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The Aesthetics of the Extended Front Dart


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#37 jukes

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 01:22 AM

Exactly the same problem matching the pattern with an extended front dart and a side body, no difference, yet the side body seems to be highly favored on here.
Pattern matching should concern the whole garment, not just the fronts.

Edited by jukes, 21 September 2011 - 01:24 AM.


#38 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 01:45 AM

^ Sounds like an argument to get rid of the front dart altogether along with the side body. Jason is a bit overdue for an appearance to decry what an evil eyesore the front dart is and how we should return to the way W.D.F. Vincent did things in Edwardian times: no front dart!

However, as Whife says, many find the extended front dart to be an objectionable eyesore. So if you are going to dart the coat to give it extra shape, the classical thing to do so in men's cutting is a way that is discreet. Scholte displaced the front dart off to the side a little to make it a little less visible, and did not embrace the extended dart although it was common in his time. If a client walked into Scholte's shop demanding the extended front dart on the grounds that it was "more bespoke" he would have probably kicked him right out his store (he had a reputation of refusing to take clients who told him what to do). Of course, all this assumes that it is even desirable that seams be discreet rather than being deliberately visible for show: and that is an aesthetic choice, and it is in recognition of this that this thread is in this particular forum.

The move to the side body style is international: the last T&C system, the RS/ASZ/SM/DSHW systems, Japanese systems all default to the side body style. There is often a good reason for why so many excellent minds have embraced this, and you can rebel just to be different, but you risk ending up a rebel without a cause, or just being outdated. Personally, my preference has grown to be the Ostinelli side body myself (even better pattern matching, even better waist suppression, even less visible seams), so it's hardly like I am being conformist.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

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#39 Nishijin

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 01:59 AM

OK. Here is a reason in favor of the extended front dart. And the more I think about it, the more I like it.

The front dart creates a disruption in the pattern. However you make it, it is visible if your cloth is a check. Even when you cut a front without dart, the ironwork done to provide room to the chest will show in the pattern.

When a front is cut with a side body, there is a vertical discontinuity in the pattern above and under the pocket.

With the extended front dart, the pattern under the pocket is in exact continuity to above the pocket. Of course, the distortion of the pattern all along the dart is visible. But no more than it is above the pocket ! And at least, it is consistent, there is a continuity in the whole front.

On the contrary, moving the bottom of the dart to create the side body makes an eyesore : the pattern is disrupted at the pocket, the front looks like a patchwork.

So I could say, using the same language I have read here, that cutting a side body in a check is an eyesore, is illogical, shows poor taste. The extended front dart is the logical and pleasant way to cut a front in a check. Actually, it is true too for (vertical) stripes, except if the stripe width is the same as the dart strength (in which case it is possible to have pattern continuity above and under the pocket mouth).
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#40 jukes

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:05 AM

Was Scholte really that good. Not to my mind. And those great minds you keep quoting from the books, do you really think, with todays paper weight cloths (which is what most of the
debates on here are really about) they would be held in the same esteem today, of course not, many would,nt touch or work with them, especially Scholte. As for being outdated, or left behind
i think you have the wrong person. Show me the great minds of today and then maybe we can compare. You are quoting old cutters in terms of today's tailoring and the two don't go
together.

#41 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:09 AM

With the extended front dart, the pattern under the pocket is in exact continuity to above the pocket. Of course, the distortion of the pattern all along the dart is visible. But no more than it is above the pocket ! And at least, it is consistent, there is a continuity in the whole front.

On the contrary, moving the bottom of the dart to create the side body makes an eyesore : the pattern is disrupted at the pocket, the front looks like a patchwork.


Very good, very interesting theoretical defence. But I just can't see it:

Posted Image
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"

#42 Nishijin

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:14 AM

Pictures to prove my point :

Here, see how the pattern flows uninterupted in the whole front. No interruption anywhere, and the variation of width along the dart reinforce the volume given to the chest. This looks pretty good.
Posted Image

Here, we have an eyesore (pattern-wise) :
Posted Image

See how a stripe magically disappears in the chest, and magically reappears at pocket level ? Actually, the dart should not have been made right on the stripe. Either the stripe should have been moved (moving the pattern on the cloth so that the dart doesn't fall on a stripe), or the dart should have be moved a little (it can usually be done with little consequence).

