(Giveaway now closed)
My sewing is behind schedule. As much as I don’t like to think the my life requires a schedule, the simple reality is when you are working fulltime with kids and a hobby blog… a degree of planning is necessary!
Lately my life has been dedicated to juggling a fulltime job and my eldest daughter’s very busy dance schedule and her participation in the local dance eisteddfod. More about the dancing & dancewear in another post – as I ended up making more than ‘just’ a tutu!
Today I’m here to review the new book The Tunic Bible: One Pattern, Interchangeable Pieces, Ready-to-Wear Results by Sarah Gunn and Julie Starr.
Julie Starr is well known for her gorgeous contributions to Pattern Review and Sarah Gunn needs little introduction to the online sewing world courtesy of her blog Goodbye Valentino and Mood Sewing Network – in fact she was one of the first sewing bloggers I discovered. Together they have written The Tunic Bible, a huge achievement and exciting development for them both! Congratulations.
I’m in the middle of making up my ‘tunic’ from this book and decided not to rush and to share it on a separate post because…
- I like to finish my project thoughtfully and neatly; and
- focus on the book.
I think it’s easy to just look at garment and not really know what you might be purchasing when you buy a book on impulse after seeing one garment from it.
I’ve been provided with a digital copy to review. I confess I do find it difficult to read a book online or on my ipad so I ended up printing it out in mini booklet form so I could get a general sense of the layout and feel. The paper copy is still on it’s way
MY FIRST IMPRESSIONS
Now like many of you I suspect, I thought… how on earth do you write a book about tunics? I thought that because my ‘notion’ of a tunic is a garment that finishes at upper to mid thigh, a placket style neckline – with or without sleeves. And as a general rule – modest.
And yes, the tunic as you know it is definitely this book… alongside a seemingly endless array of tunic, and dresses – mini/maxi in this book.
or if you prefer to see them on ‘real’ people…
I’ve decided to include the Contents page from my ‘review copy’ so you get a good overview of what is covered in this book.
The books does provide you with a full overview of all the possible options – and each version of the ‘tunic’ is accompanied by a description of the different style ‘elements’ that have been used as well as the type of fabric, trimming and embellishment.
There is a array of necklines and collar types to consider, sleeves (including a puffed and split sleeve), fitted vs loose silhouettes and how to embellish and trim your tunic. They also cover suitable types of fabrics – the options range from silk and linen to lace and knit options.
There is also a gallery of home sewing personalities who have made up a wide range of ‘tunics’ in all lengths, fits and fabrics. The book itself is packed with a huge range of different tunics – there must have been A LOT of sewing going on during the making of this book! I believe Sarah and Julie sewed approximately 60 tunics between them.
The pattern is provided full-size on a tear-out jumbo sized sheet. Hooray for not printing off A4 sheets and sticking them together!
There is a ‘general assembly order’ provided with an order of construction provided and also a seam finishing order.The construction instructions to me are more than adequate – however if you are an absolutely beginner you make want to google a few things BUT if you have basic sewing knowledge the book provides adequate guidance through the contruction of all the different elements: the types of plackets, collar finishes (including a ruffle of course – I would expect nothing less from Sarah!).
I wouldn’t say that there is ‘fitting’ advice in this book – other than the suggestion to make a muslin, what to check and a resource list on where to source support for alterations. I think this is adequate as it is not sold as a tunic fitting bible and fitting is such a varied and complex area unto itself.
The book concludes with a range of physical (largely US based) and online fabric & trim stores, Sewing and alterations resources, online classes and links as well as sewing with speciality fabrics.
I’ve been guilty of not to think to include sizing in my book reviews – and I always should. I’ve made the mistake of buying patterns that I fall outside the range of and I think it’s easy enough to do! So The Tunic Bible covers the following size range.
- Begins at XS: Bust 33in/84cm, waist 28in/71cm, hip 35.5in/90cm
- Finishes at XXL: 47in/121cm, waist 43in/109cm, hip 49.5in/126cm
I admit to being somewhat skeptical about 100+ pages on tunics – and I’m delighted that my skepticism was unfounded. I found the book interesting and inspiring – and a nice change from pretty dresses (as much as we all love them – me included).
There is a truckload of visual inspiration due to the large number of photographs and tunics that have been constructed for this book. This comprises more than half of the book – and reminder being dedicated to the construction of the tunic elements (yes, there are a lot of options!).
I think it may be a good starting point for someone who wants to experiment with a fairly simple base pattern to try a range of fabrics, trims and let their imagination run wild. The book does offer you a range of options to consider to make a unique garment each time.
