I’m a huge fan of everything Alabama Chanin’s creator, Natalie Chanin, does - her design aesthetic, her slow fashion ethics, her business model, and probably her biscuit recipe. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ve heard it’s good. So naturally, I was excited when her brand new book, Alabama Studio Sewing Patterns, arrived at Bolt. I had high expectations, and I’m happy to report they were exceeded on every front.
This book doesn’t come with any paper patterns like Chanin’s previous books, but it does come with a cd with ALL of her previous garments patterns plus three new patterns unique to this book. The three new patterns are my favorite - a wrap skirt, an A-line top/tunic/dress, and a jacket. You could really build a wardrobe from everyday to formal wear based on these garments.
There’s extensive information on fitting and altering each of the patterns to build a garment that’s unique and flattering to you. Chanin’s focused on designing clothing that women, in all of the different shapes we come in, can feel good wearing, and this book really helps home sewers learn from her years of experience.
There’s also some really helpful information on hand stitches and the Alabama Chanin applique techniques.
I think this book will be a part of my sewing life for years to come. I’m planning on making at least one or two these patterns for summer that I’ll share here. We have some great knits in stock right now, including an organic cotton/spandex blend that I’m excited to cut into.