Linen Bamboo Blouse & “Basic Black” Giveaway

Just before our vacation, I received  two Japanese sewing books from Tuttle Publishing that has recently been translated to English for review. “Basic Black: 25 Edgy Essentials for the Modern Wardrobe” by Sato Watanabe was one of them. When I got … Continue reading

Australia Part 3: Hobart

I fell in love with Hobart many years ago. It really does have the freshest air I’ve ever inhaled and some of the freshest produce I’ve ever eaten! Here are some of my fave places to visit and I’m just overjoyed when … Continue reading

Australia Part 2: Brighton Bath Boxes & the 70s culottes

On our way back from the Great Ocean Road, we had to make a stop at Brighton Beach in Melbourne, home to these delightful Bath Boxes. It’s color therapy time and too difficult to pick a favorite. This place made us so jolly,  … Continue reading

Australia Part 1: The Road Trip

While sewing has not stopped, I found myself sacrificing blog time for sew time. With things getting busier and kids’ chauffeuring getting crazier,  sew time has become more precious  than ever. Photography takes time and I would rather step on my machine … Continue reading

Border Print Silk Bomber & Giveaway winner!

The idea of a silk bomber jacket is so very alluring.  It didn’t help that the image of this border print bomber on the runway lurked in my consciousness, refusing to go away. I was lured and eagerly awaited the arrival of Papercut … Continue reading

Blog Tour: Christine Haynes’ New Book & Giveaway!!!

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The lovely Christine Haynes has recently launched her second book, The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Construction, and I’m so happy to be the next stop on the blog tour!

Christine has written some of the easiest instructions to follow in a sewing pattern. In the same way, her book does not disappoint. The book actually looks thinner than most of the other sewing books I have, but looks are certainly deceiving in this case!

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There is just so much information that a beginner would find relevant and useful. When instruction sheets can sometimes leave us puzzled or confused, this photo guide is where we can turn to for a potential solution or just to clear things up. The abundance of clear, numbered photos  accompanied with step by step instructions definitely helps clarify and boost our confidence in getting it right.

My favourite section has to be the one on zippers. The front fly zipper has been one of those things I’ve attempted once, did a so-so job and never dared ventured again. With Christine’s book in hand, I decided to take on the challenge and learn a new sewing skill.

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I used the same 1970s Kwik Sew jeans pattern like I did the last time as I liked the fit.
 Kwik Sew 407 1970s Jeans
To be fair, I followed the pattern instructions for completing the fly zipper. However, I wasn’t able to understand the instructions well the first time I sewed with this pattern a few years back. My zipper wasn’t well hidden enough and peeks out at times which made the garment sadly unwearable.  This time round, I read the 3 pages Christine dedicated to the fly zipper first, cross referenced with the pattern instructions and then things became crystal clear.
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Even though the two methods (pattern instruction and Christine’s) were not identical, the book pages brought to light why things were done a certain way and that helped me understand what I had to do with the pattern instructions. Like Christine mentioned at the start of the chapter “A fly-front zipper…is the most challenging zipper insertion to master, as it is the least intuitive” but with the help of this book, I dare say I’ve finally acquired the skill!
fly front zipper in progress
front fly zipper
I am just so happy I managed to sew a fly zipper I’m proud of! Thank you Christine! Now that I’ve learnt how to sew the front fly zipper, I can envision myself tackling a variety of jeans, shorts and pants! Would love to try Christine’s lapped zipper method next!
lapped zipper
I would strongly recommend this book especially to beginners who are learning to sew. I wished I had such a good sewing guidebook on hand when I started. With Christine’s guidance, I could have learnt all the easiest or most efficient methods which provided the best finishing to any garment. The good news is this handy book is now available on Amazon.com (which also provides a peek into some pages from the book).
Fabric bundle
To celebrate Christine’s book launch, you stand a chance to win a copy of her new book at this stop of the blog tour. In addition, I’m also adding this fabric bundle to the winner’s package. The bundle includes 2 yards each of an Amy Butler cotton, an adorable dotted swiss chiffon with teddy and heart print and an Anna Maria Horner cotton voile from my stash. This giveaway is open internationally. Please leave a comment letting us know if there is a sewing technique you’re hoping to attempt and don’t forget to leave your email so we can contact you if you win. This giveaway ends Sunday, 23 March 2014 and a winner will be chosen using random.org

An Amazing Start to 2014!

It was an AmaZing Sunday afternoon at the start of 2014 and the weather was just perfect. On the sunny island of Singapore, this was one of those unusually cool and windy days.  Our family visited one of our favorite … Continue reading

The “Back to School” Goldstream Peacoat

After sewing hubby a 70s Melton wool coat (below) in 2012, I wanted to sew him something different last year for our 15th wedding anniversary. The plan was to sew Thread Theory’s Jedediah pants and Newcastle Cardigan. But, I took longer than expected sourcing … Continue reading