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Men's Garments 1830-1900: A Guide to Pattern Cutting and Tailoring Paperback – January 1, 1996

9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0887346484 ISBN-10: 0887346480 Edition: 2 Rev Sub

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Players Press; 2 Rev Sub edition (January 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887346480
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887346484
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.5 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #550,179 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By R. Parks on February 20, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book is the first book I turn to for period tailoring. The drafts create wonderful period shapes. It is invaluable to me as a costumer. It is a MUST HAVE in any serious costumer's library.

Please note that this book is for DRAFTING PATTERNS. It contains little information on how to tailor a coat. Pattern drafts are available for:
1. Dress Coats
2. Frock coats and Morning Coats
3. Jackets
4. Trousers, Pantaloons, and Knickerbreeches
5. Waistcoats (Vests)
6. Topcoats
(this list is taken directly from the table of contents)

So why not 5 stars?

The book uses the same sleeve or collar draft for several different coats. However, at the end of each draft, it doesn't tell you where the corresponding sleeve or collar draft is. It is irritating to have to go searching for it. It would have taken one little line of text referring to a page number. Someday when I have nothing better to do and a good chunk of time, I will go through and write in such information.

Additionally, the drafts don't always let you know exactly what you are drafting and how it relates to the body. Most of the drafts have a dropped shoulder line, for example, but you don't know how far it is dropped and are therefore unsure where to balance the sleeve.

It is hard to have the draft picture and instructions on different pages, which happens frequently. I will usually copy one or the other so I don't have to keep flipping back and forth.

I have a few suggestions which might make the drafts results better.

This book creates a draft almost solely based on the chest measurement, using fractions of the chest measurement in order to find certain distances. This works well on a well-proportioned gentleman.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Denise H. on October 8, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There are so few books with patterns for menswear, and most of those are flawed. I'm sure I will find flaws with this book as well, but my first impression is extremely favorable. I purchased this book after several frustrated attempts to draft a well-fitting Regency dress coat. When the book arrived, I immediately started drafting the 1830 dress coat in the book. My model was very similar in measurements to the scale in the book, so I drafted without changing many of the given measurements. The directions for drafting were clear and easy to follow. The end result fit like a glove. By far the simplest and best looking coat I have drafted.

That said, this book is NOT for beginners. You need to understand sewing, tailoring, fitting, patterning, and what shapes you need for a period silhouette. As well, I expect that there may be trouble with the first draft of any garment intended for a man whose physique deviates from the norm. The book gives very limited information about what goes in to a tailored coat. The end user needs to have a fair amount of experience in order to translate the pattern to a good-looking finished garment, but the patterns themselves seem like a good starting point.

Looking through the other patterns in the book, I am excited to have access to such a wide range of menswear, and anticipate that I will reach for this book first when working on men's costuming.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jamie Grace-Duff on October 11, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Not for the novice pattern maker, but for those interested in drafting period menswear to a modern gentleman's measurements, this book is lovely. I particularly enjoy the visual history at the beginning of the book that shows the evolution of the frock coat into the more modern sack coat. I do find that instructions, measurements and guiding diagrams end up on awkward pages and I usually have to photocopy one or two pages while I am working on a project to save flipping back and forth. A wonderful resource.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book to be very helpful, as historical menswear can be very challenging and there are few resources to help the amateur costumer. I am a moderately advanced seamstress with next to no tailoring experience, and I found this book very useful. It provides instructions for drafting patterns with period shapes, from custom measurements. I just measured up my husband and drew my pattern as instructed based on those measurements. I found that my first mock-up required very few alterations (mostly just tweaks for my husband's specific body type) and was able to move on to the final garment after one toile.

I have only drafted one coat so far: the first tailcoat, c. 1830. I found it to be relatively authentic (most of my research was concentrated about 15-20 years earlier, so I can't say I thoroughly understand this period, but it seemed appropriate from my cursory understanding of the fashions of the year.)

I would definitely recommend this, and I look forward to drafting more of the patterns in this book.

Note: There is very little sewing instruction in this book - it is mostly for drafting the pattern only. There are a few notes on how to interline/line the coats, which are very helpful, but other than that you are on your own. But that's not so bad, if you just try putting the pieces together and everything should make sense.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rowan J. on February 8, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a great resource. It is not for the beginner, and theater costume construction experience is helpful in order to understand the techniques
used in the book. Highly recommended.
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