Hello! Welcome to my first ever not-exactly-sponsored-but-affiliated-with-a-product post. Excited? Me too!
So, I don't think I mentioned it here but I have a project in a book! A book that came out earlier this month. It's Fabric-by-Fabric One-Yard Wonders (the sequel to the first One-Yard Wonders). Look, it's even on Amazon. My flat screen tv cover pattern is on page 350! How many exclamation points can I use in two paragraphs?(!)
Anyway, let's start with the important stuff--if you want to win a copy of this book leave a comment by midnight on December 23 and I'll email the winner on Christmas Eve and the publisher will send you this giant book full of 101 projects.
See, giant book! There's a huge envelope of patterns in the front followed by 415 full color pages in a spiral binding that conveniently stays open to the page you want. I always like that in a craft book.
I received the book free (part of my compensation for being a contributor) and it arrived on Saturday. I finally had a chance today to take a closer look. For as much as I sew I only branched out of using quilting cottons within the last few years so I found the beginnings of the sections where they describe the types of fabric quite useful. For example, I had no idea what a "woven pile" fabric was. Turns out it's fuzzy stuff like corduroy, velveteen or chenille.
WHAT I (ALMOST) MADE
When I first flipped through the book my immediate reaction was that there were tons of things I'd make. But then, when it came down to choosing something to make for this blog post I actually got stuck. Of course that's more my fault than the book's. I wanted to make something that didn't require pattern pieces from the envelope, could be made with fabric on hand and could be made in an hour or two.
I have a great stash of knits so that's the chapter I went to. Ignoring the fine, fine project on page 350 which totally fit my criteria :) I opted to make the Speedy Ruffle Scarf on page 336.
HOW I (ALMOST) MADE IT
I used a super soft, super lightweight gray jersey knit. It happened to be 60 inches wide rather than the 45 inches called for in the pattern so I adjusted the number of strips I cut to get the proper total length. Also, I used my rotary cutter and ruler to cut the strips which I estimate was about 4000 times easier than marking the knit and cutting with scissors. Of course, I understand not everyone has a rotary cutter but if you've got it, use it!
From the image in the book I had no idea how the scarf was constructed so my usual approach of going off the photo rather than the written instructions didn't work out. Luckily, the instructions were very clear and easy to follow. The hand sewing was a bit tedious but I had my mom on speakerphone so I got all caught up with the family as I stitched away.
The next step would be to machine sew the ruffled layers but I didn't get there. I feel confident it will work (I put a stretch needle in my machine--I'm ready to go) but it's going to have to wait. I didn't want to be late on my one and only scheduled blog post of the year and it's already after 10 pm! You'll have to come back another time to see my snuggly scarf.
SHOULD YOU BUY THIS BOOK?
If the Speedy Ruffle Scarf pattern is representative of the book, it's clearly written and easy to follow. If you like to do a variety of types of sewing from home dec to toys to apparel this is a great book and you'll certainly find enough projects to make it worth the $30 price tag (more like $20 on Amazon).It's also a very informative book with tips for sewing different types of fabrics.
If you have kids (or sew for kids) this book would be especially worthwhile as there are a number of toys and kids' clothing pieces. I guess kids fit into a yard of fabric better than most adults.
On the other hand, I'm going to be honest, if you're like me and get irritated following patterns this may not be the book for you. I find it tedious to follow a detailed pattern and there are a lot of super adorable projects in here that I simply wouldn't make out of laziness. The piglet stuffed toy on page 302 is a perfect example. Of course with 101 patterns I could just skip the complicated ones. I flipped through the book with a critical eye and still found more than 10 projects I would definitely make and several projects that described a new-to-me technique. Given that, I'd say the book would be a worthwhile investment for your sewing library even for a pattern-phobe.
Of course, you don't even have to make an investment--just leave a comment and you might win a book. And if you don't sew it'd make a great gift.
And with that, I'll conclude the longest post in history with a list of the other blogs on the blog book tour. I'm sure there are several other chances to win books so take a look and the blogs of the other contributors. Thanks for reading!
12/12/2011 Becka's Project Journal
12/13/2011 Craft Buds
12/14/2011 Patch Work Duck Designs
12/15/2011 Patch Work Duck Designs
12/15/2011 A Spoonful of Sugar
12/15/2011 Nifty Kidstuff
12/15/2011 Becka's Project Journal
12/16/2011 Nom Nom Nom Nom
12/16/2011 Quaint and Quirky
12/17/2011 Two Brown Birds
12/18/2011 Sharon Sews
12/19/2011 LBG Studio
12/19/2011 Carolina Fair Designs
12/19/2011 Under Construction
12/20/2011 Little Blue Cottage
12/21/2011 Neuroses Galore
12/21/2011 Emily Steffen
12/22/2011 Jenna Lou Loves You
12/27/2011 One Inch World
12/28/2011 Sew Sew Etc.
January ‘12 Lu Lu Carter
January ’12 Fiberosity
January ’12 Zuhause
January ’12 Obsessively Stiching
January ’12 No Bad Days
January ’12 Craft & Cackle
January ’12 AfricanKelli