Monday, January 30, 2012

Sew What You Love, by Tanya Whelan Review and Giveaway

I was given the chance last week to read and review a copy of Tanya Whelan's new sewing book, Sew What You LoveFirst of all, let me say, I am a fan of Tanya.  I've used a lot of her shabby chic prints and fabrics in my daughter's room, including the recent hoop wall. So when I heard fromTanya, I was a little star struck.
One of my sewing goals this year is to break out of my quilting-comfort-zone and sew more bags, and get more comfortable sewing clothing.  I have multiple reasons for this - partly to just expand my sewing skills and partly because I think I'll be able to quickly burn through some of that fabric stash as well. :)

Feeling somewhat timid about where to start, Sew What You Love arrived like a burst of inspiration and motivation. Definitely one of the main things I look for in a pattern book, is multiple good patterns so that I really get my money's worth out of the investment.  There are around 30 patterns in this book and I can honestly say I want to make almost every one of them.  I love these cute tops (above) - the Lila Shirred Blouse and the Go-To Top or Dress. Both are on my list for spring wardrobe updates for me and my girls.
Also included are 5 really simple but good-looking bag patterns. Two cute clutches and three large tote bags. All with very clear and simple instructions. 
Saturday night I whipped out this City Tote so quickly. And I LOVE it. It's now my new winter go-to bag for hauling all my 'stuff'.  The handles are integrated - meaning the handle is part of the bag, instead of cut and sewn on separately - making the project a really quick one.
All of the projects and patterns in this book are for very simple, but darling projects. The instructions are well written with clear diagrams. Even with my fear of "3-dimensional" sewing (clothes, balls, etc.) Tanya's designs and instructions make me feel confident that I can make any of these projects. And do them in a reasonable amount of time. I'm so excited to try many more - and I'll share the results.
Finally, I love that the patterns come drawn to full scale in a handy pouch at the back of the book. I have to say, anytime I see a pattern that requires me to make a trip to the copy place for enlargements, I know right then and there the chances of me actually making that extra effort are very slim. Because multiple patterns are printed on the same page (to conserve space and paper) you will need to trace the pattern you plan to use.  I just used my giant roll of freezer paper to trace my bag patterns and was able to get right to work. Also, the fact that this book has a spiral binding makes it so easy to leave open on my work table.
Tanya is offering a free download of the Travel Checkers pattern to all of you. 

Tanya is also giving away a free bag pattern to anyone who wants to Tweet or mention Sew What You Love on Facebook. All you need to do is provide a link to the Sew What You Love page on Amazon. Go here to find out the details on Tanya's Share Program.
Lastly, Tanya has kindly offered to giveaway a copy of Sew What You Love to one of you readers! Just leave one comment on this post. If you want, you can share something you'd like to try to break out of your sewing comfort zone. Giveaway closes Friday, Feb 3 at midnight, MST.  GIVEAWAY CLOSED

WINNER:  Amber said...  I would love this book!
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Thank you so much for all the love on the HST Spectrum quilt - esp for reassuring me about the 'bleeding' triangles and the binding.  Sometimes after working so long on a project you need a fresh perspective from someone else.  I'm resolved to leave the quilt as it stands. :)

Also, the ADORNit giveaway winner has been announced. It's Paula. I have emailed you Paula!

257 comments:

  1. I'd LOVE this book! It looks like it has some pretty nice projects in it.

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  2. LOVE the bag you made - the book looks beautiful! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  3. It looks awesome!! Your bag is super cute and looks really practical and fun! Thanks for the giveaway. :)

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  4. Well right off the bat I'd make those baby blocks in your last image. My son is due in 15 days!

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  5. I tried to click the link to amazon to get the bag pattern, but the link didn't work? Can you email it to me @ kerrims.sew.what@gmail.com

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  6. This looks like a great book! 3-d objects are also a scary area for me. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  7. Oh my heavens! Those balls looks like so much fun! It sounds like her instructions/patterns are good enough that I would dare make those!

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  8. Wow what a giveaway, I would really want to make myself that red dress. I haven't sewn clothes since crafts in school. so that would be a big thing for me. But that clutch is also yummy.

