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Cool Couture: Construction Secrets for Runway Style (Singer Studio) Paperback – December 1, 2008

4.3 out of 5 stars 62 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Cool Couture: Construction Secrets for Runway Style (Singer Studio)
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  • The Dressmaker's Handbook of Couture Sewing Techniques: Essential Step-by-Step Techniques for Professional Results
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  • Couture Sewing Techniques, Revised and Updated
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Haberdasher to the stars, Kenneth D. King has designed clothing, home furnishings, and accessories for Elton John, Jim Carrey, and others. He is professor of haute couture at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City and sewing expert on the PBS series Sewing Today. He is also the author of Designer Bead Embroidery (CPi, 2006).

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Product Details

  • Series: Singer Studio
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Creative Publishing int'l (December 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589233891
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589233898
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.5 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #414,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By S. Smith on January 6, 2009
Format: Paperback
If you do not already own Design Techniques (came out in 1996) by Kenneth D. King, this is a five star book. His tailoring and techniques are top notch, and this volume is well illustrated...better than the older volume.

BUT, if you already own Design Techniques, prepare to be disappointed. When Cool Couture arrived, I dashed upstairs to see if I had mistakenly double ordered the same book. I hadn't.... he just re-used nearly 100 pages of material, including the same contrived photos and identical illustrations and text, from his first book. If you do own the first book, I'd give this one two stars, not four or five.

This volume eliminates most of the home dec material from Design Techniques, tho it repeats the tassel instructions. It adds about 70 pages of new material including zippers, some new Equipment and Tools information and a different technique for sheers.

All in all, it is King's brilliant technique, clearly illustrated and photographed (except I hate those dorky poses). But I am really disappointed that nowhere in the reviews I saw prior to ordering it that it is a revised and expanded version of his previous book. In sum, if you don't have Designer Techniques, definitely a book to have for reference. If you do have the older book, you'll want to see if the new material is worth the cost of the new edition for you. Anyone want to buy my old book?
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Format: Paperback
"Fantastic... What a book. I loved the overlapped seams for sheer fabric. There are great tricks all through the book. It's a gold mine! All the cool tricks come with step-by-step instructions in text and photos. There are directions for choosing fabric with tips for making the fabric fulfill its promise. I think his seam and rolled hem for sheer fabrics alone is worth the price of the book. His book is a bargain at any price; I'm glad I bought it!"
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Format: Paperback
Kenneth D. King is one of the finest teachers of hands on couture sewing and styling techniques in the fabulous world of clothing construction. His clear, concise words and sketches, diagrams and photos make this a must have for any library -- be that a beginner dreaming of their first runway show, or the home sewist who wants to bring up their construction and style skills.

I say without reservation that this volume should be part of every sewists cache of bound expert advice!

Your time and money are well spent with anything Mr. King writes or teaches.

Colleen L. Jones
Senior Technical Designer in the sewing industry.
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Format: Paperback
I have both Cool Tricks & Cool Techniques and much prefer this later version. It's more organized, laid-out better, which makes it easier to read and understand. This is not the happy-hands-from-home manual, it is beautiful embellishment techniques that can take a ho-hum garment to a "Wow" show-stopper, without orbiting Mars - IOW, you don't look weird, you just look fabulous. If you're a crafter who wants to do something more with your artistic talent and learn some high-fashion tailoring techniques at the same time, this is a great book for you. I'm usually blase about these sewing how-to books as I know most of the techniques, but that is not the case here. Kenneth is very generous with his ideas and creativity. The only thing wrong with this book, is you do not fully experience his enthusiasm and passion for sewing - which is what I got with one of his workshops.
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Kenneth is a fabulously talented designer. His techniques are wonderful. I purchased this book because I have his Designer Techniques book. I thought it would be all new ideas. While it does have some new stuff, there is a great deal of duplication from his earlier book. They even used the exact same photos. If you don't have Designer Techniques, then you absolutely should get this one. If you do, then be prepared for a lot of repeated info. That's the reason I only gave it four stars. I look forward to an ALL NEW book from him.
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Format: Paperback
This book is worth the price of purchase for just the directions on how to insert a zipper. I used the directions twice, on different types of fabric, and got perfect results each time. The illustrations, as well as the written steps, make zippers FUN to insert. Also, Kenneth King's discussion of how to insert piping is right on the money. This book is indespenable for home sewers who want professional results.
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Format: Paperback
This book will take your sewing to the next level. Cool, easy welt pockets, button holes, piping, and everything you could want to know about pockets. This isn't your Jr, High Homec book. This isn't for the faint of heart either. I love Kenneth king's books, they are all a delight to read and this is no exception. Wonderful illustrations and pictures that really show you some complicated techniques.
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Format: Paperback
I am very divided about this book. On one hand, he has some of the best technique descriptions (how to insert a zipper, how to handle welt pockets and bound buttonholes) and illustrations that I have seen in any of my sewing technique books.

On the other hand, he (or someone with a lot of influence on the book) has truly truly bad taste in fabric, color, and artistic direction. Unfortunately, I don't use "bad" in the "thought provoking pushing the boundaries of couture" sort of bad. I use "bad" in the sense of red, yellow, and green piping on a navy semi-military jacket with a mandarin collar and gold buttons/button accessories. .. or, "bad" in the sense of a kelly-green herringbone tweed jacket with a reddish/purple/gold brocade looking lining described in the photo as "luxurious". The (very pale) models appear to be addicted to black tights and red lipstick a la a Robert Palmer video (which, according to [...] premiered in 1989). So, it was all quite distracting from what is otherwise an excellent technique book.

Averaging 2 stars for taste with 5 stars for content = 4 stars overall.
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