My Favorite Sewing Books

I had a wonderful plan to post something every week after that January post. Where has the year gone?

Let’s talk about books…sewing books….as resources. I know, I know – with the internet who needs books, right? Everything you could possibly want is at your fingertips with a search of a word or two. And I admit, I often succumb to the ease of the just going to the computer and searching when I need more information on some technique and I want it quickly.

I have a huge library of sewing-related books, and other written materials. And sometimes it is hard to find what I am looking for (I know this information is in one of these books – but which one?).

And even though I have the entire Singer Sewing Reference Library of books and think they are the best, there is always something new (new to me mostly – often it is not really a new book).

Our local ASG (American Sewing Guild) chapter had a yard sale a couple of weeks ago. Ladies could rent a table, and sell their sewing goodies. I looked around at all the wonderful things and came across a new-to-me sewing book from the 70’s. Now, everyone says the books from the 70’s are the best; the most informative and complete. And really, aren’t most of the techniques that give the best result the ones that you learned in the 70’s or were passed down from a grandmother, aunt or mother?

So, the book I picked up (and is now looking for space on my bookshelves) is the Golden Hands Complete Book of Dressmaking. The dust jacket was pretty beat up, so here is a picture off the web of the dustjacket for this book.

The title page

The publishing information is interesting. The greater part of the material published in this book was first published by Marshall Cavendish, LTD in “Golden Hands”. I think they were magazines with a variety of topics. Then, this book was simultaneously published in the United States and Canada in 1972. There was also a British edition from a different publisher. I have no recollection of ever seeing this book.

But, it has a lot of very cool information. It has drafting information for a skirt, blouse and pants base patterns, muslin and fitting information (including adjustments for all the things we adjust for today – rounded back, broad and narrow shoulders, diagnosing wrinkles indicating too tight, too loose, all the basic sewing techniques and variations for blocks.

There are a number of books I use on a regular basis. And I need to do some purging of the books I rarely use.

I am looking forward to reading this book using it for those times I need to look up sewing information.

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