To send us your photos, comments, suggestions or tips, email mailbox@voguepatterns.com

Liz Geer writes—

In her review of Chicago fabric haunts Lyn Marsteller missed one gem. At 2125 N. Damen in the Bucktown neighborhood you will find Soutache (www.soutacheribbons.com). This wonderful little store specializes in trims, ribbons and buttons. The interior is reminiscent of a Parisian haberdashery store. The owner Maili Powell is always very helpful and can special order items. She also teaches classes on making fabric flowers. There is street parking and it is about 5-6 blocks from the N. Damen Blue Line stop at Damen and North Avenue. This store is in the same area as The Needle Shop.

Freda Smith writes—

Each issue of your Vogue Patterns magazine is so exciting. I stay up until the wee hours of the morning reading, enjoying, and just loving all the articles. When I turned to page 14, I could not believe the article. I have that ubiquitous ruffler attachment (for many years and don’t know how to use it. I have tried and tried). Now I know what all the gizmos parts are and how to use them. But, I do not know how to put the fabric into the [foot] to make ruffles or pleats. I do not have the sewing machine manual. I anxiously kept turning to the next page after learning all the parts and their functions. How do I insert the fabric? Could you please be kind enough to show how to insert the fabric in the spacer blade, separator blade, and threading guides? Twenty years of having that ruffler and now I am going to use it with your help of inserting the fabric. I have six granddaughters under 6 years old. I love to put ruffles and pleats on all their clothes. The use of this ruffler would be a tremendous help and time saving for me. Thank you sooo much.

Response from The Editors—The threading pattern for rufflers differs depending on the brand and also on the ruffling function, so it's best to consult the instruction book for the exact threading for the intended purpose. (Most dealers are able to order instruction books, even for older attachments. Or you could look online for information about a similar looking attachment.) For general ruffling or pleating, insert the fabric or ribbon under the threading guides, above the separator blade, and then under the spacer blade (see photo). If you're ruffling one layer to a flat fabric, the ruffle fabric takes a similar path, but the base fabric remains under from the separator and spacer blades so it stays flat and only the upper layer ruffles. Some rufflers don’t have the threading guides in the front, but the path through the attachment is the same—under the blades so it can make gathers/ruffles. We hope this helps you out. The full article about the ruffler attachment can be found in the April/May 2010 issue which you can purchase here.

Linda Schulmeister writes—

In the Feb./Mar. issue of Vogue Patterns, page 36, Kathryn Brenne writes that Shout Color Catchers can be used 30 times. Is that a misprint or can they really be used over and over?

Response from The Editors—No, it’s not a misprint, however, we do need to clarify that not all dye absorbers are reusable. The dye absorbers that Kathryn Brenne mentions, Shout Color Catcher® and Carbona Color Grabber™ come as one-time disposable cloths or reusable cloths that are good for 30 washloads. Please read the packaging before purchasing to choose the one you prefer.

Marjorie Oakes writes—

I recently purchased a copy of the February/ March 2010 Vogue Patterns magazine. Vogue has always been my idea of the best, but I was quite taken aback with the dress on page 43. The mismatched chevrons were quite a shock. Not only were the stripes not matched, but the right front skirt pattern piece appears to have been cut from an opposing layout on the fabric. Please don’t become just another magazine. Keep up your standards!

Response from The Editors—We have received a number of comments about this Tracy Reese design (V1158), and we can only respond by saying that this is the original Tracy Reese garment, and that the miss-matched stripes were part of her design plan. (Incidentally, the stripes at the back seam match perfectly and can be viewed here. We know that many of our customers feel that this is wrong, the same way they feel that charging hundreds of dollars for a pair of jeans with holes in them is wrong. Yet, to other customers, these “flaws” are part of the appeal of the design. The positive note about all of this is that as a sewer, you can right these wrongs by matching stripes perfectly on the garments you create.

