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The Sewing Bible, published by Potter Craft, is a fantastic resource of comprehensive tips and tutorials for sewers of all skill levels! Featuring over 20 sewing projects and a detailed fabric and tool guide, this handy companion is a necessity for your sewing room.

Until Monday, April 12th, enter to win this must-have book by answering the following question: What makes a sewing book great? Please read instructions below and provide page numbers for your examples where possible

Valentines day is long gone, but we want you to write a love letter to your favorite sewing books.

We know what books are great, but tell us WHY. What do you love about your favorite sewing or patternmaking books? The more specific, the better!

- Is there an illustration that makes things seem crystal clear?
- Did the wording in certain instructions make sewing a breeze?
- Is there beautiful photography that you find deeply inspiring?
- Is there a fabric guide or chart that helps you choose your ideal material?
- Do you find yourself referring to a fabulously comprehensive glossary?
- Did a tip for using a sewing machine change your life?
- Did you find inspiration in a book for your sewing studio setup?

Let us know! Submit your answer in the comment box below! A winner will be selected at random.

Good Luck!

- The BurdaStyle Team

P.S. – Anxious to get a copy of “The Sewing Bible” today? Discover this and other great titles at Random House!

224 Comments

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    Apr 13, 2010, 06.57 PMby roseythelimited

    of course simple and clear instructions and illustrations. i’m a visual learner, so diagrams are important. it would be cool to if it came with a dvd that followed the book and demonstrated some of the tougher techniques, or maybe went through a project with you.

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    Apr 13, 2010, 06.52 PMby sewneo

    I think most people have said this already … but clear, concise illustrations are must haves for me in a sewing bible.

    The commentary (wording and illustrations) should be designed to accommodate the most novice user to the most advanced.

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    Apr 13, 2010, 03.15 PMby jmoore806

    Great photos are a must. I also look for interesting projects that are easy to do but not something that has been done a million times before. I look for new takes on old projects.

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    Apr 13, 2010, 04.23 AMby clareh

    Sewing books are great when they have lots of pictures and really cool projects. I also love it when I get to hear the words of the sewer and she tells me what inspires her.

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    Apr 13, 2010, 03.02 AMby debbieyy01

    What makes a great sewing book? I really like detailed explanations with lots of clear step by step illustrations, such as the Readers Digest Complete Book of Sewing, it’s a classic.

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    Apr 13, 2010, 01.05 AMby lala86

    Singer books are still so clear to me!

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    Apr 13, 2010, 12.22 AMby jhophay

    a good sewing book should have pictures on every step or procedure it discusses. doesn’t need to have lots of projects but it should possessed lots of techniques to execute sewing procedures easily, especially for beginners like me.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 09.12 PMby sandyshadow

    It’s great because it helps you for create new ideas and inspire new things or forms to sew; when your are reading the books your brain works better, you have fun and more imaginative.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 08.24 PMby Liz Orlandini

    I think that clear instructions and innovative thinking makes a sewing book great.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 02.22 PMby anousht

    I enjoy a book that gives detailed instructions, accompanied by basic illustrations for each step. I’m a beginner and I think that having both visual and written instructions is a great way to learn!

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    Apr 12, 2010, 04.05 AMby elegantthreads

    I am new to the sewing community and I have not amassed a large collection of sewing books yet, but I do like the fact that the book I have has a comprehensive outline of sewing techniques. The book tells me how to prepare fabric and what to look for in the type of fabric I buy. I also like how my book outlines which body measurements to focus on when I am looking at a pattern to buy.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 03.28 AMby JonnieChavanu

    Clear, detailed (maybe even too detailed) instructions with pictures! And more skill instructions than projects. Projects tend to get outdated fast, but skills can be used forever.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 02.16 AMby suze5

    It’s the 12th, and I dont know if im too late but i’m going to have a crack anyway!!!!

    A great sewing book for me is not only about great projects, but inspirational photography. The Crafty Minx is a book I bought just last year with some wayward christmas money…it is fantastic and full of inspiration. Here is one of my favourite bits… “Being a Crafty Minx is not about being perfect: it’s about the vital importance of exercising your creative muscle to make stylish and clever crafts for yourself, your friends, your home and for, or with, your children. You will make mistakes along the way, but that’s ok: mistakes are human. Sometimes they are even charming.” The Crafty Minx, Kelly Doust, Murdoch Books, Pg 8.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 01.53 AMby londonbound

    Simple, clear step by step instructions. LOTS of pictures with every step! (I’m a visual learner!)

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    Apr 12, 2010, 01.52 AMby londonbound

    Simple, clear instructions and illustrations of patterns and techniques.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 12.38 AMby hlh

    I learned to sew with the help of a 1970’s photo copied sewing class handbook that I tied to a string and hung from the wall by an old classroom style machine at a costume shop I worked at. This book had no cover page, but was filled with great black and white images of step by step how to’s. The instructions were so simple and easy to follow along. I had highlighted, dog-eared and written all over it. Some of the glossary pages were still intact, but plenty were missing. The best part was how basic and easy the explanations were to follow along, for complex stitches and constructions. I wish I still had it. I really believe that the simplicity of the instructions and images forced me to be more creative and teach myself how to sew.

