Dear Eunice Farmer: I have a wonderful new embroidery sewing machine, but I have run out of things to use it for. I'd love to embroider part of a dress, but I don't want it to look homemade.
Can you help?
-- Bonnie R.
Dear Bonnie: You can get lots of ideas by looking at fashion magazines and ready-to-wear, which you can incorporate on your own clothes.
There are so many embellished garments today that it's hard to keep your design from looking professional.
I think Kwik-Sew 2338 (all sizes included) is a perfect pattern for embellished panels on the front of a tunic-length jacket. There are many patterns available to duplicate the beautiful designs used here.
Be creative, have fun and wear it proudly!
Dear Eunice Farmer: I'm making a two-piece dress that has bands of lace inserts. I don't intend to wash the dress. Do I still need to preshrink the fabric or lace?
-- Martie B.
Dear Marie: Preshrinking can always prevent disasters, even in dry-cleaning. Lace can shrink just by steam pressing it. I would certainly preshrink (or steam press) the lace before using it, regardless of what you decide to do with the dress fabric.
Glue for Ultrasuede
Dear Eunice Farmer: I want to shorten an Ultrasuede skirt I made several years ago and wonder if I can use leather glue instead of stitching.
-- Denise M.
Dear Denise: Never, never use a leather glue for anything except real leather. It would destroy the Ultrasuede. Instead, find a glue that is made for synthetics. You can find the right kind in a fabric or craft store.
Tip of the week
Each week, a reader wins a prize for sending in a helpful sewing hint. This week's winner is Carol Steimel of North Falmouth, Mass. She will receive a wonderful sewing notion. It's a thumb pincushion. This is a beautifully made cushion, tightly filled and easy to use. You'll love it! Here is her tip:
"For years I've had the paper directions slip off either side of my sewing machine, or it covers my scissors, pins, etc. Then I placed a memo board on the wall above my sewing machine; my paper directions are right where I can see them, and they stay put!"
P.S. My thanks to many of you who have sent in similar suggestions! -- Eunice
Send your sewing tips to Eunice Farmer, P.O. Box 31729, St. Louis, MO 63131.