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Photo from the Mrs Depew Vintage Studio (2)W.webp

August Shop of the Month Mrs. Depew Vintage

“I was always drawn back to my root - a love of vintage and a drive to preserve as much history as possible.”

I have been waiting on Pins & Needles (pun intended) to write this Shop of the Month piece. See, I have been an admirer of Anna Depew for years. Not just for her obvious talents but for her ethics, attention to detail, willingness to help others, commitment to educating any willing student on the subject of conservation, and so much more. She is, in my humble opinion, a truly good person. So, let’s get started!

The first thing that I want to do is share the video that Mrs. Depew shared with me of Sir Butters the pattern dog

 

Mrs. Depew Vintage got its start fifteen years ago when Anna found a box of vintage patterns in an antique shop when she was in college. She carefully traced them to sew them for herself and started selling them in her Etsy shop to help pay for textbooks. After that, she was hooked!

When Anna married Mike, her life changed rather radically. See, Mike is in the Air Force, and they have moved five times in the past 15 years. Each time, she has lovingly packed up this beautiful studio and relocated it to a new city or even a new country. The fact that where they are currently living is where they have been for the past six years shortens each of the previous locations pretty significantly. 

When Anna sent me these pictures to use for this post, I was agape! What an amazing studio. I want to fly to Georgia for a tour. It is the antithesis of mine! Well, actually, I've been working on mine. 

Just a hint - you will see mine in a month!

I love the calming colors that she chose and the gorgeous as well as practical wall decor that graces the wall above the design table. 

Her collection of pattern catalogs and rare publications that she lovingly restores and scans. She then offers them as PDFs to her customers who would otherwise never have had the opportunity to even see these gems. Take the ones pictured below. I had never heard of any of these before I saw them in her shop. 

Cornwall's Improved Chart tailor system and book  from Mrs. Depew Vintage from Mrs. Depew
Kellog French Tailor System coming soonW.webp

Here are two examples of Anna's hard work paying off! On the left is Cornwall's Improved Chart Tailor System. On the right, Kellog French Tailor System. Coming Soon! 

Her mother, and her mentor, owned an antique shop so she got quite an education hanging out with her mum in the store and helping when she could. As a summer antique store shopper as a teenager, we would go up and down the Eastern Seaboard combing through shops and barns looking for treasures, If it rained, you could get great deals! So, I can appreciate the vast amount of knowledge that her mum must have been sharing with her every day. I now live in Orange California – well known for its antique stores. I avoid them as I fall in love with everything! Back to Anna!

Below you will find a beautifully restored vintage 1940s Nurse's Uniform sewing pattern that can also be used as a shirtwaist dress. Pattern 3164 can be purchased as an Instant Download or as a Paper Pattern

Depew 3164 1940s Nurse Uniform and dress W.webp

These pattern catalogs are beyond beautiful. I have some but nothing this old! Truly a treasured collection!! 

The fact that she shares by educating anyone who has an interest is a bonus. It also tells us quite a bit about who she is.If you haven't checked out her pattern school, I highly recommend that you do. 

Mrs Depew 3046.webp

Mrs. Depew's 1920s Dress and

Embroidery Pattern #3046

I could go on forever! You absolutely must visit her website. While you are there, Check out her section of

Free Downloads 

Here are Anna's answers to my questions

Q: What is your favorite part of what you do?

A: Oh, there are so many great aspects to choose from but getting that rare, hard to find pattern into the hands of the person who will love and appreciate it the most - ensuring its survival, that's the best part.

Q: What is your least favorite part?

A: Ordering office supplies. It is the bane of my existence. 

Q: What advice would you give to someone just starting out?

A: Love the patterns. Treat them like family; like even the boring ones are a rare treasure. Everything else is just details.

Q: Do you have a favorite decade?

A: 1920! I love the idea of reliving the fashion from 100 years ago, day by day. 

Is there anything else that you would like to share? 

To further my aim of preserving as much pattern history as I can for the next generation, I've created a Pattern School section of our website. This collection of resources, tutorials, and articles aim to teach others how to research, properly care for, preserve, store, and safely enjoy their patterns. You can find it here: https://mrsdepew.com/pattern-school-1

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