Thursday, 31 October 2013

Book Review Stitch 'n Bitch The Knitter's Handbook

photo from Amazon

Chapter One

Take Back The Knit

Why Young Women are Taking Up Knitting Once More
My Craft Family
I knit, Therefore I Am 
The New Knitting Craze
A Stitch in Time, A Brief History of Knitting

Chapter Two
What a Girl Wants, What a Girl Needs
Tools of the Trade
Everything you Need to Know About Yarn
Yarn Weights
Tools of the Trade
The Long and Short of Needles
How to Read a Yarn Label
Making a Centre Pull Ball
Managing Your Stash

Chapter Three
The Knitty Gritty
Learning to Cast ON, Bind Off and Knit
Casting on Using Double Cast On Method
Knitting in both English and Continental Styles
Yarn Holds
Binding Off Your Work
Starting a New Ball
Changing Colour
Making Stripes
Weaving in Yarn Ends
Beginners Basic 1
Go Go Garter Stitch Scarf

Chapter Four
Purl, Too
Learning to Purl and Make Simple Stitch Patterns
Purling in Both English and Continental Styles
How To Make Stockinette, Rib and Seed Stitch
How to Tell weather to Knit or Purl
Making Stitch Designs
Reading Charts
Edge Stitches
Binding Off in Pattern
Using Circular and Double Pointed Needles
Beginner's Basic 11 Ribbed for Her Pleasure Scarf

Chapter Five
Leaning to Increase and Decrease
How to increase
The Bar Increase
The Making One Increase
The Yarn Over
Decreasing Stitches
Knit Two Together
Slip, Slip, Knit (SSK) and Slip, Knit, Pass Slipped Stitch Over (SKP)
Single And Cable Cast On
Beginners Basic 111
Kitschy Kerchief
The Rule of Engagement What Not to Knit for Your Boyfriend

Chapter Six
Finishing School
Learning to Sew Seams, Pick Up Stitches and Block Your Work
Joining Knit Pieces Together
Sewing Side Seams Using Mattress Stitch and Backstitch
Connecting the Tops of Knit Pieces
Joining a Top to a Side edge
Fake grafting
The Kitchener Stitch
The Three Needle Bind Off
Learning to Pick Up Stitches
Blocking for Blockheads
Never Look a Gift Hat in the Mouth The Fine Art of Knitting for Others

Chapter Seven
Getting Knitty with it
Fancy Things to Do with Needles and Yarn
Bells and Whistles, Fringes, Tassels, Pom poms
How To Make Blanket and Duplicate Stitches
Making Clothes
Advanced Colour Knitting
fair Isle
How to Make a Crochet Chain
Single Crochet
Crab Stitch
In the Loop Crochet Tips

Chapter Eight
The Stitch Doctor's Guide to Fixing Mistakes
Picking Up Dropped Knit and Purl Stitches
Changing Purls into Knits and Vice Versa
Fixing Extra Stitches
Unknitting One Stitch At a Time
Unravelling Rows of Knitting
Tightening Saggy Stitches
Adding Length to an Unintentional Crop Top
Frogging your Work
Quick Fixin' Tricks

Chapter Nine
A Guide to the Wonderful World of Knitters
Starting Your Own Stitch 'n Bitch
Virtual Knitting Communities
The Knit List
On-line Knitting Blogs
Free Knitting Patterns
Computer Programs for Knitters
Real Life Knitting Organizations
The Best Knitting Books
Magazines for Knitters
A Field Guide to Knitters
How to Read Knitting Patters

Chapter Ten
Scarves and Hats
Coney Island Fireworks Scarf
Windy City Scarf
Alien Illusion Scarf
Hot Head
Sparkle Hat
Adults Only Devil Hat and Official Kittyville Hat
Loopy Velez Cowl

Chapter Eleven
Chinese Charm Bag
Zeeby's Bag
Meema'a Felted
Marsupial Tote
Punk Rock Backpack
Cricket's Technicolour
Techno Cozy
Fluffy Cuff Mittens
Pippi Knee stockings
Powerful Wrist

Chapter Twelve
Baby Stuff
Big Bad Baby Blanket
Umbilical Cord Hat

Chapter Thirteen
Under the Hoodie
The Go Everywhere, Go With Everything Cardigan
To Dye For
Cape Mod
Big Sack Sweater
Pin-up Queen
The Manly Sweater
Cowl and Howl Set
Peppermint Twist

