Heavy-Duty Sewing is an English book by Anton Sandqvist, who is known for his outdoor brand: Sandqvist. In this book you can read everything about making products that are robust and strong, because they are made of heavy and sturdy fabrics. We mention: canvas, leather, strong cotton and heavier woven wool fabrics. Anton Sandqvist 'does magic' with these fabrics and is making beautiful backpacks, bags, toiletry bags, baskets and practical holders for knives and kitchen utensils.
It is a beautiful book in terms of design that exudes Scandinavia in every photo. And it is a big challenge to go for sturdy, stiff fabrics and to make usable stuff from them.
But we do have a little bit of criticism, and we'll explain that in this blog.
Heavy Duty Sewing:
The book starts with an introduction about how you can make the most beautiful and strongest products from sturdy fabrics with a needle, thread and a sewing machine. This is a completely different matter compared to clothing. It's not about fancy details or complicated sewing patterns, but about simple patterns, simple constructions and everything with one goal: to make strong products that can take a beating!
Anton Sandqvist talks about the fact that for him it was mainly a matter of practicing a lot, trying things out and working slowly and patiently on projects. He also explains that it is very satisfying to make things yourself and to be able to repair things and thus use them longer. His enthusiasm radiates from every project and you can clearly see that the products are well developed.
The book starts with a few pages of sewing theory and basic skills. These are mainly about the CONSTRUCTION of shapes which are good to try out with paper first. This will give you a better understanding of how the fabric product is ultimately put together. After this there is a chapter about the materials we will work with. From canvas to lining fabric; each substance has its own specific properties. Canvas, twill, cordura, ripstop, poplin and leather are extensively discussed. And furthermore: yarns, bias tape, bag webbing, zippers and closures.
The following chapter is about sewing machines that can handle the tough work, tips and tricks and then the following projects:
You can draw the sewing patterns yourself and are neatly indicated in centimeters and schematically drawn as an example. This is quite easy to do. We found the work descriptions a lot more difficult and there are no drawings about the constructions. You must therefore have a little insight and sewing experience to carry out the projects properly. The latter is a minus point of the beautiful book, because a few schematic drawings would make it a lot easier. It's all a lot of text and going through the paragraphs step-by-step.
Heavy Duty Sewing is a very beautiful book, especially if you like the tough outdoors and Scandinavia or nature in general. The products are very useful and fun to make. You do need an average sewing level to be able to follow the work descriptions, without schematic drawings or photos.
Nevertheless, this book is a very welcome addition to the nice sewing books that have been coming out of Scandinavia lately and it is DURABILITY in capital letters. After all, these great sturdy bags will last you years and few bells and whistles have been added to the constructions: beautiful minimalism, stylish and tough in one!