In "Citizen of Nowhere on a Brexit Farewell Tour", I pointed at the blog entry "'Military' Box Pleats" by Matthew A. C. Newsome. Near the top of this post, Matthew writes that
for fourteen years he worked at the
Scottish Tartans Museum, educating the public about the kilt both historical and modern. In view of such experience, Matthew's diagrams showing how pleats change and overlap as you add cloth ought to interest anyone making a pleated garment. Especially if the pleats are being used to add warmth as well as for show.
Matthew's blog is on Blogger, a blogging system owned by Google. Unfortunately, Google seems to have a habit of closing projects. There are users who were extremely annoyed when it
closed down its newsreader, Google Reader. So, just in case Blogger eventually goes the same way, I've archived Matthew's post in the
Wayback Machine. I urge you to do the same with any web pages you value. Including mine.
I've been processing and sorting photos, most of which I've now added to the gallery.
As I mentioned in a post written just after this went live, the gallery page displays a selection of clothes. The selection is determined by two buttons. One looks like this:
and displays all the clothes I've got photos of. These include those I own, as well as ones I've seen and photographed but not bought.
The second button looks like this:
As its caption says, it displays only the clothes that are mine.
Why do I have two buttons? The first displays a wider range of patterns and designs. For example,
here's the pattern from a silk shirt by Colorpoint. The belligerent little aliens with which
it's printed are fun:
But the shirt was a size too big for me, so I didn't buy it. By the way, the aliens are Marvin the Martian, a character "who was quiet and soft-spoken, but whose actions were incredibly destructive and legitimately dangerous". All credit to his creator, the excellent
A garment of quite a different kind is this brown coat, embroidered with spiky greens and golds:
In the photo, this is a really dramatic design. But when I tried it on, too much of the pattern went round my sides, and wasn't visible from the front. So though the coat would have looked great framed on my wall as abstract art, the design lost coherence when I wore it.
I hope these will inspire those who like designing and making, and persuade you — if you need persuading — to try your nearest vintage shop. Buying vintage is a good re-use of resources. And with
companies like the loathsome Burberry, reported to have destroyed £105,000,000 worth of stock in the past five years, fashion needs all the help in conserving resources that it can get.
Here's one resource I'm conserving. It's a
green velvet jacket:
It must have travelled halfway around the world, because
it's made, the label says, by His Lordship of Wellington, New Zealand:
Here's another. This one is red velvet:
it's only travelled 5,960 miles, as against His Lordship's
11,703, because it's from Ravi Sehgal in Bangkok:
This one is purple velvet:
Unlike the two above, it's actually a woman's, as revealed by the position of its buttons. But notwithstanding
this, which I mention because of Grayson Perry's
teenage fears about being thought effeminate for wearing buttons on the left, few people will notice or care.
you could safely wear that, or the green, or the red, and give greater
to yourself and those around you than if wearing cord, leather or tweed. Showing such examples is what I wanted the "only my clothes" part of the gallery to be for.
I've added a
gallery page to this site.
Technically speaking, it works by
randomly choosing from my photos, using a PHP script and a list
of attributes stored as YAML, and then arranging the results
by running David DeSandro's masonry program. You probably
didn't want to know that, though if anyone's interested, I'm
happy to pass on the code. But web programming aside, the gallery
shows off some of the diverse designs and patterns I've come across.
If you make clothes, or are looking for something
different to buy, use them for inspiration. And it has another
purpose, related to my Grayson Perry
about the buttons.
Some of the jackets are women's. This
pink silk, for instance. So as is the custom, they have buttons attached
on the left rather than the right. In my experience though, and in contrast
to Grayson Perry's fears, most men don't notice, or at least don't care
enough to comment. Some women friends have, but none of them care. Of course,
the shape of the jacket has to be suitable, which rules out ones curved to fit
a bust. But that still leaves a lot that a man can wear, such as this
smart linen blazer by Wallis.
So that's one way of finding vivid colours and interesting designs. Clothes
from outside Europe are another: see the Chinese silk tops and all my
Moroccan clothes. And a third is those vintage clothes that were made for men
and that do happen to be colourful or otherwise interesting,
such as my Falabella
So that's why my gallery page has two buttons on it:
The second button selects only the clothes that I myself wear.
And if I
carry them off, anyone can.