I fell in love with this book at Kinokuniya in New York last summer:
Google translates the title as “we wear clothes oneself“, with the subtitle “when you change from a three dimensional plane“. (No wonder I loved it!) To be accurate, what I fell in love with was the skirt on the cover, which has functional cut-outs on the hem that allow it to be worn a multitude of ways: With the cut-outs in front; to the sides; buttoned together to form pant legs; buttoned to form pleats at the hem. Whoo, baby, this is my kind of fun! Which is not to say that there isn’t a lot of other interesting stuff in the book. There is!
Here’s the list of garments from Amazon Japan (as translated by Google):
a – scarf two yen (I think this name must refer to the shape of a yen coin: it’s a clever scarf made of two circles sewn together to form an “s”shape)
b – to be worn with a light bolero top and bottom of the cloth accents (a light bolero jacket that can be worn two ways, making two different necklines)
c – semi + c flared dirndl (a faux wrap skirt made in two different fabrics)
d – ribashiburuberuto with pocket (a cute, decorative hip band with a hidden pocket)
e – double skirt (a tube skirt that can be pulled inside out to make several different looks)
f - best open-back + stall (a scarf that can also be worn as a vest-like topper)
g -furenchisuribuburausu pleated shoulder (simple blouse with a fluttery, pleated sleeve and two neckline variations)
h - bolero towel (a short bolero-style jacket – maybe possibly made from a Japanese towel?)
i – skirt + pants (my favorite, and the one on the cover)
j – best long scarf (a scarf with two armholes, and a pleat formed by a snap in back)
k – 1 of the marks sheet wrap skirt (a nicely-shaped wrapped skirt with mitered corners on the hem)
l – cloth accents – spiral corsage (OK, this is the only thing I ‘m not impressed with – it looks like a spiral of cloth with ragged edges stuck onto a blouse. I can’t find the directions for it, either, but I’m thinking that’s no loss)
There’s also an item b1, which is a choker with a fabric “medallion”; the instructions are hidden on page 57 in the back. And speaking of hidden, if you remove the beautiful dust jacket, there’s another nice garment shot underneath.
This is one of those Japanese sewing books that have no English instructions. All the patterns are included on paper sheets in the back of the book. You fold out the sheets, find the garment you intend to make and trace the pattern pieces. The saving grace for those of us who don’t read Japanese is that the instructions are beautifully illustrated. This isn’t a book for a novice sewist, but assembling the garments here should be no problem at all for someone with a bit of experience — or a ton of patience!
We Wear Clothes Oneself was written by Natsuno Hiraiwa (that’s the Japanese form of the name; the surname is Natsuno); the ISBN is 978-4-579-11236-4. You can order it using the ISBN through Kinokuniya in the USA, or see it on amazon.co.jp, where it can also be ordered. These books are exceptionally beautiful. The photos are printed on heavy, glossy paper, and they are a pleasure both to see and to handle. Not to mention that the aesthetic is deliciously different, even if you never sew a thing and only feast your eyes!