Sewing World magazine May 2013

I meant to post this last week while I was away on my world travels, but I found it hard to tactfully review bits of it without adequate sleep (and even with more rest, I may still have failed!).

Sewing World is a British general-sewing magazine with a mix of garments, crafts, embellishment, with a definite skewing towards beginners, but with the odd advanced article thrown in, too. It’s one I’ve picked up and flipped through in newsagents over the years, but never really felt compelled to buy more than once or twice. In recent years they started publishing a pattern sheet insert in the magazine, which IMHO makes it a million times easier to sew projects from instead of drafting from instructions or scaling up from a grid.

My sole reason for buying this issue was to get Tilly’s skirt pattern (see below), but I figured it was worth sharing the rest of the magazine with you since there are probably a lot of you who are unfamiliar with it.

The first article is all about how to tweak a teeshirt pattern to make it fit properly, which is definitely a Good Thing, and is often something that sewists ask about, especially since most FBA articles require some form of darts. I’ve got no problem with the tips offered in the article, but as I flipped the page…


And with that, dear readers, absolutely every shred of respect I had for the article’s author and the entire publication went flying out the window. What. The. Eff.

Look, I know the Big Four put facings on knits, and I scream in horror at the sheer ugliness, stupidity, and enforced crappiness of theirs, too. That someone who purports to be an expert would do this to poor, unsuspecting sewists is just unforgiveable, especially when a folded, sewn, and topstitched neckband is a) simpler to achieve, b) simpler to draft, c) better looking and d) …actually, no D. Just don’t.

Moving on… deep breaths…

From the awful to the sublime – the real reason I bought this issue is to get Tilly’s Marielle skirt! I just love the pencil skirt shape, and the asymmetric buttons and trim, just lovely!

I really want to support Tilly because she’s a great sewist and an all-around fantastic lady, but her first pattern just wasn’t my style, so I’m happy to be able to shout about this one!

Here’s a larger view of the Marielle pattern sizes:

Next up is an article about sewing with electronics, and since I’ve recently jumped back into Arduino LilyPad research, this really piqued my interest! Oh, only it’s 99% regular sewing, then inserting a bought LED and attached battery pack into a grommet… So not nearly as challenging or exciting as I was expecting, but I guess it’s good for an introduction to electronics.

Then there’s an ongoing pattern drafting series for more advanced sewists, this time all about drafting a sleeve. This article is genuinely really well done, so bravo!

Then a profile on Trudy, the owner of Hot Patterns, which puts those occasional designer spotlight interviews Burda does to absolute shame! I’ve tried Hot Patterns several times myself and they just do not work for me, but I really enjoyed reading this inspiring article about Trudy.

And finally, here’s a peek at the pattern sheet that comes along with the magazine, which you’ll need to trace in order to sew the full garments, like Tilly’s skirt, and the teeshirt:

See? Very, very easy to distinguish the lines from each other – even easier than Patrones magazine!

So, as far as I can tell, the articles are really hit and miss! I’m glad I was able to buy this for Tilly’s skirt, but I can’t say it’s something I’ll be jumping all over to buy in future, especially since it’s around the same price as a Burda issue, and with far, far fewer patterns.

If you’d like to buy this issue, however, you can purchase it online directly.

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