I'm looking for simple clothing patterns that don't scream 'homemade,' and are easily alterable.
I'm looking for clothing patterns that can yield us some utilitarian clothing, that doesn't necessarily scream 'home-made.' Vintage patterns are nice. Modern-but-simple patterns are nice. Patterns from the 80's and 90's; not so much.
My wife and I can sew clothes (but she's much better at it than I am). We're both fairly good at modifying existing clothing and hacking together simple changes to patterns. We have really specific style ideas, and to purchase them off the rack is way more expensive than we can afford. Lots of Japanese, Swedish and German clothing gets bookmarked when we go 'shopping' for clothes online. All of it is just way out of our price range. We can usually make similar pieces for less than half the price. We're okay spending the time doing this kind of stuff. Please don't tell us to consider the labor, we have. Our time outside of work doesn't really count to us because we're not…well…working and earning money.
Our most recent clothes-constrution binge was percpitated by this very expensive Fjallraven Anorak
out of our price range, and since we like to roll our own stuff when we can, it was a good project. We were able to find a pattern for an Anorak, from Green Pepper Patterns
. The pattern itself was pretty great, and with some work we were able to modify it to have similar characteristics to the Fjallraven buddy without nearly the expense. The patterns off Green Pepper are really interesting because they're almost blank slates. They're sort of generic outdoor gear patterns…which is perfect! It frees us up to focus on details we want and spending more time considering fabrics and the overall feel of the garment. We don't like wearing outdoor gear that looks like REI threw up on it; we like simple lines of clothing that works and has no frills outside what we need it to do.
Another example is again, for rain jackets, we've disassembled regular old hoodies to make a pattern, and then rebuilt them using technical waterproof fabrics. No one makes a waterproof hoodie. I've had one for years and it's the best raincoat for biking I could possibly ask for. No pockets, one zipper, no drawstrings, a nice big hood. It only cost me a couple afternoons of work and a $75 bucks. It has worked well for years, and another will be made…but hopefully more refined.
The most frustrating part, is that regular google searches for patterns didn't really turn this company up…we stumbled across it on survivalist and hunter blogs. It was in a total blind spot of ours that we just stumbled upon. I'm sure there are other resources like this out there that we're not finding readily. Googling for patterns without knowing the right vernacular is really, really
difficult. Lots of stuff comes up as nonsense, and we're both having difficulty sorting through the noise to find anything worthwhile.
We're really trying to find stockpiles of good, classic patterns. My mom made alot of clothes for me as a kid, and I'm trying to avoid what we've coined at the house the "Butterick Syndrome" of ill fitting, poorly designed patterns that have a "homemade-but-kinda-off" feel to them. I don't quite know how to explain it. I've seen this askme
, and it has been helpful for more modern stuff, but we're hopefully trying to find more vintage and outdoor patterns.