Jump to content


Photo

Modern Rundschau vs Dated Textbooks

Drafting

  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

#1 Faith

Faith

    Umsie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 61 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Missouri, USA
  • Interests:Modest clothes with correct fit, and a cure for brain cancer.

Posted 21 August 2014 - 12:51 PM

In an unpleasant thread that many of us hope to forget, the discussion turned to the proper place for dated materials. I'd like to continue that discussion here.

 

I agree that the old ways are not going to be of much benefit to the beginner with little to no experience beyond sewing from unaltered commercial patterns. They lack the big bag of tricks that comes from years of sewing, pattern truing, and so on. On the other end of the spectrum, I'm sure the highly experienced pro tailors, the ones that have made sartorialism their life's work, will find use of the dated books as reference for one thing or other.

 

Then there's the rest of us, the ones that remember playing with grandma's treadle machine when we were barely old enough to reach the treadle, but have never tried any drafting.

 

If this retired lady has been formally sewing, making alterations, and manipulating patterns since JrHS, is she ready to finally learn draft-from-scratch? And if she wants to draft a few basic pattern blocks without any flavor, where is a good place to start? Before you answer that, I'll say that my initial skirt draft from Whife's DaCLG (1969) fits me better than any commercial pattern I've been able to find. With truer measurements (for the initial I only took 5 self-measurements and guessed the rest) it will probably satisfy me greater than anything I've ever made aside from the possible exception of my bridal gown (although with the emotions tied to it I may be a bit biased). And if the skirt from a dated textbook works for me, might also the bodice and sleeve drafts? And if they work, what's to say I can't splice the bodice pattern to the skirt pattern to make a dress block?

 

Regardless of the draft textbook I use, my plans are to start with those basic clean vanilla blocks for skirt, bodice, dress, and long and short sleeves, then manipulate them to incorporate different details such as fullness (straight, full, pleated, gathered), zip-back, button front, collars of various styles including no collar, necklines of varying styles, sleeve terminations (hemmed, elastic, band, cuff) etc. But each STYLED pattern begins with a CLASSIC pattern. EDIT: By classic, I mean that it may not be IN, but it isn't OUT. Big armscye and shoulder pads are out. High necklines may not be in, but they are not out. If I'm not mistaken, pleat-front pants are not the latest trend in menswear, but pleat-fronts are not out the way sewn-in creases are out. (am I making sense, or rambling like an idiot?)

 

My biggest question: Some of us prefer classic over trendy. Is Rundschau classic or trendy? Or a mix of both?


Edited by Faith, 21 August 2014 - 10:41 PM.


#2 OJD

OJD

    Journeyman

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 430 posts

Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:27 PM

Do you read german? Otherwise HAKA schnittmanuals can be hard to read (the modern drafting books). I haven't tried any ladies drafts from it.

 

One book that is really really good for pattern design for womens wear is Helen Joseph-Armstrongs Patternmaking for Fashion Design, it goes from basic to very advanced and deals with the whole spectra of womens wear. Expensive yes, but not as expensive as M Müller and Sohn.



#3 posaune

posaune

    Pro

  • Super Pro
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 956 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Germany

Posted 21 August 2014 - 07:52 PM

What do you understand under "classic"? The classic today is done in another way than the classic from 1950. And it begins with the very changed underwear style and fit! Not to speak from the different fabrics and the changed body proportions.

As Mueller is over 100 years around they change their drafts according to the time. Remember the big armholes with shoulder pads in the 80ties?

Mueller showed how to change the basic draft for this. In the nineties the fashion changed back to a fitted draft. Last time they changed the draft was about 2000 (or so) for the come back of the sharp cutted tailor jacket.

So I would take everytime a modern draft. The basic pattern of Rundschau is "classic" for today: means the armhole dimensions and the ease. You can translate the basic pattern to anything you like. In their journals - where are the models developed- they give ervery time the basic pattern they designed from.

If you can read german I recommand Hofenbitzer. He is not so expensive as Mueller but does the nearly the same stuff.

lg

posaune


  • Schneiderfrei likes this

#4 Faith

Faith

    Umsie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 61 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Missouri, USA
  • Interests:Modest clothes with correct fit, and a cure for brain cancer.

