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Highly recommend new book

DONNAKAYE | Posted in General Discussion on

I purchased a new book yesterday, Encyclopedia of Sewing Machine Techniques, by Nancy Bednar and JoAnn Pugh-Gannon.  It is positively awesome, with clear and complete color photographs.  336 pages.  I’m using some of the ideas to help me plan the Reader’s Closet challenge, Simp 4032.


  1. rekha | | #1

    positively awesome, with clear and complete color photographs...

    compared to which excellent sewing books?

  2. sewelegant | | #2

    I agree wholeheartedly... that is an awesome book.  My daughter had the hard cover version that I devoured every time I would visit her and kept thinking if I saw it I would purchase it for myself.  I see this is a new soft cover version.  Wouldn't it be nice if they would make it with a spiral back so we could use it more conveniently?

    Edited 7/26/2008 11:10 am by sewelegant

    1. User avater
      JunkQueen | | #3

      Get you a paperback one, take it to the office supply store, have them trim the binding off, and put a spiral binder on it. It was $5 for the last one I had done here locally. Last year, if I remember correctly.

      1. DONNAKAYE | | #5

        JunkQueen, I'm going to do that TOMORROW.  Good idea.  Thanks!

      2. Cherrypops | | #7

        excellent idea!

      3. sewelegant | | #12

        Definitely worth looking into, however, a few years ago I put together a cookbook for myself and my family, printed it out on half pages, took it to Kinko's, Staples, and Office Depot and to get it cut, and bound it was a minimum of $20 so I am skeptical.

        1. User avater
          JunkQueen | | #18

          YIKES!! I think I got a bargain!Okay, depending upon how important having the book lay flat for you is, you could consider taking the book apart yourself, punch the pages with a 3-hole-punch, and put into a 3-ring-binder. I've also done that.

          1. sewelegant | | #20

            Your right about how important it is to me.  If I really needed the book beside me to copy the directions then it would be worth it, but if it's just for my reading pleasure I'll skip all that "work".  I am definitely going to keep your idea in my tip file though because I think there have been times when I would have appreciated that convenience.

      4. rekha | | #19

        I think if you are going to use a book for spiral binding you need to consider how hardy the paper is and how frequently the pages will be turned.

        If used frequently, you need to reinforce the holes in the paper

    2. DONNAKAYE | | #4

      Would love to see it in spiral-bound.  Did you see the next post?  That's exactly what I'm going to do.....donna

  3. Cherrypops | | #6

    Thanks for this, I love books! I am waiting on 'practical home mending made easy hardcover printed 1946" to arrive. I love ebay.

  4. sewslow67 | | #8

    Here's a link, if anyone is interested.  They have a lot of them used, but in "good" condition.  http://www.amazon.com/Encyclopedia-Sewing-Machine-Techniques-Bednar/dp/1402742932/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1216871540&sr=8-1

    1. Ralphetta | | #9

      There are several hardback copies listed in as good condition but cheaper at the same location.

      1. sewslow67 | | #10

        Yes ...and there were a lot of different prices for the same condition.  When I looked, they also had several "used but like new" offered.  You just have to check them all out to see what works best for you.  Everyone will no doubt have a different opinion - including how much postage they want to pay.  Getting a copy from a distributor closer to home will obviously cost less in postage.

  5. rekha | | #11

    One reader had to say this about the book:

    Luckily I borrowed this from my local library before buying it - I found it pretty useless. There seems to be more empty space than pictures and instructions, and where there are pictures, they're very small. I was interested in zipper instructions, but these weren't very clear at all, skimping on the details and the tutorial seemed to end before it had covered everything! This seems to try to cover too many things, and ends up not giving a lot of detail on anything. I don't know what they were thinking with the size of the pictures and the stingy instructions.

    Is there any truth in this comment?

    1. sewelegant | | #13

      This book is an encyclopedia, not an instruction book!  However, I still think it is worthwhile to see the different techniques we hear about and if interested, but need more instruction there must be numerous other books to find it.

