A Sewing Good Read

I first discovered the writer Adriana Trigiani while on holiday last Summer. I’d picked up her ‘Big Stone Gap‘ for the bargain price of 99 pence, along with a stack of others in a local charity shop. It came highly recommended, with review sound bites from both Sarah Jessica Parker and Whoopie Goldberg no less. Set in Virginia, it’s a romantic, feel-good tale of its narrator’s voyage of self discovery.


So when I spotted another title, ‘Lucia, Lucia’, by the same author in another charity shop recently I couldn’t resist! And I’m sew glad I didn’t. It’s the first time my two favourite hobbies of sewing and reading have collided so happily, and to such great effect πŸ™‚ I’ve read a couple of novels involving knitting before: they were ‘ok‘ in a kind of lightweight, but if I’m honest, slightly naffΒ way… This, however was well-written and totally convincing. It revolves around a young, Italian girl who becomes an apprentice for a clothing designer at a Fifth Avenue department store, and amongst other themes, charts the golden age of couture design in the most intricate detail. It really was a joy to read!

Around the same time I managed to get hold of the Autumn/ Winter, Burda Vintage Style Special. While I’ve no intention of making any of the beautiful designs featured any time soon (although I have spied a very tempting version of the Rosa Balloon Jacket over at handmadebychris.wordpress.com), what I loved about this publication was the in-depth history behind each style featured, complete with the most lovely images, sigh!

Sometimes it’s just as good to read about sewing as it is to actually do some sewing.. Has anyone else come across any other ‘sewing’ novels that you’d recommend?


26 thoughts on “A Sewing Good Read

  1. I’ve never come across a book involving sewing before however the one you speak of sounds quite interesting! I do however love that burda magazine! I bought it and spent a good few evenings flicking through the pages on repeat! Such great inspiration!

  2. Ooooo I loved that book too! It made you want to dig out vintage patterns immediately! Another really good sewing related read is The Seamstress by Maria Duenas- it was hugely popular in Spain and they even made a tv series of it! Sewing meets war/spy drama..

  3. I bought this Burda too, it eventually arrived after many repeated trips to WHSmiths. I love the style and look of it too, and there is a particular dress I would like to make, with a sort of gathered neckline. The multi-pattern layout is a little off putting though!

    • I really like quite a few of the designs, but know they just wouldn’t get worn, so I’m trying to be practical and yep, those crazy, chaotic pattern lines won’t be tempting me any time soon πŸ˜‰

  4. I enjoyed Lucia Lucia. You might like ‘the pink suit’ which is a fictionary account about ‘that’ Chanel style jacket suit for Jackie Kennedy. I read the dressmaker by Rosalie Hamm this summer. It’s quite different from Lucia Lucia but I loved it. Set in Australia and coming out as a film later this year (Kate winslet and Hugo weaving). I have just put the seamstress by Maria duenas on hold at the library ;o)

  5. It’s not about sewing but I like A Vintage Affair (can’t remember the author now) about a lady who runs a shop selling vintage dresses and such… I read it years ago so can’t remember it very well but it was a fun read! I just might have to get my hands on Lucia Lucia πŸ™‚

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