Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A question...

Inspired by the wonderful Jodie, I thought I'd seek some help...

If you could design a (hypothetical) book - written by someone who knows quite a bit about sewing... someone a bit like me (only much more hypothetical than I am) - what would you like to see in it...?

35 comments:

Tanya said...

I have just bought a couple of books- Sew U and Sew U stretch by the built by wendy lady, I have also got Amy Karols 'Bend the Rules' sewing book which I liked but didn't love alot of the projects- I would love a clear australian reference book about sewing but in paticular, pattern making or even bits about understanding pattern and not being intimidated by them!- I am a confident beginner- well, a long history of sewing who has just picked it back up. In a book, I would like to learn a skill and then have a small project to practice that skill. NOt all just projects. NOw I am waffling- give us some yes/ no questions in a later post once you have got other peoples ideas!

ginevra / red_swirl said...

How to make my stuff look EXACTLY like I bought it at a (nice) shop. So no-one ever, ever thinks to ask if it's handmade (but I can tell them if i please). If you do pattern making, please try explaining things like adding a seam allowance to a corner, or grading. Definitely not a beginner book (even though I'm essentially a beginner, I can cope with a lot of complexity if you explain clearly!)

thornberry said...

Oh yay for you Nikki, congratulations on the hypothetical book deal! I am extremely proud. And shall think about what things would be good to include in it for you!

Liesl (Hoppo Bumpo) said...

Oooh how exciting!

I'd like to see some of the techniques that can be used outside of dressmaking, if that makes sense? So things like attaching snaps, making and attaching bias binding, inserting zippers into openings, etc. Skills that would help when making accessories and homewares.

Hypothetically speaking, of course!

willywagtail said...

I would like road testing of products available in this country and recommendations of the good, bad and ugly. Cherrie

Annie said...

I would just like to have you (or Jodie for that matter) as the author of the book, and heck I don't care WHAT"S in it, I'm buying it!!!!! Love your workxxx

Kaja said...

I love to make my own things. So a basic pattern for say a top and then suggestions of what you can do to "spice it up" would be great! You can add a puff sleeve (and show how you change your original pattern), you can make it more fitted, adjusted for narrow shoulders or big boobies, add a v-neck or a square neck. Make it a little longer to be turned into a dress with different skirts attatched to it. And so on.

And then, the second section, how to make it more personal. Add ribbons, appliqués, ruffles, buttons, choice of fabrics.

I have seen similar items on children's clothes, but it is not covering all details, and the pictures are so booooooooring. I can't get any inspiration at all from ill fitting clothes in hideous colors on bored children.

Candied Fabrics said...

Ooh! How about a book of all your awesome tips to make awesome bags?

EMO in Beautiful Wisconsin, USA said...

A brain-dump of everything you know about stabilizers! Should be several chapters there!

Margaret @ Konstant Kaos said...

Ohh, sounds like I might have to put this hypothetical book on my hypothetical christmas list ...

You have the coolest of tools to do your work, a chapter on tools of yesteryear ....

And what about sewing methods that no-one uses anymore because half the world doesn't care about presentation?

Oh and that applique sheet...

I'd love to write a hypothetical chapter! After I finish my Y12IT book I am doing chapters for.

Jodie said...

Nikki !! I am hypothetically very excited.
I love books with a "where too next?" idea. Does that make sense?
Example one of your patterns takes the reader through the steps to make a bag...and then there are gallery pics to show variations on the theme...to help people launch off into their style or type of craft.
Maybe i should just email....

plus some of your gorgeous design sketches as well.

Jennie said...

I think my perfect hypothetical book would be about techniques rather than projects, and then show how you could customise various projects (bags, tops, softies, soft furnishings) using that technique. IE, different pleating methods, free motion embroidery/thread sketching, applique, use of colours and textures. Inspiration and how-to customise projects. Lots of gorgeous glossy pictures is essential.

Liam's Mummy said...

I am (hypothetically) excited! I will be (hypothetically, of course) buying that book no matter what is in it! Some things I would like to see are how to design and create a bag, with some variations on shape and style. Embellishment ideas, as well as a few techniques would be good. A reference or directory page for where to get materials and web-pages for more ideas and inspiration. Lots and lots of pictures... Maybe you could do it sort of in chapters that kind of progress through levels of skill? I could go on and on...

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

How very hypothetically exciting! As well as patterns, and even though you have the free tutorials on your blog and site, I'd love a book with instructions for inserting bag bases, information about different interfacings and all that sort of stuff.

It's funny, just last night I was saying I'd like a hard copy of those things as I keep jumping online for them while I'm sewing but then get distracted by the rest of the internet :)

rachelmp said...

How exciting! I would like to see the basics and then the next step and accessories to work with the projects. Also examples in different colourways and fabric choices. Good luck!

Fiona and Andy said...

I agree with so many of the comments above. A book that takes all your tips from the website and the helpful hints from your patterns and combines this with creative ideas to modify the basic patterns to make your own custom bag or hat. Things like how to do applique or machine embroidery ... all those things that enable you to customise a bag, but that I haven't had the nerve to try (yet!). Plus how to use purse frames. I'll be queuing up (hypothetically) to buy this book!

Handmade said...

