Behind the BTP - Part 3
This post will focus on shedding some light on the design process of the Breaking the Pattern garments! Looking back to the design period now, a year later, is actually quite difficult and it’s surprisingly hard to remember the evolution behind each style. The journey from the first drawings to an actual pattern can be very long and the styles can have quite the metamorphosis during that time. But it is also so much fun tripping down the memory lane!
Normally when designing for Named, we come up with a theme for the entire collection first, then do some research on the theme, and after that start design the garments. This has proven to be a very fruitful design method for us. However, with the BTP collection we decided to start from a little different angle, because having a themed collection for the book would have been too restrictive. Also, our main focus was to make this collection as easily modifiable as possible. Additionally, it had to be timeless and classic with a twist, just like our other patterns, and like always, we wanted to include interesting structures, sewing skills on different skill levels, intriguing cuts and flattering silhouettes for a variety of body types. We also wanted to create another collection that would be almost like a mini-wardrobe, with pieces that are easy to mix and match, and styles that are suitable for different occasions. With plenty of dresses of course (we have noticed that you ladies like dresses!).
One of our absolute favorites to design, make and now wear, was the Solina trio! Solina was one of the designs that came together very easily. We had a very simple winter-appropriate dress in mind, with light, ladylike details. We wanted to add a pleat detail to the front, and at first we had many ideas on how to do it; Pain pleats that are sewn closed sounded too boring, but having them stringed like shoe laces seemed too fiddly. Eventually we settled on the closed pleats with a bow tie, which is a very feminine and cute detail. Fun fact: throughout the process Solina’s working title was ’the Princess Leia dress’!
A classic white shirt was a must-make for this collection – after all, it is a wardrobe staple! To make the shirt classic, yet not basic, we designed some fun slits in it. The two of us always design on our own first, without knowing what the other sister is bringing to the first design meeting. When we had our first BTP review together, both of us had a scribble of a shirt that had vents at the shoulders! This might actually be just a way to revenge to a dress pattern that was supposed to be published with our SS17 Playground collection – it had similar vents, but we never managed to make the pattern work well enough to be released. With Saraste, it was also important that the pattern would have the same armscye as Solina, so that the sleeve patterns could be switched from one style to another. And that is how we have made it – you can switch the Solina sleeves to Saraste and vice versa!
When designing a collection and sewing the samples, there are always styles that become our favorites, and others that make our blood boil. This time, our absolute pet pattern was Palo Jeans – such fun to design, make patterns for, and to sew! Probably because it is such a unique style, and we got to use a mixture of different fabrics from different sources – leftovers from Nummi bag, old flea-market jeans and vintage denim from our grandma’s awesome stash! The least favorite in this collection was Kaste dress, and we don’t really even know why. It might have been the fact that it had so many pieces that were hard to name (you know – upper front, lower front, front side, front facing and the list goes on), or because we couldn’t find a fabric for either of the variations until the very last minute.
Kaste was actually very easy to design, the fun geometric cut had been in our mind already since the FW17 collection and Agate dress was released – you can maybe see now, that the two styles have a very similar cut, only Kaste has an additional diagonal cut at the waist! We designed the pattern so that it has similar vertical seams as Saraste, just so you could use the Saraste ruffle on Kaste, and add the Kaste butterfly sleeves to Saraste, if you want. And now that the Kaste dresses are ready we are obviously very happy with the result, and Saara is already planning on making a Kaste dress for herself. So no hard feelings, Kaste, you are quite all right after all!
Happy pattern breaking!
Laura & Saara