You can now sew your own KMD!

You can now sew your own KMD!

As you may have noticed, there's now a section of the website for downloads!  This is because Lou and I have agreed to start selling some patterns for Kiss Me Deadly garments - starting with the Retro Classics Doren bra and the super-high-waist knicker/pantygirdle. 
You can buy our version here, and buy the patterns here.

This, but any colour you can find. Cripes, I think we shot this in 2010!

You can also have Lou's mask pattern for free, and I'm sending it out with every order that includes a KMD item.


You get the pattern for the size you select, which you will need to print out - please check and double check the scales on them! - and the 'how to put it together' instructions.

I've installed a widget that means that when you order, you should find that you get a download option, followed by an email (though I fully expect the latter to get stuck in spam filters, a common fate for all commercial emails these days!)
If we find we need to update the files - we did test them on a small group, but we might tweak them when we get more feedback - I will email out again.

For experienced folks, I'm sure I will see you making changes to your versions of these - it's fairly simple to add lace, or put a lace-up-back into the knicker, for example - from memory we did have to bone the sides to make that work. These garments, especially the bra, do need sewing experience, since, as you know, making with stretch fabrics has it's issues, and bras in particular have some fiddly bits, even without wires.

If you're new to sewing . . . definitely start with the mask :)

Retro black high waist knicker with corset lace up back

I do want to take a minute to tell you the story about why we've done this because I suspect some of you might find the business issues interesting!

Lou and I spoke about doing patterns and possibly tutorials - as Lou does lessons in real life, at least pre-covid - back in April last year, when it became clear our usual business was going to be rough for . . . a while. Factories and warehouses aren't designed to be distanced, nor do they always have great ventilation, so you can imagine our capacity to make and dispatch physical goods was kinda iffy. Also post everywhere has been terrible since this kicked off.

We decided agin the idea because;
We assumed that people who bought the garments wouldn't also want to sew them 
Lou is camera-shy and we suspected it would need video tutorials
Our patterns were always designed with industrial machines and techniques in mind and aren't ideal for home sewers.

And believe me it costs way more to buy a sewing machine, learn to sew well, and then buy individually all the bits in a bra and then spend hours making it yourself than it does to buy even quite a pricey bra. Home sewing is great - I'm generally considered rubbish at making but even I sew enough to fix garments, do trims, etc -  but money saving? Not until you've really sunk a lot into getting into it.


Also I forsee a lot of questions about where you even buy bra foam.

Then, at the start of this year, I got an email from a distressed customer. Not distressed by anything we'd done, thankfully, but on our behalf. They said they thought we had had our designs stolen.
I always appreciate it when people tip us off privately about this, as in the UK it's usually legally preferable to handle things privately.

Of course this wouldn't be the first time I've had IP issues, and so I prepared myself for the various possibilities (some of which, by the way, are fine - I've written before about circumstances where designs are shared or similar for perfectly agreeable and legal reasons)

What I was not expecting to find was a whole new way of being copied! It turns out that last summer, a business had ordered a complete Velvet Doren set from us. I don't question orders from businesses - I often order from other brands, perfectly amicably with no nefarious intent whatsoever, so it didn't set off any warning flags, though when you order as a business you do not have the data protection for your order that ordering as an individual gives you.

This business sells patterns for personal use and has an online community group where they do pattern development and then use it as an easier way to run through any questions about how to make things. Their hashtag game is WAY better than ours, too. Neat. Generally I like it.

I was slightly less impressed to find that they had used KMD images without any credits, in order to take the garments they had bought and make patterns to sell from them.

Retro black high waist suspender belt and bullet bra with vintage film noir style

The fact that a lot of the pattern testers took photos staring the camera down while holding a large knife was a bit of a giveaway - if you are of a mind to swipe images from KMD, I really recommend you crop them to the garments alone, at a bare minimum. I'm not saying we're the only people who use pointy things as props, far from it.  But I am saying, legally you're more likely to be done for 'passing off' than for garment infringement (a term from tort law, which governs UK civil disputes).  And in that case, you're more likely to get away with redoing garments that are in any event vintage-inspired, than you are to get away with swiping both similar products AND similar visuals. 


The original starting point for investigating - see that image of ours on the bottom right? That's the bit you should definitely not do if your business develops garments this way.

Now, please be assured I have screenshots and other evidence - literally, receipts! - a whole folder full, since after all I live in the UK which has the strongest libel laws. I've not shown them here because why would I give this business any more publicity? And honestly, there was a huge upside - they've tested out the ideas we had about selling patterns.

Based on what I am seeing from their customers, people who sew DO also want these garments (and vice-versa), they definitely made a frankly AWESOME job of doing the garments in all sorts of fabrics - I think my favourite was seeing an entire set made from an old pair of jeans!
And we already have a group where we discuss all things KMD (ok, its like 27% pangolins)  so that's likely how we'll handle questions about making.

So that's the story of how someone else got us to start selling our patterns!

We have like, 15 years worth of garments in the archive, though some of them would have to be adapted fairly heavily - I'm guessing none of you have the technology to permanently pleat chiffon at home, right?

Oh! and if you bought the Other Patterns and want the originals, just forward me your order email and I'll send you ours for free.