Oliver + S

Sewing Books

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    Profile photo of RhythmRhythm @rhythmtyagi

    I want to invest in some quality sewing books to learn to be a better sewist. This forum is full of immensely knowledgeable people, so where better to ask! What are your recommendations?

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    Profile photo of LindaLinda @Knitting1

    Hiya Rhythm!
    I don’t know how experienced a sewist you are, so difficult to answer straight off. Also, what do you need to learn about- fitting skills? Things like different seam finishes,setting in zips and making buttonholes or more complex stuff like tailoring? Are you experienced using all the different machine feet you can get? Do you want to learn some hand sewing skills? If you have some more details about what you need to know, oor what you’d like to know,I will try to come up with some answers! Hope that is helpful, other people might not agree so you will probably get a variety of responses! Linda

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    Profile photo of BeckyinFLBeckyinFL @BeckyinFL

    Rhythm, I have bought at least a dozen O+S patterns now, and I notice that I am a much better sewist after making them up. I learn new things with each one. The tutorials and the forum here help a lot, too. It’s been a great way to learn. Best of luck to you.

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    Profile photo of RhythmRhythm @rhythmtyagi

    Thank you both for your replies. I do agree that Oliver+s patterns are great lessons themselves! Pardon me for I did not provide much details in my question earlier. I am a beginner sewist. I would love to gain knowledge on all basic skills like seam finishes, zipper installation, adding lining to dresses etc. Would love to know about adding trims, fitting and making alterations on garments as well.

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    Profile photo of melelizameleliza @meleliza

    The Colette sewing handbook is very well written and covers a lot of very important information that other beginning books don’t such as fabric characteristics and beginning fit alterations. It also comes with patterns!

    Gerties book for better sewing is also full of really useful stuff, more intermediate than beginner, but also accessible and with patterns.

    A lot of other books out there are pretty superficial in terms of skills. these two are substantial and useful as a reference.

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    Profile photo of miss_sonjamiss_sonja @miss_sonja

    I believe Liesl wrote about this in an older blog post, but I recall that she recommended older editions of the Big 4 type books or Good Housekeeping/Reader’s Digest. She said the older books give more detailed information on more topics; the newer ones assume you want to do fewer really challenging things and omit them.

    I picked up a 1970’s copy of the Reader’s Digest sewing guide. It’s a huge book, full of detailed information on all aspects of sewing. Well worth the $4 I paid.

    I’d say try your local library and just search for sewing and check out a bunch of books. Buy the one you find you keep going back to.

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    Profile photo of NicoleNicole @motherof5

    Fit for real people is another good one

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    Profile photo of RhythmRhythm @rhythmtyagi

    Thank you so much everyone!

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    Profile photo of dubhels2003dubhels2003 @dubhels2003

    I have got a book recently that I’m really enjoying so I thought I’d share it, it’s called Fabric Manipulation by Ruth Singer. It’s lots of techniques for doing slightly different and interesting things with fabric. While it wouldn’t help you with sewing a garment, it would give you great ideas for embellishing it.

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    Profile photo of needlewomanneedlewoman @needlewoman

    Thanks for that Dubhels, I’m a book nut; I will check it out.

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