We're taking a short break from the Lights Project to do a giveaway!
Remember this post about the launch of that new Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book? It's now on sale everywhere, and I'm excited to be reviewing it for you here today!
I sew a lot but I don't buy a lot of sewing books. At least, I don't buy a lot of the glossy-color-photo-gorgeous-projects types of sewing books. I buy drafting books written in the previous century by European and Commonwealthy folks, on which pages are hand-drawn black-and-white sketches of basic blocks and darts and general pattern-drafting stuff. Technical, not particularly inspiring as far as specific projects go, and any gratification from reading such books would definitely not be instant. Want to read my rave review of such a book? Here you go.
When I'm in the sewing aisle of bookstores these days, however, I do like browsing the modern sewing books - the ones with the beautiful, beautiful photos and quick-finish garment sewing and the simplified pattern-making. They are gorgeous books and, unlike the drafting books, very easy to read. They are full of tips and tricks that I've never heard of and am very excited to discover and file away in my brain. They are also informative in how they reveal current sewing trends and the primary market of the modern sewing movement. It's all hugely fascinating.
And then there's the new Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book.
It's just been launched, it's available for sale, and you want to know all about it!
Here goes, then!
First, it's huge. It contains more than a hundred projects, spread out over 9 pattern sheets.
The book is organized into different fabric sections, each with projects made from those fabrics that showcase their unique qualities. The fabric categories include
- Lightweight cottons
- Quilting-weight cottons
- Home-dec weight fabrics
- Woven Pile (as opposed to pile knit) fabrics
- Coated fabrics
Each fabric section begins with an introduction to that category of fabrics, and how to work with them.
Over all the specific chapters is an introduction to the basics of fabrics, including general sewing techniques, stitch knowledge, lists of must-have notions and equipment and a very useful fabric cheat sheet.
At the end of the book is an illustrated glossary of many common sewing terms.
Beginning seamstresses will especially appreciate this information - it covers what everyone takes for granted that everyone else knows (and therefore might be too shy to ask about) but in reality might not. More experienced seamstresses will enjoy having all the stuff they're supposed to know, organized for them in ways they can actually access, and discover many gems of new tips and terms in the process.
Now for the projects themselves - I am aware that some of my readers are seamstresses with considerable experience, and who have therefore sewn enough different kinds of projects to now have a preference for certain kinds over others. There are (I counted and then rounded the numbers up/down)
- 30 bag and bag-like projects
- 20 household items, including aprons
- 20 toys (including dress-up items and costumes)
- 20 accessories (including shoes, hats, scarves, blankets)
- 16 garments for children (not costumes)
- 8 garments for adults
in addition to the usual materials list and cutting/ sewing instructions. The instructions themselves are detailed and illustrated by clear diagrams. The level of difficulty of a projects is commensurate with the number of pages it spans - some books I've read attempt to pack projects into quick bites, regardless of how simple or complicated they are; this book does not, and is all the better for it.
Where relevant, multi-size patterns come with referring size charts. Unlike commercial patterns which confuse with a matrix of numbers, none of which are actually recognizable as one's RTW dress size, the reference size charts in this book are happily like this:
Even I can figure them out!
So, do I like this book? Yes!! Not only because my projects are in it (whoo!), but because it's well-organized, covers a variety of different projects, in different materials, for different purposes, in different styles and for different skill levels. If you've just started to sew and want to beef up your projects resume, this is a good book of practical items you'd actually use. If you've been sewing a while with your comfort-zone cotton fabrics and want to expand your repertoire some, this is a good book to step out with.
Now here are some of the projects!
Storey Publishing is very generously giving away one copy of this book to one of my readers! You will need to have a US mailing address to get picked for the book. To celebrate the launch, I am also giving away 5 one-yard (of course) pieces of fabric to five readers (who can live anywhere in the world). So something for everyone, regardless of where you live!
Here are the rules:
- Anyone can enter the giveaway. All you have to do is leave a comment that answers this question: "What have you sewn recently that challenged you?"
- Make sure you leave (or provide access to) an email address where you can be reached.
- Make sure you mention whether you live in the US or not.
- Leave your comment by Dec 22nd, midnight. I will do a random-number drawing on Dec 23rd before we leave town to be with family for Christmas.
- The first commentor picked who has a US mailing address will win the book. The next five commentors picked (from anywhere in the world) will each win one yard of fabric.
Fabric-by-Fabric OYW is making its rounds on its blog tour, so check out these other sites for more reviews, photos and more chances to win copies of the book!
12/12/2011 Becka's Project Journal
12/13/2011 Craft Buds
12/14/2011 Patch Work Duck Designs
12/15/2011 Patch Work Duck Designs
12/15/2011 A Spoonful of Sugar
12/15/2011 Nifty Kidstuff
12/15/2011 Becka's Project Journal
12/16/2011 Nom Nom Nom Nom
12/16/2011 Quaint and Quirky
12/17/2011 Two Brown Birds
12/18/2011 Sharon Sews
12/19/2011 LBG Studio
12/19/2011 Carolina Fair Designs
12/19/2011 Under Construction
12/20/2011 Little Blue Cottage
12/21/2011 Neuroses Galore
12/21/2011 Emily Steffen
12/22/2011 Jenna Lou Loves You
12/27/2011 One Inch World
12/28/2011 Sew Sew Etc.
January ‘12 Lu Lu Carter
January ’12 Fiberosity
January ’12 Zuhause
January ’12 Obsessively Stiching
January ’12 No Bad Days
January ’12 Craft & Cackle
January ’12 AfricanKelli