Sunday, October 8, 2023

Weekend Review: StyleHacking


StyleHacking / Karoline Dahrling Hughes
Concord, CA: Stash Books,c2021.
128 p.

This book is a quick and dirty look at creating a 5 piece wardrobe of pattern templates that can then be hacked with various details to give you some variety. It's one of those books that is heavily DIY -- ie: sewing patterns are complicated and boring, there isn't a 'right way' to do anything, just do what you like! 

The book proposes five basic garments - a tee/tank, pants, skirt, dress and jacket, all of which you get a pattern for by "cloning" (tracing off garments that you already have in your wardrobe). Then there are a variety of sewing options to put them together in different configurations. Since there are no real rules, it's a bit of a choose-your-own-adventure way of learning. Four of the five projects are knits (easier fitting I guess) and the last can be made in woven. 

I loved the idea of this, and do like that the photos are bright and use colour. They are fun and encouraging for a certain kind of new sewist who likes to learn by experimenting. I think this one might appeal more to younger sewists who don't mind the DIY feel. 

For me, it feels a bit messy with the pattern clashing and boxy unfitted styles. There are some good ideas, though, that someone might use to create things more in their own style. This might be a different way to look at things for newer sewists who are afraid to deviate from a pattern, even with the simple ideas of adding a gathered  skirt to a favourite top pattern to make a dress. 

I'm not sure this one is for me, as I'm not a loosey-goosey sewist, I like to use patterns and fit things well. But I can see there being an audience for this book, and it's fearless approach to being just good enough and using what you have. Worth taking a look at if you can find it in your library as I did. 

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