The Sewing Place

Tilly Walnes - ageist?


Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« on: October 11, 2018, 07:57:52 AM »
Yesterday I treated myself to Tilly`s new book "Stretch".
  It might be a good book but when I skimmed through it last night I became increasingly distracted and irritated by the fact that every single photo is of a woman the same age as Tilly.  Surely I`m not the only 60 year old who wants to learn more about knit fabrics?   Are older women really so hideous that they would put others off buying a book?

(In case you are wondering - all of the designs featured would look perfectly acceptable on someone over the age of 35)


Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2018, 09:46:45 AM »
I can't comment on this book, but I know I have a couple of books where the models are all different ages and sizes, all beautifully groomed and happy-looking, and they are a pleasure.

I think there is probably a temptation for younger designers/authors to see themselves as trying to engage the younger generation.  It's very short-sighted and not helpful to anyone.  Apart from limiting their potential purchasers, it is quite unhealthy for younger people to see themselves as something separate.  Especially as they will get to a point where they realise they are no longer in the favoured group!
I might look as though I'm talking to you, but inside my head I'm sewing.


Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2018, 09:53:51 AM »
It's the same with most books, magazines, shop mannequins, tv programmes etc etc........ young and thin is the desirable image.......... if only  :'(
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Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2018, 10:02:47 AM »
Oooh yes - they should think about their older audience. Haven't the heard of the grey pound? (or euro, or dollar...)  :D
'One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.' Oscar Wilde


Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2018, 10:06:22 AM »
She's probably just asked her friends to model the clothes.

There are other books around.  I have Sharon L Czachor's book  but I'm sure I didn't pay that much for it :o

If you have an overlocker stretch fabrics are really easy to sew, and the stretch makes fitting much less critical.  I made a top yesterday, prepping pattern and everything, in less than a day.
Brenda.  My machines are: Caroline a Singer 201K-3 born 1940, Thirza a Featherweight 221K born 1949, Azilia a Singer 201K born 1957 and Vera, a Husqvarna 350 SewEasy about 20 years old. Also Bernina 1150 overlocker and Elna 444 Coverstitcher.


Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2018, 10:09:43 AM »
Despite me generally disliking them, Seamwork Magazine do a good job of this. They have several models of different skin tones and ages and I think it's really positive.

I can understand using models of certain ages for products where the target market is quite specifically that age (e.g I don't expect a Marisota catalogue full of 17 year olds) but sewing is exceptionally popular with older age groups so she really ought to be displaying an inclusive array of faces in her books.
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Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2018, 10:54:46 AM »
She's probably just asked her friends to model the clothes

I agree. I know at least one of the models was a pattern tester and is modelling her own sewn garments. Saw that on on sewing vlog.

Goth Gardiner

Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2018, 16:03:47 PM »
The last series of project runway used models of all shapes and sizes and skin tones. They were swoped around each week.  It was really interesting to see which designers embraced this and which ones blamed the shape of their model for the failure of their design.
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Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2018, 03:54:37 AM »
Once upon a time I wouldn't dream of sitting home on a Friday or Saturday night ( or most other nights). Out drinking and dancing til the wee hours at the hottest spots in town. Made a point to avoid the places where "dignified businessmen" of a certain age chose to socialize.

There's a time and place for everything. Can't imagine my tiny 28 year old niece buying a Connie Crawford or Claire Shaffer book at this point in her life.

I actually prefer looking at patterns on younger thinner models as opposed to plus size models as many of them have bums much larger than their tops - I'm just the opposite, so the distortion confuses my inner vision.

Seems Tilly and her troops are specifically trying to target the younger newer generation of sewists, many driven by early interests in things like cosplay.

If most of the designs in the book would be appropriate on women over 35, why should a youthful model make any difference?

In my 20's, I can remember wanting to look as elegant ( and to be able to afford) the Vogue Woman patterns. When those first came out, I doubt the models were much over 35.


Re: Tilly Walnes - ageist?
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2018, 18:41:34 PM »
I think she targets young, new sewers.  Hence the range of her designs.  I know quite a few more mature ladies who don’t look at Tilly’s patterns.
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