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Couture Sewing: The Couture Cardigan Jacket- Sewing Secrets from a Chanel Collector [Paperback]

Claire Shaeffer
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
List Price: CDN$ 33.95
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Book Description

Oct. 15 2013 Couture Sewing
If you want to make a jacket with the impeccable look of Chanel, this is the book to have.
The Couture Cardigan Jacket presents sewing methods Claire Shaeffer developed based on her knowledge of haute couture construction and meticulous research studying original Chanels in museum archives and her own collection.  Via the DVD, Shaeffer instructs readers in essential techniques such as cutting and shaping the jacket sections, princess seaming, quilting, making the 3-piece sleeve, adding the chain weight, creating the double buttonhole, and more. Where there is a trick or shortcut for an operation (without lowering the quality) Shaeffer demonstrates it, along with a host of sewing methods discovered via careful and meticulous study of Chanel originals.
The package is a perfect mix of instruction and insight into the complex design-details that make a Chanel a Chanel.

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Couture Sewing: The Couture Cardigan Jacket- Sewing Secrets from a Chanel Collector + Couture Sewing: Tailoring Techniques + Couture Sewing Techniques, Revised and Updated
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About the Author

CLAIRE B. SHAEFFER is an internationally recognized expert in fashion design history and construction techniques for haute couture and high-end ready-to-wear. She has served as Couture Sewing Technique Consultant for the Museum of the City of New York, is a long-time designer for Vogue Patterns, a frequent contributor to Threads magazine, and the author of numerous books. Shaeffer received the Professional Association of Custom Clothier's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003, and was inducted into the ASG’s Sewing Hall of Fame in 2012.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars CRAZY for anything Chanel Jan. 10 2014
Just when I thought I knew everything there was to know about Couture construction techniques….enter the 3 piece Chanel sleeve. I was thrilled to see how Chanel gave her sleeves so much shape and rather than doing it via a 2 piece sleeve construction, she did it in 3 parts. Thanks for continuing to share your love and passion for the Couture.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  38 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book Oct. 4 2013
By CL&B - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In this book, Claire Shaeffer introduces couture sewing techniques and methods for the Chanel jacket. The meticulous research/studying of original Chanels, and the illustrations makes it a great guide for the home sewer enthusiast. The included DVD, complements her book very well. The instructions of cutting and shaping the jacket sections, princess seaming, quilting, making the 3-piece sleeve, adding the chain weight, creating the double buttonhole, etc. can be found in this book and the DVD.
if you are not familiar with basic hand sewing, or couture methods of garment construction, I strongly recommend purchasing her revised & updated Couture Sewing Techniques book along with her Couture Techniques Workshop DVD (sold separately) before purchasing The Couture Cardigan Jacket.
Why four stars? It would have been phenomenal if Mrs. Shaffer could have acquire at least one contemporary jacket to her collection and briefly discuss its features. Also, but since one of the things that makes a couture garment special is the attention to detail, a more detailed explanation on sewing different handworked tailored buttonholes, would had been appreciated.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Claire Shaeffer has a series of these books on couture sewing techniques Nov. 19 2013
By BowedBookshelf - Published on Amazon.com
While I am not the type to actually wear a couture jacket (a Chanel jacket with jeans, say, is not my favorite combination) I do admit to admiring the luxury of the material and the exquisite craftsmanship of the creation.

There were a number of techniques discussed here that could be applied to effect on other projects one wanted to upgrade to the level of fine art. For instance, you may have wondered why certain items of clothing you have owed (or borrowed from a friend or relative) lasted so well, and could take the abuse of daily living without showing the effects. Perhaps sometime you admired the drape of a jacket fabric without knowing quite how they achieved that custom fit. Without taking the garment apart, you were never going to uncover the mystery.

Author Claudia Shaeffer does all that for us and more. She shows us the machine and hand sewing techniques for each stage of the jacket process. One part I found most interesting was the cutting and seam-marking. It may seem obvious to some, but thread-marking the seams rather than using some other marker is clearly superior to anything else I can think of when one is cutting from a large piece of fabric with an obvious graphic. (I am not talking about Chanel jackets here, but using unique fabrics for specialized projects).

Buttonholing, sleeve side vents, applying gimp trim and pockets are all discussed, and it should come as no surprise that good results comes from careful attention to detail and patient hand sewing techniques. These are projects in which one must revel in the process rather than simply the product. But with the right kind of desire, one can produce lovely, long-lasting and unique pieces of clothing art…and it doesn’t have to look like Chanel unless you want it to.

Shaeffer includes high-quality and useful close-up pictures in the book of the techniques she describes, and has many gorgeous photographs of Chanel jackets through the years. While I did not see the DVD included with the book, it must be an equally useful master course in couture fitting. For an aspiring tailor, clothing designer, or seamstress, to find a teacher for these techniques is as rare as hen’s teeth. Artisans that can do these things can rarely explain it. Shaeffer has done that AND produced a book with beautiful, clear photographs that you can reference again and again as you struggle to achieve something unique.

As I went to post this review, I discovered that Claire B. Shaeffer has an entire line of books and DVD sets on couture sewing techniques. Her line is wonderfully priced by the indispensable craft publisher Taunton Press. Creating works of art by hand makes better people of us—those who appreciate the time and effort involved in success and failure and beauty. We begin to understand talent, patience, perseverance…those things that will make a difference to us in our lives and loves. If you know an aspiring fabric-ator, the name Claire B. Shaeffer is a useful name to know.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pleased to add this title to my collection Oct. 8 2013
By Jessica - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was very excited to receive this book. I have gone through much of the book, but I have not been able to watch the DVDs. There were some points where I thought the instructions were a bit confusing and not detailed enough. I am hoping the DVD will help with those points. However, I think the overall quality of the book is great. There are a lot of beautiful techniques included in it that I haven't seen anywhere else before. I love that she dicusses the quilting technique. I have always wanted to know how to accomplish that. I like that the pattern she discusses is available through Vogue. I look forward to following her instructions to complete a jacket before moving on to some more adventurous projects. In the back of the books she talks about different ideas for fabrics for the jacket, one of which is denim. I have always wanted a nice denim jacket, but I can never find one that suits me. If I add a collar to her basic pattern (the Vogue pattern) I can create the denim jacket I have always wanted. I am very pleased with this book.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Nicely Done! Oct. 3 2013
By anascana - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My purchase arrived earlier than expected and in perfect condition. I love the book and am looking forward to viewing the CD. I just got the book so I have not had a chance to look at the CD yet. I love Claire Shaeffer...she is the expert to turn to for just about any sewing need and for improving one's skills to the couture level.
I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to elevate skills to that courture level and degree.
Thank you Claire.
17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful! And there's more... Oct. 3 2013
By David P. Coffin - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
So wonderful to have this detailed how-to guide at long last, just as Claire's fans have always wanted! Nice job, everybody, and congrats to Claire on another publishing milestone! As you'll see on the book's Resources page (137), Claire and I put together a vast digital image library based on her fabulous Chanel collection, with over 600 close-up, annotated inside, outside, and under the lining shots that you can zoom in on and ask questions about. The reference in the book left off the link to it, so here it is, in amazon-approved style: go to shaefferonchanel[dot]blogspot[dot]com. If you love Chanel and really want the inside scoop on these amazing creations, we think you'll be thrilled by this earlier labor of love from Claire.
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