There is a side body, and we can see under the arm how the pattern is highly disrupted, lines being interrupted.

Using an extended front dart would prevent this, keeping a nice, flowing pattern on the whole chest, underlining the shape, as we can see it on this coat :
Posted Image



Preventing any interruption in the pattern is even more important when making a front with patch pockets, such as these :
Posted Image

With patch pockets, we want the patch to be in continuity to the cloth at the mouth and at the bottom. This can be done with the extended front dart, since the pattern is the same above and under the pocket. It cannot be done with a side body, which makes a discontinuity a the pocket mouth level (when cutting a side body with a patch pocket, there is a horizontal cut hidden behind the patch, and this cut is sewn close while making the front).
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#43 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:29 AM

See how a stripe magically disappears in the chest, and magically reappears at pocket level ? Actually, the dart should not have been made right on the stripe. Either the stripe should have been moved (moving the pattern on the cloth so that the dart doesn't fall on a stripe), or the dart should have be moved a little (it can usually be done with little consequence).

There is a side body, and we can see under the arm how the pattern is highly disrupted, lines being interrupted.

Using an extended front dart would prevent this, keeping a nice, flowing pattern on the whole chest, underlining the shape


Most Italian tailors consider it correct to have the stripe disappear like that. Here is a good example:

Posted Image

I have been taught by an Italian tailor that this is the correct way to do it!

And Engelbert Ott does it that way too: his coat you criticised came from an article about correct pattern matching. You can make the front dart cause the stripe to disappear regardless of how you dart the front - dart extended to the bottom of the front hem or not. It's got nothing to do with whether there is a front dart extended to the base by the "nifty side step" explained in the first thread to help hide the extended seam at the side better.

As for the disruption in pattern mismatch, of course it is there, but moved (for the non-tailors by this I mean the "nifty side step" to help hide the extended front dart which I showed in the first post) to underneath the sleeve so it is nicely hidden:

Posted Image

If you extend the front dart straight down the front, you move the pattern mismatch to the front where you can see it better.

As for this one, I see good pattern matching on the right, but I see big problems on the left:

Posted Image

So you can see that avoiding the extended front dart is improving the pattern matching here:

Posted Image

Ps as I say this is losing most of the non-tailors. All of this stuff is also in the technical sister thread - and more. I am going to start to move these technical arguments to that thread if it gets too complicated.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"

#44 Nishijin

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:56 AM

OK, what can we say ?

You started with a technical explanation of why the extended front dart is a bad thing.

When I comment pictures showing it is a nice feature, you answer that it is too technical... So what can I say to explain why I like it ? All I'm talking about is where do we make disruption of the pattern. I did not joined patterns, I used no paper model, nor any diagram, I just comment pictures...

This whole thread is very strange, and I don't know if we are loosing non-tailors, but I'm pretty sure we are loosing tailors.
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#45 carpu65

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:56 AM

Most Italian tailors consider it correct to have the stripe disappear like that.


And is not correct?
Is a rule like "not brown in town"?

#46 Nishijin

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 03:09 AM

Carpu : I don't know about "correct". All I can say is I don't like it if I can prevent it (and in the coat I commented, I think it could have been prevented).
I don't know why, I find it less strange on the Solito coat, maybe because there are 2 stripes making a big "V", instead of just one stripe vanishing.
Sometimes, it can't be prevented, for instance when the stripes are too close together. "Hiding" the dart between stripes only works if there is enough space.

This is not related at all to the question of the extended front dart, I shouldn't have talked about it in the first place. My bad.


Edit :
actually, yes, it is related : with the side body (the "step cut" in the front), the vanishing stripes reappears out of nowhere at the pocket level. This emphasise the void between the chest and the pocket. With the extended front dart, there is perfect continuity above and under the pocket, so the missing stripes doesn't come back. See the Solito coat for instance.
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#47 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 03:11 AM

OK, what can we say ?

