The process of writing a book is involved. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Each draft gets written and edited, reviewed, passed from hand to hand, rewritten, reedited, and re-reviewed until – after many (many) drafts – you finally arrive at a finished product. It’s a shiny new representation of years of hard work. And in a best case scenario—like a perfect dinner party— it looks effortless.

Each author wants her books to be perfect, especially considering the blood, sweat, and tears that go into every word. You haven’t just written the pages, you have rewritten, proofed (see photo below), had projects produced, reproduced, pages designed, and then redesigned again. It’s all part of the glorious process of eliminating errors, removing comma splices, making things pretty, laying a foundation, and inspiring a person to want to hold your book, to open it and, in the end, find it perfect.


However, it happens occasionally, that something slips through the cracks. In our case, that “something” was the Bucket Hat pattern on page 39 of Alabama Studio Sewing + Design. When the illustrated pattern for the hat is enlarged and cut, the pieces don’t fit together the way that they should: the brim of the hat is too long for the perfectly sized circle. This Bucket Hat flaw only exists in the first printing of the book, as the subsequent printings have been corrected. For a child’s version, you will want to reduce our full-size adult pattern by 49%.


Our apologies to everyone who made a hat from the original pattern and were frustrated, disappointed, or outright mad as a hornet. We hope that the rest of the book makes up for some of your frustrations, that the “new and improved” Bucket Hat pattern will result in some colorful sun hats this season, and that our own Bucket Hat hides the perfect blush on our cheeks.





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Click to read 13 comments
  1. Janet

    You certainly achieved what you set out to do Natalie, your book is absolute perfection. I was looking for inspiration in my local bookstore one day, when I came upon this beautiful book that has done more to reignite my creativity than I could ever have imagined. Thank you for this generous gift, well done!


  2. Susan

    Your note brings back memories from proofing an academic book that I wrote when pregnant with my son. I finished just before I went into labor, good thing he was 10 days late! The proofs came a couple of months later, so here I sat, at my computer with a “baby at my breast”, and typing with my other hand corrections that had to be made. Not something I will ever forget. Unfortunately, my book is not such a success as yours. I love all of your books, especially the last and use them frequently. Thanks for sharing your designs.

  3. scamp (aka Shirley)

    Thank you for this! After seeing some posts about the error, I had put off making the hat because I’m too lazy (or busy or distracted!) to figure out what to do. Now I think I’ll get one cut out for some travel sewing next week!

  4. Nina

    I asked my local public library service to buy this book last week and am eagerly waiting for them to email me to say it’s arrived!

  5. Mary

    Thanks so much for the updated pattern! I made my first bucket hat and realized something was off with the pattern. I put it down to my copy shop (they can be a bit problematic). I loved the material too much to turn it into scrap so I continued on. It was a great lesson in altering something you’ve cut out to fit you perfectly. Well as perfectly as a beginning sewist can make anything. I am super proud of my slightly off kilter bucket hat as it was one of my first hand sewn pieces. At any rate, thanks again for the PDF and the beautiful books I use almost weekly.

  6. britt

    how nice of you. and i love your books so thanks for going through all that work!!! they have a very revered place beside my couch so that i can look at them whenever i am feeling blue or need some inspiration!

  7. lynn

    I’m a newbie sewist and had a blast playing with the bucket hat pattern. I start most projects with the idea that the first time is a run through and really try to enjoy the process. Yes I had to do some tweaking but I think I learned a lot along the way. You can see my before and after tweaking photos here :)http://fidlstix.blogspot.com/2013/04/stitching-away.html

  8. Amanda Perl

    The book is amazing. I rarely buy craft books unless I find myself trying to memorize every page, and that certainly happened when I picked up this one. These days I sew entirely by hand and there is very little out there for hand sewers besides what you offer. I even have a degree in costume construction and before this book I knew only one stretchy hand stitch (herringbone). What a delight – this book combines the two types of craft books – the kind with practical working instructions and the kind with inspiring pictures that make me start sewing right away. Thank you for your hard work, your philosophy or sustainability and slow living, and the beautiful book you produced.

  9. Moushka

    Thank you for updating the hat pattern. I can’t wait to make one for my DGD 🙂 You’ve inspired me to start slow sewing with your corset kit and your fabulous Craftsy class.
    I love tracing the growth of your company and your style throughout your three books. It’s uplifting to see your life and design philosophies come together and think, “Yes! Natalie gets it right.” All three books are a feast for the eyes but the details on colour choices and styles at the end of ASS&D make it unique. Your colour palette is exceptional. I’ve spent many happy hours poring over your colour charts, planning combinations for future garments. Thank you for so generously sharing your work. You bring beauty and joy to a world hungry for both.

  10. Sara Crystal

    how much would you reduce the pattern to make it newborn to 3 months’ size? I think it would make a nice baby shower gift with lots of variations possible. thanks, I am about to try it out. I went to the copy shop yesterday and made a pattern but hadnt seen this post then. I also made the patterns for the adult dress/ shirt and will be cutting some out later today. love sara

  11. Curlin R Sullivan

    Is there a downloadable pattern for the adult xl bucket hat that I can buy? Because of pandemic, I’d like to stay out of a print shop. I bought the book thinking that the included patterns also had hat patterns. i’m comfortable downloading and printing a tiled pattern at home that I can tape together.

    many thanks,

    Curlin Sullivan