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  9. This looks like such a great book. I've only made one bag, but I'd love to make more. Thanks for such a great giveaway.

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  10. oh I would love to tackle a dress. something that is easy to wear. That red dress looks easy to wear. I think you are right a prefect spring dress.

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  11. Thanks for the chance! I'd love to try more challenging sewing....

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  12. I love that bag! I have a big problem with sewing up bags, but I never sew clothing, it would be fun to break out of the norm. :)

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  13. I looove that bag!
    Thanks for the chance to win.

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  14. Everything you have posted from that nook looks like so much fun! I want a copy...definitely going on my wish list, but it would be even better to be picked to win a copy!

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  16. Everything looks adorable - I would love to try the red dress!

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  17. That pleated clutch is really cute! I need to sew some more clothes. I got away from it when I started quilting!

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  18. I'd like try 'break out of my comfort zone' and try some paperpiecing or improve my applique. Thanks for the chance at this book!

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  19. What a treasure that book would be! Thanks for the generous opportunity!

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  20. I would love to try sewing for myself. I've done it in the past, but not for many years. It would be fun to have something new that I've made myself.

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  21. I would love to get a copy of this book!

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  22. I love sewing clutches and bags, I'd really be curious to try new patterns!
    Thank you

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  23. Sewing for myself would be a fun thing to try! :) Thanks so much for the giveaway, this book looks great!

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  24. I've been thinking about this book, so thanks for the review. I have mostly sewn quilts and a few things for my daughter. I would love to try a bag or maybe some clothing for me. Looks like a great book. I'd love to win!

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  25. The projects in this book are SO cute! i think that if I won it, I would attempt to sew everything in it!

    Thanks for the opportunity!

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  26. I'd love to win that book. I'd love to make a quilted jacket, right now, I'm just starting out!

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  27. Thanks for the chance to win! Your bag looks so cute, and it looks like there are lots more great projects in this book :-)

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  28. I would love to make the baby blocks or balls, 'cause who knows, I may get a grandbaby some day.

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  29. I love that bag you whipped out!

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  30. Looks like a great book. I can always use another bag. I've been wanting to make more clothes too. I made my first dress for my daughter a few years back and she loved it. It's been one of things I'd like to do again. This time maybe for me.

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  31. I really want to get over my fear of knit fabrics.

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  32. I have made a few bags, but usually find them very confusing. Thanks for the pattern!

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  33. l love everything you've shown about this lovely book! I would make the cute balls for a new great grandbaby, and a dress for the big sister. Love your bag , it's so quick and easy!

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  34. I'm new to sewing, so nearly everything is expanding my comfort level, lol! My goals for this year include doing a quilt, a table runner, a skirt, a dress & a blouse.

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  35. Great looking book! I would love to make a tote bag!

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  36. I like the dresses shown, hope they are in the book :)
    Kate

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  37. I, too, want to make some great bags. I have made a cute little pouch, so I am on my way... Thanks for the chance to win!

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  38. One of my goals this year is to sew some clothes for me, and these look perfect! I would love wot win this book.

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  39. Love that pleated clutch! So cute!

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  40. Everything in the book looks great and would love to work on all of them. Thanks.

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  41. I love ALL things Tanya Whelan....she is so talented and her fabrics are beyond dreamy!!! Would LOVE LOVE LOVE to win this book!!!!

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  42. I really want to try sewing clothes, but, like you, I'm a little nervous. This book looks awesome!

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  43. That red dress has me sold on the book. I'm frantically looking for dresses for my tall 12 year old daughter--and maybe one for me too? I have to ask though, is the patten for misses/junior sizes, or is it just for little ones? Thanks!

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  44. I'd Iike to make some more bags too....:)

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  45. This is my kind of book! I'd love to win one.

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  46. This book looks great! I'm hoping to try more embroidery this year.

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  47. This looks awesome! I tweeted about the book too :)

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  48. Oh. I Would love this.. I am new to sewing and would love to try making a dress..Thanks for the chance!!

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  49. I love the travel checkers game. What a great thing to stash in the car for the grandkids! Thanks for generously offering a copy of this sweet book. I should be so lucky!! Be blessed.

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  50. I, too, have been wanting to do more than quilting projects this year. Thanks for the chance to win this great book!

