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.

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 dress photographed by Thomas Alexander for SHOWstudio, 2018
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
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?

Betsey Johnson: Butterick Patterns

Betsey Johnson sketch for Paraphernalia, 1965. Image: CFDA / Pinterest.

Betsey Johnson turns 75 today. Four decades on, the designer’s 1970s Butterick patterns are still very popular. Here’s a look at Johnson’s early work, with an emphasis on more seldom seen archival images.

Betsey Johnson (b. 1942) has made a career of creating irreverent, youth-oriented clothes that stand a bit outside the mainstream. She learned sewing and pattern drafting while running a dance school as a teen, but got her official start in the business designing for Youthquake boutique Paraphernalia. By 1970 she was the designer for Alley Cat, a junior sportswear label. (For more see Vogue.com and Anne-Marie Schiro, “Betsey Johnson: Honor for a Life of Celebrating Youth.”)

Dale Fahey, Birgitta, and Renée Roberts in Betsey Johnson neon satins (Golo sandals) photographed by Howell Conant, 1966
Models wear Betsey Johnson neon satin dresses in Piper’s Alley, Chicago. Life magazine, November 11, 1966. Photo: Howell Conant. Image: LIFE archive.
Juggler stands in front of Steel Pier's mystery ride and wears fancy-sleeved mini (Betsey Johnson, $34). Life magazine, May 24, 1968
Juggling in a Betsey Johnson mini dress in front of Steel Pier’s mystery ride, Atlantic City. Life magazine, May 24, 1968. Photo: Richard Davis. Image: LIFE archive.

In 1971, Johnson won a Coty Award for her work at Alley Cat (see the New York Times notice). The following year, Butterick launched its Betsey Johnson patterns in the Spring 1972 catalogue. The designs were also cross-promoted (along with Cyrus Clark cotton chintz) with a Barbara Bordnick editorial in Seventeen magazine.

Sunny Redmond in Butterick 6530 Betsey Johnson dress
Butterick 6530 by Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1972. Model: Sunny Redmond.
1970s Betsey Johnson Butterick editorial "The Betsey Girl," photographed by Barbara Bornick
Butterick 6533 by Betsey Johnson in “The Betsey Girl,” Seventeen, January 1972. Photo: Barbara Bordnick. Image: Gold Country Girls.
Butterick 6530 by Betsey Johnson in Seventeen, January 1972. Photo: Barbara Bordnick. Image: Gold Country Girls.
1970s Butterick 6535 by Betsey Johnson photographed by Barbara Bordnick for Seventeen
Butterick 6535 by Betsey Johnson in Seventeen, January 1972. Photo: Barbara Bordnick. Image: Gold Country Girls.
Butterick 6532 by Betsey Johnson in Seventeen, January 1972. Photo: Barbara Bordnick. Image: Gold Country Girls.

The earliest of Johnson’s Butterick Young Designer patterns refer to her as Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, and most seem to predate the founding of her company in 1978. Here’s Butterick 6979 on the cover of the March 1973 issue of Butterick’s news leaflet:

1970s Betsey Johnson Butterick 6979
Butterick 6979 by Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, Butterick Fashion News, March 1973. Image: eBay.

The young Patti Hansen in Alley Cat:

pink Alley Cat by Betsey Johnson acetate/cotton velvet dress with two Red Cobra necklaces, pink Lurex and stone bracelets by P.C. Designs
Patti Hansen in Alley Cat by Betsey Johnson, Glamour, December 1973. Photo: Rico Puhlmann. Image: Getty.

One of the first items I sold on Etsy was this 1975 issue of Butterick Fashion News with a Betsey Johnson cover. (Click to see inside.) The same embroidered pinafore was featured on the home catalogue cover:

The Romantic Pinafore: Butterick 4090 by Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, Butterick Fashion News, March 1975. Image: PatternVault on Etsy.
Butterick 4090 by Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1975
Butterick 4090 by Betsey Johnson of Alley Cat, Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1975. Image: eBay.

The pinafore also appears in this cute advertisement with Butterick 4088:

Butterick 4090 and 4088 by Betsey Johnson, 1975
Butterick Betsey Johnson ad in Seventeen, February 1975. Image: Carmen and Ginger.

This Butterick ad shows three Betsey Johnson designs that came with transfers for DIY embellishment (dress Butterick 4679, knit tops Butterick 4676, and skirt/pants Butterick 4678):

Butterick 4676, 4678, 4679 by Betsey Johnson
Butterick ad for Betsey Johnson patterns in Seventeen, 1976. Image: Gold County Girls.

