About That Iconic Wrap Dress Pattern

1976 Vogue Patterns catalog featuring the iconic DVF wrap dress pattern that is so coveted today. From the McCall Pattern Company archives.

“When will you please re-issue the DVF wrap dress pattern?!”

Just about every time I post anything related to our vintage patterns someone will chime in with this question. Sigh. I love and covet this pattern just as much as you do. But here’s the reason why re-issuing DVF’s pattern, or other vintage designer patterns, is complicated and not likely to happen:

We license original designs from designers and then turn them into patterns. A contract is drawn up between us and the designer, and it specifies how long the pattern may be sold and any other stipulations, like geographic distribution. We never own the rights to a designer’s property, i.e., the garment design that is turned into a pattern.

So while we would love to bring you this iconic wrap dress as a pattern once again, you probably shouldn’t hold your breath waiting for it to happen. I know, major sad face. But… did you know we currently have 11 different wrap dress patterns that you can use for your own DVF-inspired wrap dress? Find them here on our newest Pinterest board:

Follow The McCall Pattern Company’s board Wrap Dress Patterns on Pinterest.

Speaking of wrap dress patterns, blogger Sew Wrong suggested that we all sew a wrap dress for the next McCall Pattern Company sponsored sewalong. I like that idea, but what do you think? Talk to us in the comments section!

Vogue Patterns: About Those Designer Patterns


All About VP square

Editor’s note: This blog post first appeared here on August 5, 2014, when this blog was brand-new. It’s one of our most popular posts and we thought it was worth reposting for those who may have missed it the first time around.

Today we’d like to talk about the designer patterns for Vogue Patterns, specifically to clear up a common misperception that often appears online in blog posts and discussion threads. True or false: The models in the Vogue Patterns designer patterns are wearing the actual designer garments.

Give yourself a pat on the back if you answered true. The models in the product photography are indeed wearing the actual designer garments as supplied by the designers. We don’t remake these designer patterns using our own fabrics, nor do we alter the garments’ designs in any way. The designer labels are intact and very often the original price tags are still hanging from them.

Model wearing an actual Tom and Linda Platt top. Voge Patterns V1415.
Model wearing an actual Tom and Linda Platt top. V1415.

Some designers, like Ralph Rucci, will supply the patterns for us to use when we translate their designs for home sewers. If we don’t have a pattern from the designer to start with, our patternmaking team will study the garment very closely so we can replicate it as exactly as possible.

Ralph Rucci pattern pieces used by Vogue Patterns to create one of his designer sewing patterns.
A Ralph Rucci pattern, as supplied by the designer.

Every now and then we’ll see online discussions comparing a designer runway photo with the same designer pattern, and if there are differences between the two garments people  assume we altered the garment for our home sewing market. Not so at all. Designers frequently modify their runway garments for the RTW market—changing a hemline or fabric, for example—if they feel that will broaden a garment’s appeal. But we don’t alter the garments that come from the designers who allow us to license their clothes.

We hope this clears up this common misperception about how we create Vogue Patterns from designers. Let us know if you found this post informative and if there are other questions you may have about our designer patterns. We may feature them in future posts!

Sew Our New Ralph Rucci Patterns

Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns; V1404 and V1419

These two new Vogue Patterns by Ralph Rucci are top sellers for us, and I think it’s easy to see why. The designs are fresh and flattering, and they’re challenging just enough for sewers who are tired of making basic patterns all the time. Thinking about sewing one yourself? First read our tips to ensure success with V1404 dress and V1419 coat, then scroll through the detail photos we’ve posted here:

1) Be sure you like the fit ‘n’ flare style on yourself first. You do not want to go through all the effort only to discover you’re more of a sheath person. (Ask me about my peplum debacle of 2012.)

2) Make a muslin! I hear you groaning but this is practically mandatory for these two patterns. You want a slim fit through the shoulder and bodice. If you can’t bear the thought of sewing an entire muslin, just do what we do here sometimes and only make the bodice and a little bit of the skirt.

3) Use the right fabric if you want to closely mimic the designer originals. The V1419 coat is made of a heavy, water-repellent gabardine bonded to some kind of flannel. “Think techno fabrics,” advises Penny Payne, McCall Pattern Company fabric editor. She likes denim and gabardines for this coat—anything that is firm and tightly woven. You want the fabric to have stiff folds to it.

The V1404 original designer dress is made of ultrasuede, a soft-to-the-touch fabric that makes stiff folds. We love denim or a thicker wool crepe for this dress. You might be tempted to choose a lightweight dress fabric but keep in mind the end result won’t hold that flare shape of the designer original.

4) Take your time with these patterns. I just looked over the guide sheets for both patterns and we instruct you to sew them in the same way Mr. Rucci did—your interior dress or coat will look just the same as the designer garments. Which is a really cool thing and should make you proud that you are constructing your garment the same way a noted couture designer does.

Details photos:

Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1419 coat.
The original Ralph Rucci coat from which V1419 is drafted. Note how the fabric makes the sleeves form distinct bells.
Interior of Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1419 coat.
The inside of the designer coat. No lining, just beautifully finished Hong Kong seams.
Interior of Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1419 coat.
Another interior shot of V1419 for you.
Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1404 dress.
The designer original dress for V1404. Note how the ultrasuede fabric makes stiff folds even on the hanger. That’s what gives it the distinct fit ‘n’ flare shape.
Interior of Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1404 dress.
Interior of V1404 dress, specifically the lining side of the quilted hem.
Interior of Ralph Rucci for Vogue Patterns V1404 dress.
V1404 dress turned inside-out. We instruct you to finish your version just like this.

Visit our new Pinterest board for even more detail shots for these two patterns, plus several more photos of the new Vogue Patterns fall collection. People have been telling us how much they love these detail photos, and we’re thrilled to hear that. We’ll do our best to post more images like this.