Fashion Sewing Book Reviews

A number of sewing books focus on clothing. These offer valuable tips and delightful projects for your wardrobe. Here are reviews of some special fashion sewing titles.

Altered Style-Sewing and Embellishing Wearable Fashions

By Stephanie Kimura, this was released by Krause Publications/F & W. Create customized designer-style fashion and fashion accessories the easy way. This title offers quick and simple, affordable projects using items from yard and rummage sales, and thrift shops as well as things from your closet.

It features over 30 exciting fashion-conscious projects. These include everything from clothing and purses/bags to aprons, shoes, hats, backpacks, glass cases, and overalls. There are items for everyday use and special occasions.

The author covers a range of embellishment techniques, including appliqué and fusibles, beads and crystals, fabric pens and paints, ribbons, and other trims.

The introductory chapter covers all of the fabrics, supplies, sewing notions, and recommended products needed for the projects. One section is devoted to all of the basic sewing techniques. Throughout the book, there are boxes offering quick tips. The appendix includes a glossary of terms.

For each project, this has a list of materials and supplies, templates, and easy to follow, color illustrated, step by step directions. There are projects to suit every taste from beautifully decorated denim and poplin jackets to signature handbags. An entire chapter is devoted to wedding projects that are simple to make and easy on the budget.


By Shannon Okey et al, this was released by North Light Books/F & W. Turn ordinary clothing into wonderful new items for your wardrobe with this enlightening guide. It offers over 25 DIY customized fashion projects suitable for all skill levels. This has chapters on jackets, shirts, skirts, pants, dresses, and fashion accessories.

The first section discusses all of the techniques, supplies, and notions that will be needed. This covers hand and machine stitching. There is an introduction to sewing machines and sergers. The authors also explain how to cut and press fabrics. The techniques include fusibles and fabric paint. This also shows how grommets can add chic touches to clothing.

Each project explains how to begin with a basic garment, such as a t–shirt or denim jacket, and customize it to suit your needs. For each project, this has a list of materials and notions, cutting instructions, and color illustrated, step by step directions from start to finish. For some of the projects, this includes various options.

These easy projects are suitable for all skill levels. There are items for all sorts of occasions, such as a painted jacket for work and casual garments for everyday use. Some of the projects are of a seasonal nature, such as a jacket decorated for the Mexican holiday, Day of the Dead.

The fashion accessory projects include scarves, bags, and handbags. This also has unusual items made from men’s ties.

Downtown DIY Sewing-14 Easy Designs for City Girls with Style

By Alice Chadwick, this paperback was released by Watson-Guptill. It features three full size patterns. These include a tunic dress, pencil skirt, and summer blouse. Beautifully illustrated with color art and sketches, it is especially recommended for beginners.

This simple and easy guide covers everything that beginners need to know about fashion sewing. The early chapters cover all of the sewing basics and techniques. Readers can also learn how to use patterns to create a sophisticated wardrobe. The author explains what items will be needed, such as thread, fabrics, and various tools and notions.

The projects are simple and easy. In addition to fashionable clothing, this includes various fashion accessories, such as totes, an MP3 player cover, fabric necklace, headband, and bows. Among the clothing projects are a t-shirt mini-dress, off-the-shoulder top, circle skirt, and comfy pajama bottoms. There’s also a lovely stuffed dog.

For each project, this has a list of supplies and fabrics. There are directions for cutting the material along with complete, color illustrated, step by step directions from start to finish. It also features layouts. This has templates and additional patterns that can be enlarged.

For disclosure purposes, I received review copies of these books from the publishers.

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