Clothing Construction by Christine Haynes - review and a treasure giveaway

85 comments

REVIEW
When Christine Haynes announced she was writing The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Construction I couldn't wait to get my hands on it! When I read her blog and sew her patterns I am always introduced me to a new technique or skill that is easy to do and results in a flawless finish. Now, after reading the book cover to cover (no joke), I am confident in saying that this is a book you will want near your machine at all times. Seriously! She covers so many topics and has included tons of beautiful photos to make following along super easy.

See, I wasn't joking about having this next to my machine!

You probably don't know this, but I have a BS in Graphic Communication from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Graphic Communication is not necessarily graphic design, it focuses on different printing processes, publishing, packaging, etc. With that said, I nerded out on this book so hard because there are photos for every step described and the book layout is so clean and organized. The typography is beautiful, the text flows nicely, and the use of white space on the chapter introduction pages makes my GrC heart happy!

There are so many little details I appreciated, like the color coded bars along the top of the pages to differentiate between chapters and the little images next to the page numbers.

SEWING PIVOTS
I thought I would demonstrate a technique that Christine covers in the book on pages 98 and 99 on sewing pivots. Most of us have sewn pivots before, but the tutorial in the book introduced me to a more precise and exact way of sewing them.

First, I marked my pivot spot with my fabric pencil.

 Next, I sewed until just before my marked line and kept the needle down in the fabric. Normally I would eyeball it, pivot pretty close to the marked line, and move on with my life, but this lazy bad habit of mine wouldn't always produce a nice, crisp corner. On something like a collar, a focal point on the front of your blouse or dress, a perfect corner is important to having a nice finish.

This is where I had an epiphany thanks to the book, manually turn the hand wheel until the needle hits the pivot line. Ahhhhhhh! Why haven't I ever thought of this?!?! Christine, you are a genius!

 If your stitch still isn't hitting the line perfectly, she suggests making the length shorter. Here I went from 2.5 to 2.0. Lebron the cat (not the human, but it would be pretty cool if I was sewing with Lebron James. Maybe he is into sewing idk) was watching this happen in the background and he approved.

With the needle down, turn the fabric and continue sewing.

Clip the corner.

Turn the fabric right side out, give it a press (which I didn't do for this photo :(  sorryyyyy) and get pumped on that good looking corner!

If you are ready to blow your sewing mind, then I highly recommend this book. It's a book I wish existed when I first got my machine and it's the perfect book for me now as I expand my knowledge. I can try new skills and techniques and learn them correctly with this sewing encyclopedia at my finger tips. You can't go wrong with this book.


GIVEAWAY TIME
To celebrate the release of The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Construction , Christine was nice enough to send me a Chelsea sewing pattern as a giveaway prize! I've sewn it up twice (one and two) and can vouch that it's one of the most comfortable dresses I have sewn.

I'm also adding some buttons that I got at Liberty and a Cath Kitson pincushion. I got both of them when I was in London over Christmas and was holding on to them for the perfect giveaway :) There is also a ***mystery*** prize that is not pictured.

To enter the giveaway leave a comment below with a pattern you wish Christine would design next or take a guess at what the mystery prize will be. Giveaway is open worldwide and will close on Tuesday, March 11th at 5:00 PST. Make sure to leave a way for me to contact you (e-mail address, blog website, etc.)
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Oh, and don't forget to check out the other blogs on the blog tour. They are also giving away some awesome treasures and books!

Monday, February 24 - City Stitching with Christine Haynes
Friday, February 28 - Sew L.A.
Monday, March 3 - Coletterie
Tuesday, March 4 - Miss Crayola Creepy
Wednesday, March 5 - Whipstitch
Thursday, March 6 - Lucky Lucille
Friday, March 7 - Grainline
Monday, March 10 - Oonaballoona
Tuesday, March 11 - Paunnett
Wednesday, March 12 - Sewaholic
Thursday, March 13 - Lladybird
Friday, March 14 - House of Pinheiro
Monday, March 17 - Flossie Teacakes
Tuesday, March 18 - The Sew Convert
Wednesday, March 19 - Craftsy
Thursday, March 20 - Sublime Stitching
Friday, March 21 - Sew Stylish

85 comments :

  1. I'm not entering the giveaway - just wanted to say how cool your degree sounds. It always boggles my mind how much work goes into, say, designing and constructing a book, and the thought that there are people out there fussing over typography and layout makes my heart sing!


