Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Book Review: Simple Sewing with Lola Nova

Simple Sewing with Lola Nova is a lovely looking book. It's written by Alexandra Smith who blogs as Lola Nova  (I'd never read her blog before hearing about this book, though).

When her book first arrived in the post I "oohed" as I opened the parcel - as it's a gorgeous hardback with moss green end papers and yummy matte paper pages full of pretty, colourful projects.

The book begins with a guide to tools, supplies and techniques needed for the projects - fabric painting, attaching bias binding, drafting and modifying patterns, and finishing touches like button holes and embroidery. There are lots of sweet illustrated details on the pages, which gives the book an added "crafty" feel.

The 25 projects are rated by difficulty, and include step by step photos, with a few illustrations to help clarify any tricky steps.

The projects are divided into chapters themed by style instead of by type of item: boho, natural, vintage, eclectic and whimsy.... with vintage fabrics in the "vintage" section, and lots of browns and greens and woodland animals and leaves featuring in the "natural" section:


There's quite a wide mix of designs in the book: some kids clothing, a piece of fabric art, a selection of bags, printed cushions and teatowels, a cool patchwork tent...

...  fabric boxes, a fabric headboard...


... quirky "pockets full of posies" ...

... cute patches, fabric cards... 

... all sorts of stuff, lots of which would make great gifts.

There are several motifs provided (like the deer from the cushion featured on the cover) which are all included at 100%, overlapping so they fit at full size and can be easily traced (which is great). Unfortunately, the templates are printed across double page spreads and being a hardback it's pretty difficult to get the pages flat enough to be able to photocopy or neatly trace those shapes which cross the two pages (which is not so great).

Luckily though, most of the shapes are not affected by this & the majority of the book's projects are based on measurements (e.g. instructions to cut a rectangle of fabric a certain size) rather than on templates... and this issue is the only niggle I have with an otherwise lovely book.

If you like your craft books to have a pretty, slightly retro style to them I think you'll like this book. I keep saying I'm going to finally dig out my old sewing machine and re-learn how to machine sew stuff so I can finally make use of all that lovely fabric I've bought over the years... and when I do, I'll definitely be getting this book down off the shelf and trying a whole bunch of the projects.

Simple Sewing with Lola Nova is published by Octopus Publishing. RRP £16.99. It's available from Amazon UK, The Book Depository and a selection of sellers on Amazon USA.

[Disclaimer: Octopus Publishing sent me a free review copy of this book, and the Amazon & Book Depository links in this post are affiliate links]


emily said...

I just bought some christmas felt from you and I wanted you to know how much I appreciate the speedy delivery and extra little touches! Made my week

LimeRiot said...

Thanks for sharing! I haven't seen this book yet but simple sewing is definitely my pace :).

Gill said...

Thanks for your review of this book! I follow Lola's blog and her book is on my amazon list!

BugsandFishes said...

Emily - Yay! Glad to hear your order arrived & that you like the extras :)

LimeRiot - Haha, me too! :D

Gill - I've added Lola's blog to my reader since getting this book, always nice to discover a "new" crafty blog :)

Little Green Doll said...

What a wonderful book! :)

NinaMe said...

Thank you for sharing! I'm in love now.


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