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Jan 26, 2010

When BOLD was new



There's a reason we're still fascinated with 70's style at MPB.  It truly was a "way out" era, one that now seems oh, so long ago -- not only in time, but in temperament.  Oh, sure, people can wear anything today, but it's usually with an ironic wink.  That wasn't the case back then.  The (admittedly brave) guy who wore those op art bell-bottom pants thought he epitomized cutting-edge style, not camp.

I love old 70's patterns and have sewn quite a few of them.  I'll admit, I straighten the pants legs so I don't look like Greg Brady, and avoid period double knits (and psychedelic prints).  There's still some wacky RTW (ready-to-wear) clothes out there in stores, but for the home sewer, it's slim pickins' when it comes to menswear patterns.  The vast majority are for boxy shirts cut with extra ease for expanding waistlines or high-waisted, baggy-thigh jeans whose RTW equivalent you'd find only at Kmart.

The big pattern makers have surrendered style to the bottom line.  The market for high fashion menswear patterns is too small to bother with.

Yes, I know, there's Burda.  But the Burda styles for men I see in print look like the kind of just-past-the-fashion-curve outfits I see in Bollywood movies: cute on Akshaye Khanna, perhaps, but not on me.

I'll stick with the Apache shirt -- and I might even try that neckerchief!

From male pattern boldness

18 comments:

  1. Hey Peter! So glad you've got a blog. I've enjoyed you on PR and can't wait to see what you write about here.

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  2. That ensemble is absolutely atrocious. It's hard to believe people took themselves seriously in those getups, but I distinctly remember watching the Brady Bunch wishing my old man dressed that hip.

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  3. Is the guy on the picture a real person? He reminds me of Ken, Barbies boyfriend I used to thow from the balcony just to see what would happen to him ... ;-)

    Great that you are blooging now - I expect a lot of great stories!!!

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  4. Is it me? I love that shirt. But I'm not so sure about the pants :) My son (age 19) says he likes the shirt. He would wear the pants too, he says, but he is tall and thin and handsome and 19 and those people can wear anything

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  5. Ooh- is that Simplicity 8255 a men's shirt with armhole princess seams?? Sigh. I wish they still put out patterns like that. I need more non-boxy men's shirt patterns for my non-boxy man.

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  6. Peter! I'm so glad you started a blog. Just caught up on all your posts.

    That top pattern cracks me up -- the Apache shirt calls for a dose of Hai Karate, definitely!

    And as far as your choices for Cathy - doesn't she need something dressy? I love her casual look, but.. what does she wear in the evening?

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  7. Love your blog! I always follow you on PR - and wish I had your natural talent - Selfish Seamstress pointed out your blog - Great job!!

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  8. Your nemesis the Selfish Seamstress tipped us off to your new blog! Adding you to my list immediately, since I already love seeing what you make on PR.

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  9. Rest assured, evening wear for Cathy is on the list. (After that, a complete trousseau.)

    Speaking of Barbie and Ken, putting Cathy together IS a little like dressing a doll, and wait till you see the vintage 4" Yves Saint Laurent pumps I picked up for her at the Salvation Army last week!

    I think what they're calling an Apache shirt here is really just a Daniel Boone shirt in double-knit, without the lacing.

    How about that princess-seamed shirt, huh? That's actually why I bought the pattern. I have to tackle that one of these days.

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  10. I keep thinking of sewing something for my husband but chicken out. Could my ego handle his displeasure? I'll be watching what you create for inspiration.

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  11. I am DYING over the princess seamed shirt! Amazing!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm so glad I've found yours now too. :) Looking forward to watching you kick it Apache-style!

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  12. Oh, that men's pattern is AMAZING...so many of the patterns for men are, especially the ones from the 70s. I'll have to dig up some special ones to post about on my blog as a welcome for you!

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  13. I heard about your blog from the Selfish Seamstress. Wow, you're a natural! I've been sewing for 12 years and only wish my work was as good as yours!!

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  14. OK, I'll ask: What size shoes does Cathy wear? Seems like she would be hard to fit, long, slender foot. Of course, that's complete speculation on my part.

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  15. Cathy wears a 9.5 medium width, or a 41 European.

    But she'll squeeze into a 9 for a good photograph!

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  16. Dear heavens, I own that Butterick pattern O.o

    Is it bad that I want the Simplicity one now???

    BTW, I totally heart your vintage sheet shirts! That's how I got here (through BurdaStyle). Too bad my muffin has a low tolerance for "silly" shirts...

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