A Lancaster lady who wants to surprise her husband for Christmas is anxiously searching for medium-size shirts made of rough-textured raw silk like the ones he wore 20 years ago. Can you help make this a smooth transaction, or will she have to tell her husband to keep his shirt on a little longer?
Florence Hooper of Canoga Park realizes that this is no snap, but she is looking for a photo lab, hopefully in her area, that can reprint Fotron negatives. Can you help before Florence develops a negative attitude about this, or will she be kept in the dark while we wait to see how things develop?
B. Berman of Hollywood would like to get hold of a cloth or nylon bag with wheels attached, so that she can wheel her groceries onto a bus and then to her apartment; the luggage and hardware stores she asked had nothing like that. Can you help get Berman her meals on wheels, or will this problem be food for thought because it will never be in the bag?
Reader-to-Reader Help Line: Vivian E. at (818) 353-0718 needs a curtain-rod thimble , which is a small plastic item that fits on the end of curtain rods so the curtains can slide across without tearing; neither drapery nor hardware stores seem to carry them. Please help stem the slide in Vivian's house, otherwise it will be curtains for her. . . . Kathleen P. at (714) 597-5601 has been bending everybody's ear while searching for staples to her husband's T-18 Arrow stapler, but no luck so far. Please help so that everything in Kathleen's house won't have to go down to the wire while her mettle is being tested.
Note: The Reader-to-Reader Help Line is only for one-time items and for products no longer available in stores. And you must give us written permission to publish your telephone number, so that others may contact you directly.
Bonnie Gissler of La Habra, who was looking for a 10-inch-diameter mirror on an adjustable floor stand, will soon be able to stand her ground. H.D. of Seal Beach says the Bath Shop at Westminster Mall has these stands. Our other sources are mail order firms. Lynn Geller of Los Angeles and Mary Madsen of Havasu Lake say the mirror stand is available for $49.95 from Brookstone, 5 Vose Farm Road, Peterborough, N.H. 03460. Phyllis R. Gillman of Laguna Hills suggests the catalogue by Montege, 8 Olson Ave., Edison, N.J. 08880; the price for a rotating mirror is $68 for brass, $62 for chrome. And Harriett Wagner of Los Angeles says Miles Kimball, 41 West 8th St., Oshkosh, Wis. 54901, sells an adjustable standing mirror that folds for storage.
For Luella L. Dealey of Culver City, who is having the darnest time looking for darning cotton, we have a mail-order source. Dolores G. Barlow of Pearblossom writes that she gets darning cotton all the time from Coats & Clark, P.O. Box 1010, Toccoa, Ga.; so does Eleanor Georgi, who has six spools of white darning cotton that she no longer needs. If interested, please send a stamped, self-addressed envelope.
We have another mail-order source for rug grippers, to keep rugs from sliding. Nola Richards of Arcadia writes that Brookstone Homewares, 5 Vose Farm Road, Peterborough, N.H. 03460, sells a 4x6-foot pad (that you can trim to any size with ordinary scissors) for $29.95. They also have a 6x9-foot pad for $59.95.
Lura Angell of Camarillo, who was looking for parchment paper liners (for baking), will soon be able to spread the dough around; we have many sources. Locally, according to one reader, Williams-Sonoma sells 20-square-foot rolls for $3.50. Clarice Secrest of Clarice's Cake Decorating and Candy Making Supplies in Newhall also sells parchment paper in that size. Another local contact is Esther K. Oyler, who can be reached at (213) 472-9419. And Edie Suval of Encino suggests California Poly & Paper Bag Co., 19755 Bahama St., Northridge. Also, Bridgeford Frozen Bread, available in many stores, has a coupon deal for pan liners (from Mrs. George Oswald of Pasadena and Chris Mackey of Hanford).
Here are our mail order sources for pan liners: M. Coppock of Downey and Ruth Lane of Lancaster suggested James River Corp., KVP Group, Parchment, Mich. 49004. A Van Nuys reader told us about Home Health Products, P.O. Box 3130, Virginia Beach, Va. 23454; they sell six 24x36-inch sheets for $3.95. And Dorothy Dickinson of Highland Park mentioned Miles Kimball, address above.
We also have two do-it-yourself hints. Marjorie Anderson of Los Angeles positions a pan in the center of a sheet of aluminum foil and fits the foil around the pan; then she presses this foil pan inside another one of the same size, removes the inside pan and comes up with a perfectly fitting liner. But Dorothy Beichel of Eagle Rock, who says she has been baking for more than 50 years, has an even simpler plan. She has never greased a pan in her life because her grandmother told her that baked things don't stick on the side, only on the bottom. Consequently, she traces the outline of her baking pan on one thickness of a brown paper bag, cuts it out and places it into the bottom of the pan. When done, she inverts the baked goods on a rack and simply peels off the paper.