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Conversational Threads

Looking for an old sewing book

cycler1729 | Posted in General Discussion on

Back in the 1960s I had a book written by a seamstress in New York City.  It was written as a memoir but it also had many sewing ideas and there were instructions how to create an unusual jacket just by measuring the distance from the edges of the fabric (no pattern).  I did sew it back then and I’d love to be able to re-create it.

I was hoping that someone might remember the author or title.  I’m sure that it’s long out of print but there might be a copy for sale somewhere on line.



  1. solosmocker | | #1

    Was that a "bog" coat/jacket? They are a simple rectangle with minimal cutting and a weird way of wrapping the fabric to make the sleeves, if I remember right. The cutting was all strait measuring with an oval for the neckline. Perhaps a google on Bog Coat if this sounds familiar. I have seen the bog coat used by various designers over the years and I think Threads even did an article back in the day. Hope this helps.

    1. cycler1729 | | #2

      Thanks for the response but this was a short jacket that was like a huge turtleneck.  There were no openings except for at the top and bottom (and sleeves) - the front, back and sleeves were cut in one piece on the fold.  I added a zipper along the neck and shoulder for it to be easier to put on. 

      1. Gloriasews | | #3

        If you go to http://www.macpheeworkshop on the web, click on Patterns, then on It's Magic.  They have a Magic Sweater pattern #485 for $7.98 that looks like what you've described as the pattern you're looking for - or it certainly can be easily adapted.  It is cut on the fold, so the only seams are the underarm seams (probably made of fleece, as lots of MacPhee's outerwear garments are).  Check is out, anyway.  They also have patterns for tops, bottoms, vests, coats - all relatively easy to make.  Good luck!

        1. Josefly | | #4

          If you add ".com" to your link it works better :>))

          1. Gloriasews | | #5

            Yah, I know, but I wasn't sure if it was .com or .ca - besides, I thought that all you computer-savvy gals would find it anyway!  Next time I'll check the address out BEFORE I mention it here.  Sorry about that!

          2. Josefly | | #6

            No problem of course. Most probably knew right away what to do, but I sat there for 5 minutes stubbornly trying to force my browser to accept the address. I'm not so savvy. Thanks for the link, by the way.

        2. user-217847 | | #11

          Hello Gloria,    I'd just like to say thankyou for the site. while hubby watched state of origin football, I spent the time browsing, I had a wonderful time. thanks again.

          warmest regards,


          1. Gloriasews | | #12

            Glad you enjoyed the website.  Happy sewing!


  2. jatman | | #7

    Hi Cycler1729, I'm not sure if this will help you or not, but there is a site called http://vintagesewing.info/index.html .  They have all sorts of vintage sewing info but appear to go only up to the 1950's.  Still, if you can remember any more information you may be able to do a search and find it in their archives if the book is a bit older than you originally thought.

    Good luck and if you find it, please let us know!


    1. cycler1729 | | #8

      Thanks - I will check it out. 

      1. cycler1729 | | #9

        I asked an online book researcher and he sent out a message to about 100 of his friends who are also researchers and in just a couple of days one of them located the titlle for me

        Vivienne Colle's Make it Yourself BoutiqueBy Vivienne Colle with Marjorie P. KatzM. Evans and CompanyNew York 1967

        If you want to read something entertaining and educational there are a lot of copies on Amazon for very little.

        Edited 7/3/2007 5:52 pm ET by cycler1729

        1. jatman | | #10

          Thank you Cycler!  I just ordered a first edition in good condition for $5.00 from Amazon!  Sounds like an interesting book.  Thank you for the info!


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