Book Review – Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh

Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh
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Sewing Made Simple


Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh is described as “an indispensable guide to everything you need to know about sewing” and I’d have to say that’s a pretty good description. A substantial hard back with over 200 pages, this book contains all the information you’ll need to get to grips with the fundamentals of sewing.

Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh

The first half of the book is dedicated to equipment and the basic technical know-how you’ll need before you put needle to thread. The second half focuses on specific techniques – fastenings, applique, enclosed seams – and then offers projects that will help you tackle them. It’s a clever idea as they are nice projects and a good way to put the skills into practice.

Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh

If I had a criticism of the book, it’s that it’s not really a book for the boys, as the overall style of the book, and the projects contained within it, are a touch on the girly side. However that’s not a big deal. The book is filled with big pictures and the illustrations to accompany the tutorials are clear and easy to understand.

Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh

Sewing Made Simple is published by Jacqui Small and is available from all good retailers.


See Also
Felt Passion by Ellen Bakker and Ricarda Aßmann

Competition Time! Win a copy of Sewing Made Simple!

Now that I’ve whetted your appetite, it’s your chance to win a copy of this great book!

All you have to do is leave a comment below telling us the next project you’d make with your new (or existing) sewing skills!

The closing date for entries is Saturday 7th April, when a winner will be chosen by the random number generator and we will post the result.

Good luck!

View Comments (73)
  • The next project I want to take up is sewing a pair of fabric shoes. Never made shoes before. Looking forward to it. 🙂

  • Who knows!!! I’ve got so many projects I want to work on i don’t know where to start. I fancy making a bag, and my sewing skills are lacking, so perhaps I should with something very basic!

  • I have a burning desire to make a matryoshka doorstop. Bit of an obsession developing at the moment 🙂

  • I need to make lots of little drawstring bags to organize all the lego, jigsaw, cars and dinosaurs that litter our house, I already have some boyish fabrics but haven’t got any further than that

  • I have my first BJD on order and I want to learn how to make steampunk style doll clothes for her. Last time I sewed anything was 20+ years ago – yipes!

  • I need do redo my mysinge sofa from Ikea. It is 7 years old and it is time to do it. The fabric is here, but the motivation is dancing in the garden or somewhere else LOL. I have to start soon, is will be a looooooot of sewing with three big elements and a great number of cushions…

  • I’m working on a jacket made from men’s neck ties. It’s been on the books for ages and ages, but I’m finally getting around to finishing it!

  • I need to finish up a revamp of a thrift store dress. After that, I have this really cute scottie dog material that I want to make into a vest.

  • I got some pretty fabric and matching oil cloth (the waterproof stuff) to make like a mini suitcase overnight kit that zips around 3 sides and opens up to reveal a bunch of perfectly sized elastic holders and pockets for little travel size bottles of things, toothbrush, a pair of undies, and a clean shirt. It will fit inside my regular daily bag so I’m always prepared for sleepovers!

  • Box cushions! They totally weren’t on my list until I saw this post and now I’m thinking how great the would be for our hangout nook.

  • The book looks lovely – I’d love to try a line of retro bowling shirts with names over the breast pocket from the fabric up, so to speak, and have no Home Ec experience – this would be really f’ing handy!

    • Although you didn’t win this time, I think that’s a kickass idea and I look forward to you sharing pictures of them when you’re done. 🙂

  • I have so many ideas I hardly know where to start. I think the project that has been inspiring me most lately is making some cushions to take to the park or lake this summer. I’ve also been meaning to make some cute sundresses to wear while sitting in the park on my new cushions.

  • I would either make the quilt I’ve been saying I’m going to make for months but not making because I’m nervous to start (my first quilt). Or I would try and make a dress because I think that would motivate me to sew more.

  • I’d love to finally make that pair of pants I’ve been dreaming about making forever. Thanks for the chance.

  • My next project will be some drawstring bags to hold all the cloths in the kitchen and bathroom. Then a whole heap of floor cushions.
    PS I’d love to see Danielle’s jacket made out of neckties.

  • Hello, I would love to make the perfect pocket book!! Because you can’t find them in the stores!! One with pockets and key fob! i!would love to learn how to make a rag quilt bag!!! Thank you Annmarie

  • That box cushion looks exactly like the project I have been searching for. (I have a stack of patches and badges that a friends husband gave to me, so I’d love to turn it into a gift and give them back!)

  • I would love to make a baby quilt – I had a little boy 10 weeks ago and would love to make something that will last him as he grows up and might even be passed on to his children in the future! I haven’t sewn for years but am determined to get back into it and teach him when he’s old enough too 🙂

  • My next sewing project is to make a teddy bear for my cousin. With little teddy clothes!
    Love the book!

