The Colette Sewing Handbook Review

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The Colette Sewing Handbook is finally here!
http://www.amazon.com/Colette-Sewing-Handbook-Techniques-Seamstress/dp/1440215456/

I received this book in the mail two nights ago, and finished reading it last night. I loved it! It starts with the basics, covering the different tools required for effective sewing. It then goes through planning your wardrobe, and how to determine what your style is. It talks about how to fit patterns to your own body, and talks about different construction techniques, and reviews different seam finishes. It has five very cute patterns in it, from skirts, to tops, to dresses.

Here’s a picture of the Taffy blouse and the Meringue skirt.

 

My favorite chapter is Chapter 2, which talks about planning your wardrobe. She talks about how it’s a bad idea to just randomly pick a pattern and fabric, without thinking about how it fits into your wardrobe. There are so many times that I’ve made a garment that I never wear. She talks about picking the items in your wardrobe that you really love, and figuring out why you love them so much.  She goes into planning your fall and spring wardrobes, and having a clear idea about what pieces you would like to make to complete your wardrobe, BEFORE you go pattern and fabric shopping.

I love the tips that she gives for different construction techniques, like how you can machine sew a dress lining to the zipper tape of your invisible zipper. I will definitely be referring to this book for tips like this when I am sewing up my patterns.

I don’t think that I will be making any of these patterns. I find that the dresses and tops are a little too exposed, and I like my necklines to be quite high. Also, because it’s winter right now, I can’t imagine making a sleeveless party dress. But I will definitely be referring to this book for the techniques, which she does an excellent job of explaining in a lot of detail with excellent photos.

Overall, I would highly recommend this book to both beginning and intermediate sewers. One last comment is that this book is gorgeous, and has a coil binding which makes it very easy to lay flat.

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About Karen

Karen first took sewing classes in middle school, but took a break until her husband bought her a sewing machine a few years back. Her MIL taught her how to quilt, and recently, she started making clothes again. Karen is taking sewing classes at Portland Sewing. She took Beginning Sewing 1 2 and 3 in summer 2011, Patternmaking 1 and 2 in Fall 2011, and is currently taking Textiles.

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