Chapter Fourteen
Summer Stuff
Tank Girl 
Little Black Top
Queen of Hearts and wonder Woman Bikinis

Chapter Fifteen
Princess Snowball
Cat Bed

Chapter Sixteen
DIY Tote Bag and Iron on Patch
Roll Your Own Needle Case
Circular Knitting Needle Holder
Resources and Yarn
Stitch n Bitch The Knitters Handbook is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Book Review 400 Knitting Stitches

photo from Amazon

Whether you're a beginning knitter or advanced, whether your tastes range from simple knit-purl stitching to fancy Daisy or Moroccan screen, a dictionary of stitch patterns is indispensable! 
Young knitters, old knitters, hip knitters, traditional knitters: they all enjoy different styles. But every knitter from age 5 to 95 needs a good dictionary of stitches.  400 Knitting Stitches is a comprehensive guide that invites knitters to experiment with a variety of new stitch combinations. The book is conveniently divided into eight categories: knit-purl, crossed and cables, slipped, lacy,double, twisted, cast-off, and fancy stitches.  Making a romantic lacy wrap or a classic cable sweater? Whatever your style, there's a stitch in here for you. 
Each of the 400-plus featured stitches is accompanied by easy-to-follow written and charted instructions,as well as a full-color photograph. A section on basic knitting information and techniques at the front of the book makes this volume even more invaluable. 

From advanced knitters experimenting with their own designs to beginners looking for clear instruction and explanation, 400 Knitting Stitches is an essential reference for knitters of all kinds.

Chapter One
Knitting Basics

Chapter Two
Knit Purl Stitches

Chapter Three
Crossed Stitches and Cables

Chapter Four
Slipped Stitches

Chapter Five
Lacy Stitches

Chapter Six
Double Stitches

Chapter Seven
Twisted Stitches

Chapter Eight
Cast Off Stitches

Chapter Nine
Fancy Stitches

Chapter Ten

400 Knitting Stitches is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Monday, 28 October 2013

Book Review Crochet Me

Photo from Amazon

Join the crochet revolution! Young designers everywhere are making crochet their own with hip, edgy, stylish designs that are toppling the frumpy, uncool image of the craft. Crochet Me: Designs to Fuel the Crochet Revolution by Kim Werker, editor of Interweave Crochet magazine and founder of the online community, offers 18 designs from emerging crochet artists certain to get those hooks moving. How did the crochet renaissance get started? Read short essays about experimenting with crochet to empower readers to take design risks. The projects run the spectrum from crochet jewelry to thigh-high stockings, retro bags, scarves, sweaters, shrugs, camis, home decor objects, and more. Projects explore color, texture, design, embellishment, and how to customize patterns to fit personal style. Basic crochet techniques will be covered along with tutorials on sizing, design, and special techniques. Up-and-coming designers are profiled throughout the book to give an entertaining and inspiring insight into this new generation of crocheters - what inspires them, how they find community with other crocheters, and creative ideas for breaking the rules and representing their individual crochet style. This book will empower everyone to start their own crochet revolution. This is crochet for the people!

BabyDoll Dress
Icelandic Turtleneck
Victorian Shrug and Wrap
Mini Wrap Skirt
Messenger Bag
I'm A Convert Sweater
Style Moderne Jewelry
Mesmerize Sweater
Shades of Plaid Scarves
Leaves Sweater
Thigh Highs
Comfy Cardi
Five O'Clock Tank
Cocoon Bag
Variations Basket
Circle Rug
Doug and Gordo Dolls

Crochet Me is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Friday, 25 October 2013

Book Review 200 Crochet Tips, Techniques and Trade Secrets

Photo from Amazon

The basics of crochet are very quick to master, but feeling confident about how to move beyond the basics and create a stylish, professional finish for all your crochet projects is a common dilemma faced by many crocheters. Presented in an easy-to-use format arranged by topic and cross-referenced, so you can dip in and out as needed for advice, this book offers hundreds of answers, fixes, insider tips, and secrets to help you along the way.
Divided into sections that cover a multitude of topics such as: choosing the right hook for you, putting gauge measurements to work, fool-proof ways of turning, quick fixes for uneven edges, shaping with increases and decreases, how to make neat corners, marking essentials, dealing with yarn ends, choosing the right seam and even how to look after crochet garments, 200 Crochet Tips, Techniques & Trade Secrets contains a wealth of technical knowledge and handy tips. Aimed at all crocheters, from the beginner to the more experienced, this book is a valuable addition to any craft library.

