Bilingual Sewing

I don’t know how it happened, but in some form or fashion I learned about this book series, happy homemade, published in Japan. There are several volumes, each dedicated to a particular theme. Volume two is kids. I cannot even tell you how much I love these designs. Each one is better than the last; they are so crisp and clean, cute without being fussy. And don’t get me started on the adorable models.

However, as you can see from the photo above, the book (introduction, instruction and all) is entirely in Japanese. I read from other sewers that Japanese pattern books are renowned for their clear and detailed illustrations, so I ordered it anyway, thinking that I could infer from the pictures what I was supposed to do.

Happily, my first project was a resounding success! I made the dress that is pictured on the cover in gingham, using a cute little fabric I found at IKEA.

This sleeveless dress has a square neckline and empire waist. I won’t say it was entirely easy to interpret from the book, but it wasn’t rocket science. I can’t wait to try something else. I envision lots of Christmas presents coming from this book. In fact, this particular dress will be going to my niece, who turns four next week. I’m pretty sure she doesn’t give a crap about this sewing blog, so I don’t think I’m spoiling the surprise.

My favorite part is the back, where I used two lovely vintage green buttons from my stash. If I lived to be 150 I could never use all the buttons my grandmother gave me. If you are in need of big, gold buttons, I’m your man.


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