Author Topic: Frock coat skirt/Pleats  (Read 1005 times)

Philipdep

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Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« on: March 25, 2017, 05:04:24 AM »
Hi, I'm attempting to replicate this frock coat, but the pleats/skirt is confusing to pattern. I can't quite tell how the bottom of the skirt is cut so that it can be pressed to make pleats, how might I go about this?
Thanks!
-Philip



« Last Edit: March 26, 2017, 12:47:46 PM by Philipdep »

jruley

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2017, 12:03:41 PM »
Hi, I'm attempting to replicate this frock coat, but the pleats/skirt is confusing to pattern. I can't quite tell how the bottom of the skirt is cut so that it can be pressed to make pleats, how might I go about this?
Thanks!
-Philip


Hello Philip,

What era is the coat?  A number of historical pattern drafting books are available that show how tailors approached this problem at different times.

In brief and to over-generalize:  Earlier coats had deeper pleats, which might be uniform width from waist to hem, or tapered.  By the time frock coats fell out of fashion after WWI, pleats were quite small or even false, and generally tapered to the bottom.

For all periods, the pleat is cut with the main skirt piece, and folded under.  The back skirt piece (cut as part of the back) allows for the width of the pleat below the waist seam.  So the back piece has a notch or hook shaped extension in width above the waist, and the finished pleat lines up with the curved seam on the back of the coat.

Hope this helps,

Jim

lepus

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2017, 12:56:23 PM »
Hi, I'm attempting to replicate this frock coat, but the pleats/skirt is confusing to pattern. I can't quite tell how the bottom of the skirt is cut so that it can be pressed to make pleats, how might I go about this?
Thanks!
-Philip

Am I smelling a trend here, involving sonic toothbrushes, sorry, screwdrivers? If it is about cosplay, accurate historic details won't help much, as the designer(s) will have used their own insight.

Schneiderfrei

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2017, 12:56:30 AM »
So the period is timeless, get it. :)

Steelmillal

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2017, 06:52:43 AM »
Perhaps a wibbley-wobbley, timey-whimey thing? At least the Einstein haircut is finally back in style, just in time! And if the 70s come back!? Woo, Katie bar the door!!

Be bold, Philip, and write Moffit. The era of inspiration may be disclosed for at least a target to pull from. Never hurts to try!




Philipdep

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2017, 08:11:35 AM »
Not quite sure about the time period it's based on, it looks like a combination of 17th and 19th century. I think the pleats farthest from the center back are just some flare that has been pressed. So, there would be not overlap on the top of the pleat, and 1 1/2 inches on the bottom (I hope I explained that well...)

You all seem to have caught on that this is from Doctor Who! While I'm using it for cosplay, I would like it to be a well-tailored garment, and as close the the original (made by Chris Kerr in Soho) as possible.

Another question: would this type of coat have a vent hidden in the center back pleat?

Thanks for the help!

jruley

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2017, 02:17:54 PM »
So, there would be not overlap on the top of the pleat, and 1 1/2 inches on the bottom (I hope I explained that well...)

I believe that in the mid-19th century pleats were either uniform depth, or deeper at the top than the bottom.  The increased depth helped to conceal the pocket opening.  Around the turn of the century they might be widest at the middle, tapering to nothing at top and bottom.

A practical reason to taper the pleat to nothing at the bottom is that it's generally tacked down there anyway.

Another question: would this type of coat have a vent hidden in the center back pleat?

Frock coats derive from equestrian garments, so yes they generally have a back vent.  All the originals I've seen had a hooked style so the slit did not show.

hutch--

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2017, 03:03:52 PM »
I imagine the only way you would get genuine antique garment design "pre-photography" would be in some of the museums around the world. You do see period costume in very old portraits but they risk being stylised by the painter. From memory some of the older European countries that had monarchies have preserved some of the clothing that was worn by such people but it tends to be highly formal where the common garments are very hard to get a good example of what they looked like.

Now another factor is trying to match the fabrics they were made from. It is doubtful that common clothing of the distant past was anything fancy so if you can at least see what the fabric looked like, you may have some chance of finding a modern fabric that looks something like it but a genuine match is probably impossible. Something I picked up from a tailor I knew as he was retiring was a roll of linen that at close range looks like old style muslin and I could be tempted to make an archaic designed shirt out of it as I have plenty on the roll.

As far as matching old designs, I would image the best you can do is get a good idea of what it is supposed to look like then draft a pattern to emulate that appearance. The folks who have been working on period costumes for a long time generally know what this stuff looks like and design the costumes to have that appearance.
The magnificent tools of the professional tailor
http://www.movsd.com/tailors_shears/  ;) ;D

Greger

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2017, 04:38:01 PM »
It looks like it has been stylised for the show. Not a true replica of any particle time. The shoulder seam is very high. A lower shoulder wasn't adjusted for. The skirt is baggy. The tailor and cutter, from maybe the turn of the century, had a page of different back cuts, which this might be one of those, or some variation the show invented. I doubt they invented anything new with the pleat construction.

That's my two cents.

TTailor

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2017, 11:14:49 PM »
It looks like it has been stylised for the show. Not a true replica of any particle time. The shoulder seam is very high. A lower shoulder wasn't adjusted for. The skirt is baggy. The tailor and cutter, from maybe the turn of the century, had a page of different back cuts, which this might be one of those, or some variation the show invented. I doubt they invented anything new with the pleat construction.

That's my two cents.

I agree. Its a modern coat with minor period attributes. Period coats would normally hve a step vent at the CB but this one does not, it looks like a large box pleat with out any CB opening, as far as I can see.
It has obviously been made from a fabric that responds well to distressing and breakdown, which has been done for the character.

Philipdep

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2017, 01:13:20 AM »
Thank you all very much for the help!

It looks like it has been stylised for the show. Not a true replica of any particle time. The shoulder seam is very high. A lower shoulder wasn't adjusted for. The skirt is baggy. The tailor and cutter, from maybe the turn of the century, had a page of different back cuts, which this might be one of those, or some variation the show invented. I doubt they invented anything new with the pleat construction.

That's my two cents.

I agree. Its a modern coat with minor period attributes. Period coats would normally hve a step vent at the CB but this one does not, it looks like a large box pleat with out any CB opening, as far as I can see.
It has obviously been made from a fabric that responds well to distressing and breakdown, which has been done for the character.

Yes, I think it'd probably be hard to pin it to any specific era. From what I can tell, there is just a box pleat at the center back, and the two pleats to either side of the CB (under the buttons) have a uniform overlap. However, I think that the two pleats farthest from CB are tapered, but I can't tell from pictures. I'll be patterning today, and I'll be sure to post some pictures. Thanks!

Philipdep

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Re: Frock coat skirt/Pleats
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2017, 12:32:32 PM »
Just an update: I have finished patterning and cutting! Thank you all very much for the help, it is turning out great!