Book Review: Sewing For Your Girls


When Tuttle Publishing sent me the much-anticipated She Wears The Pants to review, they also sent a copy of Sewing For Your Girls. Talk about different ends of the spectrum! Today I’m blogging about the Girls book a the little blouse I made from the book.

Giselle blouse 3

THE BOOK

I must say this book surprised me. Japanese pattern books are famed for their scanty sewing instructions and daunting pattern sheets! Sewing for your girls is not one of ‘those’ books.

Sewing For Your Girls published by Tuttle Publishing

There are seven relatively simple patterns – along with a variation on each basic pattern (oops sorry – forgot to take a photo of one, it’s No.1 an A-line smock… and it’s nearly 10pm now). You can click on the images below to enlarge them.

It has by far the most comprehensive sewing instructions I’ve seen in a Japanese sewing book in a long time. I learnt a few new tricks – I love that! Nothing of rocket science proportions but little clever things that just make life easier.

A typical pattern instruction page... the instructions are brief but point to the more detailed techniques section of the book which contain LOTS of photos!

A typical pattern instruction page… the instructions are brief but point to the more detailed techniques section of the book which contain LOTS of photos!

The book includes a guide for no less than 70 dressmaking and basic sewing techniques. Each of theses are accompanied by step-by-step photos. In fact some techniques are extensively demonstrated…. for example when I attached the collar to this shirt, the book provided a 20-step guide, each step was paired with a photograph.

This is the 'how to attach a collar' technique section of the book - it's very detailed!

This is the ‘how to attach a collar’ technique section of the book – it’s very detailed!

The pattern sheet has some over-lapping and it’s printed in one colour. However, it is not overcrowded and tracing is quite straightforward. You just need to remember to add seam allowances!

The pattern sheet is not as crowded as other Japanese books I have used - and much, much easier than a Burda sheet!

The pattern sheet is not as crowded as other Japanese books I have used – and much, much easier than a Burda sheet!

I prefer to sewing something from a book when I’m talking to you about it. I think it’s integral to the experience of a sewing book when the book is primarily about patterns. That said, I don’t claim to have sewn every pattern or read the book or pattern in ‘editing’ terms. With translated books or measurements converted between metric & imperial there are often slip-ups just be conscious you need to exert a level of awareness – I often double check everything. Just.in.case.

Everyone asks about Japanese sizing, so here is the chart for your reference.

Sewing For Your Girls published by Tuttle Publishing

Sizing chart: Sewing For Your Girls

THE BLOUSE

Cute. I love this little blouse. It was utterly delightful to sew. Giselle wasn’t keen for photos – fair enough, she had surfing to do. So today’s post has a blouse minus the body.

I absolutely loved making this blouse, a real joy. Better still, she loves it.

I absolutely loved making this blouse, a real joy. Better still, she loves it.

NEW TRICKS

What did I learn? Frills have been few & far between on my blog… so these little bias cut frills were new to me. Rather than running a gathering stitch up the centre of the frill, I ran a gathering stitch up either side of the centre.

A simple and neat way to create perfect little frills.

A simple and neat way to create perfect little frills.

I also learnt to run a line of gathering stitches around the seam allowance of a Peter Pan collar curve, gently gather the seam allowance up so the allowance curves over into the collar itself, a light press, trim off the excess seam allowance (and gathering stitches) and then turn the collar right side out… perfect collar curves!

THOUGHTS

This book was quite different to what I expected – far more detailed instructions and construction photographs than I have found in other Japanese sewing books.

The clothes are simple but I often preferred to dress my girls in simple, play-friendly clothes when they were little. Many of these patterns would be perfect for sweet floral and kooky lawns, voiles, linens and poplins. Let the fabric sing and the child play unfettered by fussy clothes I say!

THANK YOU
A big thank you to Colette of Colette’s Sewing Stuff for bringing this sweet fabric to the March Brisbane meet-up. And a thank you to the ever-lovely Vicki-Kate of Vicki-Kate Makes for sending me a sweet little gift package a few months ago which included these perfect little buttons!

THE DETAILS
Pattern: Basic Pattern #7 from Sewing For Your Girls, published by Tuttle Publishing
Note: Tuttle Publishing provided this book for preview purposes. All opinions my own. No affiliate links in this post.
Fabric: from the march Brisbane High Tea, donated by Colette
Buttons: from Vicki Kate Makes

THE WEARER
This is the blouse recipient, my dear little crazy poppet Giselle Violet. A fuzzy iPhone snap taken one night… one of those sweet little moments in life. She’s in her school uniform and wearing a much-loved beanie crocheted by the boss at work!

Giselle Violet

Giselle Violet

This post first appeared on http://www.sewbusylizzy.com

 

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9 thoughts on “Book Review: Sewing For Your Girls

  1. Pingback: Floral Riot, Burda 6849 from Mood Fabrics NY | Sew Busy Lizzy

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