So I just realized with horror that my last book review was 2 months ago! Where did the time go? If you have been following me on Instagram, I went for a short holiday in June, came back and spent almost of the rest of June busy sewing for my brother’s wedding. Oh and I also released a new bag pattern😛
On top of that I’m doing some partial house renovation at the moment so I’ve had to move things around a bit to make space and that includes some works to my sewing area. So I think you can all understand why now. Keeping up with the blog is difficult because I need to take photos and videos then edit them. and all these on top of my daily full time job as a mother of 3.
Anyway, the good news is the book buying doesn’t stop…. but the bad news is I have a growing pile of them to review. I hope that once the renovation is over I will have more space and the setup will make it easier for me to take photos quickly!
Back to this book review. It’s an English version of a book that I bought back in 2016 when it was first released. The title of the book is Learn Skills to Sew like a Professional.
Today’s book review was one of the recent best sellers on Amazon.co.jp. It is a new release by Katayama Yuko – designer of the Coat sewing book I reviewed at the end of last year. She’s back with a brand new book, recently released last month and it’s all about sewing with knits. This book contains patterns for a full range of wardrobe essentials – from tops, bottoms (pants and skirts) as well as outerwear. Sizes start from kids 110cm to Ladies (3L) or Men’s 2L!
Happy 2019! A little late into the year but I must confess I have been taking a nice relaxing time off. I took 2 weeks off in December, and when I came back everything was a mess at home and there was so much laundry to catch up. It is also a few weeks more the Chinese New Year which means more frantic sewing trying to get everyone’s new clothes ready. Anyway, I really wanted to review this book because I think this is one of the more useful Pouch making books I have bought so far. I realize the cover is not that attractive, and maybe many of you might skip it while browsing through online shops. But I saw the sneak preview and one of the set of instructions on the different ways to deal with zip ends caught my attention. So I just had to buy it to take a look. And then there was a pouch with 3 compartments that I’ve always wanted to know how to make, and it’s in there too!
You know a book is really useful if the first thing you do when you buy it is not to make 1, but 2 pouches using the patterns 😛 This book is published by Nihon-Vogue and there are 35 different projects you can make. The lessons include how to install zippers (adjusting length / end of zips / sewing), attaching lining to your pouches, attaching different types of interfacing, sewing with special materials, and how to attach metal purse frames. With this book you can literally make any pouch you want!
This was the first one – a little cosmetic case with elastic pockets inside for small items like eyeshadows or tweezers..
and the second pouch I made was this – This is actually a twin pouch sewn together, and the section in between the two pouches makes a 3rd compartment. It’s really useful for sorting things out and even my daughter has asked for one for her school devices!
And here’s the book flip-through video, you can find lots of other pouch designs in the video.
The lessons are very clear and easy to follow, so I would really recommend this book even though the cover looks rather plain! I hope you like it and make lots of useful pouches out of it!
Title :ポーチの教室 (Pouch Making Classroom)
Publisher : Nihon Vogue
ISBN No. :978-4529058438
Today’s book review will take on a different format, one that I hope will allow me to post more book reviews quicker and faster! So what’s the difference? I noticed that ever since I started posting book flip through videos, the photos became quite redundant. So I’m going to just post the videos on various channels, and then summarise my thoughts about this book in my blog. I hope that this will speed things up a lot more because I have so many books sitting on my desk waiting to be reviewed I fear I will never catch up with them all!
Today’s book review is about this book on Sewing Coats. Don’t ask me why I bought it, but I have a strange obsession with coats. I really wish I could wear them more often but it’s so hot here in Singapore, even in December. But never mind, I bought the book anyway because I’m really interested to know how to make one!
So here’s the book flip through video, and I’ll share my thoughts about the book below!
There are 18 different coats you can make from this book, and the main categories are the pattern styles – there is the Drop Shoulder / Raglan Sleeve / Tailer Collar coat, Set in Sleeve as well as the Kimono sleeves. Each of the 18 coats are a variation of one of these main pattern types. The patterns are for Ladies size S-LL.
Based on these 5 different basic templates, are 18 different arrangements you can make. Detailed step by step lesson are provided for the Tailored coat which is fully interfaced and lined. I believe it is the most complicated of them all so there are lots of techniques that you can refer to from here.
There are also detailed step by step photos you need for making different types of pockets – namely, Patch pockets, Seam pockets (side pockets), Welt pockets, Box pockets (direct translation from Japanese but I think these are single welt pockets/ broad welt side pockets).
With these detailed instructions, you can make up any kind of coat, even mix and match your own styles from trench coat to duffle coat, to the simple collarless style which I love so much.
So if you love coats and especially if you actually need one this winter (or even the next), why not make one of your own? I think this book provides really clear instructions and not much translation seems to be needed. In fact, the rating on this book on Amazon was 4.6 stars, and most of them said that the instructions were easy to understand.
Title : コートを縫おう (Coats Sewing)
Author : かたやま ゆうこ (Katayama Yuko)
ISBN No. : 978-4391151497
Today’s book review is for a book that is not very new, but one I have bought for quite some time simply out of curiosity 😂. I did actually want to try it though, and I did!
The pattern designer is Asuka Hamada, author of Piece Work. Her style is very quirky and usually not tight fitting, but I like them because they look modern and fun and very stylish, I just wasn’t sure if it would suit me. But anyway, it was the top on the cover that made me buy the book (as usual), since I buy all my books online. It is a round shape, sewn up leaving two holes for the arms and one for the head. Looks easy!
The title of the book is called Katachi no fuku – where katachi 形 means shapes, and fuku means clothes. So I loosely translate it to Shapes you can wear! Sounds more fun isn’t it? Patterns include – tops/tunics/dresses/poncho/handbag/bags/skirts.
Let’s have a look at some of the more interesting pieces, and then to the book flip-through video.
The first one is similar to the one on the cover, and it is literally called 丸 (maru) which means round/circular/ball shape.
Doesn’t look that bad when worn as a tunic! I tink this is some kind of heavy wool so it looks extra cushy and comfy for winter.
The next (below) is a rectangular shape – hole in the middle for the head and sides sewn up leaving armholes.
Ok maybe the model makes everything look good, but I want to try this one too!
Here’s another shape. Using a square, you can make a poncho. The sleeves look a bit restrictive in the first picture, but it drapes rather nicely in the last picture.
and this is the one I made! There are two versions, the top one – P is a dress length, and the bottom Q is a top length. I like how the bottom corners drape. The cutting of this is still more in line with a traditional top, just that everything is cut out of one piece instead of having to join the sleeves. It was a very quick sew!
and I made this too! But I can’t show you this because it was made out of test fabric and I did not finish the raw edges, it seemed to wide for me though, so I will have to adjust the width a bit.
As for the size info – well, there is none. The book did mention it is suitable for sizes S-L though, but there is one size only – free size! However, seeing that it is made up of really simple shapes, it should be quite easy to scale the patterns?
In the how-to-make section, there is a couple of pages on sewing techniques, which you will use for all the projects.
A close up of the sewing diagram.
1 full size pattern sheet, double sided, is attached.
There are lots of other projects in the book so without further ado, here is the book flip through video!
Title : Katachi no fuku
Author : Asuka Hamada
ISBN : 9784579115174