Dressmaking Gems for Every Sewing Skill Level

By Rhyme and Reason

By Rhyme and Reason

Whatever your sewing experience, from total beginner to advanced dressmaker, you'll find the perfect book in this list to expand your skillset as well as your wardrobe! Drawn from personal favourites as well as books that have topped recent crafting bestseller lists and won awards in the sewing community, all of these have plenty to learn from and inspire. For more information and a proper look through the books, The Fold Line YouTube page releases book review videos that give a good insight into how they can be best used

The Great British Sewing Bee: Sustainable Style

Caroline Akselson and Alexandra Bruce

£27.00 £25.11

Covers all the basics you'll need to start sewing as well as how to approach your hobby in a sustainable way - for example, making more environmentally friendly fabric choices and getting the most out of your offcuts. Includes 27 projects and comes with five full-size pattern sheets (double sided so need tracing off)

Mending Matters: Stitch, Patch, and Repair Your Favorite Denim & More

Katrina Rodabaugh

£17.98 £16.72

Champions a more mindful and sustainable way to fashion, with everything you need to know about mending clothes - patches, darning, weaving etc etc. Each how-to chapter is accompanied by essays linking mending to the rest of our lives, and includes modern and innovative methods to challenge the idea of mending as being simply a matter of darning socks rather than a conscious fashion choice

The Nani Iro Sewing Studio: 18 Timeless Patterns to Sew, Wear & Love

Naomi Ito

£20.99 £19.52

From an art studio in Osaka comes a great selection of patterns for a comfortable and practical wardrobe - lots of drape! Manages to be simplistic in construction with no compromise on style

Tilly and the Buttons: Make It Simple: Easy, speedy sewing projects to stitch up in an afternoon

Tilly Walnes

£25.00 £23.25

The third book from Queen of sewing Tilly Walnes, contestant on the first series of Sewing Bee and pioneer of the recent popularity in DIY dressmaking, this was named 'Favourite Sewing Book' in the British Sewing Awards 2020. Full of time-saving techniques and shortcuts, it includes six full-size pattern sheets with lots of variations to try. Suitable for beginners and and experts alike, it starts with the basics and moves on to more complex wardrobe-building projects

Sew Your Own Activewear: Make a unique sportswear wardrobe from four basic sewing blocks

Melissa Fehr

£16.98 £15.79

Great information on sensible fabric decisions for sewing activewear, techniques and tips to suit sports from yoga to running, this book includes 13 different styles

Girl with a Sewing Machine: The No-Fuss Guide to Making and Adapting Your Own Clothes

Jenniffer Taylor

£12.99 £12.08

Covers all the basics you'll need to start transforming your wardrobe and making your own pieces without the need for shop-bought patterns - innovative and waste-saving, it's a great starting point for keen new dressmakers

Sew Step by Step: How to use your sewing machine to make, mend, and customize


£14.99 £13.94

A completely comprehensive classic from DK, covering everything you need to know for machine sewing projects - essential tips about stitches, seams, hems etc and extra knowledge to personalise projects. Also includes large sections on upcycling and adapting to help reduce environmental impact

Sewing Your Perfect Capsule Wardrobe: 5 Key Pieces with Full-size Patterns That Can Be Tailored to Your Style

Arianna Cadwallader and Cathy McKinnon

£19.98 £18.58

Five key patterns that can form the basis of a capsule wardrobe and be adapted to form a huge range of complimentary garments

Tilly and the Buttons: Stretch!: Make Yourself Comfortable Sewing with Knit Fabrics

Tilly Walnes

£25.00 £23.25

For those wanting to expand their experience sewing with jersey and stretch fabrics, Tilly Walnes' second book includes six full-size pattern pieces and simple instructions for a wardrobe with maximum comfort

The Maker's Atelier: The Essential Collection: Sewing with Style

Frances Tobin

£30.00 £27.90

A beautiful collection of eight essential patterns, with variations to form a total of 31 different garments. They show a wide range of skills and techniques but form a very versatile collection of staple pieces

Boundless Style: A Mix-and-Match Sewing Pattern Workbook

Kristiann Boos

£28.99 £26.96

Great for those who want to customise their garments as much as possible - this book includes fifteen mix and match pattern pieces to create your dream dress

Merchant & Mills Workbook: A collection of versatile sewing patterns for an elegant all season wardrobe

Merchant & Mills

£25.00 £23.25

With a focus on practicality, sustainability and quality fabrics Merchant and Mills are in the perfect position to provide this book of six classic patterns. All the dressmaking projects are accompanied by comprehensive step-by-step guides

Building the Pattern: Sew Your Own Capsule Wardrobe

Laura Huhta and Saara Huhta

£26.00 £24.18

Beautiful showcase of clean Scandinavian style from the Finnish sisters behind the pattern company Named. The book includes six full-size pattern sheets, with the projects introduced throughout the book in order to build up skills and develop techniques - from tote bag to cocktail dress! Gives the perfect tools to create an entire capsule wardrobe