Category: Copy fashions and do own patterns

A look into my workshop

Behind the scenes I try to figure out how Vintage Barbie clothes (Vintage era from 1959 – 1966) were made. I’m especially interested the patterns for the fabric. How can I turn a piece of fabric into a piece of clothing. I want to design own clothes in the Vintage style later but at first I have to understand how the patterns are made and the result I get when I follow sewing instructions.

It’s not as easy as you might imagine. I have to deal with many different problems. Especially the body forms of early Barbie dolls seem to be one of my main problems. At first I thought they were all the same size but they aren’t. Although they seem to be the same size they aren’t and that’s a big problem when you don’t know it. Then you can’t adjust the pattern to the body. For example that’s my result when I tried to sew a blouse.Barbie Blouse

 

Vintage Barbie blouse

As you can see here the blouse seems to be to tight for the Midge/Bubblecut body I used here. Obviously the breasts are larger than it seems. I haven’t really measured until now but fellow collectors told me that the first Ponytail Barbie bodies are smaller/ the measures are different. That’s very interesting and a good thing to know. By the way it’s no problem that the blouse is to tight. I thought that I might get problems like these. I made it just for reasons of learning.

Let’s dance … a new dress

Last year I wanted to buy a Let’s dance Vintage Barbie dress but most of the sellers refused to ship to Europe. So what kind of idea came into my mind? If I can’t buy one, why not do my own copy? I found a seller who recreated the pattern and bought it.

Two weeks ago I was able to start my work and within a few days I had my own version. It’s very similar in comparison to the real Let’s dance Vintage dress. Here are some pics of my version…

Finally I found the real Let’s Dance. Another collector from Europe had one left over.

Retromania !?

Today I saw a docu with the title “Retromania”. I admit I saw the title last Friday while watching youtube. It was interesting but I think that I’m probably not the only one who had the idea years ago. When I was still in school I thought about doing my own clothes because I had problems with mainstream fashion. There were trends I really hated and customized some of my own clothes long before. Once I sat in school and we discussed the whole topic. In my class were classmate who did not understand why I wanted to my own thing.

It all began with a preparation for a formal school graduation party. I wanted to wear a something like a Swing skirt but I had no idea of the name nor where you could buy one. Yes, there were times when these clothes were not so easy to get like today. We had no second hand clothes store where you could look. So my mom did her best to sew me a skirt. It was pretty fancy.

Maybe I have been more into Retromania than I ever thought before. I started to feel the way I started to collect Barbie and the feeling continues but nowadays it’s no problem to get the Vintage clothes. There are many stores where you can buy them. I have always been on the “I like to do what I like” way and not impress others. Why be so uniform? Why not be the Audrey Hepburn in heap of ….. ( I forgot her name).

Anyway I think others feel the way I feel too. Maybe we look for a bit stability in a world that changes constantly. I don’t know. Maybe that’s why I collect Barbie dolls. I can stay in touch with the past. Last weekend I did a copy of a great dress from the early 60s. I really like to copy early Barbie clothes. The quality of the fabrics is so good. The dresses are very detailed. You can easily understand how it is done. Maybe some of you understand me … and here’s a pic of my work.

What if….. you want to buy something, have enough money and have no chance to get it …

I had this problem in the last months more than once. I saw a Barbie doll body or a piece of outfit I liked and wanted to buy it. I asked the seller if he would ship to Europe and most of them said no. It’s a good question what to in this situation. Well, I solved a part of my problem in the way that I bought some Vintage pieces (in poor condition) and disassemble the piece in which I’m quite good. I also understand how to make a pattern for clothes and did copy the pieces of fabrics to create a paper model. This allows me to copy the piece I want and I’m not depended on the sellers from the US. I like to keep it as originally as possible but I can also include my own ideas and wishes. At the moment I’m experimenting with different pieces. For some of them I used a pattern and did others from own ideas.

I know my workshop is a bit of chaos but I need my chaos to be creative. Stay tuned in. Next week you gonna see more of my sewing project.

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