Giveaway: The Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Instruction



I’m happy to be taking part in the blog tour for my friend Christine Haynes‘ brand new book, The Complete Photo Guide To Clothing Construction. Today, we’re offering one lucky reader a free copy of the book (see details below).

CPG Clothing Contruction High res

First, I wanted to share a few pages of this fantastic book with you, to give you a sense of what’s inside.

Personally, I am a big believer in photo-heavy instructional books. I’m a visual learner, and I tend to think that clear color photographs are one of the absolute best ways to demonstrate any sort of needlecraft technique.

And the sheer number of photos in this book means that Christine has fit a huge abundance of information into this slender and beautiful book. There are over 600 full color photos, demonstrating everything from how to install zippers to sewing with knits.

This book is like a an extended class in garment sewing, only in book form. With a wonderful teacher like Christine at your side, you can basically learn anything.

Here’s a preview of the kind of clear, quality instruction you’ll see in this book:

page 58

page 59

page 62

page 63

page 87

I highly encourage you to pick up a copy, and I say that not only as Christine’s friend and admirer, but as a collector of fabulous sewing books. This is the sort of book you will find yourself turning to again and again.


To enter to win a free copy of this book, leave a comment below telling me one sewing technique you’d like to learn or get better at.

I will choose a lucky winner by random number generator after Friday, March 7 at midnight Pacific time. You have until then to enter.

International entries are welcome, and we will pay for shipping (though if you are outside the US, you are responsible for any local duties that may be charged).

Good luck, and be sure to pick up a copy!

PS: Tomorrow, the blog tour will move to another friend’s blog, Erin of Miss Crayola Creepy fame. Be sure to visit Erin too!

UPDATE: The winner of this book is Stella, who answered our question with: “How to use my serger/overlocker and whip those stretchy fabrics into shape!” Congrats, Stella!

Sarai Mitnick   —   Founder

Sarai started Colette back in 2009. She believes the primary role of a business should be to help people. She loves good books, sewing with wool, her charming cats, working in her garden, and eating salsa.

Comments 729

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zippers =)


I would really love to learn how to sew better exposed zippers. Perhaps collars, too…better Peter Pans for the wardrobe.


Shortening a zipper would be great to learn. I usually ruin it and thus avoid making anything that doesn’t use a standard size.


Uh, yes please!! I am currently working on mastering my zip fly – and it seems like zippers are a popular one!

Angela eyer

I need help with fly-front zippers!



Penny hooper

I am trying to talk my self into doing Fly zippers!


I might have to join the chorus and say that zipper insertion is something I want to conquer. Also, edgestitching. It’s so beautiful when well done!

Jean Kenny

I’d love a copy of this book. I dream of sewing my own clothes and clothes for my kids! I’m having trouble with zippers so I’m looking forward to checking out Christine’s instructions. Thanks so much!


I would love to get more comfortable with sewing knits and slippery fabrics!

Penny K,

Zippers, zippers and zippers. Invisible zipper tips and tricks


I need to work on installing a fly zipper and welt pockets.


I would love to improve on my zipper installation!




Set in sleeves always give me trouble. I’d love getting better at easing them in.


I would love to master the Zipper but also the overall fit – Everything seems to look like a sack once finished so it has got a lil disheartening :(

Courtney Ostaff

I would love to get better at set-in sleeves!


I’m hoping that a serger will mysteriously appear on my doorstep one day (I’m too poor to buy one) so I can lose days of my life working out how to thread it :p


I need to work on stitching ruched pieces together!


beautifully sewn sleeves, including plackets.

Jennifer Brandenburg

I would love to learn more about welt pockets!


Grading sizes or getting a better custom fit :)


Zippers… and matching prints, I haven’t even attempted that one…

Marie Linehan

Seam finishes… French etc…

Bree Crocetti

Perfect sleeves

Me Pendleton

I would like to learn to insert a more profession looking zipper .


Set in flippin sleeves all the way!!!! I’ve done raglan on a knit, but I am dying to figure out set-ins on a woven!


I’d like to get better at fly-front zippers!They are a tricky thing!


Looks like a lovely book! I would love to learn how to sew a fly zipper.

Sarah J

I had some issues with understitching in a recent pattern, so I’d love to see that. Also setting in sleeves because tanks and kimono sleeves can’t do me forever :)


Bound buttonholes for that polished look!


I would really love to learn to do a jeans fly better. Sounds like that’s a lot of peoples’ goal from the comments above!


I’d like to work on sewing with knits. Specifically, hemming them is a nightmare!


I keep meaning to work French seams into a garment, but I have yet to do so! So my answer to your question is I would like to learn how to incorporate French seams into a garment. Wonder if that’s covered in this book. Hmmm….;-)


I would love to master pleats

Lisa S.

I definitely need to work on fly zippers!


Invisible zipper.


Zippers! I just started sewing and mine never come out right.


I want to learn more about lining and how to do it better, prettier.


Oh and darts. I am not very precise.


I need some serious help with inserting linings….


sewing knits! and improving everything.


Fly zipper! I’ve yet to make some pants/shorts!


I need a refresher on sewing button holes-picture instructions would be awesome!


Darts. Seems so simple but mine always end up too long, too pointy, and somehow–uneven!


Zippers!! I’m making jeans right now and it’s frustrating me so much.


