Here is the first in the series of "Meet Our Advertisers": Jen from MOMSPatterns!
How long have you been in business?
I've been in business on eBay since 1998, and owned my own vintage sewing pattern website since September, 2006!
What motivated you to go into the vintage pattern business?
I used to sell costume patterns, until a dear friend of my mother's found a box of 1940s patterns in her aunt's attic. She asked if I'd be interested in selling them, and I originally, very snobbily said, "Oh, I'll TRY but I can't see that there's a market for USED OLD PATTERNS." Imagine my surprise and delight when they sold for more money than my NEW patterns! I adore the styles and fashions from the past, so started focusing on the vintage styles and couldn't be happier having a job dealing with what I LOVE.
What did you do before this?
I used to foreclose houses for a large, well-known bank!
Where are you based?
I'm in a town called Orange Park, which is right outside of Jacksonville in Florida. Hot, humid & sunny … all the time.
More fun questions:
What's the weirdest/best/most unusual/most beautiful thing you've ever
Dabbling in vintage clothing, I found nearly ninety (yes, 90!) vintage new old stock DeWeese bathing suits from the 1970s. My pals Michelle from Dollhouse Bettie and Ang from Dorothea's Closet Vintage are selling them on consignment for me and we are reveling in the whole Charlie's Angels feel of them!
What do you have in stock that you can't believe hasn't sold?
Most of the 1930s and 1940s FABULOUS DuBarry patterns I recently added … They're just fantastic … really!
What do you dream about finding?
A box of 100 or more uncut 1920s McCall's vintage sewing patterns … An original Fortuny Delphos evening gown … and good homes for any of my beloved patterns for sale!
What do you enjoy most about working with vintage clothes and vintage sewing patterns?
I love the quality of vintage clothing. The attention to details … the shirring, the draping and the utter GLAMOUR of the days gone by.
What do you wish someone would ask you about your site?
May I Link To You / Blog About You / Advertise For You?
It's a good day at work when …
I wake up to emails from people telling me that they just found the MOMSPatterns site and they had SO much fun looking at styles that their mother or grandmother had made for them … when I can connect someone with a pattern they used to love SO much but lost … and when there's a nice stack of orders to get filled & shipped!
If I ran the internet for a day I'd …
Make sure I was number one on Google for ALL vintage sewing search keywords & combinations so I could make sure I was reaching anyone who was interested in vintage, sewing, and vintage sewing!
The blogs I read (other than ADAD) are …
Random Acts of Vintage (My friend Lisa's blog)
You'd laugh if you knew this about me …
I CANNOT SEW!!
Jen has also offered to run a month long sale for you! Coupon code 'nowiknowjen' 15% off. From today until the end of the month!
More coupon details … you can use the code over & over & over again all month long, so as you see more patterns added throughout the month, you can STILL use that code! Free s&h to USA & Canada with the purchase of 5 or more patterns, discounted shipping rates available for international orders.
0 thoughts on “Meet Our Advertisers #1 : Jen of MOMSPatterns”
Well that was fun! And I’m happy to be the first poster to say so. Sad story with a good ending: about a year or more ago, I decided that having so much stuff around me doing nothing was not healthy in a “feng shui” sort of way. As I haven’t sewn anything in Many Years, the patterns I’d hoarded from my teens & my daughter’s youth were obviously useless, so I put those out in the recycling bin (or burned them), sent fabrics to local charity & gave the best to one friend who actually sometimes sews.Good part – about the time when I started feeling like I needed to work with my hands again (“mid-life crisis”), I discovered DAD & something called the Blogophere. I credit Erin with re-invigorating my old love, am having a great time trying to remember the stuff that I used to do so easily (altering patterns, sewing in a zipper,,,). I’m even raiding my own mother’s lovely old fabrics – which she hasn’t been so silly to throw out (she doesn’t throw anything out). I spent one night digging through an old Chinese camphor chest of hers, and dragged away pieces to “seed” my new stash. She found old letters & pictures from the 1940’s &50’s & it really was a wonderful bonding time. She can’t wait to see how I’m using fabrics these days.So, my hat is off to Erin, and to all you people whose enthusiasm & crazy humour are making such a cheerful impact on my life!Thank very much.
Great interview! It’s always interesting to hear stories of people establishing a new career/business, just by chance. You just fall in love with those vintage patterns! I found my first one by chance at a flea market – a 1930s Butterick pattern for a “frock” – and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Forgot to say – I’m surprised she doesn’t sew! Just goes to show that you don’t have to sew to appreciate these gorgeous old patterns!
