The Sewing Place

"Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business

coffeeandcake

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2020, 13:28:57 PM »
@annieeg  The About me piece is the bit where a blogger/pattern maker tells the reader about themselves.  Always useful to read as you can view their work with a better perspective.
Re. the big four - I use mostly Vogue and McCalls and would be very disappointed if they disappear.

Gernella

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2020, 13:35:50 PM »
There was a recent article in the Telegraph headed "Why sewing your own clothes is making a stylish comeback".  First part copied and pasted below. It might eventually make us very fashionable to sew instead of, as happened to me, looking at me like I was something on the bottom of her shoe. I only recently started using an Indie pattern and sometimes found them having too much in or not to the point, but I do like them but it would be shame if the Big 4 disappeared.

22 JANUARY 2020 • 6:00AM
Every single thing in Lydia Higginson’s wardrobe
has been made by her very own hands, from her
woollen coats to her dungarees and lace bras.
‘Except my socks,’ she says. ‘They’re the only things I still
buy because they’re mostly knitted and I don’t really
knit. But everything else I’ve made from scratch.’
The 26-year-old has known how to make clothes ever
since she was a child and her mum, a curtain maker,
taught her how to use a sewing machine. Like most
women, though, Higginson’s wardrobe was made up of
shop-bought clothes - until 2016, when she made a
radical decision to give away her entire wardrobe and
replace it with items she’d made herself.
‘I loved the idea of making all of my clothes myself,’ she
explains. ‘To know where every single thing came from.
It feels honest. It can feel so frenzied in the fashion
industry, with brands preparing seasons in advance and
[high street stores launching] 52 collections a year. But
home-sewing is so responsive, and obviously it’s more
[environmentally-friendly]. As soon it starts to get cold, I
bring out all my wools and think about lovely, cosy
jumpers and coats, and if I have an event, I make myself
something beautiful for it.’
Stash extension 2020 - 4.7 meters
Left at the end of 2019 - 39 meters

Kwaaked

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2020, 13:41:09 PM »
In the US, cost is a major factor.  I've read for years everyone pointing out not everywhere gets those prices, but it is a consideration.

At 99 cents, I bought whatever.  At $1.99 I cut back a bit.  I'm paying $3.19 with a club membership online or $1-5 in store, $5-6 for Vogue, and I buy 10-20 a year.

Compare that to the only Indie I buy StyleArc: I have about 15 since I started buying the a decade ago, with half of them being PDFs.  $10-20 a pop curtails the amount I buy considerably.  As in, I haven't even looked at Style Arc in almost 6 months...I buy only when I need something specific that I can't find bargain prices in the Big 4.  And then there is the Amazon issue where if you buy a paper pattern, you don't get the freebie and paper patterns from AU is cost prohibitive for me with shipping being $20+ regularly, so PDFs wind up winning (which is another issue).

Fit is another issue.  While SA is patterned well, I still have a lot to do to make it fit my body since I am not their fit model body type.  I have less to do with Butterick and Simplicity (of which I am the fit model body type), so starting from a company that is closer to my body shape is always easier to make the pattern fit then to redraft it.  But all patterns have to be walked to check for error since it happens regardless of what brand.

Not everyone is a fan of the indies.  I'm not.  Big 4 goes away, I'll quit buying patterns if Indies are my only choice for a variety of issues: quality, style and the whole community revolving around them which has put me off for years.  I see no reason to pay premium prices for patterns I can either draft myself or go to the pattern stash and pull out and frankenpattern.

My biggest issue is the dumbing down of patterns...everything is so simple (which has a place) but not everything I make I want to be "easy".  I want design options and none of them, indie to big 4, are giving that.  Hot Patterns a few years ago had the owners stating that those that sew were not trained or skilled enough to follow advanced patterns...a trend that you see throughout the sewing world. 

Lot of issues with patterns no matter where you fall.

UttaRetch

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2020, 13:44:32 PM »
Here is the blog post that Lydia wrote.
What goes around comes around.