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    Apr 12, 2010, 12.24 AMby martham

    The Singer sewing books are an excellent series. They are my go to reference for technique, projects, and explanations. They have pictures and good explanations. I especially like the Sewing for the Home book — I could never figure out how to measure for curtains. I am renovating right now, or I would get you page and project examples. That said, I like reading new sewing books for inspiration and new ways of using traditional or innovative techniques.

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    Apr 11, 2010, 10.58 PMby sofie-m

    Oh just further to my last (first ever) post… I also have Burda magazines (some from 90’s found by a friend in a garage sale) and the technical tips in the sewing course are always great. I also borrow from the library a lot. I am back to sewing after a big hiatus as I am a single mum to a 5 yo and he takes up my time, but I have stared making him some clothes too and he loves it. I have made a lot of things for sisters and friends and other children and they love it too. I need all the help I can get… book would be lovely for inspiration and guidance! Love this site!!! and love seeing how wonderfully other people sew.

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    Apr 11, 2010, 10.52 PMby sofie-m

    I have only one sewing book (so far) and it is for overlocking (serging) but I always refer to it to see a new technique or tension settings. I find the most useful thing is photos/diagrams. I need to see what they mean. This is my first post here, and I would love to have a reference book to help me more.

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    Apr 11, 2010, 09.41 PMby rachelily

    My favorite sewing book is the one I bought myself to replace the one we had to buy for school – it was the Reader’s Digest Guide to Sewing (surpisingly!) The reason the book is so great is that, even though the drawings and photographs are dated, the information is incredibly precise and detailed. There are pictures for every step, not just for steps in between or the final step of a technique. It not only teaches you, but inspires you to think outside the box with your techniques and apply them elsewhere.

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    Apr 11, 2010, 08.33 PMby simboeck

    In sewing books I am looking for those that teach technique rather than focus on specific projects. Fabrics I chose when I hold it in my hands. Book-knowledge is nice but experience is priceless. In pattern books those that have a good scaling and pref. set up in a way which makes it easy to scale up or down. Probably my favorite one is “Pattern for theatrical costumes”. It goes from the ancient world right into the early 1900s and also includes decorative patterns of the time. The scale is 1:8 (1:4 of head-wear) and it has different sizes (S, M and L).

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    Apr 11, 2010, 11.07 AMby suman nayek

    pictures! pictures n pictures!! yes visuals help everyone,right from amateurs to professionals……n more than helpin 2 make d finished garment it helps us by inspiring us to make such a lovely piece. though there has to be written instructions also for the same//

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    Apr 11, 2010, 07.44 AMby ciff

    I love books,I love to read, I love to learn . I really love to sew. I don’t have a job and I am panicking. so it has to be something to make me happy and I sew . I need clear instructions, different techniques, tips, pictorials. I love Burda magazines , are my best resources.I like the idea of creating something based on the pattern but I need to now how to sew, how to put in a zipper or understitch or other . I really love this book, I really need this book, I must have this book.

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    Apr 11, 2010, 07.29 AMby miktha

    A sewing book must have step by step instruction, clear picture, sewing tips, sewing projects that we can try (from the easiest to the hardest), I like when the project is made from one simple pattern than can be altered to make another projects, fabric guide, and the instruction must be writen in words that I can understand. Thank You

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    Apr 11, 2010, 03.35 AMby thecuriouskiwi

    Dear Sewing books, What I love about my favourite book that I got just recently (Readers Digest Complete book of Sewing") are your wonderfully clear fitting diagrams, each example shows a simple but obvious fitting problem and then a flat pattern piece with the alterations required and the final outcome sketch too. This is more important to me than how to sew straight or insert a zipper, which I can already do. I love my next favoutite book (The Art of Maipulating Fabric) because you give me so many great ideas that I can insert into a simple pattern to make it more personalised. Again clear diagrams help but also fantastic pictures of real fabric being manipulated and then some great ideas of how to use it. From Mel xx

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    Apr 11, 2010, 02.39 AMby swags

    Clear instructions and crystal clear images help make a good book. A balanced book answers questions for all types of sewers, novice, begginers, intermediate and expert sewers. Having insightful hints, tips, suggestions makes a good book great. I am at beginning level and do not know a lot of things. I haven’t yet found a good book that speaks to me or gives me confidence to try new things..But I know its out there…

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    Apr 11, 2010, 01.49 AMby bratling

    It has to have great pictures and things I don’t know how to do in it. Just as an example—I was a runner up in last year’s Simplicity/Joanns Halloween Costume Contest. I won a free pattern and a free sewing book. I thought the book was great—-until I realized it was written for people who don’t know how to thread a needle. I’ve been sewing for as long as I can remember, so I need more than how to lay out a pattern and how to thread your sewing machine in a book. I also do better with pictures as opposed to written instructions. Honestly, I wish there was one that would give me my sewing epiphanies. I mean, I was doing lots of gathering last week and it popped into my head that what I should do aside from basting stitches was to loosen the top tension and it would gather easier. It seems like a Duh now, but nobody’s ever told me that and I’ve never found it in a book.

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    Apr 10, 2010, 08.12 AMby plookiss

    lots of pictures and easy to understand information to see you through all the steps.

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    Apr 10, 2010, 04.42 AMby llesenia

    I’m very visual, so lots of pictures!

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