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Dec 18, 2018

Cathy Models the Pink Tweed Couture Suit!


Friends, is there any more luscious fabric than pink wool tweed?

And speaking of luscious, is there any more delectable model than my identical cousin, the ever-youthful, effortlessly soigné Cathy Lane?  I was so delighted when I found out that Cathy would be stopping in New York City for a few days on her way to visit daughter Simplicity at boarding school: evidently there have been some behavioral problems and Cathy is required to visit in person rather than merely text.

Anyway, Cathy agreed to model the project I've worked on all semester in my Haute Couture Construction class at FIT, taught by none other than Kenneth D. King.  We all used the same pattern in the same size but we were able to choose our own fabric.  I opted for a raspberry pink wool tweed with flecks of other colors as well -- I believe this is generally referred to as Donegal tweed.

Luckily the skirt and jacket fit, otherwise we would have had to make alterations--not to the outfit, mind you, but to Cathy.  She can hardly bend with that boa constrictor-tight waistband but it certainly keeps her standing up straight.




As you can see, the jacket is dramatically shaped, echoing the New Look silhouette.  It's fully interlined with horsehair canvas and the front and back neck facings also have multiple layers of hair cloth and quite a few shaping darts.

We do try to keep things interesting, so I made sure Cathy had a change of shoes and hat, for a slightly different look.  Below she's wearing a burgundy angora tam and beige slingback sandals.


Cathy prefers a bit more lift, however, so we switched mid-photo shoot to her favorite pink satin open-toe slippers.



I made Cathy a turban hat from a remnant of the skirt and jacket lining fabric from a late Forties Vogue pattern (see it here).  Isn't it chic?!




It was all I could do to convince Cathy to go easy on the bling: she'd have a cocktail ring on every finger and probably a few toes if it were up to her.  We pared accessories down to the minimum: earrings and a statement pin, simple patent leather handbag, and matching gloves.

I think you'll agree that pink truly flatters my cousin and the strong silhouette gives Cathy a bit more shape.  You probably know by now that she's less of an hourglass and more of a grandfather clock.









In next semester's Haute Couture Collection class I'll be creating three separate garments from scratch; I think you can guess who my muse is likely to be!



Happy Holidays everybody, from our family to yours!


(All photos by Michael Hanko)

60 comments:

  1. That is really impressive. The suit is great & Cathy looks great in it. Your cousin is a very lucky person.

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  2. Oh so glorious. The suit is just gorgeous. Thanks for the great photoshoot with Cathy.

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  3. The shoot we’ve all been waiting for! Magnificent! I hope Simplicity’s behaviour improves. Mustn’t give Cathy frown lines.

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  4. Very Elegant! Very nice colour for that design! It looks luxurious and fresh and joyful
    But the photographer needs to learn to focus ;)

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    Replies
    1. If you click on any photo you’ll see it at a higher resolution and sharper.

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  5. Superb Peter! I'm totally in love with the whole outfit

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  6. Grandfather clock! But I do love the suit.

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  7. The suit is so lovely! And so is the blog! �� ��

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  8. Cookie, you are all that! And to think it is as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside😍😍

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  9. Fantastique! that fabric with that pattern is as divine as Cathy is. what a smart cookie, dropping in right when you need her to model! ; )

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  10. The photo shoot has exceeded all expectations. Wow!

    Spud.

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  11. You look fantastic! It really looks best with the pink slingbacks and raspberry beret, but regardless it is a fantastic outfit.

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  12. These are exquisite! The tailoring is beautiful, and the colors and style are smashing! The interesting thing about the turban (to me at least) is that when styled with the low heeled pumps, the outfit looks rather saucy 60s to me! I prefer the beret and heels myself, but the other look is interesting too!

    What a wonderful suit for Cathy! Looking forward to whatever you make next semester--the process photos are so interesting too!

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  13. That outfit is fabulous Cathy, but most importantly, THOSE ANKLES. Such slender dainty things! (Coming from a very jealous cankle-owning lady).

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    1. Amen, sister! The 'upright' support is also most becoming to those of us in an particular stage of life. And yes, I bought that turban pattern this week. Because I am a dedicated follower of Cathy.

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  14. Wonderful! The turban - nice touch! But the waistband? This suit is made for walkin'?
    Thanks for all the details and the reveal. Inspiring!

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  15. Oh, so good to see Cathy again! (And so sorry to hear about Simplicity. I hope the discipline problems are merely a child "acting out" over loneliness, and not early evidence of psychopathy.)

    I have such great affection for you and Michael, through this blog. I wish you and your extended families a right merry Christmas.

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  16. Oh that jacket!! It's fabulous! Great job!

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  17. Three garments...TRIPLE the Cathy!!!

    2019 is going to be her come-back year, I can feel it in my bones.

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  18. It's a good thing that Cathy is half my size or I'd sneak in her window and steal it. It's gorgeous!

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  19. Is that hand picked decorative stitching on the skirt's front pleats? Stunning, just stunning and the fit perfect! Wish we could bring back wide waistbands!

