I’ve been reading Gretchen’s blog Gertie’s Blog for Better Sewing for awhile now and I still really enjoy it. It’s a wealth of sewing knowledge and tutorials and is one of those blogs I have to read when there is a new post. I was pretty excited that she was going to have a book published, but I wasn’t moved to order it on pre-sale. I’m a believer in instant gratification when it comes to buying books (well as instant as it gets when you order online and it takes a week for the book to get shipped to me 🙂 ) I’m just no good at the looong wait.
As I mentioned when I first posted about this book I was drawn in by the posts other seamstresses where writing about the book. I saw all the rave reviews from other sewing bloggers. I. JUST. HAD. TO. HAVE. IT!!! I jumped online and did a bit of price comparison (Book Depository usually beats everyone else by the time you add in other online book stores shipping fees)
Gretchen’s introduction really set the scene for the book and the design really tied in nicely with the whole ‘sewing retro’ theme of the book. I enjoyed how the book progressed through the various chapters in part 1, touching on the areas of sewing techniques; stabilising and tailoring; patternmaking; and fitting.
This was a fantastic lead in to Part 2: Wardrobe and wowzers what a great wardrobe it is! The pictures of construction steps accompanying the instructions for each of the patterns are a fantastic aid in visualising how each garment is put together. However I do wish there were a few more pictures with the instructions for some of the variations Gretchen has included in the book.
I found that I read the book fairly quickly, but I must admit I skipped over the instructions for the Suit Jacket and the Coat Dress at the end. I’m not really up to constructing a super tailored garment just yet.
Things I didn’t like about the book:
- The pattern envelope at the front. Not really related to the content I know, but it was a little annoying when reading the book. I think I’d prefer it at the back. My pattern envelope has come unstuck from the front cover 🙁 – Oh well I’ll just have to stick back on.
- There aren’t enough pictures in some of the sections. I think that more pictures in the tailoring and fitting sections would be beneficial, however I should be able to find out more from fitting or tailoring reference books. I do wish that there were more pictures when it comes to the pattern variations, this is something I won’t be able find anywhere else.
Things I liked about the book:
- Fantastic patterns of course! I really like the separates and the dresses. You really can’t complain about how many you get either. I mean there are 10 patterns in this book-TEN!
- The weight of the pattern paper. It’s really sturdy and looks like it would stand up to multiple tracings.
- I really enjoy the writing style. A reviewer on GoodReads commented that she didn’t like it, however if you read the blurb on the back and the introduction Gretchen explains that this books is really an extension of her blog and therefore she has written in a similar style.
- The book design and styling was fun and is pretty great too.
|The Pattern Paper|
Items I want to make (the important part : P ):
- The Pencil Skirt;
|Would be great for work!|
- The Portrait Blouse;
|Wonderful for casual and work wear|
- and the Straight Waistline Full Skirt variation The Scalloped Waist Skirt
|Would be great for social outings. Maybe work too.|
- The Shirtwaist Dress
|Love, love, love – one for work and casual|
- and the Peter Pan Collar variation of the Bow-Tied Blouse.
|I’ll have to see if the high neckline works for me.|
What are you reading these days?
Until next time, I hope you’re engrossed in a fantastic book