The Sewing Reference Tool Guide: Review and Giveaway

Signing up for Carla Hegeman Crim’s book tour for The Essential Sewing Reference Tool was completely awesome.  I mean, she IS the Scientific Seamstress after all, right?
This is a reference book that every single sewist needs, regardless of skill level.  Beginner and Advanced seamstresses alike will find every single page to be full of new and extremely helpful information.  It took me about 2 weeks to go through all of the pages, which completely humbled me.  I was pleasantly surprised to realize that I learned a lot of new techniques and terminology.  I can’t wait to try them out! 


When I say that there are a lot of topics covered in this book, I am absolutely serious.  This is one of those reference books that you should keep right by the sewing machine because it will answer every single question you have!

Here are a few examples
(also find a preview of the pages HERE)

Interfacing, Buttons, Buttonholes, Bias Tape, Piping
Different Presser Feet

Needle Size and Type

Cutting Tools, Marking Tools, Thread Types, Stitches
and more!

 There are even measurements and tutorials on how to make your own bed coverings and home decor.  Curtains, table runners, key fobs, belts, and bags.  I seriously can’t believe the wealth of information contained inside of this book.

There are 130 pages full of important information with colored illustrations.  Purchase the ebook and paper book HERE.

The technique I want to learn more about is how to make button holes without the use of the automatic buttonhole foot.  If your machine is anything like mine, it is so finicky with that setting! 

There is so much to learn from this book and I am so excited that I get to offer one of you the opportunity to win a copy of your own!

Leave a blog post comment telling me what you would like to learn about sewing that you don’t already know.  (don’t forget to show your entry via the rafflecopter too!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

130 Responses to The Sewing Reference Tool Guide: Review and Giveaway

  1. Katy R March 6, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    Oh wow – that looks like a FAB book to have. I’ve decided I ought to learn to sew with stretch fabrics this year, but there’s so much else I don’t know too!

  2. Brianne Matlage March 6, 2014 at 12:39 pm #

    Awesome! I’d like to learn more about batting!

  3. Isabel.A. March 6, 2014 at 12:41 pm #

    I´d love to learn more about sewing with stretch fabrics and batting.

  4. Bec Touzel March 6, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

    What an awesome book to have!! I would love to learn how to do a French seam (i ALWAYS mess it up) and a blind stitch hem that is actually, well, blind!!

  5. Sew It Sherry March 6, 2014 at 12:57 pm #

    I would like to learn how to draft my own patterns and how to grade them.

  6. Kimberlee Broeker March 6, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

    I am new to garment sewing, so I would enjoy a compact reference guide!

  7. Deb Petras March 6, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

    I would like to learn more about working with different fabrics. I have a feeling this is one of those books you use over and over again, every time you are working on a project.

  8. atabanana29 March 6, 2014 at 1:16 pm #

    I would love to master zippers!

  9. Glowing March 6, 2014 at 1:21 pm #

    Im a beginner so i would like to know so much more, like how to sew with knits, do piping, zippers to name a few.

  10. Chasingmermaids March 6, 2014 at 1:23 pm #

    Awesome I need all the tips I can get!!!!

  11. Kara Orr March 6, 2014 at 1:28 pm #

    I need to learn more about presser feet!

  12. TheBilingualMom March 6, 2014 at 1:48 pm #

    I would like to learn about zippers and sewing with knits

  13. Heather March 6, 2014 at 1:56 pm #

    I want to learn about zippers & piping!

  14. IRedS March 6, 2014 at 1:57 pm #

    I would like to learn to add piping flawlessly … or … good.

  15. Ashley S. March 6, 2014 at 2:04 pm #

    I would love to learn to make jeans for myself. It’s been on my to do list for a long time.

  16. Courtney March 6, 2014 at 2:06 pm #

    I have yet to attempt a lot of things, bias tape, smocking, manual buttonholes…the list goes on and on!

  17. Vanessa March 6, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

    I love her pattern writing skills, so I can’t wait for the book. Looks awesome!