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  51. Sounds like a great book. Thanks for the giveaway! I think I'd like to try a bag!

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  52. I would love to make a bag...never done one!

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  53. Great sounding book - would be fun to win this one!!

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  54. I'd really like to get into making clothes - that dress is adorable, I hope I win as that might push me over the edge into giving it a whirl!

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  55. Love this!! The bags are so cute!!

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  56. I have a goal this year to make myself a new bag to take to church. I do clothing pretty well, as well as home dec stuff like pillows and curtains. The bags though are a bit intimidating!

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  57. THis book looks great! Clothes are definately out of my comfort zone but I interested in learing more about making them. I LOVE the Go To Dress so that would probably be first on my list! Thanks for the chance! Smiles~Beth

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  58. This book looks amazing! I'm hoping to get better at making clothes too, probably I'll start with pajama pants for myself and branch out from there. :) junie.none@gmail.com

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  59. This book looks amazing! I'm hoping to get better at making clothes too, probably I'll start with pajama pants for myself and branch out from there. :) junie.none@gmail.com

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  60. I'd love to break out of my quilting comfort zone and into clothes!

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  61. Posted a link on Facebook :)
    Beth Rooney Dodd
    Smiles~Beth

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  62. I would love to win! Thank you Tanya for the wonderful giveaway book.
    Blessings,
    itsybitsystitches@gmail.com

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  63. I'd love to break out of my comfort zone! Thanks!

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  64. What a great looking book. Love it being spiral bound. Like you I want to try some different sewing this year. I'd love to make some bags for myself. So many great patterns and fabric as well. I'd also love to try to make some clothes for my grandson, who is one year old.

    Thank you for a great giveaway and a chance to win.

    usairdoll(at)gmail(dot)com

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  65. I want this book so bad. I'd love to win.

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  66. I love the looks of this book and can't wait to try the patterns!

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  67. what a great looking book - thanks for the giveaway! sewing clothes is something I'd like to do that is definately out of my comfort zone. I've tried a couple times, but so far all I've made is a mess.

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  68. I would love to try the pleated clutch! I think it would be perfect for Spring:)

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  69. I would love to jump out of my comfort zone and try my hand at totes and bags! Awesome giveaway!!

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  70. I love that city tote! Looks like a perfect carry all,

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  71. I love that bag!! Making bags and zip pouches is what I would like to try this year. Looks like this book could help me out!! Thanks for the opportunity!

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  72. I can see lots of projects I'd love to try (plus my daughters have spotted a couple too!).

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  73. i want to try to make more of the adorable dresses i keep pinning on pinterest for my little girls. all those zippers, buttons, button holes, and bias trim can't be too hard, right?

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  74. Oooh! I've been eyeing this book at Barnes and Noble! I too fell in love with just about every project. Thanks so much for the opportunity to win. And by the way, your tote turned out so well!

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  75. I would love to start making clothes!

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  76. I would like to make some neat handbags with fabulous fabrics.

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  77. Tanya Whelan is my alltime favourite designer! I would LOOOVE to win her book!

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  78. This looks like a great book!

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  79. I too have a fear of 3D sewing projects -- those baby blocks look like a great challenge!

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  80. I'd love to get a copy of that book!

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  81. I'm drawn to the big ball and the blocks but I'm afraid mine will look all lumpy. If I win this book, I made myself promise to give them a try.

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  82. This looks like a great book, thanks for reviewing it. I love to try my hand at some pants.

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  83. I am addicted to bags and want to try some of her adorable bag patterns in her fabric line.

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  84. I saw lots of projects that I would like to make. Looks like a great book!

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  85. I would love to win a copy of this book- looks wonderful!! I too would like to try and sew for myself. Maybe some easy, cute tops to start with! Thanks!:)

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  86. Waa.. Love it!
    anitadwiindriyani[at]gmail[dot]com

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  87. Oh, this looks fabulous! I've been wanting to try some clothing, so this would be perfect.

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  88. Love this! Thanks for the giveaway! Amy @ gasudimack(at)sbcglobal(dot)net

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  89. I would really like to try making a bag. I like the brown and aqua one shown in the book. It is definitely my style.

