My Top 5 Sewing Books

As I have previously mentioned in my favourite sewing tools blog, I love sewing books. 95% of the time I would rather lift a book to find out more about a particular topic than use google (but there is the odd occasion google is good for a quick reference). So I am going to talk through my Top 5 sewing books, covering both reference books and pattern books. All the books I mention are available in my Amazon Storefront.

Amazon Storefront

Winifred Aldrich Metric Pattern Cutting for Women

This book has been with me since university and I reference it so much. It is not only great for drafting patterns but also comes in so handy when I want to hack a pattern. It gives a lot of different styles and ideas that can easily be transferred to a lot of patterns. The instructions for drafting a pattern a super clear as well.

Probably the most referenced section!

The Readers Digest Guide to Sewing

My mum gave me this book when I started teaching sewing lessons and it has come in so handy. I always recommend it in my beginner classes as it has so much information in it that will always come in useful. It’s an older book so I would recommend asking family or friends if any one has a copy they don’t use anymore, or keep an eye out in second hand book stores or charity shops for a copy.


I have mentioned this book a few times recently on my weekly videos. I have been referring to it a lot while making a blazer at the moment and it has got some amazing information in it. I have learnt so much about more advanced sewing techniques and managed to sew my most accurate welt pockets with it.

Named Clothing “Breaking the Pattern”

This is one that a lot of you will already have. It was so popular when it was first launched and for good reason. The patterns are beautiful and modern, and the book is put together in a way that is ideal for beginners. I have made a lot from this book and it contains one of my favourite tried and true patterns, the Ruska T-shirt.

Ruska pattern

Wendy Ward “A Beginners Guide to Sewing with Knitted Fabrics”

I always tell people that Wendy Wards books are essentially an education in sewing, there is so much information in them. This was the first book I got and it taught me so much about sewing with knit fabrics. I still reference it to check the ideal needle size or type of hem to use on a fabric.

This book also contains one of my most worn patterns- the Kinder cardigan. It is perfectly oversized and comfortable.

If I had to choose a top 10 I would include

  • Tilly and the Buttons “Make It Simple”
  • Pattern Magic
  • Palmer/Pletch Guide to Tissue Fitting
  • Capsule Wardrobe
  • Couture Sewing Techniques

I hope you have enjoyed my round up of sewing books. Let me know what your favourites are, I am always looking to add to my library!

Happy sewing,

Sharlene xx