Drape Drape in Manila!

As you all know, my dear readers, I’m a self-taught hobby seamstress.  I haven’t had time to do many projects lately thanks to my darling daughter, but let me tell you it that it sure hasn’t stopped me from adding to my stash of sewing books and fabric!

I still stand by my original list of 2012 favorite sewing books but I’ve picked up a few more along the way.  One thing that particularly excited me was my find in Powerbooks Greenbelt, Drape Drape.  I saw some reviews such as this one on Drape Drape and the clothes are so my style!   It’s quite a bit more advanced than the level I’m at now but I’m dreaming of the day that I can create something for myself from this book.20130117-225253.jpg

Hooray for local bookstores stocking more and more books for us!  🙂

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Sewing books – my 2012 favorites so far!

I’m sure that all of you hobby seamstresses out there have your own little stash of sewing books as references.  Even with the ever popular YouTube and all the wonderful sewing blogs that I constantly stalk, it’s still nice to have the actual books to leaf through (plus all the great paper patterns that a lot of these books come with).  Aside from my iPad, these are what I take with me while waiting for my turn at my ob-gyne’s clinic or at the salon.  Hehehe.

I ordered most of them through Amazon because there used to be very few sewing books in Manila bookstores.  Luckily (or unluckily for me since I had to pay shipping), local bookstores like Fully Booked and Powerbooks have been carrying more and more sewing books.  This isn’t my full stash since I have some on Kindle (the Nancy Zieman ones and Me and My Sewing Machine by Kate Haxell) and some others lying around our flat, but these are the ones that I’ve been going through the most as references.  There are a lot of patterns that I can’t wait to try out once I give birth!

Sewing books

Most of these are for relative beginners (not absolute beginners) or those with average skills, because they do assume that you already have previous knowledge on basic sewing terms and skills.  A lot of them though have patterns and suggestions that advanced seamstresses can easily use to take their projects up a notch or make their projects more complicated.

If you’re into making things aside from clothes, 1-2-3 Sew or One-Yard Wonders (not pictured) are good options since they have projects like bags, electronics cases, pouches, aprons, etc.  For absolute beginners though, I love Stitch by Stitch for its clear, detailed instructions (one of the best I think) that gets you started with small crafty projects (napkins) then guides you through projects of increasing complexity until you find yourself making clothing!  I used Stitch by Stitch to create my reversible totes (you can read about it here)  and found the book simple and easy to follow.

For the books on sewing clothes, I’ll be able to make a better call on the books once I start sewing from them (after I give birth) but so far I’m really liking most of these books.  These are the ones that come with basic clothes patterns and offer tips on customizing them:

These books don’t come with any patterns:

Another great book that I read through is Claire Shaeffer’s Fabric Sewing Guide that I bought on Kindle.  It gives you an awesome reference on types of fabric and what presser foot, thread, needle, hems, seams and finishings to use for the best results.  When in doubt, this is my go-to book!

If you have any questions about any of these do let me know, I’ll try to put up some reviews on the individual books soon.  =)

First Sewing Project – What to do?!

I’ve been trying to figure out what my first sewing project should be.  Ultimately, I want to be able to sew some of my own clothes and make some crafty things for our baby.  But I have to start with something much simpler as I don’t remember anything from my sixth grade economics class that taught us the basics of how to use a sewing machine.  But even if I did remember, my newfangled machine does not in any way resemble the heavy rusty old Singer machines I used to practice on.

I love to read and I figured that since I’m trying to learn how to sew on my own, books on Kindle are as good a place to start as any.  So far, I’ve downloaded Me and My Sewing Machine on my Kindle which I find very straightforward and informative, and Sewing in a Straight Line which seems like a good book to choose my first project from.  But of course, I couldn’t resist picking up a few books that I hope I can use in the future such as Built by Wendy Dresses (available through Amazon, not sure if we can get it in Manila) and the BurdaStyle Sewing Handbook (Php 1,199 from Powerbooks in Alabang Town Center around which both come with patterns inside:

I’m trying to figure out if I should try the one-hour skirt from Sewing in a Straight Line or maybe a really cute and functional crayon roll.  But since both will work well with medium weight fabric and I’ve read that printed or plain cotton is the easiest for beginners, I decided to get some cute fabric to inspire me last weekend.

I went to Fabric Warehouse in Glorietta 5 and Paramus in Glorietta 4 below the food court and left with this fabric:

Fabric from Paramus, Glorietta 4

Printed cotton from Fabric Warehouse (200 per yard)

I bought some matching thread and elastic as well in Carolina’s in the ground floor of Glorietta 5 near Starbucks.  Fanbi in Greenbelt 1 is on sale and seems to have a lot of choices too but I didn’t really look around when I was in the area.

Up next, picking my first sewing project, studying the CE8080 manual, and finally using my new sewing machine.  🙂