Chapter One
Hooks, Tools and Yarns
Choosing and Holding a Hook
Essential Tool Kit
Looking After Hooks
Which Yarn?
Changing Yarn

Chapter Two
Patterns and Charts
Understanding Crochet Patterns
Reading Symbol Charts
Mixing and Matching Stitch Patterns
Working From a Colour Block Chart
Working from a Filet Crochet Chart

Chapter Three
All About Gauge
Evaluating Drape
Garment Shapes
Getting a Good Fit From a Ready Made Pattern
Design Basics
Designing Scarves
Designing Shawls and Wraps

Chapter Four
Crochet Techniques
Working a Foundation Chain
Working Basic Stitches
Turning and Starting Chains
Understanding Stitch Patterns, Multiples and Repeats
Joining in New Yarn
Joining Lengths of Yarn
Working Filet Crochet
Working Lace Stitches
Working Shells and Fans
Working Clusters
Changing Scale
Working Chevron Patterns
Working Puff Stitches
Working Popcorns
Working Bobbles
Adding Texture with Post and Spike Stitches
Working Crossed Stitches
Shaping Filet Crochet
Making Inset Pockets
Neckbands and Collars
Button and Buttonhole Bands
Adding Buttons
Making Your Own Buttons
Working Edge Treatments
Edging and Insertions
Jazzy Trims and Fringes

Chapter Five
Working in the Round
Working Out From the Centre
Working a Basic Round Block
Fitting Blocks Together
Turning Corners on Shaped Blocks
Working in Layers
Making a Spiral
Joining Lace Blocks
Tubes and Cylinders

Chapter Six
Grouping Colours
Stripe Patterns
Working Jacquard and Intarsia Patterns
Felting Crochet
Applying Beads
Setting Up a Dye Studio
Handpainting Yarn with Acid Dyes

Chapter Seven
Dealing with Yarn Ends
Blocking and Pressing
Working Guidelines


200 Crochet Tips, Techniques and Trade Secrets is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Thursday, 24 October 2013

I Won a Giveaway!

I've been lucky enough to have won a giveaway!

I got a message from Louise at Sew Sensational on Friday to say congratulations that I won the Simplicity Lisette 1878  sewing pattern.  

diplomat dress sewing pattern
Picture taken from Sew Lisette blog

I entered the giveaway a few weeks ago and completely forgot about entering.....  So it was a lovely surprise when I got the email from Louise that I had won!

Book Review 200 Crochet Blocks for Blankets Throws and Afghans

Photo from Amazon

Choose from 200 beautiful block designs and learn different ways of joining them to make blankets and throws that are both functional and decorative. From Art Deco geometric patterns to traditional chequer-board stripes and elaborate motifs, discover new ways to combine colour, pattern and texture. Crochet is one of the oldest and most fascinating ways of creating a fabric out of yarn. Find out how to create wonderful and unique afghans, wall hangings and accessories in a kaleidoscope of colourful contemporary and traditional designs. All stitches and techniques are clearly explained with step-by-step illustrations, from working in rows and in the round to joining blocks and making figures. At-a-glance symbols denote the methods used and level of difficulty, so both new and experienced crafters can easily create a crochet masterpiece.


Chapter One
How To Use This Book
Mix and Match
Mixing and Matching Blocks
Using Colours
Mix and Match Designs
Blue Horizons
Deco Delight
Waterlily Pond
Eastern Promise
Tumbling Bubbles
Golden Glow
Stripes and  Squares
Floral Fantasy
Merry Xmas
Fourth of July
Baby Stripes
Pastel Rainbow

Chapter Two
Block Directory

Chapter Three
How To Start
Joining Yarns
Textured Stitches
Three Dimensional Motifs
Colour work Patterns from Chart
Working in Rounds
Yarn Colours


200 Crochet Blocks for Blankets, Throws and Afghans is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Book Review The Encyclopedia of Crochet Techniques

Photo from Amazon

Wonderful textured fabrics are now within easy reach! This complete guide explains, in a clear and easy-to-follow fashion, how to create everything from openwork and lace through to woven and hairpin crochet. As useful for the highly experienced as the absolute beginner, this information-packed book takes you through the basic techniques to a highly adaptable project section that will provide guidance and inspiration for making colourful and stylish garments for you to wear. Create wonderful textured fabrics with this complete guide to crochet. Essential tools and techniques are clearly explained with step-by-step illustrations, from working stitches and measuring gauge to adding embellishments and finishing off. Each technique includes stitch patterns to try out, and an adaptable project section allows you to practice your new skills making original and colourful garments and accessories using your own choice of yarns and stitches.

