Super Stitches Sewing by Nicole Vasbinder
ISBN 10: 0770434797
ISBN 13: 978-0770434793
Publication date: 18 March 2014 by Potter Craft
Category: Adult nonfiction
Keywords: Sewing, crafts
Format: Paperback, ebook
Source: Finished paperback copy from publisher
Never again will I refer to stitches on my sewing machine as "the one that looks like shark teeth" or "the zigzaggy one with the thread on the edge". Super Stitches Sewing is the Rosetta Stone of embroidery hieroglyphics I didn't even know I needed.
Not only does Nicole Vasbinder explain what each stitch looks like, how the machine moves to create it, and what it's used for, she also explains what fabric you are probably going to want to use it with, the right threads/needles, and step-by-step instructions for using them effectively in your sewing. The book is cleverly organized. It gives you alternate names for each stitch, and substitutes in case your machine doesn't have that one. It's also a lot prettier and easier to read than my sewing machine's manual. I especially appreciate the Expert Tips scattered throughout the book--Vasbinder anticipates what problems a beginner might run into and explains how to avoid these pitfalls.
If I had to say one negative thing about the book, it would be that the tools & equipment section I usually expect to see in the beginning of the book is actually in the back. Most of my other sewing books start out with a detailed explanation of terms and items needed for executing each technique. I'm not an expert sewist by any means, in fact I sew infrequently out of fear. So when I started reading and ran into unfamiliar terms like "wing needle" or "overcast foot", I got a little nervous, even though I knew I could probably check Google or YouTube for more info.
Then I reached the end of the hand-stitching chapter and found explanations and diagrams for the various needles, threads, presser feet, and sewing terms mentioned in the book. It even includes explanations of how to change stitches on a manual, mechanical, and a computerized sewing machine. I might actually finish out the year knowing what all the little sliders, knobs, and buttons are for.
Aside from the thoroughness of the book, I appreciate that there's not much in the way of projects to distract you from the information. There's just enough to give you ideas, but not enough to overwhelm and confuse. I think this would be a great tool for a beginner-to-intermediate sewist to make a cloth sampler book of stitches and actually explore how to use a sewing machine beyond the usual straight and zigzag stitches. My first goal: hem a skirt with Straight Blind Hem Stitch (page 30), which I can now stop calling "the one that looks like a bunch of plateaus".
I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for review purposes.