Japanese Sewing Books in English

I have reviewed a few Japanese Sewing Books that have been translated in English - Drape Drape and Stylish Dress Book. I’ve been asked to list all the books I know that have been translated to English, so here they are! I will be updating this page when I hear something new come up. So bookmark this page if you want to find out about new releases in the future!

The English editions of these books are usually modified slightly in terms of pattern sizes. For example, the Stylish Dress Book – wear with freedom by Yoshiko Tsukiori  provides patterns in sizes 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16  (6 sizes) while the Japanese version provides sizes 7,9,11,13. I am not sure if the new books will be all done in the same sizes, but as they are published by two main publishers (Laurence King and Tuttle) and many of the books are written by the same authors, it seems likely that the sizing will remain more or less the same. Other than the obvious advantage of everything being translated to English, they are also usually cheaper than the original books probably because of the cheaper production costs. It’s a pity that there are so few of them right now. But I believe more will come, given the popularity of these books.

Here are some new titles that will be released over the next few months. You can pre-order them from Amazon now.

Sew Sweet Handmade Clothes for Girls: 22 Easy-to-Make Dresses, Skirts, Pants & Tops Girls Will Love
 
Handmade Bags In Natural Fabrics: Over 25 Easy-To-Make Purses, Totes and More

This title will be released on Nov 25, 2014.

The following books have already been released. Click on the thumbnails to view inside pages and book reviews.



Basic Black: 26 Edgy Essentials for the Modern Wardrobe
Sato Watanabe 

Read my review here 

Stylish Skirts: 23 Simple Designs to Flatter Every Figure
Sato Watanabe
Read my review here 
Happy Homemade
Ruriko Yamada

Read my review here

Feminine Wardrobe: Town, Party, Resort
Jinko Matsumoto

Read my review here 


 

Happy Homemade: 
Sew Chic: 20 Simple Everyday Designs
Yoshiko Tsukiori

Read my review here 

Girls Style Book
Yoshiko Tsukiori

Read my review here


Stylish Dress Book:
Simple Smocks, Dresses and Tops

Yoshiko Tsukiori

Read my review here!

Sweet Dress Book: 23 Dresses of Pattern Arrangement
Yoshiko Tsukiori

Read my review here


 Shape Shape 2:
Sewing for Minimalist Style
Natsuno Hiraiwa
Shape Shape: Sewing Clothing Patterns to Wear Multiple Ways
Natsuno Hiraiwa

Stylish Dress Book:
Wear with Freedom
Yoshiko Tsukiori

Read my review here!

 Drape Drape 
Hisako Sato

Read my review here!


Drape Drape 2
Hisako Sato
 Drape Drape 3
Hisako Sato

Pattern MagicTomoko Nakamichi Pattern Magic 2Tomoko Nakamichi
 Pattern Magic:
Stretch Fabrics

Tomoko Nakamichi

Linen, Wool, CottonAkiko Mano Carefree Clothes for Girls:
20 Patterns for Outdoor Frocks, Playdate Dresses, and More (Make Good: Crafts + Life)Junko Okawa

 
I Am Cute Dresses: 25 Simple Designs to SewSato Watanabe  Simple Modern Sewing: 8 Basic Patterns to Create 25 Favorite GarmentsPublished by Shufu To Seikatsu Sha

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10 Responses

  1. Hi there!

    I’m wondering if you could tell me what the
    seam allowances are in your wonderful
    tutorial for the double zip pouch.

    Specifically 0.5cm and 0.8 cm. I converted
    each to inches, but that still doesn’t
    help because the amounts are in decimals.

    Usually seam allowances, here in the states,
    are 1/8, 1/4. 3/8, 1/2 etc etc. Can you
    help?

    Thanking you ever so much!!! Kim

    • Japanese Sewing Books says:

      Hi Kim,
      The two different seam allowances used when sewing the zip is so that the first stitch (0.5cm) that is attaching the fabric to the zip will be subsequently hidden when the next row of stitches (with a larger seam allowance of 0.8cm) is being sewn to attach the second piece of fabric onto the same zip. So theoretically, you don’t have to follow the exact seam allowance. You just have to make sure that the first stitch has a narrower seam allowance than the second.

      When I convert 0.5 and 0.8cm to inches, it is actually approximately 1/5″ and 1/3″ but that is not marked on the sewing machine. In fact, 0.5cm is in between 1/8 and 1/4, and 0.8cm is between 1/4 and 3/8 mark.

      So I would suggest that you either do a step down to use 1/8″ for the first stitch and 1/4″ for the second line of stitching. Or if your zip is wide enough to accomodate two rows of stitching at 1/4″ and 3/8″, you can do that too if you are more comfortable with wider seam allowances.

      Hope that answers your question! :)
      Yi Farn

  2. Note: This is Kim and I just emailed you
    a question. However, I put an extra letter
    in my email address and with that you
    wouldn’t be able to email me.

    I have corrected it and now you will
    be able to comment , if you choose!

  3. Kamille says:

    Hello,
    I have been following your blog and read your book reviews with great interest and admiration. My daughter and I are ready to buy our first Japanese Pattern book and would like to know your recommendation. We will be sewing for a 12 month old little girl (my grand daughter), I am concerned that she may be too small for some of the children’s pattern books. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your help.

    Sincerely,
    Kamille

  4. Nerah says:

    Hi I was wondering if these books are using the metric system?

  5. stacey says:

    Brilliant! I remember finding Japanese craft books may 7-8 years ago via Ravelry wishing I was fluent in Japanese …. I had this great idea to translate the books and make a million dollars! The very best of luck to you.

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