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Reviewed by:Mini

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Member since: 3/21/02
Reviews: 115 (patterns: 57)
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Posted on:8/15/02 12:50 PM
Last Updated:6/24/03 7:34 PM
Pattern Size:Plus-Sized Regular 
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people    Very Helpful by 15 people   
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23 Comments      Login to Add a Comment    
jannw said... (4/2/07 10:44 PM) Reply
thank you for the great review..just found my patterns while cleaning the closet & am going to try some of the patterns, so your comments are helpful particulary on the gored skirt & tuxedo blouse.
Sanibelle said... (10/17/06 2:05 PM) Reply
Mini, your reviews keep on giving! I've read this one a number of times over the years, but it was just today, in trying to decide on a pants pattern and thinking about the SB full pants, that I noticed you mention Burda 4550 here. A light went on! This was the very first pattern I ever tried and had stuffed it away because I was so discouraged by my poor sewing skills at the time. I just went and dug it out and I'm going to try it again. It could be that the pattern I've been searching for has been hiding on a shelf all this time! THANK YOU!
Mufffet said... (9/25/06 1:55 PM) Reply
Thanks for this terrific review...I am making the wide pants first. I got the book recently at a closeout vendor (no paterns in it), and then ordered the patterns from Betzina's online store. I am certainly going to print your review and leave in the book permanently. I hope to try the tuxedo shirt.
Nancy Peters said... (11/4/04 11:35 PM) Reply
I love your reviews and if I see you have reviewed a pattern, yours is the first I click on. I too have this book. I agree with your assesment. The T was too boxy, the pants too tight, and the raglan dress needed lots of alterations. I made the raglan sleeve dress out of some stretch velour and had a bitch of a time with the underarms. Unfortunately I cut the pattern since the underarms hung to my waist. I had never made 2 piece raglan sleeves before or since. I did like the dress but it has gone to the wayside years ago. And thanks for the advice with the scarves. Maybe that is why I don't like scarves. They have always been square. I think I will pull out the book and make a few. Might as well get my moneys worth. He hee.
Denny1600 said... (9/26/04 7:41 AM) Reply
Mini--Thank you for this review. I'm in the process of making the slim pants and I can't get them up over my hips. So, obviously, I read something into the instructions that was different than Sandra Betzina's intent, so I came here for help. I made the full pants and like the look, but found that I needed to shorten the crotch quite a bit, too. I'll follow the suggestions from Mini and others for any other patterns that I try--such as the T-shirt. Thanks so much for your comments. This is EXACTLY what I wanted to know. Thanks again.
Doris Stewart said... (11/21/03 11:54 AM) Reply
Thank you, thank you and thank you. I have had this book and patterns for a long time and just couldn't get excited enough to attempt sewing anything up. Could be because I knew that a 'fluffy petitte' should steer away from the tapered pants even when she wants them to look as good on her as they do in the book! I may try the T shirt with your modifications and the Tuxedo shirt is still tempting me . . . I still want to justify buying the set to begin with - better than lamenting time and fabric on something I wouldn't be able to wear, thanks.
Neefer said... (6/25/03 5:07 PM) Reply
I think I am the only one who likes the slim/tapered leg pants. I followed her directions for the tummy alteration and added 6 inches for my tummy. I forget if it was 6 inches total or 6 inches/pattern piece. She has you do this by slicing the pattern all the way down the leg. It worked for me, and I really like the pants. Of course, 6 inches is a tremendous amount to add, and adding those 6 inches at the tummy also added a lot at the thigh. That being said, I haven't made that many of these because of the lack of pocket.
sewywabbit said... (6/25/03 2:12 PM) Reply
Thanks for your review. I totally agree with your comments on the tuxedo shirt collar, wish I'd done something different with mine. Every time I wear it I have makeup on the collar. I also found the sleeves short, weird for me as I am very short. I did find that the gored skirt pattern was a dream I have made it 6 times and still love the way it fits. The full pants are lovely but not for me except on extra fluffy days. I had to shorten the crotch more than 2 inches. All that in mind, it still is a really good book.