  18. prairiegirl March 6, 2014 at 2:26 pm #

    Buttonholes. They are my Achilles Heel. I hate the way mine always turn out looking like something the cat dragged in!!

  19. Merav Ruthman March 6, 2014 at 2:31 pm #

    I would love to learn how to use the different feet for my machine.

  20. charlotte l March 6, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

    I like to learn how to clean my machine and keep it up.

  21. Kimberly March 6, 2014 at 2:53 pm #

    Ruffling is my nemesis. I would love to find a way to do it that doesn’t result in disaster every time.

  22. March 6, 2014 at 2:57 pm #

    would love to learn how to use more of the presser feet for my machine…..

  23. Debbie March 6, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

    I would love to learn how to make bound buttonholes that don’t look puckered.

  24. Capi March 6, 2014 at 3:12 pm #

    One can never have too many sewing reference books. This one looks like a keeper.

  25. 0de7103e-3316-11e0-bc58-000bcdcb5194 March 6, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

    I would love to learn more about piping.
    Kim M.

  26. LittleHouseontheDairy March 6, 2014 at 3:23 pm #

    I want to figure out how to make a bed skirt!

  27. Lauren March 6, 2014 at 3:28 pm #

    I would love to learn more about sewing with knits. I tend to shy away from them

  28. Kelie M. March 6, 2014 at 3:40 pm #

    I want to learn how to free quilt. I have failed multiple times!

  29. Robin March 6, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

    I’ve been sewing for years but learn something new everyday! This would be handy to have!

  30. Mary Catharine White March 6, 2014 at 4:42 pm #

    I want to learn how not to be afraid that I will screw something up when starting a new project! ;-)

  31. Laura Leal March 6, 2014 at 6:22 pm #

    I want to learn more about pleats! Thank you!

  32. Jen March 6, 2014 at 6:35 pm #

    The size charts would be super helpful. I’m always searching for average sizes for kids when I’m sewing for my niece and nephew.

  33. Trudy March 6, 2014 at 6:42 pm #

    I want to learn to sew with knits.

  34. Trudy March 6, 2014 at 6:43 pm #

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  35. Brooke March 6, 2014 at 6:56 pm #

    I would like to learn how to make better alterations!

  36. Tiffany Sanderson March 6, 2014 at 7:06 pm #

    Pretty much everything!! I am a true novice and need lots of help!! The seam ripper is my bff right now and my machines and I are mere acquaintances. My serger likes to play mind games with me.

  37. reen March 6, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

    I’d love to learn more about feet. Actually using them! I’m almost ashamed to admit I have used the same basic foot on my machine for the last 5 years… to do EVERYTHING. I know there feet for a reason… the ridiculous part is I actually have a few extra feet I’ve never bothered to find out what they were for.

  38. Ajaire P March 6, 2014 at 7:16 pm #

    I’m so super curious about her tips for non-automatic buttonholes now. I keep hearing people talk about them! But I’m sure there are tons of other tips I could learn from this book.

  39. Joy Clapsadle March 6, 2014 at 7:18 pm #

    I’d love to learn how to use all the feet that came with my machine & piping!!

  40. Smileycrissy March 6, 2014 at 7:25 pm #

    I’d love to learn about french seams!

  41. Dawn Apperson March 6, 2014 at 7:40 pm #

    I really want to learn how to do shirring! Using stretch fabrics would be good too!

  42. Mabey She Made It March 6, 2014 at 7:42 pm #

    What a cool reference guide. I’m sure I’d learn a TON!

  43. jenny w March 6, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

    I’d like to learn more about stabilizers, interfacing, etc

  44. Julia Floyd March 6, 2014 at 8:14 pm #


  45. chinapat March 6, 2014 at 8:26 pm #

    I see this book as great reference

  46. ceromero March 6, 2014 at 9:58 pm #

    I am completely self-taught and making stuff up as I go along! This would be my bible…

  47. Elizabeth Truscott March 6, 2014 at 10:11 pm #

    This book looks fab! There’s always more to learn so I couldn’t pick one thing.

