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Q: I recently purchased some knit fabric. Before I begin, I want to clarify some instructions. You say to cut it all in one direction. Does this mean to forget the cutting sketch on the pattern instructions?

A: Pretend the pattern has a drawing for fabric with nap. This would mean that it must all be cut in one direction. It makes a tremendous difference when working with directional fabrics, which actually can look very different, according to the nap.

This week's winner

Each week, a reader wins a prize for sending in a helpful sewing hint. This week's winner is Marilyn Schmitz of Marietta, Ga. She will receive a collection of 100 hand-sewing needles from England. Her tip:

"Sewing in the winter means more static in the air. When I am sewing and cutting the ends of the threads, the threads tend to stick to my fingers and hands. I have found that if I keep a roller of lint remover nearby, I can stick the clinging thread to the roller."

You, too, could win a collection of hand-sewing needles. Send your sewing tips to Eunice Farmer, Box 31729, St. Louis, MO 63131, or If she selects your tidbit for publication, you'll receive this prize.

Eunice Farmer is a nationally recognized authority on sewing. She is an author, teacher, lecturer and fashion reporter, and she owns her own fabric boutique and sewing school in St. Louis.