book teaches 8-16 year-olds how to sew, and more importantly
find sewing fun and relevant in an age of mass produced goods.
If you make it yourself you can customize it how you like,
make sure it fits and have it in the color of your choice.
It is written in an accessible way and encourages young people
to have a go and not be afraid to ask for help if they need
There are thirteen projects in here to “make your own”
and, as it also says on the cover, “tons of techniques”.
The more techniques you know the more you can do and every
page is packed with useful information. In fact, I wish I
had had a book like this when I was the right age and learning
to sew! You can learn in the first chapter all about different
types of fabric, what tools you need and why you need them
plus a list of other more fun things you might want. This
is an American book and some of the items might not be quite
as inexpensive or easily available, but it is good to see
what is new out there and what can be done with it. Techniques
covered include working with patterns, measuring for garments,
using an embroidery hoop, making a tassel, etc., and more
things are covered in the actual projects. All the projects
in here are contemporary and sure to appeal to the target
age group. They include a mermaid tail, animal neck pillow
for travelling, animal face purses, a skirt with novelty shaped
pockets, a pillow and T-shirt you can decorate how you choose,
and my own favorite, a donut shaped pillow. The projects are
grouped in themes (on the go, fashion, in my room and accessories)
and have three difficulty ratings. Four are beginner, eight
require some experience and only one is rated for requiring
some help (a pillow). Each project is written in a way that
is easy to understand and features a list of what you need
split into materials, tools, patterns and sometimes optional.
Often an item will have a page number so you can look it up
to find out more about it, and the method is divided into
preparing the pieces, and step by step. Photographs are given
of many of the stages, and although there are a few that could
have been a bit larger, it is usually easy to see what is
going on. Measurements are all imperial but as most sewing
patterns are American, even if the person using the book is
only used to metric, learning the other system is a good idea.
All the patterns used are provided at the back, the garments
in different sizes for “typical” 8-16 year-olds.
Overall this is a very up-to-date and user-friendly book for
any young person who wants to learn to sew.
If you cannot find a good range of sewing materials locally,
try www.searchpress.com for a list of suppliers.
You can buy Kamsnaps in the UK at www.kamsnaps.co.uk/
Iron-on Vinyl available in the UK at www.gmcrafts.co.uk/