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bruble | Posted in General Discussion on

Does anyone have an opinion or can comment on smocking pleaters. Is Amanda Jane better than Read, etc? I would like to buy one but don’t know which one to settle on.




  1. meg | | #1

    I know little about them, but I do have my mother's Sally Stanley Smocking Pleater. She used to do some pleated things when my nieces were young but now they're quite grown up. If you'd like this one, let me know. I'd be willing to sell it to you at a fair price.

  2. User avater
    Sewista | | #2

    I smock. There isn't too much difference when it comes to quality. I will give you a few suggestions however and they are JMHO.

    Get a pleater with 24 needles. You will inevitably wish you had if you didn't. You will need it to do any fully smocked bodice.

    Get a pleater with half space needles at least half way across. This will help you tremendously in gauging your stitches in your first few projects. They also are necessary when pleating difficult fabrics like silks and will prevent you getting nasty "Y" pleats.

    Friends have told me they wish they had a pleater like mine because of the way you remove the bar to set in your needles. That means a pleater with two little pegs on each side that slip out to make the bar removal possible. Most models have you unscrew screws and its a pain and also adds an aspect of tension from the tightness/looseness of the screws.

    Nice but not necessary and definitely after the above options: having a pleater with a bar across the front to hold the spools. With this option you never have to rethread your needles unless you change the amount of needles you are using. This will add to the price and can easily be made by anyone slightly handy so don't make this a priority. If you google you can find directions for these thread holders. I am not sure if they have an official name but have seen them many times referred to on the internet.

    I have heard horror stories about getting pleaters off of EBay.

    My personal recommendation: A Super Amanda Jane pleater

    Buy more needles than you need. You don't want to get caught short and an episode of difficult pleating can break MANY needles at a time.

    When you get your pleater, and forever, go SLOWLY. It will definitely pay off. This is not speed sewing.

    I wish you the best in your smocking efforts and welcome to a very addictive, pleasurable world.


    Edited 7/17/2009 8:26 am ET by Sewista

    Edited 7/17/2009 8:27 am ET by Sewista

    Edited 7/17/2009 8:28 am ET by Sewista

    Edited 7/17/2009 8:35 am ET by Sewista

    1. bruble | | #3

      Thanks for the great advice Bunny! That's kind of the same story I've been getting from other people so that's probably what I will get. Can't wait until I have all your experience.
      Then maybe I can be the giving advice : ))Bonnie

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