This is a review of an audio book aimed at sewing for teens called Sewing: the Ultimate Guide to Mastering Sewing for Beginners in 30 Minutes or Less by Jessica Pickens.
My name is Samantha (Sammy for short). I’m 14 and live with my parents and my older brother who is 17.
For Christmas, my mom gave me this audio book as a way of introducing me to the world of hand and machine sewing. She’s been sewing all her life and really likes it. I’m still deciding, but this book gave me a good idea what it’s all about.
The book is an audio book, so you have to download it and listen to it on your phone or iPod. If you want to listen to it, you can get if for free along with another audio book just for trialing Audible, which is Amazon’s audio book store. They have a pretty good trial program where you can get two books for free and cancel any time if you don't like the product.
This book has been the perfect introduction to sewing and has given me a lot to do over the school break. Firstly, I would like to say that this book has greatly interested me in sewing, and has shown me how easy it can be to start off. I was really worried about how difficult it might be to learn all the things my mom already knows how to do, but this book helped make it a lot simpler and less intimidating.
From materials to sewing techniques, this book covers the essential aspects of sewing, making the book interestng to new and old sewers alike. You or anyone can learn sewing with this book in just under 30 minutes. It's great for people with shorter attention spans. Does that remind you of any teenagers you know..?
The book starts off by introducing what sewing is and the general history of the practice. It moves on to discussing the value of hand sewing and machine sewing, and what each are used for.
I was really surprised to learn that hand sewing is still practiced and valued across the world. This book focuses on hand sewing as it is the most basic and versatile form of sewing. It’s also the place most beginners like me start learning to sew. By being able to hand sew, it is much easier to expand your skills to include machine sewing and other forms of textile work.
In the first 10 minutes of the book, it goes over the history of sewing and the essential materials needed to start. You are provided a detailed guide on:
- What thread is appropriate for different tasks (thread weights and colors)
- What are the most effective cutting tools for a situation such as fabric scissors, embroidery scissors, cutting knives.
- Fabric marking tools such as tailors chalk, fabric pins and pencils.
- Tape measures and rulers
- Iron and ironing boards to press and shape fabrics
- Fabrics: For example for making a shirt, cotton would be used for comfort while silk and satin would be used for style.
- Sewing spaces: how to organize your sewing materials, making a comfortable and effective sewing area.
The book goes on to teach a series of essential sewing techniques that everyone should learn like thread knotting and threading your needle. It also talks about stitching, covering the running stitch/straight stitch, catch stitch, whip stitch, zig zag stitch, back stitch, basting stitch, and slip stitch.
With these essential techniques, I am now able to move on to creating my own personal projects. In addition, if I ever forget, I can always come back to the audio book and follow the instructions, in time with my own projects.
Projects for beginners and teens
The final third of the book contains a series of easy, but fun and useful projects. I thought that the projects provided were really the highlight of the book. Not only are they easy and informative, but you can put your own spin on them and make them your own. I made a video to show how we changed the color and type of fabric used in the design, giving it a more personal touch. My mom and I are going to make a pillow case, using the techniques taught in this book. I would encourage you to follow along in creating your own easy and stylish design.
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Why an audio book?
An audio book is a perfect format to listen to this type of book. You can take part in the numerous activities in the book while listening to them. You can listen to audio books while on the school bus, running, or any other boring tasks. In addition, by signing up with a free audible account, you get Sewing: the Ultimate Guide to Mastering Sewing for Beginners in 30 Minutes or Less and another book of your choice completely free. Audible has a wide range of audio books ranging from instructional books, to top selling fiction. What’s best of all, if you don’t like it, you can cancel and it’s completely free.
Here are a few other books that might be of interest to the beginner or teen sewer.