Chapter One
Crochet Essentials
Equipment and Materials
Basic Skills
Measuring Tension
Joining Yarns
Reading Patterns and Charts
Pressing and Blocking

Chapter Two
Techniques and Stitches
Working Stripe Patterns
Working Ridged Stitches
Working Clusters
Working Shell Stitches
Working Bobbles
Working Popcorns
Working Puff Stitches
Working Loop Stitches
Openwork Lace Stitches
Filet Crochet
Working Chevron Patterns
Working Spike Stitches
Working Raised Stitches
Working Jacquard Patterns
Working Intarsia Patterns
Tubular Crochet
Working Circular Motifs
Working and Joining Squares
Working and Joining Hexagons
Tunisian Crochet
Broomstick Crochet
Hairpin Crochet
Making Cords
Making Sew On Trims
Working Edge Finishes
Working Buttonholes and Button Loops
Braids, Edgings and Fringes
Surface Crochet
Applying Beads
Applying Sequins

Chapter Three
Winter Scarf
Baby Afghan
Filet Crochet Wrap
Buttonhole Bag
Intarsia Potholder
Hexagon Pillow
Striped Bag

Chapter Four
Crochet Garments
Hats, Scarves and Mittens
Shawls, Ponchos and Wraps
Crochet in the Home
Dolls and Toys
Care of Crochet
Abbreviations and Symbols

The Encyclopedia of Crochet Techniques is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Monday, 21 October 2013

Book Review Stitch 'n' Bitch Crochet The Happy Hooker

Picture from Amazon


Debbie does crochet! Debbie Stoller, the "knitting superstar", has been leading an entire movement of hip young knitters with her "New York Times" best seller "Stitch 'n Bitch" and it's follow up "Stitch 'n Bitch Nation". But guess what? For every one knitter in the world there are three crocheters - which translates into millions of hip and crafty crocheter's ready to be happy hookers with stitch 'n bitch attitude. Written in cheeky chick style, this heavily illustrated book - featuring four-colour photographs and instructional illustrations throughout - is chock full of instruction, inspiration, and to-die-for designs, from a fishnet skullcap to a lacy evening wrap. For knitters and new crocheter's exploring the hook comes the primer, a discussion of tools, what the gauges mean, plus basic techniques and stitch patterns - including the chain stitch, picot, flowers, filet crochet, changing yarns, and finishing. 40 fabulous funky projects - and no there are no grandma's doilies!
Stoller's "Stitch 'N Bitch" and "Stitch 'N Bitch Nation" have become icons of the knitting craze: every hip young needleworker has at least one of them next to the yarn stash. Now, she uses the same approach that made her knitting books so successful in this entree to sexed-up hookwork that takes pains to show crocheting isn't for grandma anymore. Stoller provides everything short of the hook and yarn a crafter will need to learn how to crochet. From a history of the craft to mind-bogglingly complete instructions and dozens of charted and explained patterns (the majority of which are for women's clothing and accessories--there are no afghans here), it's all presented in Stoller's bright, witty style and accompanied by cheery color photographs. Beginners will like the easy construction of the "Stripes (and Stripes) Forever Scarf," and intermediate crocheters will enjoy whipping up a "Cupcake," a purple sweater confection. Experienced crocheters have patterns here too, such as the astonishing lace "Go For Baroque" sweater. This latest entry into the "Stitch 'N Bitch" canon is sure to be another bestseller.