      1. rekha | | #14

        Sure it is an encyclopaedia of techniques.

        I imagine an encyclopaedia such as Britanica to give comprehensive information to-date, including the method and historical origins.

        1. sewelegant | | #15

          But that's the Encyclopedia Britannica!  I have several other "encyclopedia" type books on knitting patterns, one on crochet patterns, needle work and so on and none of them go into detail how to knit, crochet, stitch, etc. so I do not think the criticism of the book is all that meaningful.  For those of us who do like the book though, it is a treasure.

    2. DONNAKAYE | | #16

      I can see the reader's point.  That's what I thought at first blush.  But upon closer examination, I decided I really liked it.  I can see her point about the zipper insertion, though, and I think she's right, but zipper insertion is not an issue for me.  What I like about it are the different embellishment techniques.  I really don't have any problem with the wide open spaces between the color photographs.  Obviously, no book will satisfy everyone all of the time, but I love it.  Just FYI, I am an advanced seamstress.


      1. rekha | | #17

        Thank you for your response.

        How does it compare to the earlier edition of 1999

        1. DONNAKAYE | | #21

          Seems I'm a slow learner when it comes to "new" books.  The first edition came out in '99?  (I had this experience recently in another post dealing with The Perfect Fit.)  Perhaps in the future I'll check this kind of information out on the web before I recommend it so that we're not all buying books we already have.

          Thanks for the tip.

          1. Cherrypops | | #22

            As I am in my 30s and just starting my book collection any of your recommended books you list are appreciated.

            Please don't think everyone here has all the books.

            We would miss out on such beauties if you do search the internet before posting valuable information.

            If other members do have the books you recommend then I ask them to add their own feedback on the book.

          2. DONNAKAYE | | #23

            Thanks for the vote of confidence, Cherrypops.  You may want to search some previous postings (probably about a year ago) from me (donnakaye) to anyone.  Several members had requested a listing of my favorite books (I have over a hundred).  I had gotten several of my favorites and a brief review posted at the time.  Let me know if you can't find the postings.

          3. Cherrypops | | #24

            thanks Donna, i will do a search. be in touch later on.

          4. katina | | #25

            Hi Cp

            A book I love, which I've mentioned before, is "Decorative Dressmaking" by Sue Thompson. Keep an eye out for a copy.


          5. Cherrypops | | #26

            thanks, a quick google search and they are available at various prices via amazon, alibris and one down here for $75.

          6. katina | | #27

            Bit pricey....

            can you check if there's a library copy?

          7. DONNAKAYE | | #30

            Katina, one of my FAVORITES as well.  I think I posted a review on that book about a year ago.

          8. katina | | #32

            Oh goody, Donna, I'll look for it. Where's Cherrypops when we need her? Sleeping peacefully, I hope.  Pity - she'd find it for us in a tick.

            Thanks - Katina

          9. Cherrypops | | #33

            Morning everyone,

            I found Donnakaye's previous post where she shared her 8 Favourite Sewing Books. Click on the number; 7235.1


          10. User avater
            ThreadKoe | | #28

            It is always nice to discuss any book that is enjoyed. I have several antiques, and not so antique books that I have read. It is only here that I have found people who are interested in discussing them. If there are past posts about a book, someone will direct me there. Like you Cherrypops, I wish to hear feedback on books. Then I have a better idea of which ones to put on my wish list. I have not even heard about most of the books discussed here because I only just had access to the information, so please keep posting. Cathy

          11. sewelegant | | #29

            I don't think you should let this book being an already published hardcover stop you from recommending it or any other one that comes out.  The only reason I saw it was the older version being put out now in soft cover was by going to the internet to check it out and seeing the original cover posted there.  No one is going to spend a lot of money on a new book without checking it out.  I was happy to know it is out now in soft cover and thank you for going to the effort to share!

            Edited 7/28/2008 12:39 pm by sewelegant

          12. DONNAKAYE | | #31

            I certainly will, sewelegant!

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