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BOOK GIVEAWAY: “Famous Frocks” by Sara Alm and Hanna McDevitt

Mar 19, 2012
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The patterns and instructions in Famous Frocks will allow you to recreate the iconic garments worm by ten famous celebrities.

Threads #160 featured the book Famous Frocks by Sara Alm and Hannah McDevitt (Chronicle Books, 2011) in the “Notions” department on page 17. This is a sewing book that’s probably different from any you’ve seen before. The authors have selected ten famous women and provided patterns and instructions to duplicate one of each woman’s most iconic garments. Among the celebrity fashions included are Audrey Hepburn’s little black dress; Marilyn Monroe’s poster-classic white halter; Madonna’s sexy “Like a Virgin” outfit, and more. Each section begins with a vintage photo of the celebrity in her iconic outfit followed by how-to illustrations that break down each step so sewers of all skill levels can follow along. The patterns for each are included in a pouch found on the inside front cover. The patterns are sized from XS to L (bust 31 to 37 inches, hip 34-1/2 to 40-1/2 inches). To obtain other sizes, alterations are required.

One iconic garment worn by each of the following celebrities is included:
Bette Davis
Farrah Fawcett
Rita Hayworth
Audrey Hepburn
Marilyn Monroe
Stevie Nicks
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
Diana Ross

Each of these women is known for her distinctive style. Leave a comment and tell us which person’s style you would most like to recreate for yourself, and you will be entered into our giveaway contest. Leave your comment on this post before the deadline–11:59 pm EST, Wednesday, April 4–and you could win a copy of the book. The winner will be randomly selected and announced during the week of April 9.

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  1. sewsanista March 20th

    I am crazy about this book. I would love to sew my own version of each celebrity dress.

  2. User avater jamaco March 19th

    Classic styles, classic looks. Wow!

  3. User avater Mengar February 20th

    Ooops! Forgot to say whose style, which would be Marilyn Monroe.

  4. User avater Mengar February 20th

    Dresses and looks that I would love to explore!

  5. User avater rijacks63 August 14th

    I would love to imitate Rita Hayworth's sytle. She was a woman with curves and so am I! :)

  6. User avater AnnSewItGoes May 21st

    I am really enjoying Threads Magazine, on-line projects, and I am learning so much. Thank you!

  7. user-1020935 May 2nd

    As far as I'm concerned, Jackie O could wear anything and look sensational. This is an original and fun book and while I like them all (except Madonna) if I had to pick a favorite, it's Jackie first and Twiggy second. Truly less is more.

  8. NoelleDJud May 2nd

    Audrey please. Her look is so timeless. Wear this with my grandmother's pearls for a feminine to-die-for look!

  9. Thumbles April 30th

    Ack! It's 'sew' difficult to choose! Each of these women has a different style, and a different body type. Each can be identified by her style. Do I hafta choose a favorite??

  10. user-1109491 April 28th

    I'm a Jackie O fan! I would love to have this book!

  11. NikkiK April 28th

    This would be a perfect Mother's Day gift. She did the most fantastic things with an old Singer zig zag machine (one of the first slant foot kind). She would love taking a trip through fashion history with a cup of tea. How great.

  12. user-1125243 April 24th

    Can't wait to read this book front to back.

  13. 7360tonilee April 23rd

    I love all the "Icon" but my favorite has to be Stevie Nicks, she is what I call Elligant Bohemien.
    I will definately get a copy of this book one way or another!

  14. user-1078645 April 21st

    Twiggy is my current style icon. Sadly I'm no longer Audrey Hepburn shaped!

  15. User avater user-118104 April 18th

    For me it would be Jacqui O, Audrey and Twiggy. All three mastered Chanel’s ‘less is more’ rule so eloquently. I have reached an age where too much fuss doesn’t work so I am trying to move into the stylish, elegant, classic styles these women are famous for.

  16. User avater gpfrench April 18th

    I STILL love making my own clothing--- I have over 50 years of experience and study behind me,

  17. user-1121234 April 17th

    I have 3 daughters - 25, 23, 20 - all who have discovered the beauty of vintage clothing. This book would be a godsend to us.

  18. User avater memarston April 17th

    This is really exciting! How I would love to own this book!

    The more I learn the more I want to learn! Sewing is one of my passions!


  19. User avater pookies April 11th

    I had purchased this book because of the review I had seen in Threads magazine. This is a great "inspiration" book, and the patterns contained are well presented and explained. However; the patterns included are NOT duplicates or copies of the iconic dresses these celebrities are shown wearing. They are very similar, but not duplicates. My comments are provided for transparency of what this book is providing.