You started with a technical explanation of why the extended front dart is a bad thing.

When I comment pictures showing it is a nice feature, you answer that it is too technical... So what can I say to explain why I like it ? All I'm talking about is where do we make disruption of the pattern. I did not joined patterns, I used no paper model, nor any diagram, I just comment pictures...

This whole thread is very strange, and I don't know if we are loosing non-tailors, but I'm pretty sure we are loosing tailors.


This thread is being kept deliberately simplistic and minimally technical at a level non-tailors can easily relate to.

I am just saying that there is a technical thread which discusses all of this, where we can talk shop fully, if that is what you want:

http://www.cutterand...?showtopic=2471

It says everything that is in this thread but that is what the technical thread is for. I have only said that this thread was meant to be kept simple so that non-tailors can easily follow it.

As for people getting upset over the fact that Whife and a 1949 Viennese article criticise the way they were taught - there is nothing I can do. They are perfectly welcome to present a counter argument instead of running away. If I were to stop presenting ideas I was taught or what I found in the literature because it might offend someone used to doing things differently, I would have to close down the forum immediately.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"

#48 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 03:13 AM

And is not correct?
Is a rule like "not brown in town"?


It is preference and you will see it being done both ways by tailors from all over the world. Most of the German literature says that it is wrong to make a stripe disappear, however as you can see, someone of the calibre of Engelbert Ott obviously disagreed with that.

But an Italian tailor taught me to make the stripe disappear, and you see this on most Italian coats.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"

#49 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 03:46 AM

Was Scholte really that good. Not to my mind. And those great minds you keep quoting from the books, do you really think, with todays paper weight cloths (which is what most of the
debates on here are really about) they would be held in the same esteem today, of course not, many would,nt touch or work with them, especially Scholte. As for being outdated, or left behind
i think you have the wrong person. Show me the great minds of today and then maybe we can compare. You are quoting old cutters in terms of today's tailoring and the two don't go
together.


Well, you know I hardly worship Scholte. As for lightweight cloths one of the arguments in the literature is that this is why a side body is used today.

On mentioning Scholte, there is one more very important fact that I have neglected to mention. That is, that the style of cut with the extended front dart is often called a "drape cut". Non-tailors will note that in the opening thread closing the dart produced a bulge in the chest. This extra bulging or fullness in the chest is often called drape. Fullness/ease is the most basic meaning of the term "drape" - it doesn't have to imply folds of cloth.

The reason why Neapolitan tailors adopted the extended front dart was that they reputedly tried to reproduce the Scholte cut, which they had heard was a "drape cut". They probably found English publications (old Italian publications such as La Moda Maschile show evidence of having very carefully read the international literature of the time) and found a pattern for a "drape cut" with the extended front dart. Apparently, somewhat later they got to examine a real garment by Scholte only to find that it was quite different to their copy from afar, but they probably continued to cut with the extended front dart ("drape cut") anyway, as they had grown accustomed to it. So the adaptation of the extended front dart in an effort to reproduce the Scholte "drape cut" was probably the product of an accident.

If you read the following LMM page you will find references to various Austrian, British and American texts on cutting:

Posted Image

At other places they show things from the German literature too. Educated Italians have always been very cosmopolitan.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"

#50 jukes

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 04:44 AM

Thats quite a damming statement regarding the Italians copying Scholte and not getting it right. I would say the opposite was true, the Italians certainly knew what they were doing and if you look at the styles of that era i would say that the Italians
were far more advanced in both style and elegance, which you do not get from copying someone like Scholte. Also as Nishijin has explained, there are reasons why garments are cut in a certain way.

Oh, by the way, thanks for the pages containing lessons on cutting, been there, done that.

Edited by jukes, 21 September 2011 - 05:00 AM.


#51 rs232

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 06:35 AM

At the end of the day, the cutter will draft the garment the way he sees fit for cloth, style, figure and purpose, if that means including an extended front dart, so be it. That should be the case for
every cutter. Otherwise, as mentioned before, we would end up with the same boring garments and might as well work in a factory churning out the same.



