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In my experience there are beginner sewing books, often geared towards children, and there are sophisticated a sewing books for people who are close to the professional level. But there is not a lot of in-between. This book fills that missing link wonderfully! When I was a teenager, I had trouble finding clothes that expressed my personal design in style ideas so I looked through my mother’s and grandmother’s old sewing patterns and made some simple dresses myself. A few weeks later, I wore one to a County Fair and a local shop owner ran up to me to ask where I got my dress from? When he found out I made them myself, he asked if I could sew dozens more for him to sell at his store in a major mall in Southern California. I wish I’d had this book with me to help me bridge the gap from what little I knew and what I needed to no to move forward in my sewing.

Instead, my sewing languished us still waiting for help to bridge the gap. With my own daughters wanting help with their own sewing projects, I’m so happy to find this book. The book is very well written with super clear and easy-to-understand instructions which is just what I needed. There are many a simple, step-by-step instructions and illustrations to help guide me and my daughters along. I found the descriptive text running over a hundred & sixty pages that I found to be most helpful. This book revolves around making and modifying clothes, particularly for women and girls. To get an idea of just how broad, detailed, and complete this wonderful book is, I’ll like to list the chapters. In Section 1, covering basic tools and techniques, there are sections on tools, basic terminology, fabric, working with patterns, finishing seams & hems, and finishing curved edges.

In Section 2, on patterns, there are sections on tops, skirts, trousers, and shirts. In Section 3, Adjustments, there are sections on changing seams, lengthening and shortening, widening and narrowing, shoulder adjustments, bust and chest adjustments, along with rise and seat adjustments. In chapter 4, Modifications and Embellishments, there are sections on neck lines, sleeves, body, waste, ham, and embellishments. In Section 5, combining patterns, there are sections on creating a dress, lined tunic, a tie-front shirt, and a jumpsuit. They are also actual real patterns in the back. This is clearly a labor of love and there’s so much valuable information here. It’s like a holding years of college courses in sewing — made simple — in my own two hands!



What a gorgeous book! It is designed much like the embroidered projects — with beautiful attention to detail. Such a treasure! The author offers designs which are western, often showing North American animals. The final products seem both contemporary and Colonial in their design and feel. Each is a treasure in itself and are so lovely, as shown in the plentiful photographs throughout. The book itself is well-bound and beautifully printed on a thick glossy paper, often covered in full-page photos.

I also appreciated the step-by-step photos that accompanied the basic a fundamental section of the book. Stitches that are explain here include a straight Stitch, outline Stitch, running Stitch, chain State, lazy Daisy Stitch, and so on. Projects include bears in the forest, birds in Paradise, dangling monkey, dancing rabbits, and more, along with the basics patterns and project instructions. The book is beautiful and a Keepsake in itself. It’s definitely inspired me to pull out my embroidery hoop and get stitching!