Part One
Learning to Crochet

Chapter One
A Brief History of Hooking
The Joys of Crochet
Crochet vs. Knitting
A Guide to Crochet Lingo

Chapter Two
The Tools of Crochet
Getting to Know Crochet Hooks
Choosing Your Yarn
Yarn Weights
Crochet Thread
Yarn Textures and Crochet
Making Skeins and Hanks
How To Read A Yarn Label
Other Crocheting
Supplies Standard Yarn Weight

Chapter Three
Making the Chain Stitch, Single Crochet and Slip Stitch
Making a Slipknot
Holding Your Yarn and Hook
Making the Chain Stitch
Making Single Crochet Stitches into the Chain
Other Ways to Crochet into the Chain
The Turning Chain
Single crochet Row 2
The Structure of Crochet
Understanding Gauge
The Slip Stitch
Finishing Off Your Work

Chapter Four
Making Half Double Crochet, Double Crochet and Triple Crochet
The Half Double Crochet Stitch
The Double Crochet Stitch
The Triple Crochet Stitch
Double Triple and Triple Triple Crochet
How To Add Yarn
Understanding Crochet Directions

Chapter Five
Increasing, Decreasing and Working in Circle
Adding Stitches
Decreasing Stitches
Crocheting a Circle
Making a Circle with Smaller Hole

Chapter Six
Making Fancy Stitches
How to Read a Crochet Chart
The V Stitch]Making Shell Stitches
Making Bobble, Puff and Popcorn Stitches
Making the Mesh Stitch
Making the Fishnet Stitch
Making a Picot Stitch
Inserting Your Hook in Other Locations
Making Ribbing with Crochet
Crocheting Around the Post
Making the Crossed Stitch
How to Make The Spiked Stitch
Crocheting with Granny Square

Chapter Seven
Making Images in Crochet
Colour Work Using Tapestry in Crochet
Working Filet Crochet
Learning the Afghan Stitch

Chapter Eight
Sewing Your Pieces Together, Blocking and Adding Decoration
Sewing Seams
Weaving Sides and Tops of Crochet Pieces Together
Making Joins Using the Whip Stitch
Seaming with the Back Stitch
Crochet Seams
Making Buttonholes
Adding Fringes, Tassels and Pom Poms
Making Decorative cords and Crocheted Buttons
Stitching onto Crochet
Working Away Yarn Ends

Part Two

How to Read a Crochet Pattern

Scarves and Shawls
Garden Scarf
One Skein Scarf
Stripes and Stripes Forever
Sweet Pea Shawl
Cold Shoulders

Yeehaw Lady
Anarchy Irony Hat
Boy Beanie
Spring in Winter

In Bloom and Fit to Be Tied
Granny#'s NO Square
Orange You Glad and Fashion First Aid
Exchange Bag
Fat Bottom Bag

Spring and Summer
Short 'n' Sweet
Designer Wannabe Tank Top
Knot Ugly Shrug
Bikini in a Bag

Fall and Winter
Jolly Roger
Unseamly Sweater
Go For Baroque
Violet Beauregard

One Night Glam
Ruffled Corset Belt
Fluffy Bunny Slippers
Ladylike Gloves

Home, Gifts and Baby
Doris Day Mat
Cozy Pod Creatures
Colour Bar Blanket
Li'l Monkey
Seija Set

 Stitch 'n' Bitch Crochet The Happy Hooker is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers. 

Friday, 18 October 2013

Book Review - Vogue Sewing

Photo from Amazon

Since its introduction in 1970, Vogue Sewing has been the favourite of sewing enthusiasts, covering everything you need to know to create fashionable, professional-quality clothing—from fabric selection and construction basics to advanced pattern alterations and couture techniques. Now, fully revised and updated, this latest edition stays true to the spirit of the original Vogue Sewing, while providing up-to-the-minute information and a wealth of colour charts, step-by-step illustrations and time-saving tips to make your sewing quick and easy. 
 In this book you will find:
Information on the newest sewing equipment, notions, fabrics, linings and supplies on the market.
A wealth of colour charts step by step  illustrations and time saving tips to make tour sewing quick and easy.
Instructions on taking your measurements and adjusting patterns to achieve the perfect fit for your body type.
No mater what your skill level or sewing needs, you are sure to find the answers and inspiration in this comprehensive manual .  A trusted classic for more than 35 years, Vogue Sewing promises to remain the premier guidebook for a whole new generation of sewers!

Chapter 1-The Fashion Game
In chapter 1 you will find the following sections:
 fashion sewing as an art form, colour, prints, texture, line, proportion and balance, your fashion analysis, figure and your body profile.