Front fly zippers!

Heather in Oregon

Only one thing? I’m self taught and relatively new to sewing so there are tons of gaps in my knowledge but most immediately I need help with zippers, buttonholes by hand, and hemming knits and rounded/circle skirt hems.

Hannah Johnson

I would like to improve my zipper installations. I feel pretty comfortable with an invisible zipper, but the transition between the zipper and the seam below gets a bit tricky and I usually end up with a wrinkle, gap, or something awkward like that.


Pleats….. and slick fabric! I love photo books, and will have to add this one to my list of “must buy”


The two things I would like to conquer are: bound buttonholes and matching plaids.


Zippers!! I’m getting better but they still intimidate me..

Kate McIvor

Welt pockets!


Zippers! Invisible and fly-front. They are scary!! Thank you.


I’d love to learn how to make changes to patterns to better fit me.


Sleeves :)

Talia van der Wel

I’d love to learn how to set in sleeves better! My attempts always look so average.


I’d love to attempt pants or shorts one day, so clear info on inserting a fly zipper would be very handy!

Show and Tell Meg

I’ve always been interested in shirring, but I’ve never had the guts to try it out – maybe this book could boost my confidence :)


Hemming knits. I just finished up a shirt and it looks great! but I’m afraid to hem it for fear that I’ll ruin it… I’d love to learn some foolproof tips on that.


I always have SO much trouble with set in sleeves! would definitely appreciate some (more) tips on easing those in!


That Is A Lovely Book! I’d LovE To Get A copy For Reference. I ToO Am A Visual Learner :)

I Think Prick Stitch/Picked Stitch For Zipper And Bound Buttonhole Would Be Something I Would Love To See A picture-Heavy Tutorials On :)

Thanks!!! ~far


I would really like to start making my own clothes. I’ve been quilting for years but know very little about garment construction.


I could use lessons on all techniques! But, I’d really like to master French seams


I’m still very much a novice sewer, and I have tons to learn. To break up “everything” into a slightly more manageable chunk: I really want to learn how to do set-in sleeves!


Sewing knits!

Rebecca Pelletier

Pattern drafting is on my list and this book looks just the ticket!


Buttonholes – machine- and hand-sewn. It always feels completely random with the machine, whether it’ll come out right or not. And my hand-sewn buttonholes are just embarrassing!


Matchup prints / pattern / plaids in fabric- it makes my brain hurt


French seams…I’ve been wanting to try them but have yet to work up the courage!


I need to learn more about zipper insertion!


Darts. The last time I made a dress with darts, I had to redo them because they weren’t quite right.


What a great book for visual learners like me! I really need to get better at zippers: both invisible and lapped zippers.


As a new sewist, I want to learn EVERYTHING! :-)


I want to have beautifully finished garments so the insides look as great at the outside.


I recently had a total fail with my first blazer. I’d love to learn techniques for jackets.

Erika A.

Handstitching hems! I always ignore this and just use a machine, but this silk chiffon sitting in my stash deserves better.


This book looks fantastic. As a new sewist, I have so much to learn but I’m most eager to learn to set in a sleeve properly.


I would to improve à lot of things ….. my making of a classic man ´s shirt for example
Hugs from France


Perfecting fit. And choosing the correct fabric for a project. And a hundred other things:)


It would be nice to finally make a sleeve that looks professional. Actually, I’d settle for non-amateurish. Thanks for introducing the book and the blog tour-what a great idea.


I would like to learn how to sew an exposed zipper.
Thanks for the giveaway!


PANTS all parts pants! And sleeve & bust grading!


Sleeves and zippers


How to perfectly match collar stands on a tailored shirt!

Louisa S.

All things pants, especially fitting tips and fly front zippers; also tips on when to use what types of seam finishes and how to work them in as you sew!


What a beautiful book. I feel certain it could help me overcome my fear of learning how to attach sleeves to garments.




I would like to get better at fitting.


I received a gorgeous yard of silk as a present, but I have no silk sewing skills/experience. I would love to learn how to handle and sew with slippery fabric.


Well, I just finished putting in probably my 25th invisible zipper and I’m getting better, but still not satisfied with the results! I would love a good resource, and this one looks excellent. I know you said ONE technique, but here’s a second: mitering hems–confusing to me!


Oh I still struggle with fly zippers, and I’m determined to conquer welt pockets this year. What a beautiful book. Thanks for the chance to win it – it’ll go on my wish list if I’m not lucky enough to win it!


I’d like to learn more about fast, accurate cutting techniques.


It may not be a technique, but I struggle with fabric choices for clothes. After quilting for 15 years, I focus on color and pattern and don’t realize until I have a finished garment that the fabric doesn’t drape enough or hold it’s shape well enough for the pattern I chose. I can check for fiber contents and hold up yardage to see how it falls, but I can’t make the conceptual leap to what it will look like as a fitted garment.


I would LOVE to learn more about seam finishes, from super easy zig zag stitches to the Hong Kong seam finish!


I’d like to learn how to set the perfect sleeve without any visible puckering!


I want to start making my own clothing again. I did for most of high school and college. Then work got in the way. I now have the time again and would use this book to refresh my skills.


I still struggle with attaching elastic – would love to figure out how to do it properly!


Darts and sleeves. I could really use this book!


Interfacing and neckline construction!

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