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Recommend me some sewing books!

(6 Posts)
chaosisawayoflife Fri 21-Aug-09 15:58:30

My mum has recently bought me a sewing machine and I want to get started but have no idea how or where to! Can anyone recommend me any books that will give me tips and also have some decent beginners projects? I've had a look at sewing for dummies which looks ok and I may get it, but have read some reviews that the projects are all quite old fashioned. I'd prefer to make things that I'll actually use/wear, rather than just treat them as practice, if that makes sense. I'm mostly hoping to make clothes for my DD (age 1) and maybe a few home projects, and possibly summer dresses for me if I can find nice patterns.

Sorry, wittered on a bit as usual, but any help would be great! Thanks

snickersnack Fri 21-Aug-09 16:19:22

Sewing for Dummies is fab. Projects all hideous but techniques are gear - I taught myself using that. Plenty of inspiration for stuff to make online.

Pawsandclaws Fri 21-Aug-09 16:42:11

I would say buying a pattern and following the instructions is the best way to learn, far better than a sewing instruction book initially. The sewing books are better for when you have made a few things up from patterns already as you have some experience to compare with.

As for practice, if you are a novice I assure you that you WILL make mistakes and you WILL discard things after you've spent quite a lot of time on them and money on fabrics, so prepare yourself! I would say to not spend too much on fabrics for the early projects, just get basic cottons in. Better to make your DD a dress in plain white cotton at £3.50/m then it's not the world's end if it doesn't turn out, but if it does, you have a nice white dress which you can decorate with ric-rac smile. Save the £15.00/m Cath Kidston stuff for when you have turned out a decent cheaper one!

here is a website that sells patterns, I have linked you to the Babies patterns, there are one or two nice dresses for baby girls. There are also dress patterns for women.

A few tips to get you started: smile

- ALWAYS follow the pattern piece layout as per the instructions. Don't be tempted to squash as many pieces on as small a bit of fabric, the pieces are placed in a certain way for a reason (to do with weave, hang and stretch of the fabric).

- Take time cutting out pieces as precisely as possible. Ideally, draw round each piece in water soluble pens (available from haberdashery) for complete precision. The more precise your cutting out, the better the result.

- Iron seams and finish raw edges as you go along. Don't be lazy and leave them to the end!

- Get some really good, really sharp sewing scissors and don't use them for ANYTHING else - not sellotape, or wrapping paper, or piercing film on ready meals.... fabric only!!! hide them from everyone else smile

Good luck and enjoy!

shigella Fri 21-Aug-09 19:12:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FairyMel Fri 21-Aug-09 22:40:00

This one from Dorling Kindersley is a fab book.

I got my 1st machine for Christmas and have been teaching myself. I got the sewing for dummies book out the library but didnt find it very user friendly. The DK book is very clear and has great instructions

FairyMel Fri 21-Aug-09 22:43:15

Although just noticed the buy new price on that link lol.
This is more like it WHSmiths}

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