Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Tried and True(TNT) Patterns

Diary of a Sewing Fanatic blogger, Carolyn, introduced me to the term TNT patterns. I had thought only my family got stuck on one or two patterns.

My Grannie used the same pattern from the time I was born until she stopped sewing. It buttoned down the bodice, which was attached at the waist to the four panel skirt, and had set in sleeves. It always had self covered buttons and self-covered belt. The tissue was quite worn by the time I was noticing patterns, but I think she could have cut it without the pattern. After a car accident, in which her collar bone was broken, her shoulders were of different heights and she also developed a dowager's hump. Somehow she knew how to compensate for all that and made very well fitting dresses.

When I started sewing for Sister, we settled on two patterns. One was The Dress, which falls free from a yoke. The other I call The Elastic Dress, since it falls free from an elastisized or beribboned neckline.

I prefer princess style dresses. The pattern shown above worked well for me for several years. Then, the last time we moved, I lost a piece (side front, I think.) I consulted with an expert friend and we came up with a couple of ways I could remake the piece. However, I kept putting it off and looked obsessively in pattern books for other princess patterns. During one midnight hormonal cleaning fit, I threw out the parts of the pattern I had, thinking that there are many other princess patterns out there.

As it turned out, the others didn't fit me, even with a lot of tweaking. Sometimes, I suppose they fit, but they just didn't feel right. So for several years I have occasionally searched the web for The Pattern. I can only think that many women liked the pattern and didn't want to give it up.

Last week, I found it! Since I bought the first one at a $.99 sale, I had to pay several times that for the new one, but I'm really pleased.

Grannie used her tissue pattern for many years. I found that after only three or four dresses, my patterns are pretty well used up. So I learned to paste them to wrapping paper, and more recently, to iron them onto interfacing. I can never refold them to fit the envelope so I use 1 or 2 gallon freezer bags to store them. I used to use file folders, taped up the side, but it didn't work well in my file cabinet. That's how I lost the piece. The freezer bags go into a milk carton.

Do you have a TNT pattern?


Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Hi, this is Carolyn, owner of the blog, "Diary of a Sewing Fanatic"...glad you have a TNT pattern and I probably learned the habit of using one pattern over and over again from my own grandma. Who even though she had a ton of patterns, always returned to several TNT favorites! Hopefully you will share a picture of you wearing your a new dress from your TNT pattern!

P and P said...

Thank you so very much for your comment. I have edited the post to show your correct name. Sorry I got it wrong.(Need computer glasses lol)