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Ryland Peters & Small Cico Books-Making Children's Clothes
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- Cico Books-Making Children's Clothes
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By combining a few easy-to-learn stitches with great fabrics and trims, expert seamstress Emma Hardy explains how to make beautiful yet practical clothes for your children. Choose from 25 different projects, including party frocks and pinafore dresses, simple shirts and elasticated trousers, sleepwear and accessories, such as hats, bibs, bootees, and aprons. There are clothes for young boys and girls, toddlers, and babies, plus full-size paper patterns that can easily be scaled to suit different ages. Packed with useful tips and sewing techniques, Making Children’s Clothes provides a comprehensive guide to creating fantastic items that your child will love to wear.
Using just a few simple sewing techniques discover the easy way to create fun and stylish outfits for young children (0-5 years). By combining a few easy-to-learn stitches with great fabrics and trims expert seamstress Emma Hardy explains how to make beautiful yet practical clothes for your children. This book is perfect for the first-time expectant mother with its stylish step-by-step sewing projects. Booties; bibs; hats; dresses; PJs; shirts and much more! This book also includes full sized patterns for applique as well as clothing. Author: Emma Hardy. Softcover: 112 pages. Made in USA.See all Product description
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Top Customer Reviews
For one thing--most of the clothes do not fit the models very well in the photographs, so I am not sure why other reviewers go on about how cute they look! Lots of baggy, overly large dresses on tiny girls--the most egregious of which is the "party dress" pictured on page 71. The child is wearing an admittedly well-constructed champagne mauve satin dress trimmed with sequins and a large silk flower which would be cute if it wasn't HUGE on her! The color perfectly compliments her pale blond hair and blue eyes, but the bodice is at least four inches too big around for her with huge gaping armholes which make her slender arms look spindly! Not an attractive look.
Similarly, on page 20, we are shown the "petal top," which is a very simply put together shirt that is just this side of a T-tunic, but instead of being cut out of two t-shaped pieces of fabric, the bodice front and back and sleeves are two separate pieces of fabric sewn together at the shoulder before sewing up the sides and armholes like a t-tunic. Then a casing is added to each sleeve, which look like they are meant to be 3/4 length, but once again, the sample garment is so big on the model it is hard to tell. There is also elastic in the neckline, but again, it does little to alleviate the simple fact that the top is too large for the model. And, to top it all off, there is an overly large fabric flower trimming this baggy mess on the shoulder, overwhelming the little model in swathes of fabric and accentuating the fact that her body is lost shapeless shirt.
Look, I have nothing against comfortable, easy fitting clothing for kids--but there is a difference between easy-fitting and baggy and just plain too darned big.
And these designs are shown as just too darned big and unflattering.
As for the instructions--they are very vague. I'm lucky in that my grandmother was a professional seamstress and I learned from her, so I can usually look at the most confusing directions and parse out the exact meaning, and I have enough experience to know when a construction method is either just plain wrong or much more difficult than it needs to be. However, I can imagine that a beginner taking up this book might well toss it across the room in frustration, and I would not blame them one bit.
For example, the three tiered skirt is put together in a very confusing manner and instead of explaining the simple mathematical formula that is necessary to make a three-tiered skirt for any size child or woman, they give exact measurements for one size! Why do that? And then, instead of teaching how to gather using a basting stitch on a machine, or even mentioning the technique, they have you hand-gather with large hand-stitched running stitches. No mention is made of how to make certain the gathers are evenly spaced around the tiers.
Another design choice/construction technique I don't understand is why the author would choose to use lines of thin elastic sewn to a rectangle of fabric to make a smock top, instead of just loading the bobbin with elastic thread and shirring it--a technique that is so simple a beginner can do it. Instead, the author chooses to put the reader through the laborious process of sewing elastic on the fabric with a zigzag stitch AFTER stretching it and marking straight lines across the fabric to guide it. No mention is made that you are supposed to make sure your stitches do not pierce the elastic, but rather encase it, so a beginner would likely fail and not even know why.
Whereas shirring is perfectly simple and results in a beautifully gathered sun-short or smock top, in a matter of less than an hour. I know, because I just put one together, without any pattern, last night.
Overall, this book is a distinct disappointment and I cannot recommend it to anyone. The only reason I gave it two stars instead of one is because I like the fabric choices used in the samples. Lots of them are very cute, without being overly juvenile in style. Other than that, this book is a bust.
I wish I had seen this book before buying it, because I would never have gotten it otherwise.