  48. Mia March 6, 2014 at 11:47 pm #

    I am scared by buttonholes and zips…totes crazy, Yes!! So I would love any techniques to help me overcome this fear!

  49. Allison March 7, 2014 at 12:09 am #

    I love learning new tips and tricks and find out all the things I’ve been doing wrong…oh wait…

  50. Tina March 7, 2014 at 12:25 am #

    I’m buttonhole impaired too…… and I have a machine with the auto function. Problem is it automatically makes crappy buttonholes! I can make a bound buttonhole, a corded buttonhole but a plain ole’ buttonhole, elusive! Thanks for the op!

  51. darcie March 7, 2014 at 1:45 am #

    I have a bunch of reference books like this, but I always love a fresh perspective. I’d love to read Carla’s take, because I really appreciate the logical (scientific!) approach she takes to sewing!

  52. Kathy E. March 7, 2014 at 1:57 am #

    I’ve been sewing for quite a while, but 2 things I want to learn is how to sew French seams and how to sew piping detail. I’d love to win this! Thanks for the chance.

  53. honeymadeit March 7, 2014 at 2:38 am #

    I have had this sewing machine for about 6 years and have never used most of the stiches. I would like to learn what they are and what I can do with them. Thank you for offering this giveaway.

  54. Kristi March 7, 2014 at 3:02 am #

    I’ve read snippets about double needles and knits. No idea what it is, but would like to learn.

  55. Jenniffer Howling March 7, 2014 at 3:26 am #

    I want to learn how to work with the fun fabrics and also different types of threads.

  56. Muselle March 7, 2014 at 3:34 am #

    sewing knits, not rouching, but that bobbin elastic sewing thing… and the names of certain types of patterns and clothing anatomy! …

    everything…! :)

  57. mvink March 7, 2014 at 3:40 am #

    Awesome looking book!! I’d love to learn about the different feet.

  58. dailygratitude365 March 7, 2014 at 4:05 am #

    I’d love to learn and understand how to adjust patterns and the whole garment making section I sure need help in!

  59. Falafel and the Bee March 7, 2014 at 5:36 am #

    I want to know how to alter patterns…particularly for chesty women like me without having to go up a size, everywhere.

  60. Jolien March 7, 2014 at 12:49 pm #

    Pick just one thing? I’d love to know more about interfacings… I know what they are, but when to use it… Think one good reference would be great to have!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  61. Courtney Davis March 7, 2014 at 1:07 pm #

    Pattern drafting is definitely on my list!

  62. Banana Showcase March 7, 2014 at 3:02 pm #

    I’d really like to learn a bit more about pattern drafting just so I can alter my patterns to fit myself better.

  63. LiciaLee March 7, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

    I want to learn what everything is! There are so many terms and tools that I just don’t understand and sometimes I get tired of googling.

  64. Ledys March 7, 2014 at 9:39 pm #

    This looks like such a fabulous guide!!

  65. Kendra March 8, 2014 at 12:01 am #

    Bound button holes!

  66. Susanne March 8, 2014 at 12:23 am #

    The book sounds terrific, I still need a ton of work on zippers. And interfacing still baffles me. Thanks for the great giveaway!

  67. Margaret March 8, 2014 at 4:29 am #

    I would love to own this book. I need to learn more about my feet and how to use them.

  68. Stephanie @ Swoodson Says March 8, 2014 at 5:49 am #

    I’d like to learn more about fitting!

  69. Cindy Gillis March 8, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

    I need to learn about the different presser feet!!

  70. Vicki H March 8, 2014 at 5:22 pm #

    I need more help with button holes and zippers.

  71. Mom C March 8, 2014 at 8:27 pm #

    I do struggle with fitting and I love to read tips cause I always learn how to work better or smarter. Thanks.

