I love looking through sewing books, but my latest additions are a little different. They're Japanese sewing books.
On a recent trip to Kinokuniya I just couldn't help myself. There were rows and rows of sewing books to choose from; all with beautiful photos and almost all of them written in Japanese. I bought three books full of kids' sewing patterns and one with women's patterns.
I usually find that sewing books only contain one or two projects that I really like; or a handful if I'm lucky. Look how many variations are in the one book. The first book is all about skirts, shorts and pants. Each project has a basic version and a slightly more advanced version, with suggestions as to how to change the style.
There is one detailed set of instructions showing how to make a pair of pants...
... followed by diagrams for each individual project. Both photos and diagrams are clear, making it easy to see the intended step.
All four books have the patterns on large sheets of paper. These, of course, will need to be traced.
The second book contains girls' tops and dresses, again with basic and advanced versions for each project. The pictures are a mix of photos and diagrams.
Sizing on all the kids' patterns is done via the height of the child. I've never made a pattern just with this measurement. Not sure how this will pan out, as I can't see any other measurements.
The third book contains enough projects to make a little girl's entire wardrobe.
This one has no photographs; only diagrams, but as with all the books, they are very detailed and as far as I can tell, show each little step.
The last book is for ME!!! I don't do much sewing for myself, but there are several patterns that really appeal. Think I'll start with the kids' patterns, though. It's easy to get away with clothes that aren't a perfect fit on kids - not so with adults.
I've never before sewn a pattern that's not written in English. I'm hoping that a combination of my existing sewing skills and the very clear pictures will produce some wearable garments. Wish me luck!!!
If you've ever used Japanese sewing books, I'd love to hear your experiences - good or bad.