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    1. Yes, it's pick-stitched. I too like the look of a wide waistband especially worn with a jacket: it creates a longer line.

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    2. Mrs Mole, I think you should talk more of your clients into this look. It screams MOB elegance certainly (not to put any pressure on dear Simplicity)

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  20. I love the dart shaping on that skirt!

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  21. Gorgeous suit - gorgeous workmanship!

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  22. Oh, I need more Cathy Lane in my life!!

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  23. How dare you show us this amazing creation and not tell us the pattern! Or did I miss it? Please tell me it's commercially available! Divine!

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  24. Super work as always. Great job! Thanks for sharing.

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  25. It’s something we got through school. It’s not a commercial pattern unfortunately.

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  26. Beautiful work. You were right about the covered buttons.

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  27. Very elegant! Thanks for sharing with us - your project shows that couture methods are well worth the time!
    Merry Christmas!

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  28. That suit, & model, are so chic! I'm quite envious...

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  29. Oh, Peter! What a breathtaking job! Hard work and patience are all worth it in the end! Cathy is SO pretty in pink!! (I wish her the best of luck with that child of hers...!) Happy Holidays to you all! --Erik

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  30. Absolutely stunning. Cathy looks delectable in your gorgeous suit. Xx

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  31. One more comment from me: I love this suit. I adore this pattern, and I applaud the Professor King for using this. So well thought out, and so well executed by you, Peter. (sighs happily). I wish I had this pattern, too. But thankfully I have a step by step set of photos in how it was constructed. Best present ever.

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  32. Can we please have a close-up on that fabric? That wool is yummy... the outfit is terrific... skirts are something i no longer wear (impractical for my life) but I'd almost consider it if it make me look that terrific!

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  33. Fantastic work - I love the shape of the skirt and the pleats. And as always, Cathy is the perfect model.

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  34. Lovely suit and color. I like those inside out darts on the skirt.

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  35. Wow, such a great pairing of fabric and pattern! And not to speak of the model, Cathy looks stunning <3
    Stellar work, as always.

    That jacket, I really need one in that shape and with that lovely collar

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  36. What is your opinion about the wearability/comfort of this garment? How does it compare to tailored men's clothing? All I have picked up is that the sleeves are stiff, and and waistband is for standing up/ good posture reminder. It looks like a force of nature.

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    Replies
    1. It’s perfectly comfortable but s little snug on Cathy—holiday eating and all that. 😉

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  37. Absoultely stunning....both the suit & Cathy (of course)…………….

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  38. I want this exact suit in my wardrobe... now! It is just SO stunning - I love the colour, the cut and the details on the skirt and collar! Cathy looks a million $$$! Beautiful sewing, as always.

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  39. This stylization is amazing. This is a big WOW. It looks perfect. I do not even have words. Great job. A very interesting project. I like! As for me, this is number one.

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  40. What a great photoshoot of your cousin Cathy in the BIG city wearing that wonderful couture raspberry suit! Looks great, and Happy Holidays to your and your family, too!

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  41. So chic and utterly divine in every way.

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  42. It's always a good day when Cathy Lane shows up. She always puts a smile on my face, so well dressed and she wears everything soooo well.
    I hope you and Michael have a Happy Holiday Season!

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  43. Dorian Leigh? Lisa Fonsagrives? no, Cathy!!!! so soignee, so chic.
    A Roxy Music muse if ever there was one

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  44. Fabulous!!!
    I love the outfit with the beret and the tan shoes, really a great look.
    And the fabric! I'm not fond of pink, but this particular shade is exquisite and looks so good on Cathy!

    Thank you for the vision, I wish you the best for the holidays,

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  45. Oh gosh! You’re so different from anyone I know, but I think you’re lovely! Truely an inspiration!

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  46. Oh boy, what a great lookin' "dame", your cousin Cathy in this sophisticated ensemble (I don't mean to offend anyone). I love her outfit. The curve of the collar matches the curve of the high waistband, and the covered buttons are perfect. However,the whimsical lining tells me that Cathy can have a mischievous side too. Maybe Simplicity takes after her mother? Anyways, kidding aside, great job. I like how you paired it with different accessories to provide different looks.

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  47. Peter what an achievement. Amazing work on the suit, I have enjoyed following its progress and excellent modelling by Cathy! I hope we will be seeing more of her next year!

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  48. your technique is as flawless as your cousin. Gorgeous.

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  49. Beautiful tailoring work, Peter. The raspberry color tweed is perfect for this very classic looking suit, and the accessories added to the "vintage" look!

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  50. Now I need that jacket in the colour of the beret.
    Cathy looks so much like vintage haute couture, fabulous work. And fabolous model!
    The gloves fit her sassy attitude so well.

    Ah I just love the vibe she gives in those photos!

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  51. Fabulous! Your construction is superb. I love that fabric. The style is great on Cathy.

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  52. Hi Peter! I love the hourglass silhouette you were able to create for Cathy. I would like to do something similar for a 40s suit and I am more of the "grandfather clock" variety myself. Can you offer tips on creating shapeliness without necessarily having to pad out my hips and bust?

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