  20. User avater shelly123 April 10th

    Love the front cover probably frame it if i had it.

  21. User avater Francedorais April 4th

    I would love to own the Audrey Hepburn book. I love her style and the way she lived her life. She was also a dancer like me and I have her long neck!

  22. User avater user-1117949 April 4th

    It will be fun to study these dresses.

  23. User avater user-1110045 April 4th

    Oh! Love this book, I adored Audrey Hepburn's dress in Breakfast at Tiffanys. Can I please win this book and it will go in my 20th century section of my home sewing library. I can a sure you that it will get used especially for Audrey's dress.

  24. user-489313 April 3rd

    Wow, this book would be a fabulous addition to my library!

  25. bitterbunny April 3rd

    i've always thought twiggy had a way about her :-D

  26. bitterbunny April 3rd

    i've always thought twiggy had a way about her :-D

  27. User avater mpgizmo2 April 3rd

    Jackie O wins hands down with me.

  28. User avater djlv2sw April 2nd

    I love Jackie O's style! This would be a great addition to my library!

  29. CathiMc April 2nd

    I would love to make Marilyn's iconic 7 year Itch dress!

  30. User avater Slater7 April 1st

    I love making and wearing styles from before my time which is anything before the ninties. I also love Audrey Hepburn and would love to wear clothes similar to hers.

  31. user-160756 April 1st

    I love the elegance of design that these women were known for. My all-time favourite would be Audrey Hepburn with Jacqui O a close second.

  32. User avater user-982688 March 31st

    Oh my gosh I would love that book as I love to copy elegant expensive clothes. I copied a Jim Hjelm dress for my daughter when she married in the late 80's that would have cost $5,000 then with the length of train she wanted and we copied it for $1,100. I used to make myself lots of Princess Diana clothes, just so much fun to walk around in those clothes for a fraction of the cost.

  33. User avater MoniqueNL March 31st

    Such a difficult question! I'm rather torn between Audrey Hepburn and Rita Hayworth, but Betty, Marilyn, Jackie... lovely!

  34. maudberg March 30th

    What a great book! Audrey Hepburn style would be me. Love to win this book and explore the different styles.

  35. BarbaraBoop March 29th

    I work in the film industry. Sewing vintage is my thing.

  36. user-1113133 March 29th

    Just getting back in to serious sewing. Would love this.

  37. User avater fibermom March 28th

    Oh a steamy Betty Davis for me.

  38. Jelyna March 28th

    Madonna and Audrey Hepburn!

  39. mrs_l March 28th

    Definitely Audrey Hepburn - I try to keep things classic, simple & sophisticated.

  40. Thewallinna March 28th

    Hesitating between Madonna and Audrey Hapburn. I love Madonna for her daring style and Audrey for her sophistication. My current wardrobe is something in the middle and I would love to experiment!

  41. user-1112656 March 27th

    I would love to get a little bit of Audrey Hepburn's style!

  42. User avater LorraineD1963 March 26th

    I love classic movies and the history of fashion portrayed through old movies. What a wonderful idea for a book.

  43. jan in west mi March 26th

    A book that includes Jackie Kennedy is on my wish list.

  44. User avater njohnson March 26th

    I would love to recreate the dress, design by Edith Head, that Betty Davis wears in the movie "All about Eve". The movie is in black & white but I believe I heard or read that the dress that she wears off the shoulders, although it was not supposed to be worn like that, and she utters the line "'s going to be a bumpy night" is emerald green silk or taffeta. Emerald green is a color that goes well with my complexion and that design, o'yeah's goimg to be a bumpy night.

  45. User avater wicked_stitcher March 26th

    wowza! this is some lookin' good serious stuff!

  46. User avater smfsprout March 26th

    I love the styles of Audrey, Jackie and Farrah and think they are both beautiful and classy. Unfortunately, I'm built more like Danny DeVito so I'm not sure any of these styles would work for me.

  47. User avater Kate_13 March 26th

    I've been longing to capture the simple style of Audrey Hepburn. Such a classic and classy look. The book looks wonderful!

  48. User avater dpettersen March 25th

    I've checked this out before ~ would be great to make some of those dresses!

  49. user-1114021 March 25th

    beautiful Love it!!!

  50. gwtw1936 March 25th

    What a neat idea! Would have been better if all the outfits/celebs were listed. I've thought this an idea worth doing for ages-
    WIll have to check out getting it.

