Stretch and Sew Patterns

Stretch and Sew pattern company was founded by Ann Person in Eugene, OR  in the late 1960s. In the mid ‘60s, stretchy knit fabrics were part of the MOD revolution, but most home machines only had straight stitches, and home sewing enthusiasts were frustrated in attempting to sew these fabrics.  A neighbor with access to knit remnants from a ready-to-wear manufacturer inspired Ann to develop some techniques for making T-shirts. These techniques were first shared with the book “Stretch and Sew“. The success  of this book led to the opening of the first Stretch & Sew store in Burns, Oregon in 1967. 

Stretch and Sew Pattern

Stretch and Sew Pattern

Two years later, the stores were franchised (a new concept for the sewing industry). By the late ‘70s, there were 353 Stretch & Sew franchise and company-owned stores across the nation. Stretch & Sew didn’t just sell knit fabric; it sold fashion and it sold sewing techniques. Stretch & Sew patterns, featured in major fashion magazines, books, knit fabrics from around the world, and a cable TV show were all part of Ann’s empire.  By 1983, knits were no longer a novelty and blue jeans had replaced jogging suits as primary leisurewear. The franchise concept was phased out in favor of independent store ownership. Distributions systems were changed so that the patterns, books, and notions identified with Stretch & Sew were made available through multiple retail channels.

Stretch & Sew Pattern

Stretch & Sew Pattern

Vintage Stretch and Sew patterns are prized for their classic easy-to-make styling and retro looks.  Swimwear, lingerie and  leisure wear comprise most of the early styles.

 

 

 

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13 Responses to Stretch and Sew Patterns

  1. Janet Lee says:

    Many years ago, I taught classes and worked in one of your “Stretch and Sew” stores in Lincoln Park, Michigan. I loved it! However, I lost/misplaced some of my patterns in relocating many times.
    I am looking for your “jean” pattern. I know they were made with stretch material and that is alright with me. Please help!

  2. Petra Gray says:

    I don’t know if you can help me. I have an old stretch & sew sewing machine that I’m trying to find an owners manual for. The problem is that “stretch & sew” brand doesn’t seem to be brand that companies are aware of when it comes to sewing machines. Can you help me?

  3. Barbara Noble says:

    Hello! I was wondering if you had any of the old 70′s Stretch & Sew patterns for sale. I am a size 12. If so, please give me a list of the patterns and the cost. I would like to start making those clothes again as they were classics.

    Thank you,
    Barbara in Indianapolis

  4. I too am looking for an owners manual for an old Stretch & Sew Sewing machine. Any help will be appreciated.

    Thank you,
    Winnie Evanson

  5. roxanne says:

    I found the old strech and sew pattern I lost in my many military moves. I can hardly wait for it to arrive. I found the most beautiful material the other day and realized I had to have the correct pattern for the blouse. THANKS for having the vintage patterns.

  6. Ruth Searles says:

    I have been looking for pattern 1098. It is called Easy poncho and coccoon pattern. Can you help?

  7. In the 1970′s I took Stretch and Sew classes—I loved every minute of it and was disappointed when the store closed.
    I am looking for the pattern for ladies’ and men’s cardiagan–alpaca fabric—#500/600. I’d like the pattern for both men and women. Please let me hear from you so I won’t feel as if I’ve been ignored.
    Thank!
    Ruth Oppermann

    • admin says:

      All of the patterns I have currently are listed either on this website or in my eBay store. As I find patterns, I add them.
      And I post on this blog all of the patterns as I add them. You can subscribe via email or RSS. See the boxes to the right to do so. I do so appreciate these posts as it helps me to decide whether or not to pick up a pattern that I see on my rounds.

      • Joan Reynolds says:

        I am looking for the peplum blouse pattern. It had a full skirt. I made this 25 years ago and have been thinking about it and would like to make it again. I thought I had it, but I don’t have that one. Thanks, Joan

  8. Catherine says:

    I’d love to find the old Stretch n Sew patterns. I’d really like the basic knit pants pattern – I haven’t had pants fit so well since. And the t-shirt, and the….

  9. Bridget says:

    Do you have the Stretch and Sew pant pattern where the waist was sewn in with the opening in the pocket?

  10. BARBARA HOPPENSTEDT says:

    Years ago I made a pullover interlock tee shirt for my husband. Crew neck, long sleeves with a cuff and a cuff at the bottom. Through all of our downsizing, I have lost that pattern. Do you have any pattern that fits that discription? Please let me know, I would love to make another one for him. He loved that shirt. Thanks.

  11. Odessa Smith says:

    I found a near mint condition stretch and sew sewing machine e-75, but I cannot find the instruction manuel for it. I would appreciate any help. I would be grateful for a copy of the instructions. I just need to know how it works.

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