  72. Lisa E March 8, 2014 at 10:30 pm #

    I want to learn about the different types of interfacing and “what goes with what”. There are so many choices out there and my head just spins.

  73. Lin March 9, 2014 at 1:08 am #

    I’m with you on that buttonhole thing. I either do them by hand or try to avoid them entirely. The second option drastically reduces my choice of patterns!! I did try to do machine buttonholes twice but they were such a horrendous mess that I’ve given up on them.

  74. Jody March 9, 2014 at 4:09 am #

    I’d like to learn more about fitting things probably.

  75. Cindy Dahlgren March 9, 2014 at 5:24 am #

    Like, everything? I want to know how to make shirts, collars, match seams, everything. I don’t know anything about sewing, but I really WANT to learn how to sew.

  76. Melody March 9, 2014 at 7:15 am #

    I want to learn tailoring.

  77. Gwen Toews March 9, 2014 at 3:16 pm #

    Looks like a great resource to have.

  78. Liza March 9, 2014 at 3:30 pm #

    I would love to learn to better use many of the tools and features on my machine, embroidery is especially interesting (and a bit daunting).

  79. Julie N March 9, 2014 at 7:21 pm #

    This book looks like a great resource as it has been a few years since I have really sewn anything. I have been wanting to start again as I have a daughter and I have fond memories of my mom sewing me cloths.

  80. thingsforboys March 9, 2014 at 9:50 pm #

    What a great resource! I would love to learn how to install different zips.

  81. Aggie Mom March 9, 2014 at 11:48 pm #

    I am new into garment sewing so just reading about the Scientific Seamstress has given me courage. I need this book. Hope I win and thank you for the book review.

  82. lorraine March 10, 2014 at 4:08 am #


  83. Rebecca Brewer March 10, 2014 at 5:00 am #

    I pretty much need to start from scratch. I learned as a kid and am just reacquainting myself with my sewing machine, years since I’ve done anything besides a very basic repair.

  84. Kathie Craig March 10, 2014 at 7:15 am #

    I want to learn how to bind quilts. I am a beginner sewer and any help would be wonderful.

  85. KellyS March 10, 2014 at 1:01 pm #

    Y-seams are still a little hazy to me, but I have tried them at least. Pipping I haven’t tried yet but have read a few tutorials. So I guess either of them. Or invisible zippers. :)

  86. Rachel March 10, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

    I would love to learn how to make home decor. Our place really needs a “lady’s touch”.

  87. kimberj March 11, 2014 at 6:19 pm #

    I’d like to learn how to make a pants pattern that FITS!!!

  88. MinnesotaMary March 11, 2014 at 8:36 pm #

    I’d like to learn more professional tailoring tips!

  89. aus_chick March 12, 2014 at 3:03 am #

    I’d love to learn how to properly adjust patterns to get my perfect size.

  90. Lindsay March 12, 2014 at 4:55 am #

    This looks like such a wonderful book! I love the idea of improving my sewing skills since I’m mostly self taught!

  91. Lisa March 12, 2014 at 10:19 pm #

    Garment sewing so I can know what the terms being used means! So different from quilting!

  92. Angela March 12, 2014 at 11:22 pm #

    I need to figure out how to alter a pattern to fit me better and also what all those presser feet are for! I’ve been sewing forever and haven’t used half my presser feet!

  93. Rebecca Pembleton March 20, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

    I’d love to just have this as a go to when I come across something I don’t know!

  94. PiePie Designs March 20, 2014 at 8:31 pm #

    I’m self-taught, so I’d like to learn the proper way to do things. ;)

  95. mlundin March 20, 2014 at 8:32 pm #

    How to adjust patterns to fit me better! What a great giveaway! Thanks.

  96. Jona March 20, 2014 at 8:35 pm #

    I want to learn about piping! Thanks for the great giveaway!!

  97. Maria D March 20, 2014 at 8:37 pm #

    I want to learn more about zippers.