  51. User avater WillaMcNeill March 24th

    Would thoroughly enjoy this book! Not sure whose style I would choose as I am shaped differently from all of them. Maybe Jackie O or Audrey Hepburn?

  52. user-1109938 March 24th

    I would go with Jackie Kennedy. She was a fashion icon in the early '60's and influenced mainstream fashion at that time.

  53. user-1109938 March 24th

    I would love to win this book !! I grew up in the '50's and 60's when these fashions were current! My sewing business is named " Custom Frocks"!

  54. NMT March 24th

    I would have to go with Jackie O, for sure. What a great book!

  55. EmSewCrazy March 24th

    I really like Audrey Hepburn although I have a figure more like Twiggy! This sounds like a fun book!

  56. User avater Sewfinedesign March 24th

    Classic design never goes out of style. What a great book about all the iconic women and their personal style. Updated versions of these classic styles would be great to sew!

  57. User avater BobbiA March 23rd

    I have always admired Audrey Hepburn -- ultimate elegance, class and femininity!

  58. User avater SewReel March 23rd

    Oh, Audrey Hepburn for sure...but perhaps a little Farah Fawcett thrown in! Would absolutely treasure this addition to my library!

  59. Jee March 23rd

    I really would love Rita Hayworth, but then there is Audrey and Betty Davis. Classic classy styles are the ticket.

  60. User avater elowenn March 23rd

    What a fantastic idea! I hope they do more like this, perhaps they could create a Downton Abbey version...

  61. SewCindy March 22nd

    Audrey Hepburn would be the style icon I would recreate.

  62. RDRD March 22nd

    Love this book and would LOVE a copy.

  63. alaskapsych March 22nd

    While I would love to be a Jackie O girl, I'm probably more of a Marilyn! Either way, I'd love love love to have this book!

  64. fyrftr March 22nd

    My Mom was a big Rita Hayworth fan, so I was influenced by her as a young woman... love the styles of that era... very feminine yet still strong.

  65. rebekahricker March 22nd

    Either Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis or Twiggy.

  66. purple1flower March 22nd

    I've always like Audrey Hepburn and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis style because they are timeless/clasic. And their style works for different body types (like mine - curvier ... = fat)

  67. User avater tinker4u March 22nd

    What a treat!

  68. ellievyle March 22nd

    What a great giveaway! :D

  69. katesdesigns March 22nd

    Rita Hayworth, Audrey Hepburn, Jackie O...those women had style. Those decades has style. I long for the days where we took pride in our clothing and didn't just throw on sweats and t-shirts. Guilty as charged but wanting to change!

  70. SewMomma March 22nd

    I would love to see this book to get ideas on elegant dresses for myself and 3 daughters. We have proms and future weddings in our plans. The ideas from this book could be a real asset for all of us. I also love the history of fashion.

  71. kslaughter March 22nd

    I would love to do the Audrey Hepburn dress--what an iconic style! Thanks so much for the wonderful giveaway~~

  72. User avater user-1112581 March 22nd

    Very elegant, I just hope that I could actually sew them.

  73. Brabant March 22nd

    Now that's a good idea. Saves all the guess work of trying to dream up a copy myself. I once spent hours staring at a Christian Lacroix dress in an exhibition in Alencon; making the odd sketch and desperately trying to get the proportions without touching the garment. I did it but the dress is just not as good as it might be. This book could well be the solution. Awesome if it were to wing its way to France for me.

  74. Carly_Sue March 22nd

    I love haute couture sewing. I would have to choose Aubrey Hepburn even though I think any of the choices would be great. Classics are elegant.

  75. PMP March 21st

    Wow! These dresses would be great for a woman that wears classic styles.

  76. User avater kaponton March 21st

    Great variety of both women & styles,

  77. Klaudia March 21st

    Would love to win

  78. lmndesigns March 21st

    How fascinating. I would love to recreate these dresses.

  79. user-1112232 March 21st

    Perfect selection of women to model after. Classic and classy outfits with patterns! What more could a seamstress ask for!!

  80. User avater CarolannB March 21st

    I should love to be able to emulate Jackie Onassis but fear my apple-shaped figure wouldn't do her justice. Maybe if I won the book it would really inspire me to lose weight and then I could really enjoy dressmaking.

  81. User avater PABarnes March 21st

    I think the choice of women to showcase are perfect for this type of book. Each one had so much class and were so elegant.

  82. Barbyj March 21st

    I would love love love to receive this book! These styles are the reason I first started sewing...couture and retro vintage iconic dresses...thanks for the opportunity!

  83. User avater moviedoll March 21st

    I'd LOVE to get this book. I'm intrigued with these styles!