I think you (hypothetically) know exactly what to put in it - as a teacher of beginners - you know what people need help with - and to use Australian terms would be very helpful. I'll probably think of tonnes of things but for starters - fabrics - names - what's easy to sew with and what's not. Seam Allowances - how to use a variety of ways to keep your sewing exactly where it should be. Interfacings, Bag Closures, easy ways to change basic pattern shapes, how to fix disasters, pressing, essential tools of trade, embellishment ideas .... enough for starters! Good Luck!

KathyB said...

A book would be a fab idea. Also put in it your little creative touches as well as the nitty gritty of putting things together!!

Cathy said...

Nikki, I am so excited for you (hypothetically) - I still think alot of basic sewing skills is what is needed to be taught - so definitely something on that along with your wonderful patterns.

lucyboots australia said...

Hi Nikki,
i have bought a few of your patterns and think they are great - clear and detailed. however i am completely OVER beginners books which waste valuable pages on basic stuff (eg Amy karol). i think there is an untapped market of middle skill sewers who would be able to make stuff which looks great (ie not homemade) but need all those tips like inserting tricky zips (not just invisible ones), making lovely firm corners on bags, inserting magnetic snaps etc. of course colour and lots of photos are essential as hobby sewers dont want textbooks, rather, inspiration and constructive tips.
Anna

Anonymous said...

Hi Nikki,
I think you are FABULOUS at writing HOW TO intructions and your pictures always match instructions really well. So an extension of this would be a perfect match for a book. Some inspiration would be "Weekend Sewing" by Heather Ross? I have not purchased it waiting for second edition to be released. I saw a sneak preview on Martha stewart. I think lots of pretty pictures is always important too. I am so excited, you have ESP I was going to send you a message at least a month ago saying "why don't you write a book!!".

Kind Regards

ZanetaXX

Tania said...

Um, while I'm with Lucyboots there, I also just wanted to know if you're thinking this could be a New, New Testament? Cos that's the sort of thing I'm after. As well as how to alter clothes to FIT perfectly...(not much then)...

Stephanie and Carlos said...

hypothetically jumping up and down!! You have to have quick and easy sewing projects with the big effect factor. For times when we are so busy and don't have that 3 hours up our sleeves but might have 1hr or less. Something that looks like it took a lot of effort... what do you think?

Hope it helps hypothetically!

xo Steph

SEW RED HOT said...

I'd love to see a focus on putting in the extra effort for a quality finished item. Death to rounded edges on zippered purses! The importance of removing excess fabric, pressing techniques etc. As the proud owner of 3 of your patterns to date, I know that you have what it takes to compile a book of very useful information.

Good luck.

Fer said...

Being able to draft your own clothes patterns in a no-nonsense way.

That would make me very happy....

Finki (jay) said...

I'm a very visual person. I love to see galleries of work. you know...a pattern for one thing, than a page of that same thing interpreted many different ways, through use of color, findings etc.
Inspires you to do things your own way using the skills you learnt, rather than just copy exactly.

and I'm much better at following a pattern by the images used to demonstrate. I tend to skip over the text. Isn't that terrible. Sometimes the whole left seam 1cm, fold over, under, turn pin back......just does my head in. so i skip to the picture to help explain.

good luck with helping your friends hypothetical publication.
I'd love to be a test reader when you need them, and help promote it when done (:

Bree said...

I'm with Annie. I could read any palaver that involves either of you!! And all of the above! Well done Nikki.

Christina Lowry said...

Zips. How not to be afraid of and how to tame them...

:)

Original Mischief said...

Hypothetical yay! I would love visuals on how to... use various hardware, embellish, etc. I think most people have said it all. Good for you!

sewjourn said...

Hypothetically speaking I think a book from an amazing tutor who knows so 'many tricks of the trade' would be fantastic. The details of how to sew things, and sew them well would set it apart from other sewing books. Oh, and I'm a sucker for great photography.....I know a little place in Lancefield that would make a good backdrop!

colourdujour said...

ditto on just about everyone else is saying. the good tips, on techniques with detailed close up photos. Not just fluff but something real solid to sink your teeth into. Something to browse and reread to glean even more details.

Keep us posted.! Can't wail!

Kirrily said...

What SEW RED HOT said!!!!! Especially this bit: "Death to rounded edges on zippered purses!"

I think that a focus on the small details that change bags from looking 'homemade' to professionally handmade. There are tonnes of books that show you how to make a simple bag, but they neglect the finer details.

This shouldn't surprise you coming from me though!

Anna Bartlett said...

I'd like to know how to make some simple tops (fitted, flowey, both) for girls with BOOBS. Or how to adjust patterns for BOOBS. (I'm breastfeeding, so I've got boobs on the brain!) I'd maybe like projects with approximate TIME categories like some recipe books are, and really easy 'ingredient' lists. I too have bought a lot of books lately, but must be an intermediate sewer or something because I could figure out most things just by looking at them. So yes, I'm blabbering now (I won't be writing a book any time soon) but the homemade/handmade difference could be your point of difference. GOOD LUCK! Very exciting.

Cindy said...

I have been meaning to get abck to this post forever - The thing I think would be really good is some good fundamental techniques and then a few examples of how they could be used in projects.

pinkfishbluefish said...

Finally getting around to commenting on your 'hypothetical' but certainly exciting book!

As some of the previous commmenters have said, I'd love a book for intermediate sewists/sewers. I own quite a few books from other designers and they are really aimed at the beginner. I think there's a real gap in the market there. And I'd love tips on how to make your items or garments look professionally handmade as opposed to obviously homemade! Oh, and great photos! They really make a book, gotta have some eye candy :)