Tamnymore

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2020, 15:35:22 PM »
@Kwaaked you pay much less than we do in the UK for the Big 4 patterns. To some extent fair enough as they are US patterns and have to be imported into the UK and the value of the £ has gone down a lot. You can pay £17 (>$22) for a full price top of the range Vogue in the UK (although I don't think many people buy them full price). Even in a half price in a UK sale - which we don't get as often as the US - that's still well over 10 dollars a pop!
'One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.' Oscar Wilde

Sewingsue

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2020, 16:48:21 PM »
I suspect this has been asked/answered before but how do you find a pattern company's 'fit model body type' please?
Bernina Aurora 440QE, Brother BC-2500, Singer 99K (1938), Juki MO-654DE overlocker, Silver Viscount 620D overlocker.

Tamnymore

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2020, 17:06:54 PM »
Beside the full description of each pattern there's a line with a triangle, box etc which refers to the body type the pattern is suitable for. Is that what you mean @Sewingsue ? It's quite small.

I must admit I ignore advice about figure type... but then I have been known to ignore advice in general......
'One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.' Oscar Wilde

Sewingsue

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2020, 17:22:10 PM »
Beside the full description of each pattern there's a line with a triangle, box etc which refers to the body type the pattern is suitable for. Is that what you mean @Sewingsue ? It's quite small.

I must admit I ignore advice about figure type... but then I have been known to ignore advice in general......
I know about those symbols and thought that the Big 4 did patterns for all figure types. I thought that 'fit model body type' meant that some companies designed for specific shapes and it helped if you went with the company that designed for your shape.

Maybe I am just misreading and confusing myself - would not be unusual.
Bernina Aurora 440QE, Brother BC-2500, Singer 99K (1938), Juki MO-654DE overlocker, Silver Viscount 620D overlocker.

Kwaaked

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2020, 17:52:20 PM »
Some tell you like Sewaholic for pears.  Some has been in magazines for years and have told people and are known like the big 4 (hourglass).   Big 4 have figure analysis, as well that's been stated.e

Thing is, you can draft for one type, like the Big 4 with hourglass, but a style can fit a multitude of bodies. 

Style Arc tends to be either an inverted triangle or column to me, but I have to do a lot of redrafting to my waist and shoulders as well as an FBA.

Mostly, you look at the measurements they use and/or the pattern and it emerges as to what shape they draft for.

@Tamnymore I did point out it was a US concern.  I know you guys pay as much for Big 4 as we do for indies, so it evens out across the board, but we tend to be somewhat country blinded by things.  In the US we also tend to sew less, so we're likely not as much of a concern globally as other countries that still sew more often.

Saying that, it will be interesting to see what happens with price.  UK brand bought it, but the printers and stuff will most likely remain in Kansas.


Ohsewsimple

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2020, 18:02:36 PM »
@Sewingsue this has some info and is useful if you need to know what cup size they are drafting for. 
Otherwise as Kwaaked said, check out their size/measurement chart.  If there is finished measurements that’s even better!
http://curvysewingcollective.com/a-guide-to-pattern-cup-sizes-and-a-handy-reference/

Tamnymore

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2020, 19:25:08 PM »
The Sandra Betzina Today's Fit patterns at Vogue are siized slightly differently from their main range - larger round the tum - which is fine by me.
'One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.' Oscar Wilde

Renegade Sewist

Re: "Big Four" pattern companies bought by UK business
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2020, 19:34:51 PM »
The Sandra Betzina Today's Fit patterns at Vogue are siized slightly differently from their main range - larger round the tum - which is fine by me.

Also, the Betzina bust point is 3/4" lower then Vogue standard. It might also be more of a C cup but don't quote me. I'm not sure where my notes are. Sandra had hundreds of women traipse through her studio so she could measure them in detail. Her target is the more mature, over 45, approaching menopause body and those that are living with the body changes so common.

I had a fitting class with her, where she praised my excellent posture.  :loveit: She then laughed and said too bad nobody designs for that anymore. Have you noticed the increase of patterns with back seams that aren't needed style wise? It's to accommodate tweaking for our ever rounding backs. Even teens are rounding from constantly being hunched over a phone.

PS: I got the last laugh on Sandra. My "excellent" posture I learned last year is due to my spinal abnormality. I lack the typical spinal curvature. I just thought a lot of you were sway backed.  :)
« Last Edit: January 23, 2020, 19:36:34 PM by Renegade Sewist »