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  90. I'd like to try making clothes, at least, something more substantial than an elastic waist (tube) skirt for a little girl.

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  91. This book looks so fresh and the projects look fun and simple enough for even me to tackle! I posted the Amazon link on Facebook and it would be so cool to win this book!

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  92. I've been seeing lots of great reviews of this book--- it looks wonderful!! I'd love to win a copy!! :-)

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  93. I'd love to get this book! Part of my new years sewlution is to try more things! I'm comfortable piecing a quilt top but clothes and bags scare me. I love the bag you whipped up and think that would be my first thing I make from the book. Thanks for the giveaway!!!

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  94. would love to win this book- i currently have it checked out from the library. i dont want to send it back

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  95. I really like the bag you made. I have some great ikea fabric which would be perfect for that pattern. I want to get better at sewing clothes for myself. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  96. I would love this book! I'm going to attempt to sew my daughter some dresses this summer and I would love to try her pretty patterns!

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  97. The book looks great. I would like to become better at sewing clothes so that I can make my children's Halloween costumes this year.

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  98. I'm trying to do more improv sewing...

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  99. Beautiful book! I would love to be more comfortable making clothing for myself and being truly happy with the finished product. Thanks for the review and giveaway!

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  100. I'd like to try to make more clothing. The Go To Dress looks really cute - I wouldn't mind starting with that!

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  101. This looks like a wonderful book! I'd be so thrilled to win it. Thank you for the chance. :)

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  102. I think the book looks like a great addition to my sewing library. This year, my goal is to try sewing more "out of my box" fashions. I also want to broaden my horizons by learning more piecing and quilting techniques. Thanks for the wonderful book review!

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  103. What a lovely book...looks like lots of very doable projects!

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  104. thanks for sharing this book. I need to get comfortable with interfacing, it is such a good tool but I never seem to apply it correctly.

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  105. I'm always looking to try new things. Looks great. Thanks for the chance!

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  106. I'm in love with everything you posted - I would so love to win this. Thanks for the great giveaway.

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  107. ooooh, I came across Tanya's blog/site and book a little while ago and fell in love too. All beautiful projects I would love to tackle! The one project that sold me was the Go To Dress/Top. so cute and looks comfy for any day of the week. I've not sewn any clothing for myself in a long time -- I should again. Oh, I would be a very proud owner of this book!

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  108. What a great book! I'd love to sew more clothing for myself.

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  109. NEAT BAG!
    NEAT GIVEAWAY!
    THANKS ♥

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  110. This book looks great! I would love to make the City Tote.

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  111. clothes scare me, but i'm determined to try to make some this year! fun giveaway!

    bess :)

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  112. Pretty! That looks right up my alley. My biggest sewing fear is actually doing my own quilting. Good grief it scares me to death. I need some serious lessons in that department.

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  113. love the red dress! Please enter my moniker to win!!

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  114. Looks like a wonderful collection of patterns. I would especially like that pleated clutch! Thanks for the chance to win. Your bag looks great, by the way.

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  115. I want to try sewing bags this year, Tanya's patterns look gorgeous but (hopefully!) achievable. Thanks for a lovely giveaway.

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  116. Looks like a great book! I would love a copy!

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  117. I love the bag and the dress...will check out the book on Amazon. It looks delightfully inspiring! Would love to win a copy! :)

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  118. Tanya is also giving away a free bag pattern to anyone who wants to Tweet or mention Sew What You Love on Facebook. All you need to do is provide a link to the Sew What You Love page on Amazon.

    OK, I posted the Amazon Link on Facebook....curious how Tanya will know I did it????

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  119. What a wonderful looking book! I loved the teaser! That little girls dress looks fabulous. I want to be more creative with quilting. Use scraps, sew as I go rather than follow step by step. I would also love to get better at altering clothes, fixing them, etc.

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  121. What an amazing book! I would love to make that dress!!!!

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  122. I would LOVE a copy of this book! I too am wanting to make some sort of bag this Spring. So many beautiful fabrics out there!

    Great review. Will definitely be adding this book to my list of "must-haves"!

    I also linked the amazon page for the book. How do we receive the free bag pattern?