  • I have to admit some pretty lackluster sewing skills, though I DO own a sewing machine (made some curtains for my son’s room, you can hardly tell how crooked they are). So, I’d start simple; I’d love to make some pretty new pillows for my living room.

    Please please please pick me! 🙂 But if you don’t, I’ll keep reading anyway. LOL

  • I have been dying to make an ottoman or a large bean bag. First, i want to make a quilt. All i have to do now is get started. I’m sure this book would come in handy!

  • Eventually I will probably make the kitchen curtains I’ve been hoarding the fabric for for quite some time. When they were a concept, they were cute! Now they’d clash or enhance our kitschy kitchen, and I don’t know which :/

  • I have a list of sewing projects waiting to be done as long as my arm. Theres the bunting for my brothers wedding, the little project bags to contain all my knitting and spinning, the dining chairs that need re-upholstering, and new slip covers are needed for the sofa so the dogs wont rip it to shreds!
    I could do with some more sewing skills under my belt so that these tasks dont all turn out looking awful!

  • Next project? I have to pick out a first project! I’m going to try to teach myself to sew, and this looks like it would be a great resource. I guess I would try to sew something simple, like a tote bag. Thanks!

  • Next on my agenda is a chemistry-themed embroidery as a wedding present for some friends of mine. I have the pattern made, but what form it will take (pillow, wall hanging, etc) is still up for grabs.

  • I spend a lot of time making costumes for events, but it’d be nice to do something a bit different, maybe making some new curtains for my house.

  • I’ve been embroidering old doilies with depictions of various aspects of illness, I think they may need to be a quilt/wallhanging.

  • I would love to have the time to start that summer quilt I’ve been meaning to make for like 3 years. Winter duvets are the super, but I want something cheery & light for warm summer nights.

  • My friend’s got a baby on the way so I would love to be able to make a quilt in time for the little one’s arrival! x

  • I like that roll up window shade in the photos, a set of those would really brighten up my bathroom! I could use some ideas of things to sew and make use of my embroideries.

  • I have a few projects on my sewing to do list, but one i’d really like to do is a case for all of my crochet hooks.

  • I am going to make a pair of skinny jeans with a sewing pattern I bought online from the US. I have made my own skinny trousers freestyle before, but want to know if I can learn anything from following a proper pattern. This book looks great! Rosie xx

    • Hi Michelle! Congrats on being chosen by the Random Number Generator as the winner of this book – please email me with your address and I’ll get it sent straight out! 🙂

  • Finishing a quilt, using a quilt top made by my Aunt in 1956. As still happens, making the top is the fun part, but it’s so easy to put off the work of finishing it into a quilt. She’s gone now, so it feels awesome to be working on this.

  • I am going to make lots of funky scatter cushions out of all my sons old character and logo t-shirts

  • I have a grand 50s style dress planned with my Alexander Henry naked fireman fabric, but that’s on the back burner until I finish my rockabilly bra for the London Moonwalk 🙂

  • Boy, could I use this! I would first make jammies for all the 4 granddaughters, 3 daughters, and moi!

  • I would love to make a bed set for my little one and some funky furnishings for my home. It would be nice to be able to make my own clothes too!

  • Every time a make a project, I end up learning something new. I would love to have a new guide by my side to avoid learning said new technique during my project, often repeatedly! Thank you!

  • I would love to make some kind of blind for my kitchen, and that book would sure come in handy !!

  • I want to make a gorgeous fifties style skirt with some fab fabric I got in John Lewis in Milton Keynes years ago. I’m fed up of clothes that don’t fit or flatter and need to start making my own.

    • Yay for John Lewis in Milton Keynes!
      (The ladies in there still look at me a bit weird when I go in to buy needles)

  • I would like to make some funky patchwork style curtains to replace the horrid doors on my little ones built in wardrobe in her bedroom….this book could certainly help me out…hint hint;)

  • Just finished a lap quilt and a messenger bag, but I have a whole bunch of t-shirt panels that I have embellished with embroidery that need to be assembled into a t-shirt quilt. Scared of piecing and binding!

  • I’ve made one or two mini quilts in the past (as in, at least 10 years ago or so), but I’d like to make a full-size quilt – one that can fit on my bed. Now I just have to find the time . . .

  • I’m making mug rugs this weekend! It’s all straight lines and no bias tape. I’d live to have this book to teach me to master curves and bias tape!

  • I would probably be able to work up enough courage to try and make a piece of clothing lol

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