Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Sew and Stitch - A Review

I bought the first issue of this new magazine the other day when I saw it in ASDA for 99p.  It's one of those magazines that comes in weekly parts and which you can collate together into a binder and collect every week until you have the full set.  There have been lots of others published in recent years on baking, dolls houses, crochet, etc.

I can remember my mum collecting a couple of similar series back in the 80's one of which was a sewing one.   I must admit I bought this one for the small pieces of lovely fabric that came free with it.  There were two pieces of spotted fabric and a seaside fabric.  Very pretty colours.  They came with 3 co-ordinating embroidery threads and a dozen or so needles and a small piece of Bondaweb.  Good value for 99p if you ask me.  The fabric was to make a postcard block for a seaside themed quilt that you can learn to make by collecting successive issues, but I'm not intending using it for that, although it is a very pretty quilt.  I may use it instead for some other applique project.  It would also be nice as a picture if put in a frame.

As I'd bought it I thought I would review it for anybody that might be interested.  So here goes.

This first issue contains 20 pages of instructions on how to make several projects, develop different sewing skills and do various different stitches.  The instructions seem quite clear and the pictures useful to help people who aren't particularly experienced sewers.

The pages, which you collate into a binder (free with a later issue), are themselves divided into different categories.  I assume that other categories may appear as you go along in later issues.  Categories include:

The Quilt - a seaside themed quilt which it teaches you to make over 90 issues.  I believe the magazine provides the fabric for this.
Recycle and Remake - Festive bunting
Gifts and Goodies - A small slimline clutchbag.
Homestyle - A LOVE Cushion Cover
Sewing Skills - Seams
Stitch School - Backstitch
Templates - LOVE letter and bunting templates.

Also with this issue is a useful little booklet of Top Ten Tips to sewing, sewing equipment and how to build a sewing kit which beginners might find very useful.  There do look to be some lovely projects coming up in future issues too.

There is also a blog you can follow here which but you have to join up to follow and which I haven't actually done, so I couldn't tell you much about it at this point.

For the special offer price this first issue of the magazine is a steal. It will normally have a price of £3.99 which is reasonable, but bear in mind this is a weekly magazine so it will cost £16 per month to collect every issue.  I might collect a few if the projects inside appeal or I particularly like the fabrics or materials attached, but to be honest I'm not actually wanting to make this particular quilt myself as I have one I am already making at the moment and I have so many sewing books that I could probably find patterns and instructions for most things in them, so for me it would not be financially worthwhile for me to collect  them all, but who knows.

For anyone who is just starting out sewing, however, or really wants to make the quilt and feels they need the week by week guidance to motivate them or help them, they may consider buying it every week.  There are many less useful magazines out there you could be spending your money on, so if  at the end of the day you could have made a beautiful quilt and have a useful resource to help you make presents for people and things for your home, it could actually be argued to be a worthwhile choice.  It's definitely another magazine to look out for on the newsagent's shelves.  You can order it and pay by direct debit and receive various free gifts such as fabric scissors, embroidery hoops, sewing box, and others or you can give a slip to your newsagent to order it in for you each week.

Next week's issue will cost £2.50 which is slightly more money and then I assume that after that it will cost the full price from then on.  I must say from a frugal living point of view that buying a book on sewing is probably a much cheaper option, but if you like to treat yourself to a magazine each week and you have an interest in sewing then you may find this suitable for you.

Please note that I have not in any way been sponsored or paid to write this review.  It is just my personal and honest opinion of an item I have bought.  I hope it is useful.


  1. Great review, thank you. I often wonder if anyone buys a whole set of this kind of thing, it must work out jolly expensive, but for 99p this first edition looks to be worth it for the seaside fabric alone ... I might just be tempted :)

    1. Hi, thanks for your comment. I agree it would end up being a very expensive quilt, but it might appeal to someone who is just starting to learn quilting.

      To be perfectly honest, some sewing and quilting courses can be pretty expensive, so if someone can do it from home, using the magazine's guidance, it might be better suited to their lifestyle. Not quite the same from the social aspect, but that might not be a priority to many people.

      Might be especially useful to people who don't go online and watch tutorials on YouTube or the web too I imagine, as many people do now.

    2. Just to let you know the squares of fabric are about 8" square, if this helps.

  2. I think that is terrific value for the first copy !
    There is a lovely fabric shop opening in the village & they are going to hold sewing workshops. I might join one !

    1. That sounds interesting. Go for it. I haven't done one for over a year now and I was just thinking about starting another one yesterday, but I haven't actually checked any out. I must be getting withdrawal symptoms.