Thursday, June 13, 2013

Check Mate !!!

Checkers aren't just for old men anymore. Last September, Marc Jacobs sent out a variety of simple silhouettes, many with checkered stories for the Spring/Summer collection he designed for Louis Vuitton. Those same garments are now all over Paris in the store windows and they look just as exciting and fresh as they did on the catwalk. What I like about this look is that it heralds back to the 1960's, a time when art and fashion were fused together thanks to movements in op-art, Andy Warhol, a Beatles' infused Carnaby street, and Camelot a la John and Jackie Kennedy.

I knew when I saw the LV collection on the catwalk last September, it would adapt well to the 12" fashion doll. The shapes are stark, simple and timeless. Moreover, all three looks featured on this page can be realized with easy to make patterns featured in past postings. (Look in the "pages" section under "patterns" for anything you missed.)

The dress is a simple shift pattern that borrows the sheath dress minus the darts. There is a slight curve in the shape, all the same, which gives a hint of shape an otherwise straight silhouette. I painted on the checkerboard which required a graph and a bit of planning so that the squares all line up.

Ditto for the coat. I used the same standard jacket pattern we've used before. (In effect, it is the same coat used for the safari jacket or the trench coat, but without all of the pockets and assorted details. Just remember to stitch the shoulders first and while flat, attached the sleeves before sewing the rest of the coat.

For the bare midriff top of the pants ensemble (a trend for this summer), I started with the basic shell top (the bodice sloper with seam allowance). I took the pattern I had previously created and put this back on the doll to determine where the style line under the bust should fall. Once you have drawn in the line, you will need to line up the back bodice at the side seam and mark the cutting line. You do this to ensure the side seams will be equal.

I also decided to create a square neckline. Take the back sloper and line it up at the shoulder of the front. Now draw the square neckline according to your choosing. This will ensure the pattern matches well at the shoulder line.

Now create your pattern and fill in the seam allowance. I used the standard pants pattern, but lowering the waist by 1/4 inch.

If you can find checkerboard fabric, all the better. But it you can't, you will need to create your on. Here, I have created a checkerboard print directly on my fabric. Draw a graph onto the fabric and match up the pattern pieces at the side. Admittedly, this is time intensive. In another post, we will explore a different method.

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