Guys, these prompts are killing me. I'm really bad at picking like, ONE thing to recommend or say is my favorite or what have you. Maybe I'm indecisive...but I'm not sure. ;)
I'm anticipating a lot of people will be posting today about long-revered books for the historical researcher/seamstress/tailor/enthusiast like Janet Arnold's Patterns of Fashion volumes, Costume in Detail by Nancy Bradfield, Costume Close-Up by Linda Baumgarten, Fitting and Proper by Sharon Ann Burnston, and many more that I both own and love.
There's one book on my shelf, however, that I pull out every so often when faced with a tricky problem or fitting issue and it usually contains the answer to my problems.
The Costume Technician's Handbook by Rosemary Ingham and Liz Covey was a required textbook in my Costume Construction class back when I was in college, and it's one of the few books that I kept after graduation. It has instructions for drafting, troubleshooting for fitting, measurement charts, and more. As my professor, Jill Hamilton, said so many times about costuming, "if the guts aren't right, nothing's going to be right!" Having a solid foundation of basic skills is imperative, and this book was a great introduction--as well as a handy continuing resource. Thanks, Jill, for making me buy it despite the price tag...and of course for teaching me how to use it.