For me, I can see a few simple tunic shift dresses for summer and perhaps a floaty version with sleeves as a beach cover-up. I look forward to seeing the book in person.
Note: for this post I received a digital copy of the book The Tunic Bible from C&T Publishing to review. All opinions my own.
This post first appeared on www.sewbusylizzy.com
Looking forward to seeing your tunic! The book looks like a winner!
Wow! The book sounds great! Thanks for the review. Fingers crossed!
That book sounds interesting.
Although I’m mostly a pretty dress kind of girl I do like tunics. I’ve never sewn one, maybe this is the perfect opportunity.
Hmm, I’ve seen this coming up on my Amazon recommendations but thought the same – a book just on tunics? But now I’m intrigued.
After reading several of these reviews I am sold on this book. If I do not win a copy I will be buying a copy.
I’m looking forward to seeing your finished tunic 🙂 The more pictures I see from this book, the more I’m attracted to it!
The long versions are beautiful. I can see this book being used for both modern and retro/60s tops and dresses and I kind of want them all.
Great review! This book is getting a lot of attention this week.
I have been looking forward to this book since it was announced. I think tunics are such a versatile wardrobe staple and I can’t wait to get my copy in early November. I have already bought some fabric and trims. Thanks for the excellent review.
Tunics are great with leggings
Thanks for the opportunity
Looks beautiful!! Thanks!
I would love to sew something out of this! Looks delightful.
Sounds great! 🙂 And I do love a tunic 🙂
Nice to hear your thoughts, I too was a bit sceptical! Although I do love tunics…
Can’t wait to see your tunic!
Would love to win such a great book!
Who would have thought Tunic’s could be SO cool? This book looks awesome 🙂
Thanks for the chance to win….and I can’t wait to see your tunic!!!
I’d love to hsve that book please enter me in the contest.
Looks like a really useful book to have on hand, and I like most everything Sarah makes, so please count me in.
Looking forward to more on the dance sewing.
I think this would be a good book to have for inspiration, ideas also for the information on where to buy supplies.
Count me in! Can’t wait to see what you sew up!
Count me in too! I find tunics kind of fascinating in the range of impressions and associations they give out.
How intriguing! I wouldn’t have thought there were so many styles of tunics. Now I really want to make some of my own 🙂
I would like to try it out
I love tunics and a book about tunics sounds great to me!
Very interested in checking this book out.
I have followed their blogs and can’t wait to see their book.
Many of my favorite outfits over the years were tunics! I’d love to win the book, but honestly, I’ll buy it, if I don’t win.
I’m very interested in the book, I’ve seen a lot of inspiration from the garments made so far.
I would love to own this book. The long tunics are really catching my attention.
I was interested in the book just by reading your review and the photos hadn’t loaded. After seeing the pictures I really, really want this book!
It looks like a book that’s full of inspiration…id love to win a copy!
Ooh, I love that maxi version!
I’m curious to see the book. I’m actually kinda into tunics at the moment, which is a departure from my usual style, and I’m sure this would have some inspiration!
I’m like you in that I couldn’t imagine a whole book on tunics, but now I’m dying for it!
Thanks for including the table of contents. There are loads of options covered in this book. I too find ‘real’ books much easier to love than electrons!
I’ve been following Sarah’s blog for years and noticed Julia popping up here and there. These ladies are classy and I love what the sewing community is doing with the tunics. So I’d love to get my hands on this book and spin out my versions…
Thanks for reviewing this book, makes me excited to get my hands on a copy soon.
Love tunics! I need to start making my own. Thanks for the review and giveaway!
Summer is coming here and I’m starting to think I need to make some tunics
This book seems more awesome every place I see it!
The tunic book looks awesome, how do I enter to win a free book?
You just needed to comment so you are now in the draw! 🙂
Would love to win this book as it is full of inspiration
I am so intrigued by the versatility of this pattern. I would love to win a copy of this book.
Awesome, thank you. Please count me in as well.
l would love to win a copy of that book. I’ve been watching for it to be available.
I also haven’t been sewing as much as I would like to (with family and study) but this book looks great. I look forward to seeing your version
Looks like an interesting book! I feel a summer tunic dress coming on …
Pick me, pick me! I love a tunic and a simple pattern to experiment with.
Thank you for showing us the table of contents and explaining what the pattern is like. I’m sure this is going to be a muchbloved book!
A great review! This book has had my attention since I first read about it. Thanks for the chance to enter the drawing.
Would love to read and have a copy of “the Tunic Bible”.
I love love love tunics!!
I think we have a similar view of tunics as part of our wardrobes. Also, I have altered many a tutu for as costume mistress for my local dance school so we have a common “thread” there as well!