    Renee

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  123. Mmmm...Mmmm...Good! So many fun ideas. That first dress would definitely be on my list. Now. Daughter needs a spring outfit. Thanks for the chance.

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  124. I'd love to make some baby items from the book. Thanks for a chance to win. bimbi9 at verizon dot net

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  125. ooo i love Tanya as well and this book looks amazing!

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  126. I love the checkers and blocks. I am new to sewing and while want to try every thing. Sadly too many things too little time.

    http://richardquilts.blogspot.com

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  127. I think this is wonderful o fyou to offer this chance to get out of our comfort zone. I been wanting to make a purse for a long time, just am afriad to try, I make charity quilts and I would be awe struck to receive this possible enjoyment of something new. THANKS

    aka kingcooper0001@aol.com

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  128. I love that book. I can say I have a comfort zone but i'd like to try making clothes. I never made anything wearable. Thanks for the chance.

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  129. I woul love to try and make a dress!

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  130. The Go-To Dress is super cute - and I think I have the perfect spring fabric for it in my stash! I would LOVE to snag a copy of this text!

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  131. Wow, what a fabulous book. The projects look very cute. Thank you for the chance to win it!

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  132. Wow, its EXACTLY what Im looking for. Ive been wanting to branch out and make some bags. Thanks for the chance to win. Hope it includes us Aussie Folks

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  133. Great book! Thanks for the giveaway.

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  134. I'd love to try making my own clothes and that red dress looks perfect to start with!

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  135. Oooohhhh 5 bag patterns in one book....lovely. I've never made my own clothes...Usually I can't justify the expense on the fabric - but maybe one day.

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  136. I would love to try plush toys for kids...the soft blocks in the book look like the perfect start! Thanks for the giveaway :)

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  137. Love tanya too!!!
    I have all her collections and I'd like to win her book ^__^

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  138. The big bag looks fabulous! Thanks!

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  139. it looks so beautiful and full of nice ideas, thanks for the chance. Hope I'm lucky!

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  140. Love the bag and LOVE LOVE LOVE that that the book comes with full size patterns.

    Alexis
    frogsarecool at gmail dot com

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  141. Books are so inspiring...as for breaking out of my comfort zone, I'd like to make some tote bags and a skirt for my daughter.

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  142. The book looks gorgeous and I think I'd want to make it all too!!
    I'm doing pretty well challenging myself this year; I'm doing fmq on an actual quilt, doing some english paper piecing and generally trying to improve my sewing!

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  143. Oh that looks fab :o) I always trace all my patterns anyway (I'm anal that way ;o) ) so that part wouldn't phase me at all. I'm quite comfy with the various clothing/bag/3D object techniques, but I like buying craft books and learning new things anyway!

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  144. Once I get to my goal weight I plan on trying my hand at sewing clothes. The only reason I don't now is because I would hate to work so hard over something only to have to give it away in a month or two when it is too bog. So right now, to try something new I am working on Softies and Quilting.

    Thanks for the chance!

    Sue

    sweeney.susanna@gmail.com

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  145. All these projects from this book look so cute! My daughter was looking for a bag pattern like that last winter. And I've had some checker boards quilted for a while and can't wait to read the freebee to to see how she made the checkers!Thanks!

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  146. I LOVE Tanya's fabric lines. This book looks just as amazing. I really would love to try something 3D as well. Those baby blocks are adorable. Thanks!

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  147. That book looks awesome. I haven't actually made a piece of clothing for a couple of years. I'd like to try my hand at some cute everyday dresses. Thanks for the chance to win!

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  148. i would love to try to sew a tote! i never have and it'd be breaking out of my zone... i have tons of cute fabric for it though!

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  149. sewing clothes--a couple of dresses and/or skirts for this summer--is on my list.

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  150. I would love to break out of my comfort zone and start sewing clothing, but I think that's a little much at this point. I definitely need to work on sewing more complicated blocks and some bags. And I need to work on free motion quilting.

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  151. Your bag looks amazing and this book is awesome. So excited to have a chance at winning this!

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  152. I would love to make the baby blocks and balls. I have a grandbaby due any day now. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  153. I would love my own copy. I got it at the library and really liked it but I had to return it.

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  154. I would love to win this book!