Posted 21 August 2014 - 10:49 PM

I can only read English.

 

By classic, I mean that it may not be IN, but it isn't OUT. Big armscye and shoulder pads are out. High necklines may not be in, but they are not out. If I'm not mistaken, pleat-front pants are not the latest trend in menswear, but pleat-fronts are not out the way sewn-in creases are out. (am I making sense, or rambling like an idiot?)

 

To summarize, IN is the latest trend, OUT is so not trendy that it has become unacceptable, CLASSIC may or may not be in but is never out.


Edited by Faith, 21 August 2014 - 10:51 PM.

If most women are not 5 feet 10 inches 120 pounds, why do these unrealistic models dominate the runways?


#5 OJD

OJD

    Journeyman

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 430 posts

Posted 21 August 2014 - 11:51 PM

I think it is important to see who the different books are written for. What you need is more of a basic course in pattern making than trade books written for the industry. If I were in your shoes I would have a look to see if there were any courses available locally. Depending on the quality of the tutors you would learn much faster with a tutor than by self study, this is something I have experienced myself. If I lived rurally or had a very strict budget I would look into some beginners pattern cutting books and go from there. Classical or not are more style choices than intricate to the pattern IMHO. And what we label as classic is often not really what and how people would have worn it in the past.



#6 Schneiderfrei

Schneiderfrei

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 863 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Adelaide, Australia
  • Interests:learning and imagination

Posted 22 August 2014 - 12:24 AM

I think that since fashion does go around in a large circle, and many people ask for items that are not completely the fashion in any given time (who wants to look exactly like the next guy?) it is useful to have as many experiences in drafting, fitting and construction as possible.  

 

By drafting an old shirt you can appreciate the difference from what is common today. You could use that experience to adapt and develop.  If you never do it you will never have that experience.  So I like to look backward.

 

I wonder if what you mean by classic is not especially the current style but the excellence of the fit and the workmanship, the choice of cloth?


Shell made out of gold
Found on a beach picked up and you held so close


#7 jcsprowls

jcsprowls

    Pro

  • Super Pro
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,134 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Roanoke, Virginia

Posted 22 August 2014 - 02:51 AM

Styling is both subjective and personal. Some people prefer modest (e.g. "appropriate" coverage) yet contemporarily styled (i.e. color, fit, decoration) garments; others prefer refined silhouettes in contemporary fabrications with a few design elements to "theme" their garments a little to the left-or-right of center.

 

The pattern drafting books will never teach you any of this in a very specific way. What they will teach is the mechanics of drafting, committing the draft to pattern and then making the detail pattern elements (e.g. pockets, facings, interfacing, lining, etc.).

 

There are several women's pattern magazines on the market (the names of which escape me - but mostly Japanese & Korean) in addition to the Damen Rundschau. These magazines draw inspiration from the runway and decompose the style into drafting instructions. Drafting instructions are generally well-illustrated so it's possible to follow along even if you don't read the published language, especially if you have fundamental drafting skills.

 

Ultimately, you have to make the all design, styling and pattern decisions to achieve the final "look". This comes through fitting and styling (and lots of mistakes). The more you stick with it, you will learn the "vocabulary" to make informed style decisions so you can change the patterns you make.

 

That said, if you have altered commercial patterns in the past for fit, you probably already have the skill (and, eye) to look at a draft and make informed style decisions (e.g. make the neckline not so deep but wider to accentuate my collarbone, etc.)


Edited by jcsprowls, 22 August 2014 - 02:52 AM.

___________

Dir, Product Development

web: http://www.studio9apparel.com
portfolio: http://www.behance.net/studio9apparel

#8 Schneidergott

Schneidergott

    Master

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,680 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Scotland

Posted 22 August 2014 - 04:13 AM

It's true, without German language skills you won't be able to understand how the system works.

Müller & Sohn also have reduced the instruction to a bare minimum, so unlike the books in the past, they don't give the reason for doing it a certain way.

Perhaps they just assume that the students have someone experienced enough to guide them.

 

That said, a system is just something to start with and, depending on the period it came up, was the best they could come up with.

