In this Sept. 5 commentary, I pondered VF's (NYSE:VFC) recent acquisition of trendy jeans maker Seven for All Mankind, and had a couple of questions about the company's strategies as well as whether it looked like a tantalizing investment at the moment. Although I considered myself on the fence about VF, I certainly had to give credit to the consumer goods company for making some fascinating moves right now.

VF's director of corporate communications, Paul Mason, emailed me the company's perspective on some of my questions and concerns that I believe VF shareholders -- or people who are considering the stock -- would be interested in hearing. Of course corporate communications executives are among the most bullish of folks, but it certainly doesn't hurt to provide their perspective so investors can form their own opinions.

First off, one of my concerns was the possibility that VF might widen distribution of the Seven for All Mankind brand and thereby tarnish it by moving down market. Mason responded that the company plans to maintain premium positioning of the brand, and that VF believes there are plenty of growth opportunities left in its current wholesale channel, as well as in expanding its retail stores. He also indicated that, historically, the company doesn't take premium or specialty brands and move them downward in distribution. He offered up North Face as an example, illustrating that VF recognizes how important it is that brands stay true to their core customer bases.

As for my scrutiny of VF's increasing debt, Mason pointed out that at the end of the second quarter VF's debt-to-capital ratio was just 20%, and by the end of the year it should be only 25%. VF is certainly correct in the stance that a 25% debt-to-capital ratio isn't generally considered too onerous for companies with good cash-generating abilities. While some of us might prefer debt-free companies, VF can easily handle the debt load it has taken on, as it could pay its interest 13 times with its operating income.

However, I am of the camp that likes debt-free companies, although two of the companies I do own, Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) and Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFMI), have both increased their debt recently, so I admit it's difficult to stay hard and fast on "rules" like that when you really like stocks for the long term. And preferring little or no debt is often a Foolish attribute. Of course, sometimes leverage is optimal and a company can maximize its growth strategy by finding the right mix of capital. (Here's an informative Foolish article that can help with contemplating debt and capital structures.)

Last but not least, I interpreted VF's price-to-earnings ratio (P/E) as sounding a wee bit high, since it currently slightly outpaces future growth expectations; its PEG ratio also sounds a little hefty, at 1.56. However, Mason argued that VF's P/E is low compared to its peers, despite the fact that it does exhibit double-digit growth and has a 48% dividend payout ratio. I can't deny that I find VF to be a more interesting stock idea than another similar company, Liz Claiborne (NYSE:LIZ), which has been gutting its brand portfolio as it struggles with a turnaround. Liz Claiborne is selling many of its brands in order to focus on its higher-end ones, such as Juicy Couture, Kate Spade, and Lucky Brand Jeans.

I ended last week's commentary feeling iffy on VF, but I'm definitely interested in keeping an eye on the stock. In fact, I put it in my Motley Fool CAPS watch list as an "outperform." My uncertainty might be a good example of how there's art as well as science to investing. The art here is whether some of VF's newly acquired brands are going to pay off big over the long haul and possibly make today's multiples look cheap in retrospect. While it's comforting to know VF will keep high-end brand integrity intact, investors will still have to wait and see how sales and profits transpire. And if such moves pay off big, people like me -- with an uncertain attitude -- might look back and regret missing an opportunity.

VF is a Motley Fool Income Investor recommendation. Starbucks and Whole Foods Market are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks.

Alyce Lomax owns shares of Starbucks and Whole Foods Market. The Fool has a disclosure policy.