Sew Darn Cute: 30 Sweet & Simple Projects to Sew & Embellish by Jenny Ryan
My reviewrating: 5 of 5 stars
I am loving this book - its definitely one of my favorite sewing books on the market right now. First of all, the title doesn't lie, these are some seriously cute projects, folks. Almost a lethal dose of cute. Not in a bad way. The book is beautifully laid out - love the gingham and polka dots! Jenny's fabric choices are brilliant - I especially love the fact that she used vintage fabrics and pillowcases, with a little bit of cute Japanese fabric thrown in.
The book begins with a bio/ introduction as most craft books do, then goes into tools and techniques. I'm excited to find that I have a lot of these tools already (bias tape maker and yo-yo maker) - but I don't know how to use them so I'm excited to learn. Next there's a bit on free-motion quilting and some other "basics" like sewing a zippered pocket. Jenny promises it's not as hard as it looks and I believe her, which is half the battle, I think. If you are a more advanced seamstress, you might skip this part. If you are a more advanced seamstress, you might skip this part.
Most of the projects seem easy enough for a beginner so I'm excited to try them. The instructions and patterns are clear and easy to follow. I am loving the necklace tank, fabric button necklace, and reversible headband in the Pretties section. The eyeglasses cozy and appliqued tote are also a couple of my favorites, as is the merit badge wristlet (genius!), in the Totables section. In the Nest section, I am eager to make the Happy Hostess Dishtowels. Another section for Kid's Stuff includes instructions for a Silly Snake that reminds me of a puzzle my dad made me when I was younger. It also gives you a new use for shrunken sweaters. The Square Bear is also adorable and I love the fact that Jenny incorporates embroidery and vintage buttons. One last section called Crafties includes a crochet hook cozy that makes me want to learn to crochet and a Nifty Needle Book that I really need for my embroidery needles. I love how the projects are not only cute but practical.
I read another review that accused this book of being un-hip and to that I say "un-true!" Ok, so I'm not the coolest kid on the block but I do keep up with the latest handmade fashions and as far as I can tell, cute is definitely "in." Besides, if you don't like Jenny's use of mellow fabrics, you can always substitute color combos like black and hot pink or skull prints. Plus the cover gives a good indication of whether the projects will fit your personal style. Personally, I love them.
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