    As far as pivoting goes, I've been taught that you should always use a smaller stitch length on corners, as it makes for a tighter finish and a neater corner to press out.

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  2. Mystery prize = measuring gauge.

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  3. Not entering...just guessing, lol.

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  4. I guess I'll be the first to officially enter! I'm guessing the mystery prize is fabric or another pattern.

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  5. I'd love Christine to design a vintage style top. Nothing too plain, but not a button down. Maybe something with a cute yoke and collar :)

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  6. I'd love to see a dress with a straight-skirt variation.

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  7. Girl, I WANT this book. It looks pure amazing, and the buttons, pincushion, and Chelsea pattern are (duh) totally drool-worthy, too! I would love for Christine (whose Emery dress I've only JUST tested, not yet blogged, but LOVE), would come out with a sun dress pattern. She's got the casual-ish, wearable, superbly-drafted dress pattern thing down... now that spring's approaching, I need a new sun dress to make 5 of! Amirite? :D

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  8. I'd like to see a pattern for a vintage inspired dress with a nice full skirt, I can't get enough of full skirts :)

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  9. Aleksandra RobinsonMarch 4, 2014 at 7:10 PM

    I wish she'd do a skirt next -- I always need more skirt patterns! I think the mystery prize is... bias tape! (Totally random guess, lol.)

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  10. Rachelle CrosbieMarch 4, 2014 at 7:18 PM

    I'd love a pattern for a nice fitted button down top

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  11. Omg this giveaway is fantastic! Thank you! Umm perhaps her next pattern might be a bow blouse (wishful thinking!)

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  12. I would love a skirt pattern from Christine! She has designed my favorite dress pattern, so I'd love to see what she could do for a skirt.

    Also, that pin cushion is so, so cute! Love it!

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  13. Ooh, this book looks amazing! How cool! Because I'm an addict, I'd love to see Christine's take on a blazer!

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  14. I'm guessing the mystery prize is some Liberty fabric! Well, a gal can hope, no matter how far fetched it is! ��

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  15. Can a Seattle girl wish for a jacket? I'm sure that someone from Southern Cal doesn't really need to make many jackets, let alone draft a pattern for sale. I'd just love to see what cute jacket make she would come up with, then use her book to guide me through construction!

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  16. I'd like to see Christine's take on a dress with a straight skirt and some of her embellishment touches...bow or collar.

    Toni - www.archmom.com

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  17. You do an excellent job at describing this book! I think fitted blouse would be wonderful as her next design.

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  18. this book sounds amazing. definitely going on my wish list! i think a fitted jacket for the busty lady would be fantastic.

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  19. I would love a sweater or cardigan. Unlike jackets, they're much more practical and comfy for a girl like me who is always freezing both outdoors and indoors! :)

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  20. Oh, this book looks fantastic!

    Hmmm.... I'd like to see a woven-fabric wrap dress. :-)

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  21. I would love a vintage style jacket or Cape. Or y'know more dresses. Dresses are always good! Theres an emery on my sewing table at the moment. Great giveaway - thanks to you and Christine!

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  22. I'd love to see a skirt pattern, or a blazer. Like a little cropped vintage-inspired blazer.. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  23. I'd love Christine to design a jacket too. Something that sees you through spring and autumn the in between seasons.

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  24. I'd love a good blouse/top pattern; maybe with a couple of different options for embellishments/peplum etc. Her patterns are just fantastic, and would love to win this giveaway!!! xx

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  25. I would for her to make a shirt dress pattern- they're my favourite kind of dress :) craftygirl101@cox.net Hope I win!

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  26. A little vintage inspired jacket would be great! Thanks for the giveaway, those buttons are lovely!

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  27. A jacket, blazer or a dress pattern for knits are high on my wishlist!

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  28. I wish Christine would come out with a maxi skirt pattern! I haven't tried her patterns yet, but I would if she came out with this.

