Sewing for Teens: and Audio Book Review

Sewing for TeensThis is a review of an audiobook 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 16 and live with my parents and my older brother who is 19.

For Christmas, my mom gave me this audiobook 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 audiobook, 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 audiobook just for trialing Audible, which is Amazon’s audio bookstore.  They have a pretty good trial program where you can get two books for free and cancel anytime 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.

sewing for teensFrom materials to sewing techniques, this book covers the essential aspects of sewing, making the book interesting 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 discuss the value of hand sewing and machine sewing, and what each is 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 tailor's 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 audiobook and follow the instructions, in time for my own projects.

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I think most beginner or teen sewers will enjoy Sewing the Ultimate Guide to Mastering Sewing for Beginners in 30 Minutes or Less.

You have to sign up for Audible and then you can search for this book and even get a second one FREE.

Here's the deal:

  • Get two free audiobooks to start
  • After 30 days, get one audiobook a month for $14.95/month
  • Receive 30% off the price of additional audiobook purchases
  • Cancel at any time. A member’s books are theirs to keep, even if they cancel.

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 pillowcase, 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 audiobook?

An audiobook 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 audiobooks while on the school bus, while running, or while doing any other boring task.  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 audiobooks 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.

The book is also available in print or on Kindle, but I think the audio format is really good for my generation.

Here are a few other books that might be of interest to the beginner or teen sewer.

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Cheryl Masters
Cheryl Masters

It was with good intentions that I tried to get one of my granddaughters to learn how to sew, and you probably know what is said about good intentions. Well, she didn’t want to know how to read pattern instructions, she didn’t want to learn to read about size measuring and layouts, not to mention pinning. She wanted to cut it out her way. Grainline? Nope, none of that either. Basically, she just wanted to sit at the sewing machine and SEW. That didn’t last very long because I said she was missing a chance for adventure along the way. She said she didn’t want adventure, she just wanted to sew. So much for teaching sessions. I didn’t have enough energy to go where she wanted to go, so I just gave up. Sad but true. I just don’t want to go there again. The audible book sounds like a great idea. I hope her mom gets it for her, because grandma is just tuckered out.

Brittany Compton
Brittany Compton

Is it only available in audio?

So Sew Easy
Active Member

Hi Brittany, there are some links at the bottom of the post to the book available in print and Kindle as well. Hope that helps. Kind regards, Mayra

Maria Allende
Maria Allende

This has inspired me to try to get my teenager to try sewing. Thanks for the review and advice.

Sharon Collins
Sharon Collins

How nice to hear from a teen who sews. I’m glad you’re enjoying the book. Remember you really never learn everything about sewing. There will always be tips, tricks, & techniques to learn about. You might be interested in the American Sewing Guild. They have a Junior membership. There is a magazine that comes out once a quarter. There are discounts available for members. Just a thought. Try anything once. If you make a mistake, it’s time for a design change or element! Just no sewing over pins because you don’t want to mess up your machine. Hand or slow sewing has made a come back as mom’s sit at dance, gymnastics, in the pick up line, or just to relax. I never gave it up. I’ve always heed my dresses by hand. Now I sew tiny squares together & hand embroider linens. Traveling it’s easy to carry so I don’t freak out over my husband’s driving! Traveling from Texas to Vermont & back is still hard on me. It keeps me from butting in during wedding rehearsal, too. Enjoy your sewing time, little lady!

Jane Hill
Jane Hill

Well done Sammy, you have made it beautifully, I love the material you chose and you explained it so well