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Lotta Jansdotter's Simple Sewing: Patterns and How-To for 24 Fresh and Easy Projects Spiral-bound – March 8, 2007

4.1 out of 5 stars 78 customer reviews

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  • Lotta Jansdotter's Simple Sewing: Patterns and How-To for 24 Fresh and Easy Projects
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Scandinavian-born Lotta Jansdotter is a self-taught designer. She works from her studio in Brooklyn, New York, where she sells her products and designs online and to hundreds of stores worldwide.

Meiko Arquillos is a photographer based in San Francisco who grew up in Tokyo.
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Product Details

  • Spiral-bound: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books (March 8, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811852571
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811852579
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #355,854 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I like many of the items in this book. Lotta has a wonderful eye for design in fabrics and the projects chosen. The problem I have with it is that there are few instructional diagrams. It seems a mistake for a book designed for a beginner to rely on the reader to figure out where everything is going. If you're the type of person that can visualize 3D from written instructions, you'll do fine. However, if you're the type who needs someone to show you how to do something, I'd skip this book.
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I would have given it three or even four as it's very cute, but the instructions are a bit too BRIEF..... I can't see how it's marketed as simple, when I was baffled - and I am in no means a beginning sewer. I've been sewing for 30 years, made my own wedding dress, coats, jackets etc.-.... I love these project books though - when they're good! I bought this book mainly for the inspiration and partly for the hat pattern - I love hats. The brim doesn't fit the crown, and the crown doesn't fit the top. It is impossible to fit them together. Whether the crown is turned with the slightly wider circumference towards the brim or the other way. Furthermore, the whole thing is enormous. Something is very wrong with this pattern, and it ruins the whole book for me. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone.

Edited to add - there are huge amounts of people out there who have had problems with this hat, as I found out after doing a search on the net. And I am REALLY unimpressed with the author - I wrote to her website early August and a very sweet assistant told me she couldn't help but perhaps I would find a flickr group that could - they couldn't - and that Lotta would issue corrections or contact me after she came back from her holidays - she hasn't!
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Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I'm a relative beginner sewer and started with Simple Sewing with a French Twist: An Illustrated Guide to Sewing Clothes and Home Accessories with Style - made the shoe bags and found the instructions concise. I bought the Lotta book because of the doorstop pattern but found the end product was HUGE and required alot more than 5# of beans! Naturally, I thought I'd made a mistake but this project had paper patterns so I did not mis-calculate the size.

Another project was a, at first glance, very simple bag - it did work out in the end but after realizing that many details were missing in the directions.

Overall, not enough great projects to warrant the struggle involved in figuring out how to put them together!
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Format: Spiral-bound
Lotta Jansdotter makes lovely fabric and her aesthetic is modern and fresh. The book itself is beautiful, and the pictures of completed projects are especially appealing. The inclusion of patterns was a great choice.

I cannot recommend this book, however, because the instructions are incomplete and often downright confusing. I've completed 5 of her projects now. About halfway through each, I had to wing it because the instructions were inadequate for every project. I can't imagine that they've been tested with actual people attempting to work through them. User-testing would have helped this book immensely.
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Format: Spiral-bound
I haven't sewed since I was 8 and using a kids' sewing machine! I wanted to start again, but was daunted by the idea of learning over and making boring pillow cases, rather than some fun and useful projects. This book is SO inspiring - there are so many wonderful ideas (that can't just be for us beginners!) and they are so EASY!! Not only am I learning the art of sewing all over, I am inspired to do so and have already made some gorgeous placemats and am onto a tote next!!
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Format: Spiral-bound
Originally, I received this book as a "gift" (I asked for it, actually) because I saw how many of the patterns were so unique. I've looked EVERYWHERE for patterns for some of the different totes and bags included in this book! (such as the yoga bag, and the all-day tote) Plus, I'm one of those people who just can't bring themselves to just cut into a piece of material without a pattern guiding their way very easily, so I've always been scared to attempt a duvet cover, although I figured I could stumble my way through it. Now I have the PERFECT pattern! Plus, all the pictures within the book are so inspiring! I highly recommend this to any young sewer, whether you're experienced or not. There are so many unique projects in here that you'll never regret it!
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Format: Spiral-bound
The patterns are very strange, I've made the sun hat and it blocks all my vision and do not fit! I've tested it twice, but it's very weird.

If you are a really beginner, you will not be able to do nothing, she only says: "sew this part to the other part" and nothing else.

If you already can sew things with your sewing machine and knows a bit about patterns, you will not be able to do nothing, because the patterns don't fit, only those that you could have figured out alone, like a place mat or a super-simple tote bag (it even have internal pockets!).

I am very disappointed with this book. If you want to sew easy, quick and fun projects, buy a magazine like the "Adorn" one. You do these things and save a lot of money.
(sorry about the terrible english!)
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