    Maddie954@aol.com

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  29. Hmmm... how about a cropped blouse and wide pants/sailor pants pattern combo? But no drawstring or elasticized waist!
    Am very, very curious about the book, it's on my wishlist already!

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  30. I am going to guess that the secret prize is a piece of fabric that coordinates with the buttons. BTW, the little chair is too cute! My son graduated from Cal Poly (2006) and you definitely live in one of the most beautiful place I've ever been. Thanks!

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  31. Mystery prize is enough fabric to make the dress.

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  32. Thanks for your review - this book looks really really useful.
    I'm guessing that the mystery prize is pretty fabric for a lovely Chelsea dress!

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  33. This looks like a great book, I know I'd find it really useful. As for what Christine should design next, maybe a nice full skirt. And then maybe a top to go with the skirt? Or another dress that's as good as the Emery?!
    Ruth - www.nightingaleanddolittle.blogspot.co.uk

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  34. Having just made the Emery and having completely fallen in love with it, she doesn't have to do another thing! Although I think I would love a fitted shift dress -- is there such a thing? Like a cozy shift dress that you throw on but that somehow has more feminine touches, maybe slant pockets and a lower neckline and backline. Yes, that would be nice. That being said, I still need to make about 5 more Emery's so no hurry, Christine! Beautiful book!

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  35. I would love it if Christine would design the perfect circle skirt pattern, lots of tutorials out there to make one, but not one straightforward pattern. Oooh, any mystery prize would be amazing! I can be reached at sewfabkaren at gmail.com. Thanks!

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  36. I would love a pair of lower rise, vintage styled cigarette pants. Not Low rise mind you, just a couple three inches below the belly button but high enough in the back that your drawers don't hang out and your side chunk is not pinched. And it would be heaven if they graded a pattern for not just curvy girls but us boy body types with minimal hips and booty's. It's just as hard to fit; baggy butt pants are an epidemic IMHO.

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  37. johanna@projects by meMarch 5, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    How about a pattern for a cardigan or a jacket for knit fabric....


    johhol01@gmail.com

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  38. I've only every made Christine's Sassy Librarian Blouse, but it was awesome. (Which reminds me I should make another), but honestly, all of her patterns look awesome. I wish she would design more casual vintage-y blouses that will work with jeans and for work. Maybe with a long-loose bow tie.

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  39. I'm currently in love with maxi skirts, so a new maxi skirt pattern would be amazing!

    brown[dot]h[at]outlook[dot]com

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  40. Nadine KalinauskasMarch 5, 2014 at 12:23 PM

    That book looks sooo helpful. (Newbie sewist here.) And that Chelsea dress looks so comfy-perfect for everyday life. I'd love to see a pattern for a high-waisted skirt.

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  41. i wish christine would design a coat! thanks for the pivot tip!

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  42. I'd like to see a cute styled blouse pattern, with some vintage style trousers.

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  43. I'd love to see Christine's take on a vintage-style cigarette pant. I took her Craftsy class and learned that awesome pivot marking technique there, as well as the importance of understitching!

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  44. What a great giveaway! I would love Christine to design a relaxed maxi dress

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  45. I would like her to design capris.
    melodyj(at)gmail(dot)com

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  46. Is the mystery prize the book?! Or maybe fabric?! Look at me getting all pumped up over this mystery!!!! carleeandrea dot smith at gmail dot com :)

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  47. I'd love to see pants that hit at the natural waist or a bit higher, with a side or back zip!

    My name should link back to my blog, but if not I'm at http://acharmofmagpies.wordpress.com

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  48. I'll guess the mystery prize is some vintage trim that matches the buttons? Thank you for the giveaway, and the book looks fantastic, I'm switching back to garment sewing this year!

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  49. I am become more and more intrigued and enamoured by Christine's book! I'm currently sewing my first pattern by her, the Emery dress, and it's a beautifully drafted and written pattern. If her book is the same it's a very good thing!
    I'd love a pair of wide legged trousers or a princess seamed blouse/shirt pattern. Chic staples!
    Fingers crossed!

