Manequim magazine January 2015

Well, it wasn’t just me, then – loads of you also thought the March Burda was a total stinker! Well, here to mop up your tears with an injection of Brazilian sunshine is the January edition of Manequim magazine (the issues take a little while to make their way across the world to my postbox…).

First up is a pattern from the “soap style” section, a rather nice little top with a collar, gathered back yoke, and long front zipper. Also of note is that this style is available in the full size range for regular Manequim patterns, 38-48, meaning pretty much anyone could make this or use this as a basis for sizing up other shirt patterns which aren’t in your size…

From the cover, I rather liked the design of this flirty, fun little summer dress, and even moreso when I saw it’s made in neoprene (which I assume is actually scuba). The asymmetric hem with the pleated layer is a great little detail.

There’s no designer-style section this month, instead they’ve disappointingly used the 1970s as the design inspiration instead. IMHO, the 70s are the worst decade for fashion so I was surprised I liked even a single pattern from it! But this little camisole stood out, not just for its frill and open back, but also because it uses less than a meter of fabric and is offered in multiple sizes.

I don’t know where you would find a zipper long enough to stretch the whole way down the back of this dress (or you could just make do with a shorter, invisible zip I suppose!), but the real feature here is in the front, anyway! Brazilians love to show a little bit of skin, and the cutaway abdomen in an otherwise demure gown is a really interesting design detail.

I’m usually prepared to be disappointed by any magazine feature that tries to do “sports luxe” since I invariably laugh at the impracticality of actually exercising in such clothes. But I attempted to just look at the clothes for their own sake, and I liked the piped seaming on this short, flippy skirt.

Likewise for these shorts and parka – not great for actually working out (if you wanted running shorts, you’d be much better served by my Threshold Shorts pattern!), but as summer casualwear, they’re cute enough.

Most issues, Manequim just publish three Plus-sized patterns, but twice a year they do a full feature full of Plus designs, and this summer it’s all about beach wear! The collection starts off with two swimsuits – a bikini and one piece that look great for supporting larger busts and/or adding foam cups, too.

I’m a total sucker for a good skort pattern, and this one reminds me that I really must make one this summer! (If we have a summer – never a thing to be taken for granted in England!)

And finally, again in the Plus beachwear spread, a casual jumpsuit and what looks to be a nice enough shirt (though Manequim label it a “parka”). IMHO Manequim are much, much more in tune with what works for Plus bodies than a lot of the pattern companies out there, and the whole spread looks very wearable indeed.

Coming up next: an insider’s review of the third Great British Sewing Bee book, Fashion with Fabric!

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