Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Bishop Method: A review

Karin has actually been waiting with baited breath for this so, here goes.

At first glance "The Bishop Method of Clothing Construction" by Bishop & Arch seems just like any other "home sewing guide" from the 1950's. It's chocked full of antiquated sayings and measurement/size guides that will make today's size "small" feel like a whale. If you can get past all of that and ignore the dated material it is actually chocked full of really useful sewing information.

The book is broken down into 15 chapters starting with a basic "how to" on sewing and the use of equipment and machines, covering everything you could want to know about cutting, patterns, measurement & tailoring and ending with adding details. At this point I think it's pertinent to say that the basic "how to" is really basic. If you have never sewed before I would not recommend this book as your only guide. An absolute beginner should use this in conjunction with lessons or a different book.

The fundamental things that they harp on er em I mean "principals" are:
Grain Perfection
Accuracy in preparing, cutting & marking the fabric
Cutting to fit
Perfection in stitching
Perfection in pressing

There are 10 "torn projects" (torn refers to the idea of perfecting the grain before sewing). The projects have fairly easy to follow directions (once you get used to the dry dialog) and all but 2 (the poncho and the pleated skirt) are really quite cute and could look very modern done in the right fabric. They are all accompanied by pictures as well as diagrams (very useful)!

From the simplest "torn projects" you are then walked through measurements and pattern buying then into cutting, preparing and sewing your garments. All the chapters include multiple pictures, diagrams and references to other chapters (in case of confusion). Also included is a thorough glossary of terms used in the book as well as basic sewing terms.

The latter chapters are very detailed in making items work for your body type and working with any and all patterns to suit your needs.

For the price of $.01 + shipping at Amazon I would say this book is a "must have" for anyone who wants get serious about making clothes!

I hope this helps all you sewers out there!! Now I'm off to work on my Badcaul! My finger is feeling much more knitterly today!!

Glad your finger is better!
yeah - also glad your finger is better. it sucks (for lack of more eloquent word) when you injure your fingers. you never realize how essential they are until you lose one. hmmm...

anyway, also LOVING those buttons you made. you're so creative. i may have to get me some of those...
Thanks for the review! I can't believe you can get it for only a cent on Amazon, even used, that's funny.
I'm so glad you are nearly back up to scratch :) Maybe if you knit then you will exercise it and will be able get even better... :D
Is it really only a penny? You're kidding, right?
Nope, it's really only a penny!

I'm glad you guys like the buttons too! It was nice to have a crafty outlet while I couldn't knit!
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