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  50. How awesome! I think it's definitely time Christine Haynes gave the world the penultimate woven wrap dress pattern!

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  51. I'd love her to design some seperates- shirts mainly

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  52. I would love to see what kind of separates Christine would make! Skirts, tops, and jackets! That being said I would also love some sort of sleeveless dress pattern with her retro/vintage feel! Hard to narrow down just one thing that I would like her to make!

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  53. Sailor style shorts, the kinds with buttons up the front/sides! I do plan on making the Emery dress one day, when I have time.

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  54. high waisted trousers would be awesome :)

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  55. Christine's book looks great, I'm also a visual learner so it would be fab for me, I'll need to go get a copy! And awesome giveaway! I've been wanting to try this pattern for a while now :) (hazel.berryman (at) hotmail.com)

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  56. I came over from Coletterie - the book looks wonderful, and I would love to see some great seperates patterns! egranby (at) gmail dot com

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  57. Yes, I agree, separates!! Another blouse that can be made numerous ways like the librarian blouse or wide leg pants.

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  58. I would love to see a sailor short pattern. Or a sailor dress! Such a cute look but really hard to find patterns for. Other than that, anything scalloped would be darling!

    xoxo, Alesha
    iRock4God2@yahoo.com

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  59. I would like to see a pattern for a wrap skirt. The book looks good!

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  60. I love the look of the book. I am guessing the mystery prize is a Big Ben souvenir.

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  61. Firstly I would like to say Thank you for the giveaway!
    I would love Christine to design a coat pattern!

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  62. I have to agree with everyone else. Coordinating separates would be great. As to what the mystery prize is. Is it a copy of the book?

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  63. This book looks great, I hope I can get hold of it here in the UK. I am new to Christine Haynes patterns but they look great, I'd like to see a pattern for a nice girly blouse :)

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  64. I would love for her to design a pants. I'm really digging wife legged palazzos pants for summer...

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  65. What a great giveaway. I would like her to make a pants patterns. batresyohana@yahoo.com

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  66. I would love to see a longer, '30s style dress pattern from her. Maybe something that could be made in a light airy fabric for summer garden parties or a nice silk or satin for evening wear? Modern reproduction patterns in vintage styles are always so lovely to come across.

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  67. I would love to see a jacket pattern from Christine, or a skirt suit

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  68. I'd like to see a jacket-not too boxy.

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  69. Since this is a sewing book and a sewing related giveaway, perhaps the mystery is fabric?

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  70. English Girl at HomeMarch 8, 2014 at 11:55 AM

    Some loose fitting, vintage-style trousers maybe, or another cute blouse (never can have too many!)

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  71. My guess is a pony! (That is my stock guess to all of life's questions). :)

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  72. I'm going to guess the mystery prize is fabric?

    Carla
    okamishoujo -at- gmail -dot- com

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  73. I think the mystery prize is fabric!

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  74. I guess it is a copy of the book.

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  75. I'd love a coat pattern or maybe a wide legged sailor pant...
    zenna(at)ozemail(dot)com(dot)au

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  76. I love to her to make a swing jacket design, a nice little short light jacket for jaunting about in!

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  77. I guess (and hope!) it's a copy of the book?

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  78. It would be great if Christine released a pattern for little ruffled skirt that I could wear along with a Rosemary collar.

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  79. I guess that the mystery prize is a copy of her wonderful book.

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  80. I'm hoping the mystery prize is an all expenses paid trip to take a sewing class with Christine? Shall I keep dreaming?!

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  81. I hope the mystery prize is a new sewing machine! (just kidding). Some lovely fabric to go with the buttons?
    eliz_lind at yahoo.ca

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  82. Hehe, I love the pic where you can just see cat paws and butt! ;) Great giveaway, I had not seen that dress pattern of Christine's before. I think the mystery prize will be fabric to make the Chelsea dress and to use the lovely buttons with.

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  83. I guess that the mystery prize is a copy of her wonderful book? hope so :)

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  84. Im hope every one should learn clothing construction . christine u r done very gud job u cna buy latest fashionable accessories online at <a href="http://www.trendin.com/latest-fashion_337'>Latest Fashion</a>

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