Chapter 2 -The Wonderful World of Fabrics
 In chapter 2 you will find the following sections:

 the wonderful world of fabrics, fibres, yarns, fabric structure, basic weaves, knits, other fabric constructions, finishes, colour and fabric pattern, fibre and fabric facts, inner construction, guide to under lining's and linings and guide to interfacing.

Chapter 3 -Your Pattern Profile
In chapter 3 you will find the following sections:

pattern design, the creation of a pattern, the vogue catalogue, choosing the pattern size for you, your body measurements, understanding pattern sizing and understanding ease.

Chapter 4 - Patterns and Equipment
In chapter 4 you will find the following sections:
pattern particulars, pattern pieces: blueprints, pattern cutting guide, choosing the correct fabric, fabrics requiring extra yardage, fabric width conversion chart, notions: your sewing accessories, needle and thread chart, special uses, the sewing machine, machine equipment, the overlock machine and tools for every sewing need.

Chapter 5 -Prepare to Sew
In chapter 5 you will find the following sections:

prepare to sew, preparing your fabric, achieving perfect fit, understanding ease, identify lengths, prepare to alter your pattern, flat pattern adjustments, dresses, skirts and bodice adjustments, pants adjustments, cut with care, special fabric layouts, mark with accuracy and more notes on underlining.

Chapter 6 - Construction Basics
In chapter 6 you will find the following sections:
your complete sewing handbook, hand stitches - getting started, basting, hand sewing, machine stitching, darts, tucks, pleats, godets, gathering and shirring, ruffles and mitering.

Chapter 7 - Construction Techniques
In chapter 7 you will find the following sections:

 interfacing applications, facing and other edge finishing, bindings, bands,castings, collars, flat collar, rolled collar, shawl collar, standing collar, fold over bias collar, tie collar, collar with stand, detachable collar,sleeves, gussets, sleeve finishes, placket openings for cuffs, special sleeve closings, cuffs, pockets, welt pockets, side front slanted pockets, in seam pockets, waistlines, waistbands, belts and carriers, closures, fabric and thread loops, buttons, zippers, fasteners, hems, hem finishes, special hems and pressing.

Chapter 8 - Advanced Pattern Alternations
In chapter 8 you will find the following sections:

 prepare to alter, personal fitting alterations - dresses, skirt and bodice, personal fitting alterations - pants and fitting as you sew.

Chapter 9 - Fabrics Requiring Special Handling
In chapter 9 you will find the following sections:

 fabrics with give, fabrics that flow and float, fabrics with luster, fabrics with surface style, leather and suede and the elegance of fur.

Chapter 10 - Impeccable Tailoring
In chapter 10 you will find the following sections:

creative tailoring, first stage - the skirt, tailoring challenge,jacket or coat, attaching interfacing to your garment and lining as a finale.

Chapter 11 - The Custom Touch
In chapter 11 you will find the following sections: 

couture techniques, the inside story, the shapekeepers, the finest fastenings, the finishing touches, creative trims, fringe, lace and embroidered trims, beading feather and fur, fashion stitching and fabric manipulation and embellishment.

"Vogue" Sewing - revised and updated is one of my favourite books and for me it is a must have book, it is my sewing bible!
It is a must have for any sewing library - beginner, intermediate and advanced.
Everything you could ever want to know about sewing is in this book .
"Vogue" Sewing - revised and updated is very comprehensive with clear concise directions, illustrations and photographs.

Vogue Sewing is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Book Review - Weekend Sewing

Photo from Amazon

"Weekend Sewing", inspired by the STC bestseller "Weekend Knitting", features unique sewing projects that can be completed in a weekend or less, plus fun ideas for incorporating sewing into a relaxed, creative lifestyle. Projects for both beginning and intermediate sewers include dresses for girls and women, pyjamas sized for the family, pillowcases, throw pillows and travel bags. The book also includes recipes, such as soup to simmer on the stove while you're sewing, ideas for sewing with friends and children, plus useful information about setting up an inspiring sewing space, buying a new or used sewing machine and the basic sewing skills needed to complete the projects in the book. All of the instructions are clearly and beautifully illustrated by the author and the requisite patterns are included on two pullout pages at the back of the book.

Chapter 1
Home and Away

Chapter 2
Dressing up and Dressing Down

Chapter 3
Sewing for kids

Chapter 4
Sewing Basics

Weekend Sewing: More Than 40 Projects and Ideas for Inspired Stitching I like this book but it is not one of my favourite books.  There are quite a few errors in this book regarding the patterns and you have to go to Heather Ross's website for the errata .  Weekend sewing has 29 projects with full instructions as well as recipes and tips for setting up a home sewing studio.