  98. Unknown March 20, 2014 at 8:40 pm #

    I’d love to learn more about garment making

  99. Crystal March 20, 2014 at 8:42 pm #

    I want to learn more about tailoring and fitting

  100. Candy Mak March 20, 2014 at 8:45 pm #

    Looks like a great resource to have on hand.

  101. Emily Steiger March 20, 2014 at 8:48 pm #

    Oh!!! I want to learn about different preser feet!!!!!

  102. Sewaholicm0mmie March 20, 2014 at 8:50 pm #

    I’d love to learn how to sew formal or wedding gowns and how to alter them.

  103. lindseymcconnell March 20, 2014 at 8:53 pm #

    I need to learn everything!! LOL, I’m sure this would be great!

  104. Laura Connor March 20, 2014 at 8:53 pm #

    I want to learn how to sew pants for myself.

  105. Kayla Ott March 20, 2014 at 8:55 pm #

    I’m just curious about fine-tuning my knowledge!

  106. Tiffany Brooks Designs March 20, 2014 at 8:57 pm #

    I wan tto learn more about fabric types.

  107. Straight Grain March 20, 2014 at 9:04 pm #

    I’d love to learn more about different types of interfacing…

  108. angela Gutierrez March 20, 2014 at 9:08 pm #

    I just want

  109. Brandyn March 20, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  110. Laurie March 20, 2014 at 9:13 pm #

    I would love to learn how to draft my own patterns.

  111. Brandyn March 20, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

    Carla is AWESOME & I so NEED this book! I need her help in edging . . . along with everything else. :)

  112. Trish March 20, 2014 at 9:15 pm #

    I want to learn the proper way to do zippers.

  113. Joy March 20, 2014 at 9:17 pm #

    I would love to have this book as a reference for me when I was just sewing. So many times I just do something because I think that it might be right or I just do not know the right way to do it.

  114. Melody March 20, 2014 at 9:20 pm #

    I want to learn everything I can about sewing!!!!

  115. RooMaBoo March 20, 2014 at 9:30 pm #

    Definately need this to figure out all of my mystery feet.

  116. Mrs Cheeky Nut March 20, 2014 at 9:37 pm #

    What an awesome book! I’d love to master zips, and the heirloom style finishes.

  117. Conversas de Hermanas March 20, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

    Zippers, zippers and then zippers again!!!

  118. Bethany March 20, 2014 at 10:11 pm #

    I’d love this book – I’ve been following the tour! I have so much more to learn, but I’d like to start by mastering zippers and fitting techniques.

  119. jdecker March 20, 2014 at 10:29 pm #

    I would like to learn how to make my garments more professional since I am a self taught sewer!

  120. Joelle March 20, 2014 at 10:51 pm #

    the next thing I’d like to tackle learning is a winter coat for me!

  121. ladydame March 20, 2014 at 11:08 pm #

    More about edging, especially rolled hems and piping!

  122. Bear and Lilly March 20, 2014 at 11:17 pm #

    i’m going to give sewing knits a try. i hope i find all the right tools!

  123. Kelly S March 20, 2014 at 11:21 pm #

    I love learning any new tricks I can!

  124. Jenn B March 20, 2014 at 11:41 pm #

    Making my own piping, blind hem stitch!

  125. Ashley Simon March 20, 2014 at 11:47 pm #

    This would be wonderful to use on my new blog I started! Thanks for the opportunity!

  126. Nori L March 20, 2014 at 11:53 pm #

    zippers in clothing and button holes…i’m still uneasy about those!

  127. Sarah Harris March 21, 2014 at 12:46 am #

    I’ve yet to learn how to install a lapped zipper, so this would be my first stop!

  128. Shelly Keefe March 21, 2014 at 12:58 am #

    I would love to learn new techniques and how to draft my own patterns.

  129. Keely March 21, 2014 at 2:24 am #

    I really want to do zippers better. I kind of put them in intuitively, and I’m not sure my intuition is quite as awesome as I like to think it is ;)

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