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Sewing Machine Basics [Paperback]

Jane Bolsover
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (92 customer reviews)
RRP: £14.99
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Book Description

14 Oct 2010
This book takes the mystery out of the sewing machine, holding first-time stitchers by the hand and showing the easiest ways to get the most from their machine. In the climate of 'make do and mend', sales of sewing machines have soared, but many are only accompanied by a difficult-to-understand technical manual. Here, Jane Bolsover provides a comprehensive guide for beginners. Starting with an essential overview of the sewing machine, learn how to thread it and wind bobbins, why tension is important and which needles to choose. There's information on the basic sewing kit you will need, plus advice on which fabrics to choose and how to cut out. The chapters then build into a complete sewing course, and at the end of each chapter is a simple project to consolidate the skills you have just mastered. The projects include items for the home, including a cushion cover and a lampshade, stylish accessories, such as bags and scarves, plus great clothing basics, such as an A-line skirt and a simple shift dress. Also included at the back of the book is a full-size pull-out paper pattern section.

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Sewing Machine Basics + Me and My Sewing Machine: A Beginner's Guide + Make Me I'm Yours... Sewing: 20 simple-to-make projects
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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: CICO Books (14 Oct 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1907030735
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907030734
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 21 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (92 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,225 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Jane Bolsover has over 20 years' experience as a designer and writer specializing in sewing and crafts. As well as creating sewing and craft projects for magazines, Jane has written seven books on soft furnishings and patchwork, and edited many more. She has also appeared on mainstream television several times. Jane now works as a consultant for a major textile and craft show company, where she organizes craft demonstrations, workshops and feature displays.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
106 of 109 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful Book but Often Hard to Follow 18 Feb 2012
By Elk2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I purchased this book after buying a sewing machine like several other reviewers and like them I wanted a book which not only taught you the techniques but also gave you some projects to work through and put them to practice and in that respect this book fits the bill. There's several nice projects, giving you a wide variety of nice items at the end including bags, scarves, aprons, curtains, blouses and dresses many of which were items I really wanted to own (rather than just made to meet the criteria of testing my new skills).

However, I was surprised to find given the universally good reviews on Amazon that I frequently found sections of the book (particularly the "teaching" sections) very confusing. I had to read text many times in some sections and even then I resorted to "having a go" in order to work out exactly what was meant. The diagrams were sometimes helpful but I also found these hit and miss. I think the main issue is that in each "step" you will be given multiple instructions, usually with one diagram which relates to only one of the instructions - often you don't know which! I usually end up either referring to another book to cross-check what I think is meant or looking up videos online.

I don't think myself to be someone who usually struggles with such things, so was surprised to see no one else had mentioned this on Amazon. I am potentially comparing this to a wonderful knitting book (Knitty Gritty - by Anneta Patel) which I recently learnt to knit with and it's coming up short against that quite high standard.

In summary, this is a nice book with some nice projects but unless you are already familiar with the basics or are willing to do a lot of re-reading and cross-checking as I have done then I feel there may be more clearly written texts available for the novice sewing machine owner.
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81 of 86 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for beginners 1 Nov 2010
By Sewing Directory TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This book differs from many of the 'get to know your machine' books in that rather than just talking you through your machine and it's functions it has a series of workshops that teach you different functions and skills with a project to make in each one.

The book starts off with an introductory section that explains how the machine works, other sewing tools and equipment you might need and explaining the different types of fabric and when to use them. The workshop section teaches you different techniques and then gives you a project at the end of each section to practice your newly acquired skills. Subjects covered include Seams, Hems, Stitches, Bias Binding, Fastenings, Zips, pockets, darts, gathers and pleats.

The book itself is easy to follow with large colourful diagrams and plenty of written instructions too throughout. I like the fact that the projects are not just your general women's clothing and gifts or small home accessories. There are useful sections on making curtains and blinds as well as a guide to understanding patterns. It also contains 7 full size pull out patterns in the back of the book.

This book is perfect for someone who has just got their first machine but would also teach a few new tricks to those who have been using a machine for a while.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic for the novice 27 Feb 2013
By skip
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought a new sewing machine and hadn't a clue how to use it. This is a practical book full of great tips. Highly recommended for the novice.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars thank you a great book 16 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a great book, I am a complete beginnner at sewing and found this book to be very helpful and informative. Also you get full size patterns too, which I didn't realise, so that was an unexpected bonus. If your new to sewing like me, the easy to use and gentle narrative will certainly help you feel at ease with any sewing machine.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book 20 July 2012
By Angela VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm not a beginner, but I am an entirely self-taught needlewoman and I fully realise that there are probably easier ways to go about things than the way I do them. This book was remarkable in that it covered every detail of my sewing machine and introduced me to things like the various feet that I'd never fully understood.

After the "getting started" section, the book is divided into a series of workshops and each workshop ends with a project to make up, a cushion cover, an apron, a skirt and so on. Just about all the techniques you will ever need are used in these projects and the patterns included seem simple to use. I'm fairly certain I will use all of them - even the child's dress when I have no children, because it looks so pretty (and the charity shop will appreciate it).

One of the most useful features is a chart showing different fabrics along with the most appropriate needles, thread and so on to use with them.

So far I've had the book less than a week and my new sewing machine arrives tomorrow. My fingers are itching to get started.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sewing Machine basics 13 Mar 2011
By BettyB
Format:Paperback
Absolutely fabulous book for anyone wanting to use a sewing machine. Clear, concise instructions and diagrams.

Great projects to work through to develop your skills.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars must-have for beginners 8 Mar 2011
Format:Paperback
This is such a great book for those beginning to sew or have very little experience, like me. The book is arranged into "workshops" where you are shown various techniques using both diagrams and detailed instructions. You then get to put your new-found skills into practice by attempting a project, which is exactly how I like to learn.
The projects are attractive and useful : there are 2 cushions (one simple, the other more complicated with a zip and piped edging), an apron, a bag, a scarf, a roller blind, a pair of drawstring trousers, a skirt, etc.
What impressed me most about this book is that the publishers have not skimped on ink - the book is absolutley bursting with gorgeous colour diagrams and photos.
I would not hesitate to recommend this book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
seems to be a good idea to have
Published 6 days ago by she
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book for any beginner with a machine. Good explanations and several patterns to follow with each lesson
Published 2 months ago by Dr. A
3.0 out of 5 stars Very intimidating
For some reason I just can't get my head around this book, it just feels like a complete information overload. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Lexela
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book!
I have now made a couple of the projects from this book and I think it's fantastic! It's instructions are really clear and easy to follow. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A really helpful book for anyone learning to sew.
Published 3 months ago by marymccracken
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good clear instructions for the beginner
Published 3 months ago by MARK FLENNER
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book.
I bought this book to refresh my memory and help me gain my confidence in making my own clothes which I had lost due to lack of use. Read more
Published 4 months ago by willowtree
4.0 out of 5 stars good book
its a good book for beginners and has projects as you go along. explains everything you need to know about how to work a sewing machine
Published 5 months ago by claire pryce
5.0 out of 5 stars great book especially for beginners
Great for beginners. Gives you 7 projects to start with, that most people would want to use once finished. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Becky
5.0 out of 5 stars Colour pictures and clear instructions
This book has clear instructions and coloured photos - just what I need to get started with my new sewing machine. Read more
Published 6 months ago by snowqueen
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