Cutters and pattern makers of all time periods havel applied their own changes to get the result they wanted or needed.

Over time the systems have evolved, but in big steps, later on in more and more smaller ones. The drafting systems of today are more targeted at RTW production than bespoke, because that's where they are mostly used these days.

 

Apart from that, you need a basic understanding of human anatomy (proportions, posture, balance and bone structure) to see where changes have to be made.

A basic skirt (or trouser) is easy to make if the person is within certain parameters, but if you are outside of those you need more knowledge and time to solve the "problem".

 

My advice would be to get a basic set of patterns (perhaps not BURDA) where the construction lines are visible and practise deriving a fitting pattern from them for various garments and sew samples. If the fit is right and If you feel the need you can then advance to adding the style features you like.

There are quite a few books around that give decent instructions regarding the alterations of a pattern to improve the fit, so start with that.


  • Gray Malkin likes this

"Nur der ist Meister seiner Kunst, der immer sucht, das Gute zu verbessern und niemals glaubt, das Beste schon zu haben."
"Only he is a master of his art who always seeks to improve the good and never believes to have the best already"

http://www.dressedwell.net/ It's snarky, but fun.


#9 Henry Hall

Henry Hall

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 840 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:De Lage Landen

Posted 22 August 2014 - 10:10 AM

Looks like a trade-off whichever way you look at it. Rundschau often appears touted as the last word in engineered systems, but those who read no German (luckily I do) are either locked out or have to wait for some kind soul to translate it; as was done with the 1959 version posted on this forum.

 

1959...quite old. Isn't the truth that pretty much all systems published around the same era differ only in minor ways? Look at most of the basic drafts from the 1950s. You lay them on top of one another and see similar silhouettes, perhaps one has a more slanted seat angle or recommends a slightly shallower fly fall. Things you might alter and refine whatever the origin of the draft.

 

Sator, among others, has written several posts already disuading people from trying to start with very old books - the things like Croonenberg's Blue Book - but I don;t know if that also includes bits and pieces from the 1949 MTOC or pocket edition CPG, the basic waistcoat draft there is bog standard really, no extra trigonometry lessons required.

I'm not a pro, but I suppose the problems from using very old books are that they assume you're working with the same cloths and tools from 70-80 years ago, when this is no longer the case. This then causes you to spend a lot of wasted time puzzling over things you don't need to and just discouraging yourself.

 

To kill a discussion like this only requires a clear statement that the standard forum drafts - perhaps trousers - recommended for all beginners are: Rundschau, Mansie's or one of the later T&C jobs from Chaudry; either one or all of them, rather than crowning Rundschau and causing people to feel depressed about not being able to read German or afford the price of the books anyway.


Each phenomenon which is taken up should be treated with as much thoroughness as possible at that standpoint... One thing at a time and that done well!

 

- Otto Jespersen (How to Teach a Foreign Language).


#10 Terri

Terri

    Pro

  • Super Pro
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,021 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Ontario Canada

Posted 22 August 2014 - 10:30 AM

The womenswear drafting books that I am most familiar with are dated, ( and they were dated when I started!)
That being said, I think I understand what you are aspiring to. As others have stated, you will have to try out some of them to see if they work for you or if you can modify them once you understand the particular mechanics of a particular system.
So, heres a list of some texts that I have in my collection.
Dress Design by Hillhouse 1940's styles, classic for the period and very interesting. Out of print, but older copies available here and there or try your local library interlibrary loan service.
Dress Pattern Designing and More dress pattern designing by Natalie Bray 1950's ish styling, very detailed explanatory text.
How to Draft basic patterns and Designing Apparel through the flat pattern by Ernestine Kopp. Late 1960's to 1970's silhouettes. Likely a precursor to the Armstrong text mentioned above.
Metric pattern making for Womens wear by Winnifred Aldrich, more of a 1980's styling and supposedly geared towards production.
Patternmaking for Fashion Design by Helen Joseph Armstrong. Currently used in many college fashion programs as a text 1990's edition I think.

The trick is to find a system that you feel comfortable with. One that gets you closest to the end result in terms of fit.
As with the menswear drafts, you have to try them out, as none will give you a perfect fit by just plugging in a set of numbers.