I think Jukes hase given a pretty good summary. Some coats, I look at and think: "It just works". Others, not. And there is no technical consistency between them that gaurantees that an extended dart will work or not, so I put it down to aesthetics. I feel that it's a little like flogging a dead horse to search for technical reason for the aesthetics, in this case, as Nishijin has pointed out.

BTW, this jacket is remarkable! However does one achieve something like that? Is that purely ironwork?

Posted Image

#52 Der Zuschneider

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 08:25 AM

I don't really understand either. I have said (with photographic proof):

1. The extended front dart is too visible (unless there are patch pockets)
2. The extended front dart causes pattern mismatching
3. The extended front dart is unnecessary because it can be hidden by displacing it to the side where it is hidden

I was told that points 1-3 were wrong because I had "poor taste". I asked for an explanation and I was told that no explanation would be given because I was "childish". :unknw:


What is this for nonsense here with being childish... LOL, we are getting crazy in the forum, hihi

The extended dart has a heritage out of the women tailoring. You can use it as you like it, there is nothing wrong. But then you have pattern mismatch in the front.
Therefore the dart was displaced in the side to hide the mismatch under the arm. Either under arm seam dart or extended dart, it doesn't matter. Cut what you like but don't mess as less as possible with the pattern.

Sators 3 points are correct.
I think the RoE artists in Napoli cut with extended darts. They need to ask the customer before they mess around with the stripes otherwise they have to order another yard of length. LOL

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#53 Der Zuschneider

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 08:35 AM

This is getting too crazy here...

Cutting of the stripe in the chest dart is only acceptable with narrow stripe. To cut of a wide stripe has to be avoided. Then the chest dart has to swallow one stripe so the stripe can continue under the pocket. Works only up to 1.5cm stripes. If you need more chest maybe even a 2cm dart can be good to go.

If you have more than 2cm stripes, the stripe cannot continue under the pocket, so you need to find an acceptable continuation of the stripes.

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#54 Sator

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 11:05 AM

Thats quite a damming statement regarding the Italians copying Scholte and not getting it right. I would say the opposite was true, the Italians certainly knew what they were doing and if you look at the styles of that era i would say that the Italians
were far more advanced in both style and elegance, which you do not get from copying someone like Scholte.


The story comes from Mariano Rubinacci. As for not getting it right, that was probably a good thing - and they knew it! As for the Scholte type of drape cut, that can actually be found in the above La Moda Maschile textbook from Milan in the 1930s as well. So the Italians already knew about that too, just like the Germans and the Americans. Tory can probably find us a Russian text with the same thing in it. In the end, the Neapolitan tailors made a conscious decision not to follow Scholte literally - and even after they found out how he really did cut, they continued on with the method of producing a "drape cut" they probably found in The Tailor & Cutter (a London based tailoring journal they could easily have subscribed to) with the front dart extended down to the base - a method not found in the men's cutting sections of the Enciclopedia published by La Moda Maschile, Milan.

In terms of studying what others are doing in other lands, far from being "damning", I regard this as a sign of being cosmopolitan, educated and well-read. Peter Ostinelli (I assume that is originally Pietro Ostinelli), a writer for the British journal, The Cutter & Tailor often talks about what is going on in the Continental literature and American literature. It would not have surprised me if Ostinelli read French, German and Italian, and that he subscribed to a whole host of international journals. Also, the Italians have a long tradition of being Anglophile, and their copying the British style of "drape cut" with extended front dart is probably a continuation of that tradition of adopting lo stilo Inglese.

In a review of Italian bespoke tailoring firms, Men's EX June 2009 stated that many Italian tailors reported to them that they draft in inches because their cutting systems are so heavily influenced by British systems. They even quoted one Italian tailor as stating that drafting in inches results in a garment that "fits the shape of the body better". Don't shoot me, I'm just the messenger.
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911): "Tradition ist die Weitergabe des Feuers und nicht die Anbetung der Asche."

"Tradition is about passing on the flame, and not the worshipping of ashes"




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