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  155. I need to try machine quilting...it seems so overwhelming. I need to because taking everything to the quilter is getting expensive!!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    cwhelan@williamwoods.edu

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  156. This looks a great book!
    Sadly I don't do FB or Twitter!

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  157. Cool book. Quick question: is the go-to dress for kids or adults? I'd love to make one for me (and would get the book to do so) but I can't tell from the picture if that's a teen or an adult. thanks!

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  158. This book looks awesome! I would love to try out that city bag pattern...it looks like it would make a good substitute for a very beat-up diaper bag I've been using for awhile now and would definitely be something different than anything I've ever sewn before! Thanks for posting about it!

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  159. Ooh! This book has been on my wishlist since it came out! I'm trying to get up the courage to attempt some clothing for myself!

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  160. I have tried to sew for my kids before but I'm not really great at it. I too, would like to break out of my comfort zone and sew more fun things!

    I hope I win.

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  161. Thank you for the giveaway! Love the variety of projects, and yes, that bag you made is very fun! I can see it hauling my 'stash' of stuff I drag around with me to my grandchildren's houses! I would love to get back to making clothes and simple ideas to start with would definitely get me going!
    thanks again!

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  162. I'd be thrilled to win this book giveaway! Thanks for the chance.

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  163. Tanya's book looks wonderful and you've done a great post on featuring it too.
    Thanks for the chance!

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  164. Ohhh would just love this book!

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  165. I posted the link on Facebook. Since I am a Tanya Whelan fan, her book is on my Amazon wish-list.

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  166. I posted the link to Tanya's book on Amazon on my Facebook. Not sure now how to get her free bag pattern. Thanks!

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  167. I am mainly a quilt/craft sewer these days but I have been gently brushing off my clothes sewing skills lately. This book looks like me! I was first drawn to the red and wt dress in the first set of photos, sold.

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  168. Such a nice book with a great variety of projects! :-)
    I'd love to put some of those patterns to good use.
    Thanks for the chance to win.
    Cathy Byrd

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  169. That book looks beautiful! I'd like to try some FMQ'ing :)

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  170. Love all the great projects in this book. It is nice when you have many choices in just one book. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  171. I need this book just so I can make that adorable dress.

    kelloshow (at) gmail (dot) com

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  172. I've been trying to branch out to clothing lately. This would be a great book to have! :)

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  173. I am anxious to try the Travel Checkers pattern. Give the grandkids something else to do in the car on long trips.
    I would love this book so I can delve into some summertime sewing projects! Cute dresses!

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  174. It looks like a great book. I love that red dress - would be perfect to make for spring!

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  175. I've seen this book around already and it looks so cute! I would love to try so many of those projects! Thanks!

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  176. Oooohhh... that looks like a good one! Lovely review. I'd love to try making more clothes for myself, and the photos for the dress & shirt look really comfy & cute. I can bang out kids' clothes all day long, but me? Yikes! Not so much. Thanks for the chance... fingers & toes crossed!

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  177. I usually make lots for babies or my lil' ones. So I would like to bust out and make something for me. perhaps a bag (I am OBSESSED with totes) or that pretty dress!

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  178. I would like to make more 3 D projects, like the blocks or balls. And fabric boxes!

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  179. I would love that book - and everything that goes beyond hemming curtains is way past my comfort zone

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  180. That City Bag is amazing. I would love to make one or three.

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  181. Love your blog. . . love the idea of the book too! I'm trying to break out of my comfort zone of only having sewn clothing. I want to make some quilts and bags and other things for my house!

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  182. Looks like a great book. I've been trying to sew more for my younger kids. I sewed some leggings for my daughter and tried sewing some pants for my boys who are 3 and 17 months old. I want to sew some tops for my daughter too.

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  183. Is there anything I wouldn't want to make??!! It all looks fab - would love to make myself the dress... but would probably start with something for the kids!

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  184. This book looks like one I would definitely use and want in my library. The projects look fun and well written. I like the bag you made!

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  185. love tanya whelen, one of the first things i made my daughter was from one of her patterns! i just signed up for an applique class to challenge myself a bit.

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  186. Thank you for the lovely giveaway. I would love to win this book. I would definitely make the soft blocks for my baby granddaughter.

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