I think we have a similar view of tunics as part of our wardrobes. Also, I have altered many a tutu as costume mistress for my local dance school so we have a common “thread” there as well!
I would love this, I think tunics can be so versatile
Julie and Sarah always impress me with their makes, but, I too, wondered about an entire book of tunics. Thanks for the thorough review.
Thanks for the review! I love the float-y silky one on the model – very chic!
Good honest review Liz. I have to say I was skeptical about a book on tunics but I have seen so many lovely ones online due to this book. I wouldn’t mind a copy now.
I would love a copy!!
Looks like an interesting book. I’m ready for a lot of tunics
Great review, this book is right up my street. Count me in for the prize draw. I’m in the UK.
Like the maxi tunic.
I also see myself buying this book if I don’t win. What a great resource for such a versatile garment!
I can’t wait to see your version of the tunic! Thanks for the great review!
Sounds like a great book. I am enjoying all the tunics.
the book sounds intriguing. lots of room for creative touches.
Great review – thanks!
I love tunics. And sewing!
Super excited about this book!
I am so excited for this book!
Hope I win this book – looks great
Great review and I am SO anxious to get my hands on this book–I LOVE tunics and the versatility they provide.
Simple shift dresses for Summer? Sounds like a perfect solution to hot and sweaty Sydney. I’ve never found the perfect tunic pattern. Maybe this will be IT!
The book looks great! Would love to try it
I’ve never made a tunic. In fact I don’t believe I’ve been very owned one. I’d love to make one.
I’ve been watching the progress of this book with interest and had the same thoughts as you did about a book on tunics. Still reserving my judgement! Thank you for a great review.
I am inspired to build a wardrobe of different tunic styles.
I agree with you completely that it’s better to focus on doing the book justice and taking time to make your project with care. Waiting patiently to see your completed tunic.
Sounds like a great book with lots of options. I’ve been inspired by the different tunics that have been made for this tour and look forward to seeing your.
Wow you’ve written a comprehensive review. The book seems quite intriguing. An real eye opener for tunics. I can’t wait to see your tunic. I can imagine you making a maxi tunic.
I would love a copy of the book.
Thank you for your thoughtful review! I would love to be inspired by the book as your on line review makes it a “must read”. 😊
Sarah was also one of the first sewing bloggers I followed. As a lover of Lagenlook, tunics make a significant contribution to this style of clothing, looking forward to seeing all the different combinations of elements 😊
I’m excited to see this book, I’ve been waiting for it’s release.
Thank you for the review. Looking forward to your finished tunic reveal. I’ m sure I could benefit from this book!
It feels like I’ve been waiting for months for this to come out! Can’t wait!
Tunics are so versatile. Thanks for a chance to win a copy of this book.
I’ve been enjoying the sewing for your daughter so very much, but I also can’t wait to see your tunic. Thank you so much for the chance to win.
I would live to start making tunics.
This book looks fantastic! If I don’t win a copy, I will certainly purchase one. 🙂
I wasn’t sold on this book until I saw all the different versions, and I love seeing your review of what’s inside! I can’t wait to see your version.
Over a period of 45 years of sewing I have realized that using a basic pattern and applying variations of plain and printed fabrics, different necklines, sleeves etc. the look can be so varied…nobody would know it’s the same pattern! But the fit is spot on every time. This book is a must have for me!
I love a good tunic, and look forward to having a basic bodice to embellish.
Sounds like a very interesting book. Thank you for the review and the giveaway!
I’ve been interested in this book since Sarah first talked about it on her blog. Thank you for the giveaway!
I’ve never been inclined to want to make a tunic but I have to admit I’m seeing them in a new light now!
This book looks really good! Hope I win! Can’t wait to see your share 🙂
I love wearing tunics and would love a copy of this book! Thanks for the opportunity!
I’d really love to win a copy of this book! Thanks for including me!
I’m loving the creative ideas of Julie and Sarah, such lovely tunics
Pleas enter me in the draw for this inspiring book.
I would love the chance to win this book – can’t wait to see your version.
Aw … was looking forward to seeing what you’d made. Please post soon! Thank you for the opportunity to have my own copy. — ldp
I would enjoy having one pattern that could be used to make countless variations.
I’d love to have a look into that book.
I would love to win. This is an exciting book I’d love to get my hands on, winning would be wonderful.
Lovely book! I’d love to win it!
I’d love to win this book and make a tunic for my friend!
Love it! But it is still October 11th on this part of the globe…. Anyway the tunics are fantastic!
I’d love a copy of this book!
Dreaming of tunics!
Tunics are my go to style at the moment. It would be wonderful to win!