Thursday, January 20, 2011

Talkin 'bout a Revolution!

As in the book: "Denim Revolution" by Nancy Minsky. Have you heard of it?

Well let me review it for you (my first book review EVER...), shall I?

"Denim Revolution" is a sewing/fashion/craft book that aims to show you "dozens of ways to turn denim cast-offs into fashion must-haves". It is a book filled with beautiful photos, handy diagrams, and stylish fashion sketches all there to inspire you to breathe new life and excitement into your own denim wardrobe. The book has something for everyone. Styles range from reckless to sassy, from cute to classy.

Nancy Minsky tackles the subject with a little denim background, explaining how denim is made and how it behaves. She describes what the bias of a fabric is and why it's important. She illustrates how to adjust a pattern and lists the essential tools needed to make each project.

The bulk of the book is taken up with an assortment of step-by-step upcycling projects. The author shows you how to use denim patches to embellish existing items. She demonstrates how to re-invent your denim clothing by adding embroidery, patches, slashing, fraying, stenciling, ribbon, buttons. She teaches you how to create whole new fashion statements by recycling old denim into a cap, a belt, a tie, a cape, gauntlets, cuffs, bags. Denim Revolution illustrates the funkification of vests, jackets, skirts, shorts, or jeans. Projects are suited to a range of skill levels from beginner to experienced. Some projects are very simple, others are more complex, and require combinations of skills.

One of my favourite parts of the book explains how to use a hammer and nails to add texture to your denim pieces (!) and states that it's okay to dribble house paint on your jeans à la Jackson Pollack. Let me at it. I like Ms. Minsky's way of challenging the reader to improvise and create his or her own unique versions of her designs. I like to be adventurous when I am crafting; I want to feel empowered to do my own thing. Denim Revolution does that.

I'll conclude this review with a teaser. I have joined the revolution! And I am working on a project inspired by Nancy Minsky's book. I'll be back soon with photos of the finished project, and thoughts on how it all went down!

Now have a yourself a great day, and I will see you soon!

  • I was not asked to review this book. The book was a gift from the author and I chose to review it here. The above opinions are my own.
  • "Denim Revolution" was written by Nancy Minsky. Find Ms. Minsky online @ 21st Century Dressmakers and blogging @ Jean Repair.


  1. This feels like Denim Revolution revisited! Back in the seventies we decorated our jeans with all kinds of flower power fabrics and lace...

  2. Can't wait to that beret, looks like such a fun book!

  3. I bought the book awhile back and reviewed it here: along with another great book called Jean Therapy. Recycled denim is my favourite material to work with. I can't wait to see what you make!

  4. not the revolution, it´s the future! recycling, the best. Adore you blog, you are so creative! kisses

  5. What a great idea for a post! I may have to steal your idea my dear :)

    And I may have to check out this book too. I love working on denim too. I took one of Alis Burke's online classes and she uses it for all kinds of collages with acrylic paint and ragged edges. Love it!

  6. Looking forward to seeing what you make.... I have been collecting old denims to make a raggy quilt for outside.... what I really need is some denims that can cope with the widening of the girth......

  7. I'm excited to see what you've got up your sleeve (or pant leg, as the case may be when you're dealing with jeans/denim)!

  8. Hey Michele i love to read a good review...well done....where have you been hiding?!

  9. Sounds like this is a great book. Can't wait to see what you make. Hugs Ariane


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