09 October, 2015

Layered top pattern design - two finished versions

Now that the summer season is well and truly over and our thoughts begin to run to wools and coats, I want to close the loop on this layered top design.  Here's my second, more whimsical version:

This version has a little more front coverage, more back flare,  is a little longer in front, and significantly longer in the back.  You can see these changes below in the main piece of the pattern:

The biggest change is in the back, where I slashed and spread the pattern.  I did this to explore the design possibilities of this funny striped cotton.  To wit:

This revision came to me as I was playing with the yellow versions - I thought, it has an ever so faint whiff of a Balenciaga dress, so let's build on that.  You've all heard of Cristobal Balenciaga, right? The (no longer) living god of couture, active from the 1940's to the early 70's? So many of his designs favoured the high-low look, had a strong back flare, and avoided the natural waistline like the plague:



Each time I look at these I think his fundamental inspiration was the Italian Rennaissance:


Not in the details of course, but certainly in the silhouette he evoked.

My first, yellow, finished version, also had a teensy little bit of that:

...and it had a lot less coverage in the front!  Perfect for those who wish to show off that bellybutton piercing, eh? (really, does anyone still do that?  it seems so passé....)

I'm going to leave this subject in highlighting the very many similar versions that strutted the runways last month for Spring 2016:

Look at that:  the bare belly look!
Tunic length with pleated shoulder detail

With a flap pocket

In a boucle or sweater knit

And even in leather, over a maxi.
When I make my wearable version(s), I'm thinking not of leather but a semi-sheer stretch chiffon, to highlight the overlapping and the unusual seaming.  Or a stiffish poly-rayon brocade, to make that back flare stand out and the Renaissance vibe ring out loud.

The last word belongs to Balenciaga after all - here's one of from his very own design house, from a runway show of many, many years ago (I found it a couple of days ago.... go figure: everything old is new again!)

With a  little modesty button at lower CF. 

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