Lisette said... (2/3/03 6:19 PM) Reply
I bought this book/patterns because I love the way Sandra Betzina teaches,she is very inspiring. I made the tuxedo shirt and like it very much, I found the sleeves on the short side but since I usually need to add to the sleeve lenght it might be just that. I'm sorry to hear about the other patterns I was going to try the dress next.
Everyday Sewist said... (2/3/03 0:45 AM) Reply
Mini, I had not seen this review. I'm glad it showed up at the top of the list again. I had thought about buying this to try out some new techniques but it sounds like this book would not really serve that purpose.
said... (10/10/02 4:27 PM) Reply
Wow! This was exactly my experience with these patterns! I have spent so much time trying to tweak them to look like the photos and I am always discouraged! I thought it was just me! I like the slim pants pattern but that was it. I'm short and fairly small so the t-shirt dwarfed me as well as the full pants. They made me look like my waist was up around my armpits. I love Sandra Betzina, though, so I enjoyed the book. I think I really like the styles but I am too short to wear them.
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said... (8/20/02 7:35 PM) Reply
Mini, I wish I had this review to read last year when I first purchased the book.Would have saved a lot of time and fabric wasted. I tried, both pants, tee shirt, and gored skirt and was not happy with any of them.KUTGW
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said... (8/18/02 1:20 AM) Reply
I made the tuxedo shirt years ago in a soft small wale corduroy...I loved the fit, the collar was perfect and didn't feel too high for me, so check for your own preferences. I have used this type of sleeve closing in just about every shirt/blouse since.
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said... (8/16/02 1:18 AM) Reply
Thank you Mini! I too had the book and the pattern (and gave away both). The vest, I made in the smallest size, came out very boxy and overwhelming for my figure (I am small and thin), perhaps because of the shape of the front parts. I found it unwearable. I agree with Lisa Laree that the illustration looks very different. Sandra's garments mostly rely on the wonderful fabrics she uses and the beautiful photographs, I guess. As an entertaining read I liked the book though.
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said... (8/15/02 9:35 PM) Reply
Great review Mini you have written and excellent review . I too have the book and pattern just have not make anything from them yet. After reading your review I will take a lot of work to use these patterns would probably be worth in for the shirt. The others I may pass on.
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said... (8/15/02 7:59 PM) Reply
Excellent review, Mini. I appreciate your taking the time to do such a thorough review. I have this book but haven't sewn anything from it yet. Your comments will be very helpful for when I do.
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said... (8/15/02 6:17 PM) Reply
I agree with CatherineN! But for now I am just very very happy that Mini is reviewing for us :o)
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said... (8/15/02 5:21 PM) Reply
Veryb well done, Mini. I have the book and pattern set also and had varying success with garments that I made from it; (the slim pants fit me like leggings, too). My biggest disappointment was that the illustrations on the pattern envelope did not match the garments themselves. The vest is probably the worst of the lot on that; it absolutely does not resemble the illustration at all. But the book is inspiring nonetheless -- I think it's due to Sandra's encouraging writing style -- and I'm glad I've got it.
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said... (8/15/02 4:41 PM) Reply
If you are ever looking for work, NYT could use you as a book reviewer. Thanks for the thorough reviews you always write for us.
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said... (8/15/02 3:55 PM) Reply
Mini, you have made a huge favor to all of us, thank you very much!!
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said... (8/15/02 3:10 PM) Reply
Mini, as usual you have provided us with a very comprehensive review. I purchased this book/pattern set because I liked the tuxedo shirt (I didn't know the patterns were available separately). I will keep your recommendations in mind if I decide I still want to make it.
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said... (8/15/02 2:36 PM) Reply
Mini, I agree with you on these patterns. Just because they are by Sandra Betzina, whom I love, I think these patterns should be passed over. I think I would have to make too many changes and would rather spend my time on garments that are more up to date and stylish than these.
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said... (8/15/02 2:28 PM) Reply
Wow! This is great! I will DEFINITELY be using the measuring tape a lot when I try any of these! Thank you so much for your very involved and very thoughtful review!
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