The Spring 1976 catalogue used illustrated photographs to present this DIY series, which also included a hat and shoes (1st page, Butterick 4680; 3rd page Butterick 4681, with Joyce Walker on the right):

Butterick 4680 by Betsey Johnson in the Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1976
Butterick 4680 by Betsey Johnson, Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1976.
1970s Betsey Johnson patterns in Butterick 4679, 4676, 4678; 4676, 4681
Betsey Johnson patterns in the Butterick Home Catalog, Spring 1976.

Another 1976 Butterick ad shows a Betsey Johnson jumper (Butterick 4956) with deep ribbon trim—perfect for a late-summer Cape Cod getaway:

Butterick ad for Betsey Johnson patterns in Seventeen, August 1976. Image: Pinterest.

Happy birthday, Betsey Johnson!

Cotton ad feat. Alley Cat by Betsey Johnson in Seventeen magazine, August 1973
Cotton ad featuring Alley Cat by Betsey Johnson in Seventeen, August 1973. Models: Sunny Redmond, Betsey Johnson. Image: FinnFemme.
With thanks to Heidi at Gold Country Girls.

Tania Mallet

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

Model and Bond girl Tania Mallet (b. 1941) was born in Blackpool to English and Russian-English parents. (Her mother, Olga Mironoff, was Helen Mirren’s paternal aunt.) She began working as a model in the late 1950s after taking a course at the Lucie Clayton Charm Academy. You may recognize her from her role as Tilly Masterson in Goldfinger (1964).

Tania Mallet as Tilly Masterson in Goldfinger (1964)
Tania Mallet as Tilly Masterson in Goldfinger (1964). IMDb image ©Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.

Mallet’s modelling work in the 1960s included editorials for Vogue patterns and Vogue Knitting Book.

Tania Mallet in Vogue Knitting Book no. 60 (Jubilee edition), 1962
Tania Mallet in Vogue Knitting Book no. 60 (Jubilee edition), 1962. Image: Etsy.

The earliest patterns I’ve found featuring Mallet are by French and Italian designers—Jacques Heim and Simonetta:

1960s Jacques Heim suit pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Paris Original 1258
Vogue 1258 by Jacques Heim (1963) Image: Pinterest.
1960s Simonetta dress and coat pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1265
Vogue 1265 by Simonetta (1963) Image: eBay.

Later patterns are by London designers like Ronald Paterson and Jo Mattli:

1960s Ronald Paterson dress pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1391
Vogue 1391 by Ronald Paterson (1964) Image: Vintage Pattern Wiki.
1960s Jo Mattli dress and coat pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1407
Vogue 1407 by Jo Mattli (1964) Image: Etsy.
1960s Jo Mattli two-piece dress pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1661
Vogue 1661 by Jo Mattli (ca. 1967) Image: Etsy.

This daffodil evening ensemble was featured in my Bellville Sassoon post:

1960s Belinda Bellville evening ensemble pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1677
Vogue 1677 by Belinda Bellville (ca. 1966) Image: Etsy.

Here Mallet wears a goddess gown by John Cavanagh:

1960s John Cavanagh evening gown pattern feat. Tania Mallet, Vogue Couturier Design 1687
Vogue 1687 by John Cavanagh (ca. 1966) Image: eBay.

In this ad for Sekers Fabrics, she wears Forquet gown Vogue 1693 in striped ‘Hero’ lurex:

Tania Mallet wears Vogue 1693 by Federico Forquet in striped lurex (with Vogue 1758 by Ronald Paterson and Vogue 7158)
Tania Mallet wears Vogue 1693 by Federico Forquet (with Vogue 1758 by Ronald Paterson and Vogue 7158). Sekers Fabrics advertisement, 1967.

Full marks for hats and coiffure, don’t you think?

Tania Mallet photographed by Eugene Vernier for the cover of British Vogue, 1961
Tania Mallet in Pucci on the cover of British Vogue, July 1961. Photo: Eugene Vernier. Image: Vogue UK.
Tania Mallet photographed by Harry Meerson forthe cover of Jardin des Modes, 1962
Tania Mallet in Pierre Cardin on the cover of Jardin des Modes, March 1962. Photo: Harry Meerson. Image: Jardin des Modes Covers.
Tania Mallet photographed by Henry Clarke for the cover of British Vogue, 1962 (Brania earrings)
Tania Mallet on the cover of British Vogue, July 1962. Photo: Henry Clarke. Image: eBay.