Friday, 10 June 2011

Oh, for heaven's sake, not that dress again!

When I returned from my vacation in Miami, in March, I showed you some of the things that I had sewn especially for my trip. However, I have to confess I didn't quite show you everything I had made. It's not that I was holding out on you so much as that I thought to myself, "how many pictures of me standing under a palm tree in Miami do my readers want to see?" Especially as what I didn't show you were dresses made from patterns that I had used previously. But now that's exactly what I want to talk about. TNT (Tried and Tested) patterns.

So, here I am, in Miami, wearing my third version of Vogue 1179

Vogue 1179
I whipped this up in a poly-lycra, called 'Falling Leaves', from Gorgeous Fabrics. My first two versions of this pattern were for the fall/winter season (blogged about here and here).


but I do think that when made up in a brightly coloured fabric, this pattern also works as a casual, comfortable summer dress.

And there's more! Here I am wearing my fourth version of Simplicity 3503, a pattern that I think is pure gold.

Simplicity 3503
Here are my other three versions (originally blogged about here, here and here).


I love how you can get some very different looks from one pattern and, no apologies, I am already planning yet another rendition!

When you are sewing up a storm, with a deadline ahead, I think that there is nothing more valuable that a TNT. But do you think that sewing the same thing again and again is a little boring? Personally I feel happy that I have reached a stage in my sewing experience where I actually have some trusted patterns to fall back on. I know they fit, I know how to make them. However, I do also love to try new patterns, new styles and face new challenges. And, of course, I am always hoping to find another TNT to add to my collection.

How about you? Do you only want to sew something new and different or do you have one or two, or more, TNT patterns that you love and often turn to? I'd really like to know ....

33 comments:

  1. I almost always want to sew something new, but I'm starting to rethink that. There's definitely value in a pattern that works and that can easily be changed up with fabric or a change in some small detail. And I love seeing more of the same from other sewists like you, because it illustrates that value so well.

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  2. I used to only want to sew up a pattern once, and be on to the next thing. But that was in my 'younger' days when I didn't have as many alterations to make. Now that I have to tweak the pattern for fit, I am usually pretty excited with the outcome, and want to make it again :-) I love seeing how you take your TNTs and make them all look so different! And we get to control that when we sew for ourselves. When you look at RTW (and I find I shop less and less these days!), you see basically the same shapes and styles repeated over and over.
    I love the fact that I drive the choices in silhouette and fabric when I sew for myself.

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  3. i occasionally make duplicates but i tend to get bored if i make the same thing more than twice. i definitely like patterns that vary in small details, like your maxi dress where it really doesn't look like the same pattern.

    otoh, it's nice to pull out a TNT when i need a break and want to make something stress-free.

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  4. I always think that I need at least one of every pattern I purchase, so I'm on to the next thing and don't usually make duplicates. But I do have a TNT pattern for a straight skirt, because that's pretty basic. Oh, and there's a knit shell top that I've made a few times. That's probably a TNT as well. Now I'm starting to think I should reuse the patterns that fit really well. You are so right that you can make something look completely different by using various fabrics and pattern views. Great new two dresses!

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  5. All your dresses look different. I don't think anyone would notice it was the same pattern anyway. I keep trying new patterns, there are only a few patterns that come along that I like enough to go back to. I am also a flibertygibert and like to hop over to the next new thing. I like the idea of TNT patterns though.

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  6. I will never tire of seeing you in the V1179 as it looks fabulous on you. Each time I think, 'Ooh, I must make that dress' - and then never do anything about it. I can feel an internet order coming on... To answer your question: life is too full of rules as it is! Do what the heck you feel like doing? It's on record that I've made several patterns three times or more!

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  7. Oh Eugenia, I have two patterns I fear I shall sew to death. I think there's nothing wrong in making the same pattern more than 5 times...lol....afterall, if you feel cormfortable in the outfit, thats all that matters. Your dresses all look very different, because you use very diffrent fabrics, and that changes the look alot. Do make more please.

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  8. Each dress has a different look. It's good to have a few "go to" patterns that you know fit and look good on you. I have a few in my collection too. Some I have used two or three times. And the third time is a charm. There is an article in the May 2011 Threads magazine that illustrates how you can make four different looks using the same pattern. Making multiples is "In".

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  9. Ooh, that's fun to see several different versions of the same dress pattern. It's a great description of what a pattern can do. And of course we want to see more pictures under palm trees!

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  10. At the moment I think I am just finding TnT's which I never used to do. But some things like a tnt shirtdress and a tnt knit top are things that we all need to build are wardrobes I think and Why not!

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  11. Beautiful!! All dresses are absolutely wonderful, I still do not I have a TNT, I always want to try new clothes, but definitely you're encouraging me to do this, I am delighted to see so many different dresses with the same pattern.

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  12. I love to use a pattern over and over, particularly when i have the fit just right. Some patterns are a breeze to put together. I have some jacket patterns that I have used 3 times. great post and now I need that Simplicity pattern.

