Thursday, February 20, 2014

If you don't like it, you can leave. This isn't Eric Roberts' teepee.

Hola! Hope everyone is keeping well. I'm grand - working from home for the next couple of days and trying to balance out how frustrating I find teleconferences with the fact that my house smells a lot nicer than the office, and that the coffee is nicer here too. You know. Standard life stuff. It's also really nice to be working in my bedroom with the sun - actual SUN - streaming in through the windows.

Anyway, I have a short and sweet post for you today, and a giveaway. Whoop! The people at Simplicity got in touch with me a few weeks ago and asked me would  I like a copy of their new edition of the Simply the Best Sewing Book. I'm not usually one to turn down a freebie so I said OMG YES PLEASE in the most dignified way I could manage, and they very kindly sent me two copies. One for me to review, and one for one of you lot playing along at home:

Ugh, this photo is out of focus, sorry! Also, if you don't get a Tina Turner song stuck in your head when you look at this photo then we can't be friends.

I must admit, I don't have a huge sewing book library. I have Gertie's book and Sew U: Home Stretch, and that's it! So, I was very happy to be sent a general sewing reference book. The book states its aim right at the beginning, saying
The aim of this book is to be the most comprehensive source of information for both new and experienced sewers.
Fair enough, right? While I honestly cringe at the word 'sewers', I think this book is a very comprehensive guide to home sewing, with a focus on garment construction.

The book is spiral-bound, and the chapters are marked with coloured tabs for ease of reference. I  also really like the way in which Simplicity have gone to some considerable effort to make the book attractive - they clearly know their audience!

Hello, pretty end papers!

I think the most useful chapters for any home seamstress are the one on achieving a perfect fit, and the chapter about sewing techniques. The perfect fit chapter is really clear in explaining how you can make adjustments to your pattern, and how to tell what adjustments you might need to make. I'm a pretty visual learner so I found the diagrams particularly helpful here:

Actually, the diagrams about bust adjustments are probably a better illustration of how good the diagrams are! But this gives you the idea.

So anyway, I won't waffle on too much more about the book. I'm a reasonably experienced seamstress by this stage but there are lots of things I am keen to learn - particularly about fitting - and I think this book will be a great basis for that. And now for the science bit. Concentrate.

Would you like to win your own copy of this pretty book? I have one to give away to a reader in the UK or Ireland. I'm sorry international readers, I just don't think I can afford to ship a pretty heavy book all the way to wherever you are! All you need to do to be in with a chance of winning is to leave me a comment below and tell me what sewing technique you want to learn. You can have an extra chance at winning if you tweet a link to the giveaway - just leave me an additional comment to tell me you've done it. I'll leave the giveaway open for a week - until 4pm on Thursday, 27th February, and then I will choose someone at random after that time. Good luck! May the odds be ever in your favour.

And because I now find it weird to have a blog post without my big round face in it, here's a non-sewing related outfit from earlier in the week. I tried on this Laura Ashley dress about 5 years ago in  store and couldn't afford to buy it. This is seriously the first time since then that I've seen one in my size on ebay:

Laura Ashley geo-print dress, Topshop shoes and Hell Bunny cardigan

It's funny because I remember when I tried it on at the time thinking it was the most flattering dress ever. And now I'm not at all sure that it is - it has a strange dropped waist, for one thing. Still though, it was super-cheap on ebay and I suppose it is pretty cute.

Anyway, that's your lot from me, boys and girls. Hit me up in the comments if you'd like the book!