Click clock click, peplum skirt #4

21 thoughts on “Click clock click, peplum skirt #4”

  1. OOOH! Good for you for being firm on this one! Her reply to you was so informal and unhelpful. I know that pattern designers get frantic emails all day long from people who can’t print a PDF or cut on grain, but it’s surely clear from your questions and a quick look at your profile that you know what you are doing!

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  2. You’ve certainly done your own investigative work on this one! Such a shame when a product isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I agree about pursuing matters if the product is faulty. I suspect certain companies rely on people blaming themselves and not following up when things go wrong (not specifically directed at Reconstructing History, just a general observation).

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    1. Absolutely- one of the worst offenders is Hot Patterns. Their customer service is below zero, and their patterns are dire. I binned a whole heap of them after a couple of disasters.

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  3. One of the things that makes me sad/angry is when people new to sewing try a poorly drafted pattern, and when it doesn’t work, they assume they are bad at sewing and never try it again.

    If undue pattern makers are truly trying to make sewing popular, they either need to draft and test their patterns properly, or be VERY forthright about what process (or lack thereof) they use. I may take a gamble on a pattern that’s only been made up in one size – but I’m certainly not going to pay $15 or more for it!

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    1. Well, she’s a costume historian, and undoubtedly very able. She does find some great styles to put out, but definitely hasn’t much skill in sizing up, and none in accurate testing. The get-out clause is she does advise you to make a toile every time, and some fitting tips are given, but a noob would definitely blame themselves for any errors or misunderstanding. I do love the range of styles they have, and hope that they take the kick properly, and get testing!

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      1. All of your comments ring true, and — from the point of view of an historical pattern-maker — reveal a lack of appropriate testing of the final draft pattern. This is precisely the reason I insist on sewing out every pattern I develop. You’d be surprised how many gaffes, both small and not so small, are caught this way. Doing this also helps me to give some guidance to users on the skill level required to successfully sew the pattern.

        Mind you, this is the reason I can’t crank out dozens of patterns per year as Reconstructing History seems to be able to do. From the sketches and historical source material you’ve posted, it’s clear to me that the pattern-maker misunderstood the actual construction of the original skirt. I’m sorry you’ve had this experience, as it reflects poorly on all independent pattern-makers. Frankly it was avoidable, and not excusable through explanations by them about body shape, bias grain, etc.

        I hope you do get a refund. In my view, it would be the right thing for the pattern-maker to do.

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      2. Thank you so much for that vindication. I’ve had a very strongly felt, and positive response to this article, which is very heartening. As I’ve said elsewhere, I think it’s a shame, as I think Kass has a really good eye for key shapes and interesting designs, but without testing, the final product falls short. Perhaps she’d be better collating the original diagrams etc and publishing them, for people to work out for themselves?
        I’ll be switching to hunting on your site now I think!

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  4. Well done you for pushing this so hard. You are quite right and the picture of the back view of RH pattern is clearly wrong. A peplum would never have come up like that. I agree with all the other commentators- this is disappointing but I am not surprised. Many indie designers do not have the resources to prepare proper tested patterns which is one reason why I wouldn’t bother with them. This confirms my prejudice.

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  5. I’d’ve liked her to offer to make the pattern up herself before assuming that it’s your fault. She sound like she knows a lot about fashion and she may be an ok sewer but clearly she knows nothing about pattern making.

    On a purely practical note, you are covered by the distance selling regs and could pursue recompense from your bank or PayPal. I’d be inclined to offer to send her the unused pattern back and exert your right that she pay postage, faced with that she may refund and let you keep the pattern as it’s a cheaper solution.

    Still, it’s a disappointing response to a justifiable complaint and very poor customer service.

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    1. It seems that I actually got the good end of their customer service, many others have had an unpleasant response. They were PDF downloads, so sending it back won’t help. I found that she has ‘suggested’ to most complainers that their skills are the issue. Easily said when you don’t make them up yourself…

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  6. What a drama! I hope you get your refund, but this doesn’t really compensate for all the time and effort (and materials) that you’ve wasted. Like you say it’s awfully strange that there aren’t many public reviews…

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  7. I’m glad you chased down the problem even though I’m not sure you got a solution. I wrote to McCalls once about an error in their pattern. It was size 16 on one line on one side of the dress and turned into the number 12 on the other side of the dress. I got no reply at all. I guess I am one in millions and they don’t care. I am glad that I knew what they meant and I could continue with my sewing. I would think an independent company would care more about their reputation whether someone is right or wrong. Good thing you are an experienced sewist and could fix the problem yourself!

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  8. What a kerfuffle and well done you for chasing them up and standing your ground. Sorry you haven’t reached a satisfactory out come and hope you do get a refund. I’m glad that you are able to salvage the skirt, pity about the blouse. Overall RH haven’t done themselves any favours in the sewing community as word will spread even if it’s just from people here.

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      1. Yep, that’s how it ended up [once I made each piece 5″ longer. Trouble was, the original instructions said to ‘catch it into the back opening’, and didn’t say how! Lucky that I decided to line them too, as the wrong side shows as they drape. Sigh. Just the hem to do now.

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  9. Well done Fairy. It is far too easy to blame someone’s lack of ability to follow their instructions correctly. You have enough knowledge to blow that argument out of the water. Keep at it – and get that refund.

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    1. Got it! They only refunded the 2 though, not the three, even though I said I’d be binning the third one. No real remorse, just a sort of ‘oh well’ weak apology. Sounds like I’m lucky to get the refund, most people don’t manage it, she pushes the blame. I’m on a mission!

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