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on 2 March 2017
Some of my favourite designs in this book... Love it, but the models look like they could do with a good meal so I wouldn't want my granddaughter to look through it.....
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on 7 September 2013
if i had realised it was only for very small sizes i would not have purchased this book money wasted
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on 20 April 2017
I like it too.
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on 18 December 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Sweet Dress Book is a book of clothes based on six patterns. This is a sewing book from Japan and anyone who has seen Japanese sewing books before will know what to expect. These are very cute designs, although not for everyone. The clothes are not wacky, but I wouldn't say they are suitable for someone who is very conventional. Having said that I was surprised how wearable these clothes were. I often find that sewing books aimed at the young contain lots of clothes that are far too revealing or edgy. What I liked about this book is that some of the designs were simple and modest and could be worn by people of all ages.

I would not recommend this book to a beginner because you are dealing with foreign patterns and sewing conventions. If you are new to sewing I would recommend getting yourself a basic book aimed at a UK audience. I do think a lot of people will want to adjust the patterns to suit themselves. I really liked the patterns as I am petite and found they fitted me better than many western patterns. If you are a larger lady I don't think this book will be suitable unless you are experienced at adapting patterns.

One thing I found very strange about this book is the models. They all look worryingly scared and depressed. I can only assume this is the style in Japan, but I found that it almost distracted me from the clothes!
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VINE VOICEon 5 December 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This book comes with patterns in an envelope at the back. Most of the designs are wonderfully individual and stylish. The writer trained as Central St Martins and is known in the fashion world.

The sizing is fashion world dictated - size 12 here is large which is quite dismissive to the larger size figure. Pay attention to the 1cm hem allowance to add when cutting out, unless otherwise specified (some of the hems have 3cm to add). I made one of the dresses without this and it came up small.

The recommended fabrics can be difficult to access if you live anywhere outside London. I have hunted far and wide for Antares Chambray and even cotton linen. The fabrics are important for the projects however because of drape and creasing. I made the jacket in linen because I could not get hold of cotton linen and though it looks great it creases like anything.

The instructions are really difficult to understand. Is it a translation issue or is it that the author uses 'insiders terms? 'Sew the shoulder seams together at the same time'. I lost sleep trying to decide what this meant. An illustration points to right side of a yoke with (wrong side) in brackets next to it. Terms like blind-stitching and edge-stitching are unexplained which assumes some knowledge. I looked for and asked for 'stay tape' in many shops with no luck until I worked out (it took me months!) that this meant fusible tape. I have even got confused by the layout (mind you that was after a glass of wine in the evening - inadvisable in terms of cutting out.

I have learnt to make these clothes by studying the illustrations and referring to my other sewing books for reference, for what feels like hours. I now use the instructions mainly for order.

However I have gained some valuable sewing experience making (to date) three of these patterns up (the jacket is the best piece) and I now have confidence to progress to a slightly more advanced project. I would recommend this book for its designs but be prepared be very active in understanding them. The written instructions are nearly inscrutable.
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VINE VOICEon 20 October 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I am not familiar with this publication and didn't realise there are already other variants on the theme out there. Coming to this as a novice then, but as an experienced home sewer (and that's nothing to do with drains) I was disappointed.

To bang a gong that has been bashed to smithereens - the models. Please pop round for a good meal and a joke any day you'd like. I would like to go to my grave knowing I've made you smile. That's just an irrelevance I know, but when the model detracts from what's being worn, I think it is a big irrelevance.

Sizing and shapes. I'm a UK 12, short and (according to husband) curvy in the right places. As such, and as experienced with many an item made and discarded, pleats placed at the top of the bust and left to drape WILL make me look as if I'm pregnant. Not a look I'm going for. This design also increases the perception of my size - something else I'm none too keen on. So, if you have not such a full bust, you'll be ok.

If you have a waist that you are proud of, and want to draw eyes to it, then as above..... these patterns will not be for you unless you pop a belt on everything. Mind you, on page 35 there IS a puff-sleeve shift dress that flirts briefly with the hips, but then the dress is photographed in black and I can't make out the details.

The cup cake recipes are interesting, but the models have not indulged.

In detail this books gives patterns for a French-sleeved, tie back tunic - not practical enough for me - the thought of doing a "Miranda" whilst in the office and the whole thing giving way is too scary. A longer version as a tunic, an even longer version as a dress. An apron dress which is an elasticated topped tube with straps - do you really need a pattern for that? A "cape-collar" blouse, with no darts; a further tunic this time with a ruffle neck; another no dart blouse with an awful lot of ruffling; an "empire-bodice shift", no darts; a button front Kimono, also worn back to front (with the plunging V back resolved by wearing a roll neck top) and then a further Kimono tunic with pleating across the bust; Flared pants (shorts that look like a skirt); long and short versions of a playsuit (shorts with a top) this time with a sheered top; a tie neck camisole with gaping raglan sleeves that are going to reveal your bra (ok, I'm bust obsessed AND practical). A raglan sleeve tunic dress and blouse; Scoop neck coat dress, based on previous pattern, sweetheart bodice dress WITH DARTS!!!! They do exist. Wrap-bodice, sleeveless dress and a bishop-sleeve blouse, an A line dress, I'm loosing the will..... puff sleeve shift and lastly another coat dress based on the v-neck pattern with flared sleeves.

I'd say you've got to have flippin' good fabric to get any of these to look good and flippin' good fabric costs and can only be found in major towns and cities. I don't have a cat in hell's chance of making myself something that I'd look good in. But, if I come across a trendy flibbertigibbet in need of a new wardrobe, I'd be happy and confident to use the patterns and the minimal sewing guides. If you're an experienced and confident sewer you're going to be fine.
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VINE VOICEon 9 November 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Some of these designs are fairly boxy some might think a bit frumpy..so might not be to everyone's taste. However if your prefer your clothes a little less fitted this ones for you. We must also bear in mind that this is a beginners book so designs are based at this level & are therefore less complex in design so in my opinion they are well designed. The diagrams that form the base of the instructional side of the book are also very well done & I feel confident that I could make a garment from this book. It is also well priced baring in mind that the patterns are included. However as a beginner there is a downside with this book as with many other pattern books. This is that the patterns are not on separate bits of paper. Rather they are printed one on top of the other. I am finding it difficult to discern where one piece ends and another begins not to mention that each one would need re-tracing onto separate paper. It is still however a lovely book & would make a nice present to a new sewer.
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VINE VOICEon 28 November 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Ideal for people who like comfortable easy to wear styles. A range of simple patterns that look complicated and lend themselves to being adapted by using unusual fabrics and notions. Ideal for the ordinary sewers who love making things extraordinary. Just check the sizes as they aren't very big so not much use if you like to eat lots of cake!
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on 27 September 2013
Another great book!
Simple, yet very stylish designs.
Includes detailed instructions with pictures, if that is what you need.
Difficult to pick which designs to actually make up! So, great book to just look through and plan your next making project! ( if, like me, you have too many projects on the go at the same time!)
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VINE VOICEon 27 November 2013
Format: Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Simple but cute design ideas. All the patterns are in the back of the book and this represents great value for anyone who makes clothes. Simple sleeves that could be attached to any design and some fab necklines. I haven't made anything yet as I am waiting to get a dummy but soon will be trying out some of these tops and dresses.
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