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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Complete Idiots Guide to Sewing {Book Review}

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Sewing
Written by: Missy Shepler and Rebecca Kemp Brent
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9781615640799
Unleash your inner seamstress with..
The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Sewing $20
eBook - Adobe reader: $9.99
There’s so much to love about sewing, from the excitement of creating your own fashions to the savings from DIY home décor But there’s also lots to learn. After all, you don’t want your projects to look DIY. And that’s where new seamstresses get tangled up.
Packed with tons of stitch-by-stich instructions, clear illustrations, tips and techniques, and fantastic projects, this helpful guide gives you a sure path from start to success. In it you get:
  • A primer on hand and machine sewing, including basic stitches you’ll use again and again.
  • Tips for sewing seams, from standard to flat-felled, French to curved, with easy instructions for creative seam edge finishes.
  • Pointers on using darts, pleats, tucks, gathering, and ruffles to add texture and pizzaz.
  • The fundamentals of fabrics, along with information on finishing with trims and fasteners.
  • Guidance on all things garments, including demystifying patterns, taking accurate body measurements, and customizing ready-to-wear items.
  • Seventeen easy-to-make projects to perfect your skills, including Easy-Peasy Apron, A Hobo Bag, Fun Flannel Pants, a Pop-Up Storage Cube, a Double Bind Pillow, and more!
My Thoughts*
I’m not a beginner, but I am not so advanced either. I know SOME stuff about sewing, but I wouldn’t say that I was very comfortable in making all designs either. There a few things that I need to work on, such as hand sewing and pattern making.
This book is great for beginners or for someone who needs to touch up on some different aspects of sewing. This book has a ton information to set you on the road to sewing. It starts at the very beginning- letting you know the essential tools that are needed.
The tools are the hardest part when starting to sew. You need to remember to check the materials and tools needed before starting a project, just to make sure you have everything you need. I don’t know how many times I started something and couldn’t finish it because I jumped right in without looking at the tools or materials and didn’t have something.
This book breaks down the different aspects of sewing and puts them into understandable categories. Sewing is a skill, and all skills must be learned from the beginning and then practiced before becoming great. This isn’t something that you can jump in and learn in a day, it takes time and patience, and a really good book..
This books teaches which fabric is best for certain projects, needle types for certain fabrics, and how to tell the difference in needle sizing. This is AWESOME because when I was a beginner, I didn’t know. I ended up using a too big or too small needle for something, and it either left holes in it- or wouldn’t even penetrate the fabric at all.
This book contains hundreds of black-and-white photographs and line drawings. Even though the pictures aren’t in color, it is still very easy to see what they mean.
I really like this book. I will post updates on projects as I do them, there are certain projects in each chapter that will SHOW you how to do what they mean. This makes it easier to understand then just throwing you in the middle of projects that you might not otherwise have no idea what or why you’re doing it.
You can buy the book @ Amazon.

Author Bio

Rebecca Brent Kemp's sewing career began in 1973 with a basic sewing class taught for younger 4-H members. Since then, she has earned a BS and a PhD with studies ranging from patternmaking to curriculum design. Rebecca has sewn in settings from theatrical costume shop to apparel manufacturing, with lots of personal stitching in between. She began writing while still in college, and has edited and written scores of articles for national magazines such as Quilting & Embroidery and Stitch. Since 1987, Rebecca has taught sewing and crafts classes for audiences ranging from elementary-school-aged children to retired adults, including a popular series of learn-to-sew classes. Rebecca's previous books include Redwork from The WORKBASKET, Fill in the Blanks with Machine Embroidery, and Machine Embroidery Wild & Wacky. She has been a featured artist on The Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims and is a member of the inaugural SCHMETZ Designer Portfolio.

Missy Shepler has worked as a graphic artist, illustrator, designer, new media coordinator, and technical support person for several book and magazine publishers. In 1997, she made the leap to her own home-based business, where she designs, writes, and illustrates sewing- and quilting-related articles for a number of clients. Many of her projects have appeared in DRG Network's House of White Birches publications. She co-authored Print Your Own Fabric: Create Unique Designs Using an Inkjet Printer, with Linda Turner Griepentrog, and her illustrations have appeared in many sewing and crafting books.

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Disclosure: This isn’t a sponsored post. All opinions are totally 100% my own. I didn’t receive compensation, although I did receive products in exchange for an honest review from the Penguin Publishing company..


This post was written by:

Jess is the creator of Stylish Southern Mama + Southern Rambles. She is a freelance writer + designer, Social Media Marketer, and Journalist. She has 2 amazing kids, Aidan and Adisyn, and has been with their dad Adam for 12 years, and has 2 amazingly adorable dogs; Harley + Cheyanne! :)

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