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  13. I too am thrilled that I finally have some T&T patterns in my collection. I so agree that it's rewarding to have a pattern you can pull out, sew and still be wearing something new in a day or two. It's sort of how I loved to go shopping for RTW in my previous life. But then the challenge of trying a new pattern, working out the fit, deciding on fabric and techniques, all of those things are enjoyable when I'm not in a time crunch. And nothing will stop me from buying new patterns just to make sure I have it in my collection if the mood strikes. So I'm off to Joanns for those new Buttericks....

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  14. As they say, "you can never get enough of a good thing". You picked some great TNT's! And every version is SO pretty! I'm looking forward to seeing all future versions (smile)!

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  15. Oooo, I love that maxi! I have some rayon jersey crying to be made into one, and that pattern should do the trick.

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  16. I've made Vogue 1179 more than four times and plan of "Doing It Again". They are so FASHIONABLE. Mines I made into maxi's :)

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  17. Hi Eugenia, thanks for sharing your beautiful dresses. I especially enjoyed this post as it shows just how different a pattern can look in different fabrics. They are very flattering styles on you, I thought you looked stunning in every shot.

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  18. We must be TNT twins! I've made S3503 three times so far and am on to my fourth this summer. It's a superfantastico pattern and so versatile with the different looks.

    And there's nothing wrong with making TNTs over and over again. Once you've knocked out all the pattern adjustments and gotten the fit just right, you can just SEW. Which for me, is the fun part.

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  19. Love my TNTs! I mean seriously, why reinvent the wheel all the time? I'm going to make that Vogue dress one of these days.

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  20. I think each of your dresses look different and each one gorgeous. Great job on using your TNT patterns.

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  21. TNT away! I only just started sewing but lucked out on finding a skirt TNT ....have 7 versions and counting! I love the way they ALL fit and I can get dressed and out the door without fussing! I AM trying other things though....now on a quest for my next TNT...

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  22. Having TNT patterns takes a lot of the guess work out of making something up, especially if you want things to go quickly. These should be fairly classic styles, and you do have to watch that they don't start looking dated, but by that point you should have worked up some new TNT - or call them "vintage".

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  23. Now that most of my wardrobe is my own hand-sewn clothes, I love my TNT patterns. I remember when I first started sewing in high school and my early twenties, I couldn't stand to make a pattern twice. I don't feel that way at all now. I love knowing the end result will fit! Great job on your two new dresses. I don't ever get tired of seeing the same pattern made up twice, because they really do look different done up in different fabrics.

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  24. I like a mix of TNT and new patterns. If you're having a bad run with new patterns you can always turn to your TNTs and know that all your time and effort will turn out something you love. And I share your love of Simplicity 3503 - I've made it three times already and am planning on a few more yet :)

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  25. I love all your versions of these dresses and would never tire seeing new versions of them because they are different!! I'm so happy you wrote this post, because I like make duplicates and I don't post some of them, because I felt subscribers wouldn't want to read about it again and again. However, this post has proved that WRONG thank goodness!

    There's nothing better than having a great TNT pattern!! I think I'm due for another version of Vogue 1179 too!

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  26. I am looking everywhere to buy 3503 - inspired by how useful you've found this pattern. I'm trying the Vogue pattern with sleeves for winter. Perhaps that could lead to another version for you. My personal favourite is the second version of the Vogue you made.

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  27. You know I'm the Queen of the TNT pattern. I've made my basic dress over 40 times and changed things up so that most people don't even realize its the same pattern...so you know I'm saying go for it!

    You have some lovely versions that you enjoy wearing and really isn't it fun to just lay the pattern down, cut it out and sew it up...knowing that it's going to fit!!!

    Carolyn
    Diary of a Sewing Fanatic
    (blogger's not liking me these days!!!)

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  28. This version of Vogue 1179 along with the other two look great and you already know I love this pattern. Your maxi dresses of the Simplicity pattern are too cute and I love them as well. I have this pattern but have yet to make it up. I might have to put it on my list for this summer.

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  29. There's nothing wrong with a few TNT patterns that work for your body type. I know women that buy the same dress or pants in multiple colors because it is a good fit. If it can be done in RTW, how much better is it when you can pick the perfect fabric for it?

    Gorgeous updates for both dresses btw.

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  30. It's great seeing how you can get such different looks from the one pattern. They are all lovely dresses. Snap on the Vogue 1179 - that has become a TNT for me too. Such a great style. I used to make things only once when I was younger and less busy, but the older and busier I get the more I love TNTs - the sewing and wearing seem much more fun than spending time fitting things.

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  31. i am just amazed at what a difference choice of fabric makes. Especially in the Vogue dress. By the way, I am really digging the shoes in the Miami Palm Tree shot!

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  32. Hi Eugenia and NO NEED for you to apologize! You have a knack of bringing something new and exciting to your outfits from your TNT patterns. So, it does not matter if I see another version of a particular pattern. It's fun to try a "new" pattern, but it is also comforting to sew a pattern that you know will be an absolute success.

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