Dear Eunice Farmer: I'm looking for a tailored suit that has a little pizzazz. I don't want anything too far-out, but I would like a little detail that will be a classic and not go out of style as soon as I finish it.
-- Marsha H.
Dear Marsha: I think you'll love Vogue 2464, sizes 6-24, designed by the great designer Bill Blass. It features a classic collar and piping detail, as well as great construction details. I love the two-piece sleeve for its better fit, and the jacket also has fold-back cuffs. The straight-legged pants have another great detail, a contour waist, eliminating the waistband and finishing with grosgrain ribbon.
Depending on the climate where you live, I can visualize this suit in a lightweight wool, wool blend or textured silk matka.
Dear Eunice Farmer: A friend who lives in Florida told me about an easy-to-make, flattering pants pattern that eliminates the side seams. Please tell me how to get this pattern.
-- Maryanne W.
Dear Maryanne: You are referring to the one-seam pants that I have featured before. Look for Burda 3216, all sizes included in pattern. The pants are a slip-on style with an elastic waist.
Be sure to select a soft, drapey fabric: rayon, silk, silky poly or very sheer wool. For a tailored look, you might press in a front crease; for dressier pants, eliminate the crease. They are perfect for fun pajama pants the teens love. If you can't find Burda patterns in your area, you may send $11 and a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Eunice Farmer, P.O. Box 31729, St. Louis, Mo. 63131. I will include extra instructions that we use when teaching classes in our shop.
Dear Eunice Farmer: I've never had the courage to change a pattern in any way. I have a tummy and don't like pants with the front fly closing that all the patterns seem to feature. Can I change the placement of the zipper?
-- Janice W.
Dear Janice: One of the fun things about sewing is taking the liberty to change any detail on a pattern and adding your own. It is perfectly OK to place the zipper at the center back seam or the side seam.
Tip of the week
Karen Shutree of West Seneca writes: "Most of us who sew make our own ironing board covers. My hint is to use a woven fabric with stripes or checks. It makes it so simple to press those areas that must be perfectly straight without stretching the fabric. (Be sure your fabric is colorfast.)"