I don’t know if you know this or not, but I started this blog to learn how to sew beyond the basics. It was originally “How to Sew a Straight Line”, and it was all about my trying to figure this whole sewing thing out. We all have to start somewhere with anything, including a hobby. Katie Lewis of The Red Kitchen has just published a book that is the perfect jumping-off point for the aspiring sewist, Simple Sewing.
Simple Sewing’s subtitle says “30 Fast and Easy Projects for Beginners”. Really, I could just end the review with that, because Simple Sewing is exactly what it says it is. This is the book you get the person on your list who keeps saying, “You know, I have a sewing machine in my closet, but I don’t even know how to use it!”, or “Man! I wish I could sew. I don’t even know where to start.” Or the kid who says, “Mom, can we have a project day?” Which is where Jonas, my five year old, comes in.
I’ve posted before about how important it is to me to teach all of my kids to sew, including my three boys. Jonas has been not-so-patiently waiting for his Sewing With Mom time to come. I’ve been routinely putting him off because a) he has a really short attention span, b) I have been super busy with my own projects, and c) his project ideas weren’t exactly realistic (“I want to make bow and arrow costume that also flips around and is a Lego Ninjago”). But with Christmas coming, Jonas had drawn his little sister’s name to get a gift for in our family gift exchange. He wanted to get her some fun things for her baby doll. Well, guess what?! Simple Sewing has a perfect baby-doll-fun-stuff project: a pillow and blanket.
The book has great, clear, fun pictures of each project, and Jonas was super excited when I showed him our project in the book and was literally jumping up and down when I told him we could make it. So, with one of his trusty action figures to watch over our work, we got sewing.
Jonas is just starting to read, but the step-by-step pictures included with each project in Simple Sewing were so easy to follow along with, that he was able to tell me what step was next pretty much through the whole thing. If you’re a visual learner and intimidated by sewing manuals, Simple Sewing is for you. The pictures and clear, concise instructions hold your hand through each project and step. It’s awesome!
I’ve looked through, and own, quite a few sewing books for projects and for instructions on how to sew. What sets Simple Sewing apart is that it’s not just an idea book, and it’s not just a teaching book. It’s both, and it does both well. Each step is included, each of those steps with its own picture. This book can teach you how to sew.
Simple projects, but explained in great detail so you’re sure to have a fun end project and the confidence to sew more.
If you are wanting to sew with kids, like I do, this book is fabulous not just for the huge range of projects, or for the fabulously-explained steps, but because the projects, as the cover promises, are fast. Want to give your kid some quality one-on-one time while the baby naps or while dinner cooks? Grab this book. From cutting to final stitches, our doll blanket and pillow took us no more than 30 minutes. My five year old stayed interested and engaged the whole time and was thrilled to see his project take shape so soon. In fact, it all went so quickly, and the toddler was still napping, that we went a little crazy and I let Jonas pick out a decorative stitch for the blanket, which pretty much blew his mind with awesomeness.
I have been informed that his next sewing project will be done in all train-shaped stitching.
We were able to sew up the Baby Doll Blanket and Pillow, wrap it up with the little doll feeding set we’d picked up at the store earlier for his sister, and get it all under the tree with nap-time to spare!
And best of all, I got some great time with my sweet five year, helping him learn a new skill and share his talent with his sister. Not such a bad way to spend a half an hour.
You can get your own copy of Simple Sewing, or grab a handful for the people in your life that could use some sewing lessons and ideas at:
Barnes & Noble
Books & Things
or you could win one (only open to US mailing addresses): a Rafflecopter giveaway
And now go check out what the amazing Adrianna of CrafterHours is whipping up with her copy of Simple Sewing!
I was given a copy of Simple Sewing in exchange for my review. Thanks, Katie!!