. Celestina Carmen

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Simple Modern Sewing by Shufu To Seikatsu sha

Simple is definitely how I'd describe the designs in this book. They look extremely easy for beginners to tackle. I've decided to skip this one. The designs are plain, and baggy (to loose for my taste). Most of the models look like they're swimming in their clothes. I like japanese patterns and their loose fit, but the designs in these books did not appeal/inspire to me. I look to sewing books for inspiration, nothing grabbed my attention and stood out in this book. I did like that the directions for each pattern were accompanied by thorough diagrams.

I'd like to clarify, so not to offend anyone ...
I realize that all the patterns can be modified. When I say the models look like they are swimming in their clothes, it's because they do. Of course you don't have to wear the clothes like that, I just didn't find that appealing and wasn't sure why they decided to make the clothes look so ill-fitted. I've seen lots of Japanese sewing patterns that have good fits even though they are loose fitting. I would never discourage someone from picking this book. After all, this is just my opinion, and yours could be a whole lot different.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook

I'm in the process of sewing the coat (Karin's variation) from this book. This mini review is based on this project.

Is this a good book for beginner's?

  • I'd recommend this book for a beginner who has some experience in sewing. I would not recommend this book to anyone who has no experience in sewing. There is not enough detailing in this book for someone who has never sewn before.
Is there detailed instructions and diagrams?
  • Based on the project I'm currently working on, no. There are not a lot of diagrams and the instructions are not worded to where they are easy to follow. I found myself re-reading many sections because I was lost on the wording. It was either unclear or could have been worded differently. (Example- The coat I'm working on is a sewer's variation of the original. Lots of pattern changes. One pattern piece calls for you to cut it in two, but does not give any direction to which pattern piece you will work on next. I had to re-read a few times to make a guess. Another example- The diagram showed one way, but the instructions said another.)
Would I recommend this book?
  • Definitely yes. I borrowed this book from the library. This is the most modern and stylish sewing book I've come across. I plan to go out and buy this book for my own home library. Their are 5 basic patterns ... blouse, skirt, dress, coat, and handbag. Each basic pattern has 2 additional variations. At the end of each segment there is 2 pages of other sewer's variations. It will inspire your creative side and teach you to think out side of the box. This book is very project runway and not your grandma's old patterns.
For more inspiration and to see other sewer's variations of these projects, visit BurdaStyle.

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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Sew What You Love by Tanya Whelan

30 surprisingly simple—yet delightfully charming—sewing projects 
Grand Revival designer Tanya Whelan’s vintage modern aesthetic has made her fabrics and sewing patterns some of the most admired by sewers and quilters everywhere. In her first book, she presents a stylish collection of 30 easy-to-make sewing projects that are achievable by sewers of every skill level. Ranging from a pretty pleated clutch to a flirty French-inspired day dress and super-cute soft baby toys to a mistake-proof design-as-you-go quilt, each project comes with step-by-step instructions and illustrations, inspiring photographs, and helpful tips. These projects and patterns for children, adults, and the home are guaranteed to work well and produce a beautiful end result. Included are 3 pattern sheets enclosed in a handy pocket, providing everything you need to start stitching something you are sure to love.
With Tanya’s passion for sewing featured on every page, you’ll soon discover just how gratifying sewing can be. (Source)

These patterns were simple and easy for any beginner. I'm a fan of Amy Butler's and recommended those books to any beginner. This book is simpler and easier for beginners.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Carry Me by Yuka Koshizen

Highlighting the extraordinary influence Japanese craft has imparted on the world of fiber arts, this brilliantly illustrated manual showcases the stylish sensibilities of eastern expertise in creating gorgeously sophisticated handbags. Revealing a balanced selection of cleverly constructed handbags, exclusive pull-out pattern templates, intricate details and instructions, and simple sewing techniques, sewers are shown how to create distinct and fashionable works of functional art, such as a wool tweed travel bag, a stylish denim bag with grommet and zipper details, a roomy tote with contrast lining and inside pockets, a handy laptop bag, a wool messenger bag with flower detail, and a soft luggage tote. With several concepts offering matching companion projects—such as change purses, drawstring bags, and wristlets—and accessible advice and information, this lively guide will inspire sewers of all experience levels. (source)

Each project comes with detail diagrams that look easy to follow as well as detailed instructions. 

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Friday, February 10, 2012

Design It Yourself Clothes by Cal Patch

This book has inspired me to get back into sewing. Sewing never went away, but I've had a hard time finding the time to dedicate to it. Thanks to this book, I started making the time again.