Weekend Sewing is available from Amazon.

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Book Review - I Am Cute Dress

  Photo from Amazon


 I Am Cute Dresses offers 25 adorable sewn dress designs that are deceivingly simple to make and fun to wear. Start sewing simple and adorable dresses that you'll love to wear. Sato Watanabe has designed each dress to maximize simplicity and style, offering charm without complicated alterations or difficult tailoring. There's no need for patterns with I Am Cute Dresses. Each of the 25 designs is created by following a construction layout with the measurements provided. No complicated pattern pieces and cutting instructions. Every one of these easy, loose, and effortless dresses is created from basic, one-size fits-most shapes that are designed to be flattering on everyone. Any custom alterations you choose to make are made easy just by adding in your one of your own body measurements to the garment layout. Height adjustments are also made easy by simply raising or dropping your hemline. I Am Cute Dresses will have you spending less time fussing over the fit and more time enjoying your new sewn dress.


Chapter 1 - I Am Pleats and Petals
Chapter 2 - I Am Very V Neck
Chapter 3 - I Am Mandarin Empire
Chapter 4 - I Am Barley Ruffled
Chapter 5 - I Am Peekaboo Sleeves
Chapter 6 - I Am Hello Halter
Chapter 7 - I Am Simply Stand Up
Chapter 8 - I Am Baby Bateau
Chapter 9 - I Am Sassy Sundress
Chapter 10 - I Am Twice As Nice
Chapter 11 - I Am Tiny Tucks
Chapter 12 - I Am Raglan to Riches
Chapter 13 - I Am All The Trimmings
Chapter 14 - I Am All Wrapped Up
Chapter 15 - I Am Dainty Drops
Chapter 16 - I Am Cue Contrast
Chapter 17 - I Am Sweetly Tied
Chapter 18 - I Am Tripled Tier
Chapter 19 - I Am Jumper for Joy
Chapter 20 - I Am So Buttoned Down
Chapter 21 - I Am Shift into Tunic
Chapter 22 - I Am Magical Insets
Chapter 23 - I Am Kimono Cut
Chapter 24 - I Am box Pleated Wonder
Chapter 25 - I Am Satin Doll

In each section there are instructions and details on how to create each item.
The patterns are one size fits all, 35-36 inch bust and up to 39 inch hips.
The instructions are well drawn and the photography is excellent.
I Am Cute Dress is available from Amazon

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Book Review - Couture Sewing Techniques Revised and Updated

Photo from Amazon

 Fashion historian Claire B. Shaeffer has opened the door to the exclusive realm of haute couture in her authoritative guide to the techniques that define couture sewing. And now, the industry bible, Couture Sewing Techniques, has been revised and updated with new photos and a chapter on specialty fabrics. No one can unravel couture garment construction the way Schaeffer can, from the art of hand sewing to mastering edge finishes, from classic closures to shaping a garment for a perfect fit. Sewers of all skill levels with an interest in fashion sewing will learn the basics for skirts and sleeves, pockets and jackets, evening gowns and more, as well as, most importantly, how to apply the techniques. Gorgeous photos, clear illustrations and concise language combine to make this the most complete couture-sewing course available.

Part 1 - The basics of couture sewing
In this section you will find the following chapters

Chapter 1
Inside the world of haute couture

Chapter 2
The art of hand sewing

Chapter 3
 Shaping the garment

Chapter 4
Edge finishes

Chapter 5

Part 2 - Applying couture techniques
In this section you will find the following chapters
Chapter 6
Skirts and pants

Chapter 7
Blouses and dresses

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10
Jacket and coats

Chapter 11
Designing with fabric

Chapter 12
Special occasions

Couture Sewing Techniques, Revised & Updated It is a must have for any sewing library -  beginner, intermediate and advanced.  Everything that you need to know about couture techniques is in this book
Couture Sewing Techniques, Revised & Updated has lots of colour photographs and well-written descriptions.  

Couture Sewing Techniques, revised and updated is available from Amazon.

Disclosure: I buy sewing books from on-line shops with my own money, I am not being paid for writing this review. All my reviews are honest and on things that I genuinely love and would recommend to my readers.
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