Jan DiEllo writes—

I have been an avid sewer of Vogue designer patterns for decades. Consequently, I have witnessed many iconic designers retire and, sadly, pass away. There are other designers who are very much alive and designing (i.e. Oscar de la Renta, Marc Jacobs, etc.) who you used to feature but haven’t been seen on your pages recently. While I appreciate the new talent you are featuring in recent issues, many of those designs are not as appropriate for a woman past 55 (albeit one who is still in good shape). I sew career and casual clothing for myself and always seem to be drawn to Anne Klein and Oscar de la Renta designs. Will we be seeing more patterns by Oscar? Also, will you be bringing out new designers (or new to Vogue Patterns) whose fashions are age appropriate for those of us stylish, fit Baby Boomers?

Response from The Editors—Your letter is timely. In this issue we introduce Kay Unger whose designs are impeccable and geared to multi generations from 18 to 80+. You can see her initial offering as well as read about her background and design philosophy beginning on page 48 or download the article here. We love her dresses and think that you will too. We are also pleased to be adding Katherine Tilton (sister of Marcy Tilton) to our roster of designers. She considers her clothes “couture for everyday” and perfect for those who want casual clothes with class. You can read her story and see her designs beginning on page 56 or here. We hope you find these new designers as appealing as we do.

Kathleen Foley writes—

I had to write to let you know that I have been so enjoying the magazine of late. Articles about people and places have been great as have those concerning techniques and style. I don’t like every garment in every issue for me, personally, but I don't think your magazine was edited or written with only one person or lifestyle in mind. [So I take some exception to letter-writer Connie Dickson in the April/ May issue expressing her disappointment in the December/January issue.] I think that those of us who sew are fortunate to be able to take a design and rework it for ourselves and our circumstances and still look stylish. Case in point is the DKNY jacket, pattern V1130. I would never have looked twice at it, but an article on channel-quilting in the March 2010 Threads caught my eye. The jacket had been made in a drapey fabic (not the recommended heavier fabrics), you could see the details clearly, the pockets had been omitted and the sewer had sewn tucks below the midriff band before the fabric was released, instead of gathering it from the band. I am so going to make this jacket! I could hardly wait for the store to open to buy the jacket pattern and now all I need is the time. I’m one of those folks who had a mother who was a talented seamstress and she passed on her love of sewing to me. Over 50 years of sewing with Vogue Patterns, and now that I’m retired maybe I’ll find the time mentioned above. Thanks a bunch for a great magazine and great designs.

Lorraine Williams writes—

I can not find rib trim suitable for dressmaking anywhere. I found one outdoor supplier that sells the heavy rib knit trim you would use for parkas and leather jackets but nowhere have I found the kind used for t-shirts and sweatshirts. I have also found multiple places to buy rib knit fabric—but again, not the trim with a finished edge. I recall that it used to come in a few widths suitable for necklines, cuffs and hem lines. Can you help me locate a supplier?

Response from The Editors—We were only able to locate one source for lightweight rib knit trim, and it is very limited in choices. This is www.stanssewingsupplies.com. Sorry we couldn’t be of more help.

Bernice writes—

When my husband brought in the mail recently, my excitement was palpable. In his hot hands was my copy of Vogue Patterns magazine (February/March 2010). I couldn’t wait to get my fingers on the Spring issue. Snow, and more snow outside my door, UGH!! So, finally, a breath of spring fashion air. Just say, I was not disappointed. This issue is jammed packed with great patterns and even more wonderful information. It has clothing for the younger set i.e., V1160 and a lovely wedding gown, V1163 and the best and most beautiful after-5 dress that I’ve seen in a while, V1162. The fit article (Pati Palmer) is marvelous and Fabric Shopping by Sandra Betzina in the San Francisco Bay area is a delightful read and each article is very informative. The icing on the cake is an article on a new designer, Rebecca Taylor. I also want to thank the ladies in Manhattan, KS for being such hard workers, who do everything they possibly can to give the customer what he or she is looking for. I also have been a member of ClubBMV for several years and always renew my membership when it is about to expire. The online sales are “marvelous.” Thank you ladies for always being available. Also, kudos to each and everyone behind the masthead of Vogue Patterns magazine. Looking forward to great things in the future. You have spoiled me.

To send us your photos, comments, suggestions or tips, email mailbox@voguepatterns.com


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