I’ve heard a lot of buzz in the online world about these Japanese pattern books- they appear to have quite the cult following. I’ve always been curious to see what exactly they entail (and I also just really love following the pack, ok), so when the publisher contacted me and asked if I’d like a copy of Drape Drape by Hisako Sato to check out, there was no hesitation on my end between when I received the email and when I replied and said YESSS YES YES. New patterns to try! Yes!!
These books were originally published in Japanese (no duh, Lauren), but they were recently translated into English. The translation struggles a little on some points – right side is referred to as “upside,” interfacing is “interlining,” – but overall, it’s pretty easy to understand. The book starts out with general information on the pattern sizing, an explanation on the various drapes and tucks used in the book, and a small chapter on sewing knit fabrics using a standard sewing machine. Drape Drape is actually a pattern book – there are a few pattern sheets with nested pattern pieces (such as what you see with Burdastyle) in the back of the book- 17 patterns in all. It is not, as some might be led to believe, an instruction book on how to drape.
That being said, the pictures in the book are very beautiful – showcasing these gorgeous fluid, drapey designs. The kind of stuff that Vogue wishes their photoshoots would end up looking like:
I personally love the line drawings. Like, I want to chop them out of the book and hang them on my wall.
Even Hammer Pants look good as a line drawing.
This last one STOLE MY HEART. I was bound and determined to make it up – using a slinky, drapey black rayon knit. Nevermind not having anywhere to wear it – I was gonna make it, and no one was gonna stop me.
If this looks easy, it is because it is the easiest pattern in the book. The V-neck dress is quite a bit more involved, with interfacing and a zipper. I spent about 2 weeks staring at the instructions and pulling hair out of my head in an attempt to understaaaaaaand, but the instructions were just too sparse for my comfort and those mountain and valley folds got the best of me. Not that I think it was a necessarily hard pattern to complete – I just need hand-holding when it comes to things like this. Lots and lots of hand-holding. I’m actually like that in pretty much every aspect of my life, so this doesn’t come as much of a surprise.
I’m not saying this to scare you – I don’t think this book is too difficult for the average sewer to comprehend. It just doesn’t work for me and the way my brain functions (plus: tracing nested pattern pieces, NOPE.). Rather than have it sit unused on my shelf, I’d much prefer to give it to someone who can use it So if you’ve been curious about these pattern books – here’s your chance! One caveat – this is my copy of the book, and I did mark up one of the pattern sheets (the skirt piece for the v-neck dress has been outlined in blue Sharpie. Yes, I write in my books. Sorry.). The book is in otherwise perfect condition – including the dust jacket – and the pattern sheets are still usable despite the markings.
To enter the giveaway, leave a comment (with an email address where I can reach you if you win, please) and tell me your favorite sewing book. This giveaway is open worldwide – if you can receive mail, you can enter the giveaway – and I’ll close the pool a week from today, Monday 2/18/13. Good luck!
GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED.
Thanks to everyone who entered!