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Jackets for Real People: Tailoring Made Easy (Sewing for Real People series)
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99 of 101 people found the following review helpful
I am a fan of Palmer and Pletsch books and have found them very helpful in many ways, but this book was a bit of a disappointment. While there are photos of many "real" women being fitted (helpful) the instructions for the actual tailoring are mostly illustrations. If you need to SEE what something is supposed to look like, a drawing can be inadequate, and that is why I have not given this book more stars. That said, if you get both the Singer Library book on Tailoring (which is full of photographs) and this book, you will have the tools you need to make a jacket. I was able to make a lovely tweed jacket on my first try using the Singer book alone. Then I tried to make one using JACKETS FOR REAL PEOPLE and kept going back to the Singer book for clarification. JACKETS FOR REAL PEOPLE is high on fit, lower on technique, while the Singer book is high on technique, lower on fit. Hope this helps.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on March 5, 2008
This book teaches you a lot of useful tailoring techniques, primarily speed tailoring using fusible interfacing. The book will guide you through each step of the process of making a jacket, from choosing appropriate fabric and pattern for your sewing skills, to fitting, cutting, marking and sewing the jacket and lining. They have excellent instructions for making welt pockets, bound buttonholes and bagging the lining. I don't know how I survived without this book! They also have a chapter about the most common fit alterations, but for more complete directions I recommend their book Fit for Real People.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Of the Fit For Real People Series, this is the most difficult of the three books. Perhaps rightfully so because a tailored jacket is a much a much more difficult garment. However, this book works hard to make the process more understandable. Early on, the book devotes a few pages to defining tailoring. Now, you know what you're in for! To increase your chances of success, the book suggests you divide the process of making a jacket into four blocks of time:

-Planning and Fitting
-Cutting Marking, Applying Interfacing and Pinning the Pieces into a ready-to-fit position
-Sewing and Pressing
-Finishing

The fabrics chapter is very informative. It's a fabric glossary with suggestions as to which fabrics are easiest and those that are not the fastest to sew. The section on appropriate seam finishes was helpful.

Chapter 4 is all about shaping fabrics. It defines lining, interfacing, underlining and interlining. It's mostly devoted to the discussion of interfacing. Surprise! There's a recommendation to use Perfect Fuse interfacing.

Chapter 6 covers pressing. The fitting discussion starts happening in Chapter 7. The real how-to begins in Chapter 9, Cutting Marking and Interfacing.

The next few chapters break down fitting and construction according to the various pieces of the garment:

-Jacket Front
-Back and Under Collar
-Sleeves, Shoulder Pads and Chest Shaping
-Facing, Upper Collar, Lining and Hems
-Bagging a Lining
-Buttonholes
-More Pockets
-Mitered Back Vent
-Finishing Touches
-The remaining chapters are:
-Tips That Will Improve All of Your Sewing
-Plaids and Stripes
-Men's Jackets

This book would be an excellent addition to any sewing library. It provides a wealth of information. There's an in-depth knowledge here that you won't get from the tailoring chapter in a general-reference sewing book. I'm glad I made the purchase.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 10, 2010
Like its companion Palmer-Plesch "real people" books on general fitting and pants fitting, this does not confine itself to the perfect size 6 figure. The photos are inspirational for that alone! More importantly, it gives valuable pointers in how to work with the bodies most of us actually have (versus the runway models' bodies the pattern manufacturers have designed for). I own several books on tailoring, and I would rate this one of the very best in explaining how to do it. Making a tailored jacket is an intimidating project; with this book, the mystery is reduced. The photographs are excellent and the instructions concise and easily understood. Anyone making a tailored jacket for a woman of just about any shape or size would find it helpful--and much of the information would apply to making a comparable garment for a man.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 22, 2011
This DVD takes all the anxiety out of tailoring and makes the process, although time-consuming, a pleasure. Even a beginner can proceed with confidence. The book is a necessity also, but watching someone actually do the steps is worth its weight in gold.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 15, 2013
I have been sewing for 55 years and I make beautiful jackets and with this book newer techniques I made a not only beautiful but a spectacular Jacket. I design my own patterns and so my patterns have always fit well. One thing I do that they do not do in this book is turn you jacket or dress or whatever inside out and then do your fitting. Check to see if the right side is the same as the left side if you take one in more than the other measure and transfer that measurement to the other side and vice versa. Make notes on each side. Then baste the changes in and turn the garment right side out and bingo bango it should fit far better. This is the only thing I would change about this book. It has a very good plan otherwise to sew a perfect Jacket. Even a novice should be able to do a great job of making a jacket. I read this and then gave it to my Granddaughters and they each made a Jacket and they used my fitting method as I taught that to them years ago and they each produced a better than you can buy Jacket.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 21, 2011
Well worth the money if you're trying to figure out how to tailor a jacket. Marta has given us another comprehensive, easy-to-follow DVD.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 16, 2009
I own Fit for Real People and Pants for Real People, so this one rounds out my collection of books by these authors. All of these books are my go-to references when I sew. Any book or article by the Palmer/Pletch folks are full of information regarding the topic they cover. This one is no exception. I highly recommend it for anyone who sews.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2010
Everything you want to know on up to date fitting and construction of jackets.
How to alter for your specific figure shape.Achieving a fine finish.Photos and line drawings make the process easy.
It's like having the teachers in your sewing room.
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on June 15, 2013
I watched a segment of Sewing with Nancy and just Knew this book would fill the bill of sewing instructions to make myself a jacket that would fit and be properly constructed.
When it came in the mail it was exactly what was needed.
I have several (from the twenties and thirties) tailoring books, but with no access to horsehair and cotton padding - (well those are just two products mentioned) I felt helpless to construct a proper jacket that would fit in all the right places.
Now, I can!
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