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Dear Eunice Farmer: Could you please explain what a "shrug" is? My teen granddaughter wants me to make her one to wear over bare-top dresses. Would you please give us pattern and fabric suggestions? -- Jackie C.

Dear Jackie: A shrug is a small shoulder coverup with sleeves, much smaller than a bolero jacket. The shrug must be made of stretch knit, stretch lace, etc., because of the fit. Today's pattern is McCall's 2194 sized 6 to 22.

The dress can be made of any fabric suitable for all seasons; it could be a knit also. However, it can be made of woven fabric, too. The dress that is included with the pattern has a small cap sleeve, long or short, and is very simple to make!

Get a neckline right

Dear Eunice Farmer: One of my friends told me about a column you wrote that takes the uncertainty or guesswork out of necklines. If I look at the pattern, I think it will be OK; then when I complete my garment, I find the neck is either too high or too low. Can you please repeat your instructions on this subject? -- Cindy B.

Dear Cindy: Take the neckline facing pattern, front and back, and machine stitch the shoulder seams. Next, cut off the 5/8 -inch seam allowance at the neckline. Now you can slip it on, and you'll be able to see exactly how the neckline on your garment will fit. It's easy at this point to lower or raise the neckline. When cutting your pattern out, be sure to add the 5/8 -inch seam allowance to the neckline that you have cut away. It's a foolproof fitting tip!

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