Craft projects with flair

Take a look at this glorious range of fresh ideas and decorating schemes featured in this selection of craft books. Choose from modern and traditional quilt projects to timeless knitting patterns and draw inspiration from a do-it-yourself guide how to enrich the character of your home with individual panache. Have fun!

Syndetics book coverModern minimal : 20 bold & graphic quilts / Alissa Haight Carlton.
“This book is a beautiful collection of 20 modern quilt projects. Alissa’s designs emphasize the use of solid fabrics, negative space, asymmetry, and a simplicity that allows the quilts to make entirely on a home sewing machine. I can’t wait to make at least one of these quilts! This book beautifully showcases the modern quilt aesthetic. Her instructions are clear and concise, great for my beginner/high beginner skill level, and I love how she offers more than one way to quilt each blanket. The quilts vary in size, but I think for quilters with some experience it will be easy enough to make them larger or smaller if you want. Her color choices are beautiful, and the patterns would still look great with some prints swapped in, and still maintain the modern look. I have made “mosaic,” and it turned out great, looking more complicated than it was. I look forward to working though the rest of the quilts.” – (adapted from summary)

Syndetics book coverStar struck quilts : dazzling diamonds & traditional blocks : 13 skill-building projects / Barbara H. Cline.
“This book includes complete instructions for 9 wall hangings, which can then be transformed into 27 bed-sized quilts. Barbara shares many valuable life lessons and shows you how to achieve the fine workmanship found in the quilts made in her Mennonite community.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)

Syndetics book coverQuilting step by step / Maggi Gordon.
“Patchwork and quilting is all the rage at the moment and, with Quilting Step by Step you’ll be making perfect patchwork in no time. Whether you’re a complete beginner or a seasoned stitcher already, find out how to create over 70 inspiring block designs from ‘Lady of the Lake’ to ‘Folded Stars’.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)

Syndetics book coverBarn quilts and the American Quilt Trail movement / Suzi Parron with Donna Sue Groves.
“When German immigrants arrived in America, they brought with them a passion for brightly colored geometric patterns that they stitched into quilts that kept them toasty on frigid winter nights. They also decorated their otherwise plain barns with hex signs serving as talismans or as purely exuberant decoration. A decade ago, an enterprising Ohioan combined these traditions and mounted outsize quilt patterns in bright colors on old barns. Others quickly followed suit, and now many Midwestern and Eastern states have quilt trails that tourists pursue in outdoor museums of folk art. Parron and Groves have documented these trails with full-color photographs that show how imaginative many artists have become, incorporating butterflies, horses, flags, and other natural and man-made designs within the more abstract geometries of traditional barn quilts. The text profiles many of the artists whose work dazzlingly enlivens America’s farm country.” – (adapted from Booklist summary)

Syndetics book coverFeminine knits : 22 timeless designs / Lene Holme Samsøe ; [translation, Carol Huebscher Rhoades].
“Fall in love with knitting all over again with this intriguing pattern collection that blends captivating designs with flattering, feminine silhouettes. Knitters will be eager to start and delighted to finish each project that includes skirts, jackets, tank tops, pullovers, and accessories. An excellent showcase of texture, lace, and unusual pattern construction, each project is inspired by current and vintage fashion and the mathematical aspect of design. Featuring projects for every season, skill level, time commitment, and occasion, each collection is full of elegant finishing and the kind of impeccable detail that makes transforms each piece into a classic. This manual, packed to the brim with timeless yet fashionable patterns, also features beautiful photographs that highlight the detail and feminine silhouettes of each finished piece.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)

Syndetics book coverKnitting everyday finery : practical designs for dressing up in little ways / Mel Clark ; photography by Helen Bankers.
“This book is a comforting treat! Like a cup of tea in the afternoon – an instant pick-me-up! It’s not surprising as its author is Mel Clark. Every page is simply drenched in gorgeous visuals and the projects are little treasures, full of charmingly thought out details. Photography is uncluttered and seductive and the patterns all look to be straightforward, most easy enough for beginners. It’s a bonus that readily available yarns are used for the designs and also information is included about substitute yarns. Some of the favourite projects are: The Heroine Hood: The shape of this hood is super flattering, the pattern has sufficient detail to be interesting but easy enough to be a relaxing knit – especially in the suggested cashmere yarn. It will be perfect for winter to wear outdoors as a hood or indoors as a cowl.The Tweed Hat and Scarf: Men prefer very simple knits – this is the perfect set. Also, who doesn’t love a photo of a lovely young man holding a barnyard bird! Mrs. Lovechild Shawl: A lovely design, easy knitting, perfect size and shape – and a collar! Shiraz Slippers: At long last, felted slippers with a sexy shape. How fun!” – (adapted from summary)

Syndetics book coverCustom crocheted sweaters : make garments that really fit / Dora Ohrenstein ; [photography, Scott Jones].
“It is possible to go through the whole process of making a sweater, only to find that it doesn’t fit quite right. Ohrenstein guides readers through making sweaters that fit, deflating common fears along the way. She doesn’t just want you to follow instructions; she wants you to grasp the technique of how sweaters are constructed, with the idea that once you understand the concept, you can alter, customize, and even change the project to suit your fit and style. This is not for beginners but, rather, for crocheters who want to take their craft to the next level in combining creativity with technical construction. Included are 10 sweater designs with alterations. Each pattern includes discussion of technique and lessons, with emphasis on understanding how the garment is put together and including helpful side notes. Challenge yourself under the caring guidance of this designer, writer, teacher, and professional singer (also author of Crochet Insider’s Passion for Fashion, 2008, and Creating Crochet Fabric, 2010, and founder-editor of” – (adapted from Booklist summary)

Syndetics book coverSuper-cute pincushions : 35 adorable pincushions all stitchers will love / Kate Haxell.
“Create your own pretty and practical pincushions with step-by-step designs for the cute and quirky or the vintage and chic. A pincushion, like any other piece of equipment, should be fit for purpose and the filling is important too! A carborundum or sand-filled pincushion will keep pins sharp and bright and you’ll find a note with each project recommending the best fillings fir it. Work with a range of materials including seed beads, buttons, ticking, felt and ribbon and check out the various techniques and templates.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)

Syndetics book coverLiving in a nutshell : posh and portable decorating ideas for small spaces / Janet Lee ; photography by Aimée Herring.
“A do-it-yourself guide to transforming the smallest of spaces into fun and functional living areas easily and economically features tips on organization, personalization, and using colors and vintage materials.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)

Syndetics book coverThe homemade home for children : 50 thrifty and chic projects for creative parents / Sania Pell.
“Stunning and packed with really inspirational ideas for any parent to make for all age groups of children. I didn’t want to put it down but my 12 year old daughter Isabella got hold of it and ear marked her favourite projects straight away. The design work that Sania Pell has created is something so precious you would want to do if just for a special keepsake.” – (adapted from summary)