The Making of the Mod

My sweater story got a little off the track last month when it was all about Ms. January and Object Runway. In fact, I made several posts about working with machine felted sweaters and designing for Ms. January.

When we last left off, I had finished creating my first sweaters out of felted wool from old thrift store sweaters.

This is what happened next. I knew I wanted to create a sweater inspired by my collection of mod norwegian sweaters from the 1960s.

For my starting point, I used a very simple, very old pattern as a sloper. Before I started stitching these sweaters I did not know what a sloper was–now I do. According to Wikipedia, “a custom-fitted basic pattern from which patterns for many different styles can be created is called a sloper or block.”

To my surprise, sloper is not in the American Heritage College Dictionary. But the word slop is and it means. “1. article of clothing and/or bedding issued to sailers, 2. short full trousers worn in the 16th century, 3. A loose outer garment, such as a smock or overalls, 4. cheap ready-made garments. “ Which has me thinking that maybe the origin of the word sloper comes from the word slop.

Stretch & Sew Pattern No. 300 by Ann Person

Stretch & Sew Pattern No. 300 by Ann Person

This pattern is on regular paper which you the transfer to tissue paper. I prefer to use Swedish Tracing Paper. It is much easier to work with than tissue paper.

This pattern is on regular paper which you the transfer to tissue paper. I prefer to use Swedish Tracing Paper. It is much easier to work with than tissue paper.

I love these instructions. They are folksy. The only place where there is additional info about where this pattern came from is on the actually pattern.It was made and distributed out of Eugene Oregon in 1967.

I love these instructions. They are very folksy. The only place where there is info about where this pattern came from is on the actual pattern.It was made and distributed out of Eugene, Oregon in 1967.

For my first attempt, I did not really think about the lines of the patchwork. I just cobbled it together. At the time, I was super excited with the results. Now, because I am a lot better at this, I see my flaws.

Well, I must say this isn't very mod looking. It's just a regular old jumper.

Well, I must say this isn’t very mod looking. It’s just a regular old jumper.

So, I tried it again focusing more on creating graceful patchwork lines. Originally, the front was the back. But once I pieced it, I saw that the lines had the potential for being an attractive front for the sweater. I was getting close, but still not there.

I do love this sweater. I wear it all the time.

I do love this sweater. I wear it all the time.

So, I tried it again using very specific lines for the front of the sweater. This time I knew I had a keeper.

From that creation, I worked backwards and created a pattern that I have used over and over again to create what I like to call the Mod.

Here is the sloper and my reworking of the pieces to get the front of the Mod.

Here is the sloper and my reworking of the pieces to get the front of the Mod.

Because the back of a garment is flat the lines are not nearly as important as they are when designing the front where the lines MUST work to complement the bust, waist, and hips of the wearer.

Because the back of a garment is flat the lines are not nearly as important as they are when designing the front where the lines MUST work to complement the bust, waist, and hips of the wearer.

I am not sure that this is exactly the third version--I have probably made a more than a dozen of these. This is one of my favorites.

I am not sure that this is exactly the third version–I have probably made a more than a dozen of these. This is one of my favorites.

I love the color, design, and feel of this sweater.

I love the color, design, and feel of this sweater.

I guess I don't really need to lift my hair up. It's a habit for sure.

I guess I don’t really need to lift my hair up. It’s a habit for sure. I have started using the edge of the old sweaters to be the edge of my new sweaters. The edge is must stronger and cleaner looking.

While the front of each Mod sweater is the same, the back is different. Sometimes I use pattern pieces to create the back, and sometimes I let the shape of the piece of felt guide me. Each back is a surprise. Here is a little gallery of some of the Mods I have made so far.

It was at this point, that I really decided that I wanted to create my own sweater line. At first, I thought I would create the clothing line where–each design would be made in small, medium, and large. But after having many different women try on the Mod. I realized that a better approach would be to create sweaters with particular body types in mind. So, that’s where we are at now. Next up is Ms. February. I know you are going to like her.

P.S. You can check out what other fiber artists are doing by visiting Nina Marie’s blog.

This entry was published on February 6, 2013 at 6:49 PM. It’s filed under ArctiCouture and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

6 thoughts on “The Making of the Mod

  1. I really enjoyed this post! I love to recycle and use sweaters for different projects. Your sweaters are very cool?

    Like

  2. Wow – I love this form of recycling !

    Like

  3. Sue Liebner on said:

    Your sweaters are modern, form fitting, and very attractive! I love them. I’d love to see more!

    Like

  4. Pingback: Prelude to a Spring Frock | Maria Shell

  5. Pingback: Favorite Garment of 2013 | Maria Shell

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