Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Busy Woman's Sewing Book - FB#2

On my list of top 10 Favorite Sewing Books - my second book is, "The Busy Woman's Sewing Book" by Nancy Zieman.


Discovering Nancy Zieman, the host of Sewing With Nancy, on public television was one of the first epiphanies in my sewing. Saturday afternoons from 3-3:30 pm became "my time" in my household! This time was sacred because I spent time with Nancy! Even my small children knew about Nancy....*LOL* When I first started watching this series, she referred to this book alot so of course being susceptible to anything Nancy discussed, I had to have it!

My copy is dog-eared and several hundred passages are highlighted - okay not that many - but alot, alot of them are! *smile* Because this book sat on my nightstand for months. One of my favorite chapters was, "Finding Time to Sew." With three children 8 and younger, a husband, a full-time job, an active church life and all the other things that are associated with parenting young children, sewing time was at a premium. And the first tip in this section is called, "Make A Plan!" See I was indoctrinated early, very early on!

Flipping through the book, I found this tip highlighted..."Never join two seams together without pressing them, first flat and then open." Yes, it seems like basic knowledge now but please remember there wasn't a computer or two in every household then. I think I had heard of one sewing board on the internet on Compuserve (does anyone remember that?). There were no blogs and if you didn't have a friend that sewed, you sewed in solitude! So any knowledge I could gain whether through a sewing program on public television or through a book was like gold to me. And that's why this book makes my top ten list. It reminds me of when I yearned for anything to elevate my sewing to the next level, and this book gave it to me in simple to read text and large illustrations. 'Cause you know I have always like the pictures best! *LOL*

This book is now out of print. It was published by Open Chain Publishing in 1988 (Robbie Fanning - remember her - was the head of Open Chain or worked with Open Chain or started it) Anyone with the correct information, just chime in here! But most importantly, it was a great beginning sewing book. I knew how to sew. I just needed someone to encourage me and help me grow in my craft. Nancy did this.

So that's book 2...there will be more reviews as the weeks go by! Oh and if I can I want to add some vintage books that I love that didn't make my Top Ten list.

1. Anything by Adele Margolis...
I have Fashion Sewing for Everybody, The Complete Book of Tailoring, The Dressmaking Book and How to make clothes fit and flatter.

2. Anything by Edythe Bishop
I have Fashion Sewing by the Bishop Method and The Bishop Method of Clothing Construction.

These are well-loved books and are chock full of wonderful sewing information! I hope that I have encouraged you to add something new or vintage to your sewing library!

14 comments:

  1. I love this book too. My experience is so similar to yours! In fact, I lost this book once, and ended up buying another copy because it was so important to me. As you say, many of the things that seem like common knowledge now, were great revelations to me when I first read this book. Unfortunately, I never lived in an area where they carried her show. She used to have a video rental service. I'd like to get my hands on some of those videos now. Of course, I need to get a video player somewhere...

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  2. very good review, I have never seen her show before but you have me very interested

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  3. Add me to the list of fans. But, I threw this book away during my last Sewing Room Purge. I have nine other books by Nancy Zieman and I felt I could safely get rid of Busy Womans Sewing Book. I still watch Sewing With Nancy.

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  4. Yup, I have this one, too. I think if Nancy wrote it today, she'd have to include a chapter on doing less "virtual internet sewing" and more of the real thing. I'm guilty of vicarious sewing - spending more time communicating about sewing than actually doing it. Like right now, for instance..... :-(

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  5. I was right there with you! I remember learning so much with her show and book! I also remember wathcing a quilting show after Nancy (I don't remember who it was) but once my nephew was over visiting and was about 7 at the time. During the quilting show he said "this show is OK, I watch it sometime but she never finishes anything!" LOL!

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  6. Can you stop putting these books on blast before I can buy them off Ebay? Harumph. The Bishop Method was next on my list!

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  7. Another book to add to my wishlist! LOL

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  8. I'm a Nancy Zieman show watcher also - and have several of her books. I consult my small sewing book library all the time, now that I've taken sewing up again! Good review of this book. And the Bishop, my college textbook! Practically memorized one of those.

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  9. I started teaching my 3 daughters to sew when they were 5, 6 and 8. We used to watch Sewing with Nancy, too! Never watched the quilting show after it....I also signed the girls up for a 4H sewing club after a couple of years of "lessons at home", so they'd learn from someone else. I've never seen Nancy's books, but I have a Vogue book from 1970: love the ideas and how-to info in it.

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  10. I began watching Nancy on tv when I was pregnant with my third child...back in 1982!! I have several of her books, and still watch her shows on Saturday afternoon.

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  11. I have a lot of the books from your list as well as Nancy's. I also watched the show back in the 80's. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

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  12. Yeah Karla! Let's hear it for vicariuos sewing! Never rip another seam!

    I have a book by Nancy. I sew art stuff now, so I don't read this book anymore, but I think a lot of her philosphy has incorporated itself into my sewing anyway.

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  13. Same experience with Nancy here, too! I also have the book. I used to get videos from her rental deal too; saw the Roberta Carr videos that way. There's a very active group of Bishop Method educators in Nebraska (I think Edythe Bishop lived here for a while) and the wisdom lives on!

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  14. Okay, so now I went and ordered this book on Amazon...but at least I got it for only .29 cents!

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