April 18 – Books

Over the last six months I have been collecting books on sewing. I search the local thrift stores, I visit goodwill (both my local store and online auctions) and estate sales. My acquisitions are growing larger but I have a few that are my favorites.

 It all began with a 1940’s book that I got from Goodwill. Paid $2.00 for it. Complete Book of SewingI have to admit that all of the information that they provided then is a pertinent today. There is hardly any color photos in this book but the styles are great.


Another great book shows fashions of the seventies..Pant suits, scarves, florals, so much fun!

SimplicityColor blocking with denim, pinafore dresses for little girls, they are all fun


 The Sixties gave us the Better Homes and Gardens Addition.

BhGThis a great book, full of advice for fittings, seam finishes, pattern selections.


Love how it helps you accessorize your suits.

I even managed to pick up a Couture Handbook

It is from the early 2000’s but one day it will be vintage won’t it. I use to be young and I am certainly vintage now.


It gives great finishing techniques and hand stitches.



Another relatively new book but one that I reference a lot when I begin a project with fabrics I have never sewn.

FS -1 No matter what fabric you have this book gives you recommendations for needles, interfacing, thread.


All these books give great advice, from zippers to seams, if you have a question the answers are here.

So what books do you have in your library?



10 thoughts on “April 18 – Books

  1. Tanya Maile Hughes says:

    Like you, I scour thrift stores and second hand bookstores for sewing books and have a growing collection. My grandma gave that same better homes and gardens book. 🙂 My favorite sewing books are the Vogue Sewing Book, Claire Schaeffer’ s Couture Sewing Techniques and Susan Khalje Bridal Couture. I reference them quite a bit.

  2. Gjeometry says:

    I am the same with sewing books and thrift shoppes! I have many now, actually I have all of these except for the Better Homes and Gardens one, looks good. And, many more, too many to list, but I am going to also do a post about it soon, since it’s so fun to peruse other people’s book collections.

  3. I made it!! says:

    I never thought of trying the thrift shops for sewing books. I wouldn’t even care if the information was relevant or not, just to see the passing of time in fashion would be so cool! I’ve heard of that Sandra Betzina book, never sure if it was any good or not, but it sounds like its worth it.

  4. MammaNene says:

    There’s nothing like a good sewing book, no matter when it was printed! One of those with all the answers inside!
    You made me laugh when you told you’re vintage… I am vintage me too 🙂

  5. Siri says:

    I don’t own a single sewing book :/ I have seen some in thrift stores, but they’re usually 70s and the covers makes me nauseated 😀 I know it’s stupid, cause they can contain nice stuff. I ooo and aahhh over the older 40s 50s and 60s stuff though 🙂

    • ksgentry says:

      Since I was a teenager in the early 70’s I like some of their styles, it is my era. But I love the style of the older eras best, they were always so well dressed, not like what we see in places like ‘Walmart’ today. Every time I see a person with pajama pants on I cringe, they are so lazy they can’t even get dressed when they are going out. PJ pants are for wearing at home and Walmart is not your home!

    • ksgentry says:

      I have to admit that with all of these books I still struggle with alterations and each and every one of those books have a section to address that. But I love them nonetheless.

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