Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Sewing for Tiny Tots book review

I'd like to say that the title of this post reflects what I am currently sewing. However that is not the case. I actually don't have too many tiny tots around to sew for. Come to think of it, I don't even have one. (This would be a great time to toss in a "hint, hint" to my kids if I thought they were reading ... hee! hee!) It's actually the name of a book I purchased the other day at Joann Fabrics (with my 4o% off coupon of course).

Knowing that I don't have tiny tots to sew for you may be wondering why in the world am I reviewing a book about sewing for little ones? Because you might have little ones to sew for and if you haven't yet discovered this book you'll want to check it out.

This past weekend I stopped by Joann's to see if they had the new Vogue patterns in stock (they didn't). While in the store, I decided to browse through the book selection to see if they had any interesting altered art or mixed-media books that I could add to my collection.

I'm not sure how the books are organized at the Joann's you frequent, but in the store I frequent the books are semi-organized by topic, although they are not neatly displayed as they would be in a bookstore. While they all face out, they are stacked three, four and even five deep. Which means you have to flip through the stack to see the covers of the books near the back of the pile. (Kind of like the old record stores when you flipped through album covers... oh c'mon. I know some of you remember doing that!)

Anyway, as I was flipping through the books looking for altered art or mixed-media books, I spy an adorable little girl with an animal print scarf trimmed with pink feathers wrapped around her neck, holding a matching bag, on the cover of a book. I simply had to pull the book out to get a closer look.

A quick flip through the pages and that book ended up in my shopping basket.

Sewing for Tiny Tots: Sweet & Simple Clothes, Toys & Room Accents, by Susan Cousineau, published by Lark/Chapelle, c. 2007.

The book, at 9" x 8", is smaller than your typical book but the 136 pages are packed full of fun ideas for tiny tots.

The book begins with the usual section on basics, including choosing and preparing fabrics, making templates, marking and cutting fabric, basting, piecing a quilt, fusible web applique, basic embroidery techniques, and photo transfers.

It then moves onto basic materials, tools and equipment needed to complete the projects. Nothing special, just the basic tools any sewer would have on hand.

Then comes the fun part. The 40 projects, divided into sections.

Sweet Dreams, covering nursery and bedroom decor, includes projects such as a sweet dreams bunny pillow, a counting sheep wall quilt, bedtime buddies crib mobile, and a snuggle bug crib blanket.

Cutie Pie moves onto stylish clothing and accessories. This section is definitely my favorite with items such as cute as a button critter cap, designer denim bibs, see ya later alligator scarf and mittens and the aforementioned chic kitty purse and scarf.

Discover and Play bring you to toys for fun and active learning and includes an ocean friends activity mat, wiggly worm play pal, pocket bunny activity blanket, and sweet treats counting book.

Hugs & Heartstrings, the last section, is for precious keepsakes and memory crafts. Here you can learn how to make a keepsake birth pillow, a spring blossom diaper bag, or baby's first year soft keepsake book.

Not only are the instruction clearly written and organized, but there are plenty of full color photographs through out the book.

There are a few negatives with the book:

First of all, the templates provided for the projects need to be enlarged anywhere from 200 to 700 percent. I understand why publishers do that, and it does help keep the cost of the book low, but I still find it a bit annoying. I don't know about you, but I want to be able to copy the templates on my home printer not drag the book to a copy-center.

Secondly, I didn't find too many project ideas for the little guys. There are a few, but they are mostly for infants. Girls rule in this book.

I'll never make all of the projects that are included in this book. But realistically, how often do any of us make every single project provided in a book we purchase? There are enough cute ideas that I was willing to add this book to my sewing and craft library even without a tiny tot to sew for (at least in the foreseeable future.)

If you like to sew for little ones, at $12.95 I think the book is great value. At $12.95 less my 40% off coupon, the book was a steal.

And just in case you were wondering. I did indeed find a new mixed-media book that really got my mind racing with ideas. But that's another story for another day. Pin It


  1. Thanks for the book review. I have tots but they are boys. There's not much in patterns for little guys.

    Yes I remember how records were stacked. All of the Jo's stores I've been in display their books the same way you described.

  2. I will definitely look for that book!



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