I’m so glad that Jen has a job she loves! I’ve always received speedy, efficient orders from her, and I admire that she was among the first to let the scans of her products be used at the Vintage Patern Wiki. Because that site is quickly becoming a significant cache for vintage styles and construction, which can be searched by designers, historians and enthusiasts. Even once the patterns are sold, the database is there to record what people wore and how they made it. It’s a fabulous site and I love that Mom’s Patterns is willing to donate its images to flesh it out 🙂
Yeah Jen!You couldn’t have picked a better person to start this series out. Jen is the person who turned me on to ADAD and encouraged my love of vintage. And she is a super swell lady to boot.Jen rocks!-Janet
Hi Jen!!!Jen and Janet (Lanetz) get almost 100% of my vintage pattern dollars. Of all the stores I have contacted for this and that, they are the 2 that not only respond (and promptly) but seem like really nice people, too.New DuBarry’s?!?!?! Gotta go see!ps the irony. I am currently temping for a real estate consulting firm…acquisitions, relocations, er, condemnations… etc.
Dahling, you cannot sew? I understand…I have a seamstress on 24-hour-call. But it’s because I don’t soil my hands with actual work. The things you learn! Ciao!
hahaha OH Fashionista.. how I ADORE you! :)I TRULY appreciate all the positive feedback and comments and yup. It’s true. I can do an elastic waistband, stitch a hem and sew up the sides of a dolman sleeve t-shirt but.. THAT’S IT! No buttonholes. No zippers. No pockets. Yikes. And OH how I’ve tried!Some answers to some interesting questions I’m getting.. I thought I’d post here and share:Q 1. Will you think about adding a ‘Wish List’ so if I want a pattern but can’t buy it right away, I can save it?A 1. Unfortunately, my site host doesn’t have that capability for me, although it’s an interesting idea! The only drawback I can see if having tons of patterns ‘invisible’ on hold indefinately whilst other people are also wanting it.. and could purchase it right away.Q 2. All the patterns I want are SOLD! Will you get more of the same style??A 2. I am always and forever (queue Earth, Wind & Fire music here) on the hunt for and buying patterns. Feel free to send me a I WANT IT! Email and I’ll keep your email address in the event I DO come across another like the one you want that already sold.Q 3. How soon will you be adding some more patterns?A 3. Now that I’ve taught my husband to count pattern pieces *grin grin grin* I already have about 300 here in a box at my feet all ready scanned & waiting their turn to be listed. I try VERY HARD to put something in the store every couple of days.. but I never feel like it’s ‘worth it’ unless I can commit myself to tunking 50 or so at a time in. As a one woman show (aside from Mr. Moms counting help), it’s just ME putting the patterns into the store, so I get them in JUST as quickly as I can. Two, three times a week seems to be about what I can average :)Keep the comments & questions coming! And THANK YOU for the orders and continued and/or new patronage. I dig you ALL 🙂
Speaking of Wish Lists, I hope that should anyone, Jen included, spot Butterick 2241 anywhere, they’ll please let me know. It’s kind of a dowdy dress, part of that 4-Yard Line Erin discussed a month or so ago. I don’t know why I’m so obsessed, but I am, and MUST make it in white and get it out of my system 🙂 Have nice weekend, all!
Great post. I think I will certainly have to use Jen for my next pattern shopping experience. Last time I bought something on Ebay , after bidding frantically, it arrived only to discover that it was only the magazine illustration and instructions – No Pattern! The girl who sold it to me said she doesn’t sew, so hadn’t noticed a minor detail like that.
OH Miss Cookie.. I have SEEN that somewhere before! Whether I had it, have it, hmm, I don’t know but it’s duly noted and I’ll watch for it!Super kawaii mama.. wow, do you remember what the pattern was YOU were hoping to be receiving? I DO have a stash here.. (now if the unlisted inventory were a bit more organized, I’d be in heaven but that’s a whole ‘nuther story!)
Thanks, Jen 🙂
I too have to chime in and thank Erin for awakening in me a love of vintage patterns! I am hooked. A few years back I too dumped all my old patterns – I never had the “vision” of what they could be. But I will not dwell in the past – this is just an opportunity to find more. I now head immediately to the stash of patterns in every thrift store I frequent. And I have just placed an order with MOMS for 5 patterns that I just had to have! Thank you, Jen, for a very easy to navigate site.
Thank you for offering a discount for international postage! So many sites have discounted/free US postage, and hit the rest of us for the full postage. We end up feeling like we’re only there to subsidise US shoppers.I’ve been buying vintage patterns since I found one in an op shop/charity shop in 1980 – my problem is that I used to find a couple of great patterns each year; now with the internet, it’s more than a couple a week 🙂
You’re so welcome! Thank you all for your patronage.. I plan on adding at LEAST 25 patterns EVERY DAY over the next couple of weeks, so if you have time, come back and use that coupon code again!xoxJen @ MOMSPatterns
I look forward to your new additions!
Me too! Your prices seem to be very reasonable – that’s key to us sewers!