Book Reviews Japanese Sewing Books Kids Sewing Patterns

Book Review – Knitwear for Kids

July 6, 2012

Today’s book review is about knitwear for kids. The common misconception is that you will need an overlocker or serger to sew knits. But this book shows you that it is possible to sew knits with a home sewing machine. In fact, the whole book is about sewing knits using a typical home sewing machine.

 The book is broken down into a few sections. It starts with the “Basic” section which covers the basic introduction of knit fabrics and the tools and techniques necessary for sewing knits using a home sewing machine. Then the projects which are separated into Tops, Bottoms, Dress and Outerwear. Just a quick overview of the basic garments covered in this book. There are 27 projects in all.

Under the “Basic” section, you get to learn about the different types of knit fabrics, with description of their different uses.

There are some basic tools and tips for sewing knits. You have to use special needles, threads and use clips instead of pins for securing pieces of cloth together for sewing.

Also, you will need a teflon foot. I almost bought this particular foot (in the picture below) which is like a standard non-branded teflon foot, I wasn’t sure if it could snap on my Janome machine, but now I regret not buying it to try because I have no idea where to get one here other than ordering it through eBay?  I did buy the fusibile stabilizer tape that is specially for knits though (the roll of Clover tape in the picture below). The book covers other important information such as how to pre-wash the fabrics, ironing and sewing tips for sewing knits.

The first project is a simple T-shirt. Something simple for practice.

Once you are comfortable with sewing knits, there are variations for each of the “basic” projects. For example, the above T-shirt can be jazzed up into a dressy cap-sleeve T-shirt, or even a long sleeve turtle-neck great for the colder months!

Some of the other projects include a Camisole (although I think this particular design does not really have to be in knit fabric)

A very nice two-tier skirt.

Cute little dress with ribbons and ruched sides. Perfect with leggings!

There are boy designs for the T-shirts in the first project, but I did not show them here. Of course, there are no skirts/dress variations for the boys 🙂 But here is a cute little short sleeve parka for the boys. (Includes variations for girls in the book but not shown here)

Shorts and Long pants for Boys (with variations of shorts and leggings for Girls)

Most of the projects come with step by step photos like the ones below. Very clear photographic instructions (although my photo isn’t very sharp due to poor lighting 🙁 )

Another example of step by step photos.

For some of the variations, if the main technique has been covered in another project, then the variations will only come with the standard how-to-make instructions. Includes the cutting diagram, steps in point form, and diagrams.

Here are the sizes included in this book. The words on leftmost column of the chart says (Height, Bust, Waist) and measurements are all in cm.

I think this is a really good book for anyone venturing into sewing knits for the first time, especially for those of us who do not have a serger/overlocker for sewing knits. 🙂 Despite it being in Japanese, there are many step by step photographs. So there is very little translation needed.

Do you have this book? Have you made anything from it?

 Title :   家庭用ミシンで作るいちばんよくわかるニット生地の子ども服
ISBN : 978-4-529-05052-4
Published by : Nihon-Vogue

Buy from or cdjapan (aff links)

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  • Reply Justine July 7, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Why are Japanese sewing books so much better than western ones? Even though I can’t read the Japanese I still learn more from them.

    • Reply Japanese Sewing Books July 8, 2012 at 9:02 pm

      Not all Japanese books are so friendly as this one, but then again even the ones without photos usually have pretty good diagrams which more or less shows you the way if you already know a bit about sewing. Most of my english craft books are in the storeroom. I hate having to figure out where is the top right front edge that meets the bottom left corner… if you know what I mean 😉 . Too few diagrams and too long and wordy descriptions. Plus they are usually more expensive for us over here compared to Japanese books.

  • Reply Cindy July 7, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    I have never sewn with knits! And I’ve been sewing off and on since I was a teenage. I think all that stretchiness scares me LOL


    • Reply Japanese Sewing Books July 8, 2012 at 8:58 pm

      I’ve bought some and they are still sitting there, staring at me and waiting for me to cut them up 🙂 hehe

  • Reply jax May 1, 2014 at 8:39 am

    I just bought this book due to your review and I love it. I need to brush up on my nihongo so I can understand what all the comment boxes say. I find it funny that there are so many English words spattered throughout though. My first outfit was the gray dress and leggings.

  • Reply ina September 13, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    Where do you buy those book? They look lovely, especially for kids – like this one, and I really need to have it :.-) Thanks

    • Reply Japanese Sewing Books October 6, 2016 at 8:44 am

      Unfortunately this book seems to be out of print. There are a few used options on Amazon but mostly really expensive. Maybe you can try your luck on Etsy or Ebay? You can use the ISBN number to help you search. Good luck!

  • Reply Sew Good Knits and a Giveaway! | Japanese Sewing, Pattern, Craft Books and Fabrics September 29, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    […] for knits. There are step by step photos for some of the patterns, including this raglan tshirt.  Read my review here. Buy from or cdjapan (aff […]

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