Styling is a whole other thing, and all of these books illustrate how certain design elements are developed from the basic pattern.

#11 Henry Hall

Henry Hall

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 840 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:De Lage Landen

Posted 22 August 2014 - 10:47 AM

Has anyone ever used the patternmaking book by Donald McCunn? Is it good?

 

One more question: isn't Donald McCunn actually a member of this forum or am I mad?


Each phenomenon which is taken up should be treated with as much thoroughness as possible at that standpoint... One thing at a time and that done well!

 

- Otto Jespersen (How to Teach a Foreign Language).


#12 Sator

Sator

    Administrator

  • Root Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,998 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sydney, Australia

Posted 22 August 2014 - 12:02 PM

Skirts are the least problematic when it comes to drafting and fitting. The difficult is when you start to accommodate for disproportion, especially on more complex garments, but even with skirts. Once you start getting into collars and sleeves, then it starts to get really difficult. 

 

BTW I don't know any tailor who doesn't modify the system they were taught according to their experience. There is also an enormous storehouse of knowledge trapped in the RTW industry that never makes it to print. Tailors who have worked both in factories and in independent stores say it really pays to have factory experience. Never just accept received wisdom as though it were holy writ.



#13 Schneiderfrei

Schneiderfrei

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 863 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Adelaide, Australia
  • Interests:learning and imagination

Posted 22 August 2014 - 01:52 PM

By the way, you should not let a little thing like not knowing a language stop you from anything!!

 

My determination over the years has obtained for me knowledge that I never thought I could get.

 

At the moment Bing translator is the best free service I know.  German is not easy for the machines but working at it is splendidly rewarding.

 

I even bought a famous Catalan cook book the other day. I have it scanned and several pages nicely translated and edited after 2 days.


  • Ms Riza likes this

Shell made out of gold
Found on a beach picked up and you held so close


#14 jcsprowls

jcsprowls

    Pro

  • Super Pro
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,134 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Roanoke, Virginia

Posted 22 August 2014 - 10:58 PM

Tailors who have worked both in factories and in independent stores say it really pays to have factory experience. Never just accept received wisdom as though it were holy writ.

 

I may borrow that....


___________

Dir, Product Development

web: http://www.studio9apparel.com
portfolio: http://www.behance.net/studio9apparel

#15 Faith

Faith

    Umsie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 61 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Missouri, USA
  • Interests:Modest clothes with correct fit, and a cure for brain cancer.

Posted 24 August 2014 - 06:45 PM

I guess then it's a matter of what the beginning cutter wants to achieve. If you intend to design on the forefront of fashion, don't use anything less than the Rundschau. But if all you want to do is make some basic pattern blocks from which to do your own thing, most any convenient post-war system should get you on your way.

 

Is that the consensus?

 

Meantime, I'm starting with DaCLG ch9 plate 45 with plans to incorporate plate 46 and diagram s8 ofter fitting.


Edited by Faith, 24 August 2014 - 06:46 PM.

If most women are not 5 feet 10 inches 120 pounds, why do these unrealistic models dominate the runways?


#16 Schneiderfrei

Schneiderfrei

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 863 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Adelaide, Australia
  • Interests:learning and imagination

Posted 25 August 2014 - 12:10 AM

Forgive my ignorance but what is DaCLG?


Shell made out of gold
Found on a beach picked up and you held so close


#17 Faith

Faith

    Umsie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 61 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Missouri, USA
  • Interests:Modest clothes with correct fit, and a cure for brain cancer.

Posted 25 August 2014 - 02:13 AM

http://www.cutterand...p?showtopic=916


If most women are not 5 feet 10 inches 120 pounds, why do these unrealistic models dominate the runways?


#18 Schneiderfrei

Schneiderfrei

    Pro

  • Senior Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 863 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Adelaide, Australia
  • Interests:learning and imagination

Posted 25 August 2014 - 09:29 AM

Thanks Faith,  As gramountoto has said, "this forum is like a jungle". I had not seen that before.


Shell made out of gold
Found on a beach picked up and you held so close






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Drafting

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users