|Mend It, Wear It, Love It! / Zoe Edwards
New York: DK, c2021.
Coming on the heels of Me Made May, I was able to get my hands on this new book written by its founder Zoe Edwards, of SoZo What Do You Know?
It's another entry into the very hot topic of mending. But this one is a little different, as the first section is on mending, the second on alterations and simple additions to make your clothes more wearable, and the third is on laundry, storage, dyeing and embroidery. So there's a lot to this one.
It is a fairly small size, and doesn't have a lot of photographs, just a couple here and there. Most the many illustrations are drawings showing the different techniques. But I think it's a nice compact size with lots of good info, and would be especially good for a beginner who doesn't have a ton of sewing knowledge (as well as being interesting for those of us who do).
The mending section covers both invisible and visible mending, sewing on buttons and fixing buttonholes, patches, zipper fixes, and basic sewing info to begin. It also points out that taking your clothes to someone who does alterations as a business is a viable option, especially for more challenging fixes like some zipper issues. I think that's something that people new to mending might not realize -- you don't have to do it all yourself.
I really like the addition of a section on alterations you can use to make a little worn piece more 'you'. It includes instructions on waist darts, shaping seams, adding patch pockets (good for hiding stains, too), adding a ruffle to lengthen something or hemming it to shorten it, removing sleeves or adding elastic to hems and cuffs to change the look. Lots of quick ideas for ways to customize and better fit your RTW clothes, for sure. I think this would encourage people to look at their garments more creatively before just getting rid of them. Sewists, of course, do this constantly!
And the final section on loving your clothes has some good tips on general care -- washing, drying, storing -- as well as ideas for more advanced mending ideas like overdyeing or embroidering over stains and weak spots. The last two can also just be used to perk up something old rather than tossing it. There are just a couple pages each on these topics though, so it's more like an introduction to the concept, and then if a reader is interested, they can easily find a whole book on these subjects to further explore the potential.
This is a small book, so it's not image heavy, and not comprehensive. But that means it's also not overwhelming for beginners, and has solid info laid out nicely. It's small enough to keep in a sewing kit if someone is just beginning to gather their supplies, and has a laid back and encouraging tone throughout. I enjoyed exploring it.