Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Alabama Stitch Book

You may remember a teaser that I left in this post. I must share my new absolute favorite sewing book--Alabama Stitch Book by Natalie Chanin with Stacie Stukin. Seriously, I am shocked that there isn't a whole lot of blog buzz out there about this truly original book. Check out their website here and you can buy their book here. (by the way, anytime I recommend anything it is based on my personal opinions. I don't have any other reason to share it other than I want to add to other's creativity)


Okay so more about the book. Everything they do is by hand stitching and based off of sustainable living ideas. They do a lot of deconstruction, which is one of the first things that got me into quilting. (I used to deconstruct a lot of denim) They work primarily in cotton jersey, which is something I have never sewn before since I have heard that it does stretch while sewing. I am sure their is a technique to working with it and I am now bound and determined to figure it out.

Their signature look is applique, and a lot of what they call reverse applique. You'll see that I tried reverse applique on this journal cover below.


Inside covers.



I machine stitched around my lines rather than hand stitching, which goes against everything the book is about. I do plan to do some hand stitching soon though. While reverse applique looks really interesting with all the depth to it, it is not very hard to do at all. I plan to try some really interesting reverse appliques on a quilt soon.

The book has beginning section that talks about techniques and sustainable style. It then moves on to maybe 15 different projects. I seriously must do all of them--they are that great. They have several embellished skirts that are amazing (I know, I know, first I need to do one skirt and since I am super close to finishing my Built by Wendy skirt-just finish it right?)


I also am in love with what they call a corset shirt. Basically it is a deconstructed t-shirt--but how killer does it look?


Inside the book are several patterns, stencils to enlarge, one stencil already made, and a postcard to embellish. If you haven't visited their site, please do. They also have really interesting jewelry, home products, and great photos.

Guys, the book even smells good that is how much I like it. I'll be posting more photos of my projects soon. I also started a flickr group for projects from the book here.


Bec said...

Wow this sounds great. I got a book for my birthday called Cool Hunting Green (I think in the USA it is called Cool Green Stuff) and it is just a huge listing of clothing, accessories, homewares etc that are all made using recycled materials, with photos and a website listing for each object. It is great, and so inspiring. I just love the idea of repurposing stuff.

OK, off to check out the Alabama website now!

g said...

Thanks for the book suggestion - this looks very interesting!

500 or less said...

Yours is the second blog I've seen now with this book. My fingers are already itching for some hand stitching...!

*karen said...

I stumbled upon this book at Border's a month ago and had to bring it home with me. Yours is the first finished project from the book that I've seen.

Pink Granite said...

Hi -
I have to say I was delighted to see the success you had in machine stitching your lovely journal cover!
I've been fascinated with what I have seen about this beautiful book, but hand stitching is not my favorite sport.
Thanks so much!
- Lee