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on 30 April 2011
BRILLIANT, what can I say, it's true everything in this book would suit most people.
Well written,very clear instructions easy to follow diagrams,and full of great
ideas that could be used with other sewing projects.One little quibble to author
would have been nice to have instructions to line the coat\jacket.I don't have
a problem with it,but more inexperienced sewers may.Call me old fashioned but I
think a coat deserves a lining,it prolongs it's longevity and it looks much nicer,
but a miner issue really. Another good buy from amazon,many thanks
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on 6 December 2014
I love this book. As a newbie to sewing this book has all the detail you need on what all those sewing terms mean. It was a whole new world to me and the pictures and illustrations are so clear along with the style of writing. I really learnt something for this book. Other patterns I attempted were like painting by numbers and I did not have a clue what I was doing until all the pieces came together at the end. This book really teaches you what all the parts are and how to alter them so you really understand what you are doing. I didn't need to watch endless you tube videos like before. I bought this book because I loved the yellow/grey coat and wanted one like that that fitted really well. Well I achieved it and it did not take long at all and with my new confidence I even added my own lining. Was really pleased with the end result. It wasn't quite as nice as her one but really pleased and made a cardboard copy of the pattern so I can knock a few more up. Do buy- there are lots of coat/jacket and skirt variations from a few similar patterns. I loved it. Really good quality, substantial book too. Hard wearing too.
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on 23 June 2016
This is ok for what it is. All instructions are well written and it is a good star-out book if you are new to dress making. The patterns are a little "older" though.
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on 15 March 2017
love the pattern for the skirt on the front cover, less interested by the other patterns in the book; but at the price I paid, I'm happy.
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on 31 August 2010
I love this book. OK I've only made one item so far, but considering I have never made something using a pattern before, I found the instructions very easy to follow. The pictures are clear and there are sections about the various techniques that might be required during the making of your garment. I made a tunic dress and am really pleased with the results - can't wait to get onto my next project. Great that it is spiral bound too, makes it so much easier to follow as you can have it spread open next to your sewing machine.
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on 13 October 2011
A really nice book.

I have made a skirt, a tunic and a dress so far, and will be making the Parisian Jacket as soon as I find the right fabric. The tunic and dress patterns do take quite a bit of time due to the professional finish - lots of topstitching, edge stitching and general dotting of i's and crossing of t's.

The only word of warning I have is that the sizing is very generous - huge in fact. And the designs are not easy to modify at the end, they are fitted together beautifully but like a tetrus puzzle. Invisible zips on the side seams, for instance, mean you can't just pull in the seams if you realise half way through that it is a bit big.

I am pregnant and have modified the patterns to cover the bump and this works really well, being lots of empire lines and ties that you can pull round the back to tighten or loosen at various stages of pregnancy. A great perk as there are so few stylish books for those 9 months when you could really do with a bit of colour and flair!

I am a UK 10-12/EUR 36-38 and I would usually have gone for a Medium size with the measurements it gave, but went for Large to allow for pregnancy and the first tunic I made was big enough for several baby elephants! It will be useful in a few months but it really is large. Ordinary measuring is fine but because there are lots of ruffles and gathered areas, you do create a 'large' look. Just a word of warning for anyone about to start. Serves me right for being cocky not making a muslin version first, as the book recommends!

My only other comment was that some of the instructions in the techniques section may as well have been written in Chinese. The main text is very clear and easy to follow but the zip section was really not clear to me - possibly a British/American English thing. I have done lots of these in the past and found the instructions pretty murky. Even when I had done it successfully, I re-read the section and found the wording rather odd and unclear. I can imagine a beginner getting a bit stuck.

Overall a great book to learn on - the skirts are a cinch, whereas the jackets take a few more skills.
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on 28 October 2014
The instructions are clear, the spiral binding is practical, patterns are included and it is well illustrated throughout. A great book for novice sewists. But the garments themselves are very country chic and the lines are not in any way elegant - very much 'American country chic' without European sophistication. A good book for novice sewists as all the fabrics are easy sew cottons and wools, with no draping or bias tailoring. Think in terms of everything A-line with ruffles, unfitted bodices, high-necked peter pan or puritan collars and over-large buttons, and you'll get the picture. Pretty ideas for girls with athletic figures but you would really need to be a woman without a bust to look good in any of the designs as the extremely high necklines with minimal bodice structuring and added fussy detailing on the bust area would make a busty woman look ridiculous and somewhat like Grayson Perry going for a night out. The author has made the same gathered empire/puff sleeves shoulder/bust design for every tunic top. The skirt is the same block with added ruffles, patchwork or frills. The coats are mainly A-line with puritan collar, a couple of them make even her slim models look somewhat bulky. But the instructions are very clear and the patterns are included, so if you are a beginner and like pretty, unsophisticated country chic designs then go for it. It's certainly not city chic.
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on 31 January 2011
This is a fantastic book with clear instructions throughout. The book tells you how to make pattern alterations to best suit your size and shape which gives you a truly made to measure item!
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on 31 January 2011
This is a gorgeous book with lots of pictures of, and patterns for clothes you'd really want to make and wear. If you like 'designer' patterned fabric, there are lots of ideas for using it here.
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on 24 July 2011
Well actually beginners and experienced sewers can find something to suit them from this book. I have just finished the tunic/dress and I now have my eye on doing the Betty June 1940's/50's dress pattern (which can be found by either Googling Betty June Dress or go to sew serendipity dot com) which is also designed by Kay Whitt. Making alterations to the patterns are straightforward, however there is a blog by sew L.A. on full bust adjustment should you need it, which works well with her patterns.
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