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.
It’s been about a year since the launch of nani IRO’s latest sewing book and I know many of you have bought the book thanks to the gorgeous pictures and fabric, never mind if you can’t read a word of Japanese. But I have good news for you, for World Book Media (@ZakkaWorkshop on IG) has translated the book and it will be soon available in major bookstores in June!
You know, sewing garments generates a lot of fabric scraps, and I have this box full of lovely fabric scraps that I’ve been reluctant to throw away. I always think to myself that one day, when I have the time, I will make a quilt out of all my scraps. Never mind the fact that I don’t actually know much about patchwork or quilting, till Tuttle sent me this book – Shizuko Kuroha’s Japanese Patchwork Quilting Patterns. I learned so much just by reading through it, that I think I will really have to try it out soon!
I received this in the mail from our friends at Tuttle Publishing last week, and couldn’t wait to share it with you! This is the latest book to be translated to English from Yoshiko Tsukiori that is full of patterns for ponchos, capes, coats, jackets, all the stylish ways you can keep yourself warm. You may think it’s strange to release a book about cold weather wear right in Summer, but given the time you might take to buy the book, look for the right fabric, and actually get started on sewing, it is just about right.
I have prepared a flip-through book video at the end of this review where you can look at all the designs contained in the book, so I will just share some of my favourite pieces here.
I just love the cover of this book. Despite the 34C temperature here, I actually feel cold thanks to the tones of the photograph and how snug she looks in that grey wrap.
This is a drape vest, it comes in a drape jacket version too (with sleeves) but I thought this was a much better pictures. I love the draping and how being a vest it can actually be used more frequently as than a proper jacket. I also looks like a quick and easy sew.
There are full length proper, really warm looking quilted jackets in the book as well, but I like this wrap which uses quilted fabric. Another really easy cut and finish edges, add snaps pattern. I love quilted fabric but find that using them full blown on a jacket makes one look rather like a walking blanket. This is much cuter!
A stylish wrap in faux fur of course! If you have never sewn with faux fur before, there is a two page guide in the book with step by step photos teaching you how to do it.
I love the casual look on this one, layered over a dress or even a defined pant suit, I think this falls in the category of refined casual wear. Might be easy to go sloppy on this one so I think accessories are very important when co-ordinating with this wrap jacket.
A more feminine style bolero with tie ribbons in the front. Probably more suited for warmer days due to the length. This can be done in a light and sheer fabric as well to carry off the gathers and frills.
A wing-collared jacket made in tweed fabric and fringed edges.
Now for the technicalities. This book includes patterns for Japanese sizes 7 – 13. The measurements are given primarily in inches, and cm equivalents in brackets.
A typical pattern how-to-make page. I just noticed that there are some bonus knitting patterns included. For e.g. the yellow beret worn together with the drape vest above, as well as the mittens on the cover of the book. There are also knitting instructions for leg warmers, headband and other accessories shown with the main garments.
The diagrams below are from a sample of the instructions.
My favourite feature in Tuttle’s pattern books. The pattern envelope for storing pattern sheets. There are 2 x 2-sided pattern sheets. I often get emails asking about missing pattern pieces. Sometimes it is because they are scattered over different sheets. Sometimes, you need to read the instructions and draft the pieces yourself (usually the rectangular pieces that only require length and width dimensions like binding / cuffs etc)
I love making these book flip-through videos because it makes it so easy for me to show you what’s in the book compared to taking 2 dozen photographs. I hope you enjoy watching them too! Do subscribe to my YouTube channel Japanese Sewing Books to be updated when new videos have been uploaded.
Here’s the flip through video. Enjoy!
The book will only be available on Amazon.com from 1st August but it’s available for pre-order now!
Or if you can’t wait till August, here’s a giveaway for you! Up for grabs is a copy of Stylish Wraps by Yoshiko Tsukiori. There will be 4 copies to be given away in all, one on each of the following channels –
my blog / YouTube / Facebook page / Instagram
All you have to do is comment below and tell us your favourite book from Yoshiko Tsukiori. Need a list of books? Check out my book reviews of her English books here. One comment per email please. Extra entries from duplicate emails will not be counted.