I'm not a fan of sewing books that are overly technical. I need something simple, fun, easy and quick to follow. This book was perfect for that. It gives you the basics for designing your own patterns. Now I can understand sewing patterns better. Which will come in handy when I need to modify them. It's a good book to have on hand for reference. There was a couple pages dedicated to creating patterns from existing clothes. I would have liked to see more focused on this.

I didn't care for the designs in the book (not my taste), but I didn't read this book for that. I read this book in hopes it would teach me to design my own patterns, which it did.

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Sewing In A Straight Line by Brett Bara

Take a sneak peek inside Sewing In A Straight Line.

This is a good book for beginners. I'd put this in the same category as Amy Butler's In Stitches. If you already have that one, then you might not need to add this to your library. I was looking for something new to inspire me and none of these projects did this. It was fun to browse, so my mini review is based on browsing (no in depth reading). If anything else, pick it up to look at the beautifully colorful pictures. Just because I wasn't inspired, doesn't mean you won't be.

Each project comes with step by step instructions and diagrams too.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hey Quilters :: iPhone Apps Just For You


Quilt Dreams- take photos with your camera, then use the photos to create a quilt.
average rating (still new)
price :: $3.99

QuiltFab 2.0 - Helps you answer the question, How much fabric will I need?
average rating 4 stars
price :: free

QuiltRef - Provides useful information for quilters, and quilt fans too.
average rating 3 stars
price :: free

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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Wish List Wednesday :: A Field Guide To Fabric Design

If you have ever dreamed of showing your designs on fabric, textile aficionado Kim Kight, of popular blog True Up, is here to teach you how. Comprehensive and refreshingly straightforward, this impressive volume features two main parts. First, the Design and Color section explains the basics with step-by-step tutorials on creating repeating patterns both by hand and on the computer. Next, the Printing section guides you through transferring those designs on fabric-whether it's block printing, screen printing, digital printing or licensing to a fabric company-and how to determine the best method for you. (Blurb courtesy of Amazon.)

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New Year, New Embroidered/Stenciled Appointment Book

For the past couple years I've tried to mix my business life with my crafting life by jazzing up my appointment work book. It's April and I've finally gotten around to it. Last week, someone mixed the appointment books up. Now with my new design, it's guaranteed not to happen again!

Techinques used : paper cutting, stenciling and hand embroidery.
Ink used : Gocco ink.

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Wish List Wednesday :: Pulled by Mike Perry

Popularized in the 1960s by Pop artists such as Andy Warhol, screen printing remains a favorite of artists due to its remarkable versatility and relatively low cost. In Pulled, best-selling author Mike Perry (Hand Job, Over and Over) collects the work of more than forty of today's most talented designers who are, in their own way, pushing the boundaries of this dynamic medium. (Blurb courtesy of Amazon.)

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Open Studios With Lotta Jansdotter

Internationally acclaimed designer Lotta Jansdotter reinvents the craft book and reinforces her global appeal with this rare glimpse into the studios of accomplished artists, crafters, and designers around the world. Open Studios takes us on a tour through Lotta's favorite cities: Brooklyn, New York, where she lives; Stockholm, where she grew up; and Tokyo, where she has traveled extensively. Hundreds of color photographs showcase each artist's studio while personal interviews reveal how they organize their supplies, use their space, and—most importantly—where they find inspiration. The featured makers include graphic designers, photographers, ceramic artists, printers, and more—each offering a unique perspective on how to shape, decorate, and organize (or not!) a creative space. (Blurb via Amazon.)

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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bringing Some Love To My Walls

I'm adding a little love to our walls by framing my favorite love quotes and poems.

This is my favorite quote taken from City of Glass by Cassandra Clare.

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Friday, February 11, 2011

Cake Pops, Now Added To My Library

My sister surprised me with Bakerella's ...

I luv making these. Now I can try to add a little cuteness to my cake pops. Thanks sis!

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Sunday, February 6, 2011

I'm Reading A Book by Julian Smith

Tynga from Tynga's reviews posted this funny video this morning. Enjoyed it so much I decided to share it here.

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Gluten-Free Pineapple Upside Down Cake

This was a day of firsts ....

First Pineapple Upside Down Cake.
First gluten-free Pinapple Upside Down Cake.
First time trying any of Pamela's mixes.

Thoughts ...

The recipe I used came with Pamela's Vanilla Cake mix. It was delicious! The cake itself was a little blander than normal, but still really good. The biggest surprise was how moist the cake was. I was expecting it to be dry like most gluten-free cookies.

Changes Made to Recipe ...

- The recipe calls for water in the cake mix. I used water and a little of the pineapple juice from the pineapple slices.

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