Friday, May 7, 2010

Tab Details

I'm a little obsessed with tab details at the moment, and I've been hoarding mail order patterns for a while. I love the idea that no matter where a woman lived, she could have access to modern fashion patterns through the post office. Brilliant! These three Marian Martin mail order patterns from the 70s have fantastic tab details. 9460 is a prime candidate for a future of the past outfit. There's something about stand up wide collars that always makes me think of 60s and 70s sci-fi, and the buttoned tab fits right in.

This is my favourite of the three dresses. It's a pull-on dress that gets most of it's shaping from a button-on belt. Its construction reminds me of the tie waist of Vogue 1120, which I currently have lying out on my kitchen table. It's such an easy dress to wear, but doesn't have the sack shape of many house dresses from the same era. If this had been a little closer to my size I'd probably be sewing it up right now.

Marian Martin 9075

The front tabs on this dress remind me of overall straps. I like the way they aren't functional, but hint at a piece of garment design that was highly functional. It also works as an evolution of the collar, migrating out to the sides of the neck and needing to be buttoned in place.

These three patterns just went up on my etsy shop, but they are also being catalogued for my thesis, which is on the history of home sewing! Specifically, I'm looking at it from a design perspective (I do go to art/design school after all), but I am also looking at the social and economic aspects of home sewing. Mail order patterns are definitely taking up a big chunk of my research.

What about you? Do you have any mail order patterns in your collection? How do you think sites like Burdastyle continue or change the legacy of mail order sewing? I'd be very interested to hear.

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