The Mood Guide to Fabric and Fashion Book Review

If you don't already know, Mood Fabrics is a super stylish fabric store with locations in New York City and Los Angeles. What sets them apart from other fabric stores is that they buy the left over bolts of fabric from fashion designers and other sources instead of a set stock from distributors. I've never had the pleasure to go there but it is talked about as if it were the holy grail for sewing fashionistas. So when I saw this book, The Mood Guide to Fabric and Fashion I knew I had to have a look.

This book is beautiful. A hardcover filled with colorful photographs and packed with information. The first chapter gives the history of Mood Fabrics followed by information about fabric and fashion. Then detailed chapters about cotton, wool, knits and silks.

The first couple of chapters are designed to be read through completely while the latter 2/3 of the book is more of a reference for different types of fabrics and other fashion materials.

I was happy to find that they did mention the environmental impact that fabric manufacturing can have. I do wish they had expanded on that more, but it is good that they at least mentioned it. Mood's philosophy is that by buying the leftovers from designers they are reducing demand for new materials and putting to use what would have otherwise been waste. My favorite quotation in the book is from Michael Kors who said

The greenest thing you could do in fashion is to buy something great that you’re going to use for years.
— Michael Kors

With that in mind, the majority of the book is dedicated to fabric descriptions and when to use what type of material. For example: in the cotton section you can read about plain weave, bastiste, voile, poplin and broadcloth, oxford, dobby and pique, quilting cotton, gauze and cheesecloth, organdy, dotted swiss, sateen, flannel, moleskin, plaids and gingham, seersucker, chambray, muslin, twill, denim, corduroy, velveteen and cotton velvet, and cotton's cousins of linen and hemp. And that is just the cotton section! This book really is an amazing resource if you ever sew any of your own clothes.

Not only does this book tell you what distinguishes one material from another. It also gives ideas of why you would choose one weight to make pants and another for a blouse.

This book is for fashion students and home sewers who want a resource on the many varieties of fashion fabrics with a little history and inspiration mixed in. I highly recommend this book as a great reference for you home library.