Sewing book collection

When I first began my sewing adventure, my mom gifted me something important, her 1970's version of The Bishop Method sewing book. I was fourteen, and fell in love with the amazing, new-to-me methods. Catch Stitch, Arrowhead tacks, the proper way to place buttons on a shirt. Oh, and don't get me started on the illustrations, cute little doodles of how to do stitches, and especially how to press ones seams. All very captivating for a 14 year old who was, and still is, very much a nerd.

Fast forward to my starting fashion school, the books we were assigned seemed, well, boring. Now I understand that photos help a lot of people learn new skills, and I'm that kind of person, but I was spoiled by that delightful book.
I would often see on other sewists’ blogs they would have a nice collection of vintage sewing books, I would ooh and ahh over the illustrations and amusing anecdotes, and desperately want one. Some years on, my collection is pretty modest, truth be told, but I love it all the same. I've sadly lost the Bishop Method book, but I've made up with gifted and purchased delights.

This is one of my more recent buys, and it has been referenced a lot of late. I absolutely adore the Art Deco font on the cover and throughout the book itself.

I bought a 1930's Butterick sewing pattern that had the advert stating 'for more sewing help, refer to Making Smart Clothes, available at sewing counters'. Now, I wish my sewing counter had this on it, but hunting online is just as fun.

I also love the illustrations! Such dainty little Deco darlings litter the book, creating and wearing the fashions of the day. Even reading the advice in the book makes me want to create, which is a good motivator.

Next up is my 1950's copy of the Singer Sewing Book.

 I believe this was the first sewing book I purchased after I began my major.

I fell in love with the details that were taught long ago, and would love to copy them one of these days.

Something else I fell in love with are the home improvement portions of the book. While making your own bedding sounds ludicrous to us now, it was pretty common if you wanted to completely tie your room together.

This was a purchase I waffled on and off about, and finally bit the bullet when the price was right. It's full of wartime-era Making Do and Mending tips, as well as very useful garment construction help.

I love the illustrations (a running theme with the books I collect), and the cut of the garments is just so lovely, part of why I adore 40's fashions.

I believe this was a gift from my friend’s grandmother, and it's one of my most used books.

I love this little detail here, everyone needs a huge pocket to carry all their treasures.

I got this as a gift from a former professor who knew I loved vintage fashion and style. That was sweet of her, and I consult this book a lot as well.

I think I'm going to do cool buttons and button holes like this.

I need to consult this later in the year when I make a coat, but it's fun to flip through for now.


I love this one as it gives some pretty good advice on turning your passion into a business.
Phew, that's it, and I still have more, but I'll share them another day.
Do you collect sewing books? Do you have a favorite reference book?

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