he shared with SHOWstudio.

Gemma Ward photographed by Nick Knight in Junya Watanabe
Back view, Gemma Ward in Junya Watanabe, 2005. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

The Watanabe Design Download was part of SHOWstudio’s Dress Me Up, Dress Me Down project, which saw model Liberty Ross being dressed for a live photo shoot by an online audience. The project—whose name refers to the English title of Pedro Almodóvar’s Átame, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1990)—was inspired by pornographic video chats and had the goal of “exploring the idea of control in fashion image-making.” As well as images and video, the project also had a discussion component, with interviews and short essays on fashion and pornography, including an Andrea Dworkin excerpt. In its appropriation of pornographic conventions, the SHOWstudio project can be linked to punk fashion and art like that of Throbbing Gristle’s Cosey Fanni Tutti (recently seen in Pop Life: Art in a Material World).

The Watanabe design was chosen by Liberty Ross from stylist Jonathan Kaye’s draft selection for the June 2005 SHOWstudio event. The dress is from Junya Watanabe’s Fall/Winter 2005 women’s collection—the coming season at the time of the project. The original dress was made in red mohair plaid with a PVC bodice:

Junya Watanabe dress in red PVC and mohair plaid
Junya Watanabe Fall 2005. Model: Cristina Carey. Image: vogue.com.

Watanabe also showed a black version of the dress:

Junya Watanabe dress in black wool and PVC, Fall 2005 women's collection
Junya Watanabe Fall 2005. Model: Ira. Image: vogue.com.

These dresses’ play with textural contrasts carried through the Fall/Winter 2005 Junya Watanabe women’s collection, which paired cotton and textured woolens with synthetics like nylon and PVC. The models wore full-skirted dresses, the skirts sometimes bunched up with ripcords, white shirts with exaggerated collars and ruffles, and coats and jackets made with tweed fused with synthetics. Watanabe referred to the clothes as “hard-core couture.” (See Cathy Horyn, “In Paris, Tweed Tangles With Tulle.”) Here’s the collection image from L’Officiel 1000 modèles:

Junya Watanabe FW 2005 women's RTW - L'Officiel 1000 modèles
Junya Watanabe Fall 2005 ready-to-wear. Image: jalougallery.com.
Junya Watanabe dress pattern at SHOWstudio
Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the dress pattern

Fabric requirements: for skirt, approx. 2 yards of 50″ fabric*

Notions: #10 Vislon zipper, 3mm and 5mm sealing tape

* source: Craftster sewalong post

Free Designer Pattern: Alexander McQueen Kimono Jacket

SHOWstudio Alexander McQueen kimono jacket photographed by Nick Knight
Alexander McQueen Scanners kimono jacket. Photo: Nick Knight. Image: SHOWstudio.

Alexander McQueen would have been 44 today. On the occasion of his birthday, here’s a look back at the free pattern McQueen shared with SHOWstudio: the Scanners kimono jacket.

The original kimono jacket was made of black silk, and was shown on the runway with a matching pencil skirt and long gloves (worn by a pre-Outlander Caitriona Balfe):

Caitriona Balfe models the Alexander McQueen kimono jacket available from SHOWstudio
Caitriona Balfe in Alexander McQueen’s Fall 2003 runway show. Image: firstVIEW.

The kimono jacket is drawn from Scanners, Alexander McQueen’s Fall/Winter 2003 collection. (The invitation to the show was printed with brain scans—CAT scans of the designer’s brain.) This was the year McQueen received his CBE from Queen Elizabeth II, as well as the CFDA’s International Award and his fourth British Fashion Designer of the Year. The models walked across a snowy tundra and along a raised wind tunnel; the design references represented a journey eastward through Siberia, Tibet, and Japan, mixed with geometric prints and McQueen’s signature tailoring. (See Suzy Menkes, “The Collections / Paris: A stellar McQueen; elegance at Viktor & Rolf.”)

Here are the collection images from L’Officiel 1000 modèles (click to enlarge):

LOfficielno33_2003_ScannersA
Alexander McQueen Fall 2003 collection (Scanners). Image: jalougallery.
LOfficielno33_2003_ScannersB
Alexander McQueen Fall 2003 collection (Scanners). Image: jalougallery.

Watch the runway video (kimono jacket at about 6:10):

Kimono-inspired designs are a thread running through McQueen’s work. Here are a few more kimono looks by Alexander McQueen, from Eclect Dissect—Givenchy couture, Fall 1997 (as on the McQueen / Nick Knight album cover for Björk’s Homogenic); La Dame Bleue, in memory of Isabella Blow; and the posthumous Fall 2010 collection:

McQueen kimonos: Eclect Dissect Givenchy Couture FW 1997, La dame bleue McQueen SS 2008, McQueen FW 2010
Kimono-inspired looks from Eclect Dissect, Givenchy Haute Couture Fall 1997; La Dame Bleue, Alexander McQueen Spring 2008, and Alexander McQueen Fall 2010. Images: L’Officiel 1000 modèles and style.com.
Alexander McQueen kimono jacket pieces at SHOWstudio
Image: SHOWstudio.

Download the kimono jacket pattern

Size: US size 6 / UK size 8 approx. (bust 32″ – waist 24″) *

Fabric requirements: approx. 1.75 metres (about 2 yards) of 60″ fabric / over 3 metres (about 3.25 yards) of 39″ fabric *

See the SHOWstudio submissions gallery here. Toronto’s Mel of inside out inside has made an adapted version in Lida Baday fabric. Blithe of blithe stitches has a post on her metallic Hablon version and also a detailed tutorial.

Update: Useful for comparison: the photos of this gold brocade version of the McQueen kimono jacket on 1stdibs:

Back view, Alexander McQueen gold brocade silk blend kimono jacket, 2003
Alexander McQueen silk blend kimono jacket, 2003. Image: 1stdibs.

* Sizes and yardages are approximate and are drawn from Mel and Blithe’s notes on their versions of the kimono jacket.