Mar 5, 2012
Happy Monday, MPB readers. Much to cover today so let's get to it. First, the winner of the current (April/May 2012) issue of Vogue Patterns with my treadle article in it is...
Phoebe, please email me your mailing address (peterlappinnyc at gmail dot com) and I will get your magazine off to you ASAP. I am happy to autograph it -- just let me know if I should sign as myself or as Justin Bieber. Congratulations!
Now folks, on to today's topic. Most of you will agree that while "pretty" is nice and usually inoffensive, there's something about ugly that gets under our skin like a splinter in the backside and causes endless irritation. So too, the ugly pattern.
Friends, allow me to introduce Simplicity 9106, a vintage dress pattern from 1970, and our ugly pattern for today.
I know what you're thinking: is this pattern really that bad? The answer is, yes. Let's look at the pattern closely. It is not exactly what it seems.
See that peplum (Version 1)? Friends, it is detachable; it's not even part of the dress. Now you know how I feel about peplums -- or maybe it's that I know how you feel, I forget. In any case, if you're going to add a peplum, please have the courage of your convictions and go for it. A removable peplum belt signals a lack of confidence. It's like architecture that's afraid of being too modern, so adds ersatz neoclassical columns, turrets or other phony frippery. Tacky, tacky, tacky!
Simplicity 9106 wants to be all things to all people: puffy sleeves straight out of 1939 (which themselves had been stolen off some Tyrolean milkmaid; empire waist (Version 2) that's nothing more than a belt cinched up under the bustline (comfy!); bolero vest straight out of I Dream of Jeannie, and don't even get me started on the ruffled cuffs (Nellie Oleson, anyone?), phony front buttons, or that oh-so Maude Findlay fringed scarf.
Please, please, Simplicity 9106, join an encounter group (in keeping with the spirit of the Seventies) and find yourself! And lose the choker.
In closing, I hope you don't think I've been unfair to this 1970 pattern, which must show one of the earlier depictions of a woman of color on a pattern envelope -- a welcome nod to the Civil Rights movement. Perhaps you owned Simplicity 9106 yourself or you'd like to purchase it. Dig around Etsy -- it's there!
Readers, confess: did you ever wear polyester double knit dresses with removable peplums? Did you add embroidered trim to your vests, sport a shag haircut or wear chokers? If so, we'd like to hear from you!
Have a great day, everybody!