A Sad Lament & a Muslin

In Wichita, there are two Hancock Fabrics, one on each side of town.  Yesterday, while out running errands, I stopped into them both. It was soooo depressing.  I used to live in MD before moving to Kansas and that was where I first encountered a Hancock Fabrics.  The one there was dingy and dark…but in my opinion, the fabric was better than Joanns.   If I didn’t want to go all the way into DC to go to G Street (that’s a sad lament for another day), I’d head up and into Hancocks.   That was when I first started sewing.

When I moved to Wichita, I was THRILLED to have two Hancocks, plus two Joanns, plus Needle Nook Fabrics, plus another fabric store called The Sewing Center. The Hancock Fabrics here were both brighter and nicer to shop in, and one was conveniently located really close to my job.  I spent many a happy lunch time in that store hanging out with the fabric or browsing the patterns.  Now, it looks like this.



I’m sure there are a multitude of reasons why they’ve declared bankruptcy and are having a full liquidation….but regardless of all the reasons, it still makes me very sad.  I felt like an opportunistic vulture in there, but really, if I didn’t buy the fabric and patterns that I did someone else would have.  I came out with some good fabrics at 70% off, plus a pile of Burda’s and Kwik Sew Patterns that were 75 cents each.  While I wasn’t always pleased with the service, or even the fabric…it had the best selection in town.

Here’s some of the fabric that I picked up (the top three in the stack).  I also got a box of fabric from Fabicmart Fabrics on Saturday, so the bottom of the stack is from that haul.  There’s also an interesting wool blend that’s kind of a mustard/gold color down in the box from Hancocks.  I had been eyeing that up for months, so was glad there was still some there.


Here is the pattern haul.


We all know that I’m a Kwik Sew fan, and I’m not above going through each drawer of the filing cabinet looking for the old school Kwik Sews on the nice paper. (The demise of Kwik Sew is yet another lament for another day.)   That’s a lot of patterns, and I have a lot of patterns already…but there’s always room for one (or 20?) more.  I did buy a few of the newest Kwik Sews because I liked the style…like that one on top.  It’s a nice dress and I think the sewing of the two on the cover don’t quite do it justice.

Focusing on actually sewing… I’ve been continuing with the muslin of the Hotpatterns Deco Vibe Sarine. I haven’t had much time to sew in the evenings, but working through this muslin process slowly has helped me to have time to think through the problems thoroughly.  Today I wore my muslin with almost all of my tweaks in it and it worked! No shoulders creeping back…no gapping.  I’m ready to go in my fabric and have picked some out for a top.  I think this will go together very quickly now.  One last adjustment to make is to do a small swayback.  Another may be to increase the gathers at the front.  I think I would like to have just a few more gathers in the part that tucks into the waistband…that’s a super simple adjustment though and hesitate to even call it an adjustement!

Here are the muslin shots:

I think I have my fabric picked out…I just need to lay the top out and make sure there’s enough of it!  Please stand by….

Happy Sewing!



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6 Responses to A Sad Lament & a Muslin

  1. jay says:

    It’s a sad day when sewing stores go the way of so many other businesses, probably due to our online shopping habits.

    • Jay, Thanks for reading and commenting!! Online shopping likely contributed…but there’s probably a whole host of reasons — like the rise of fast fashion where it’s cheaper to buy than to make, plus too many stores in too small of an area (such as in Wichita), plus poorly run stores with not enough staffing, plus the lack of sewing education in public schools, plus what is likely a host of business reasons such as possible poor debt management or a management focus on raising the stock price at all costs. The list probably goes on and on.

  2. Nakisha says:

    I can’t even with Hancock 😦

    It is so sad. And I was lucky to have an amazing store, with GREAT staff and a backup store near my job. Ours hasn’t dropped below 50% on patterns and 20-30% off on fabrics so I haven’t bought much. Maybe I’ll drop in to the other one today. They were initially on the chopping block and may have further discounts.

    • The one store in Wichita is 100% shut down. I was so depressed after my last visit there that I decided I would avoid the closure on the other side of town. The only reason I usually went to that side was to visit Hancocks, so it’s pretty easy to avoid. I don’t need fabric or patterns that much. And anyone who visits my sewing room would agree!

  3. pixiesews says:

    Hopefully you will read this even though the post is older. First, let me say, welcome to the apparel fabric desert that is KS! I live in McPherson and the only thing that had saved my sewing sanity is being able to buy fabric and supplies online. Second, I am almost the only person I know who actually sews garments. Reading blogs helps me feel like I am not totally alone! I have enjoyed your posts and look forward to what else you have in store.

    • Thanks so much and thanks for commenting!! It is kind of sewing lonely here. I’m thankful to live in Wichita though with Needle Nook Fabrics. I get most of my knits and lingerie fabrics from there and the ladies who work in the store sew as well, so it’s a double bonus when I stop in. I do miss Hancocks…especially the pattern sales! The next big project after the pj’s is going to be the trench. I think I’m going to go with the sewaholic pattern, but haven’t 100% settled yet. I love the planning part. 🙂

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