  84. User avater thill60 March 21st

    Oh Dear!! I could never choose just one! I love each and every one of these fashion icons for there own distinctive style and fashion sense. I would love to create one of each style garment so I would have a stylish outfit to wear no matter what my mood!!

  85. User avater Sharondipity2 March 21st

    What a great book. Some fashion is timeless...

  86. user-1108894 March 21st

    Jacqueline Kennedy was a fashion icon who wore simple and elegant clothing while conveying a very calculated message that would impact her image and that of the president. Love her.

  87. User avater Violet_from_Miami March 21st

    This book is fascinating for those of us who sew garments. Thanks for offering it to a lucky winner!

  88. misssarcastica March 21st

    Bette Davis' style is probably my favorite, though Audrey Hepburn's comes in at a close 2nd. I like 30/40's fashion a bit more than 50/60's fashion.

  89. User avater Harikleia March 21st

    I love dressmaking and books or magazines like Famous Frocks that include patterns.

  90. User avater genevieve March 21st

    Timeless style of Audrey Hepburn is the one to which I aspire

  91. User avater johnsonb March 21st

    Classics! And I'll bet some of the designs were originated by Edith Head, one of my designer icons!

  92. User avater sjmoore March 21st

    Dressmaking is my passion. I love the retro looks in this book. Would love to read about these famous designs.

  93. User avater Sewista_Vicki March 21st

    Marilyn Monroe's fabulously feminine style!

  94. user-1109779 March 21st

    I would love to duplicate the look of Audrey Hepburn!!!

  95. User avater GinnyLynn March 21st

    I would love to get a head start on duplicating these glorious fashions from the past.

  96. user-1023732 March 21st

    This book looks frocktabulous!!

  97. user-1111948 March 21st

    Classic ladies and classic styles are always in fashion and fun to emulate. What a great resource.

  98. User avater DebraBC March 21st

    This would be so fun to have. I think I would like to create the Stevie Nicks looks for myself. I love the bohemian sheek look. My daughter would go for the Audrey Hepburn patterns.

  99. Jenerator March 21st

    This sounds like such a great book. Must see if I can get a copy!

  100. rebpalma March 21st

    I would love to try to channel Audrey Hepburn. Give me luck! Thank you very much.

  101. User avater kessaquilter March 21st

    I was just looking at this book on Wouldn't it be grand to win it instead. I also saw photos of Twiggy's color block dress made up and it looked great!

  102. User avater kessaquilter March 21st

    I was just looking at this book on Wouldn't it be grand to win it instead. I also saw photos of Twiggy's color block dress made up and it looked great!

  103. User avater kessaquilter March 21st

    I was just looking at this book on Wouldn't it be grand to win it instead. I also saw photos of Twiggy's color block dress made up and it looked great!

  104. TalyQu March 21st

    That looks like an amazing book. Would love to have it.

  105. Happy2BSewn March 21st

    I believe Audrey Hepburn and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis were both delightful dressers. A little black dress is always a great addition to any wardrobe and I just love Jackie's simple white and yellow dresses that she wore. Famous Frocks would be a wonderful book to use for my Couture class. It looks like a great book! Thanks for the chance!!!

  106. User avater KathfromOz March 21st

    Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Style without pretentiousness.

  107. User avater ShiningStar March 21st

    I love classic style!

  108. riversilt March 20th

    I love retro and am excited at the chance to make something worn by these famous ladies.

  109. IamLilyMunster March 20th

    Oh my gosh, how I would love to have this book! Crossing my fingers! I would choose Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn.

  110. oceanofsmiles March 20th

    This looks like an amazing book! I am always looking for authentic vintage patterns and am thrilled that this book features dresses from the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Jackie!

  111. bekabug8 March 20th

    I love Audrey Hepburn's style.

  112. User avater user-881913 March 20th

    Audrey Hepburn, because she is pure class and I would be happy with just a thimble full of her class.

  113. User avater katrina077 March 20th

    Rita Hayworth's style definitely!

  114. User avater maryann6755 March 20th

    I love a style that sets you apart and lets the true you come through...I think I would have to pick the classic style of Audrey Hepburn.

  115. User avater laurahoj March 20th

    I love Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis' style and would definitely go for her style.

  116. pnut52 March 20th

    I love these styles of Hepburn and Jackie! Classy and oh so very elegant!

  117. User avater user-1109829 March 20th

    Great book! I've just turned 40 and have decided to embrace my curves and femininity so I would definitely start with Marilyn Monroe closely followed by Jacqui O and then the other screen sirens of the golden age.

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