Brighten your artistic world! New craft books in October

Enrich the list of your craft projects with ideas and easy to follow designs in this collection of stitching, knitting and crochet newly arrived library books. Find a list of easy to make wonderful gifts for Christmas and happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverBrioche chic : 22 fresh knits for women & men / Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark.
“A modern take on brioche stitch with gorgeous wearable garments and accessories that knitters will love. Author Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark offers a solid introduction to brioche knitting and a collection of 22 garments and accessories for women and men, including hats, scarves, cowls, mittens, pullovers, vests, and cardigans. Striking brioche stitch designs that are not overwhelming or full of complicated techniques will reel in readers to this fun style of knitting. Starting with the basics, Brioche Chic offers mini collections of garments revolving around a specific set of techniques.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKnit a square, create a cuddly creature : from flat to fabulous : a step-by-step guide / Nicky Epstein.
“Wise owls, feisty fighting fish, and delightful turtles are just a few of the 25 cute critters that knitters will enjoy constructing from this collection of addictive projects. Using Epstein’s fresh approach to crafting stuffed animals, and her simple step-by-step instructions, knitters need only make a square (often with color work or quirky techniques), sew it into the designated shape, and stuff it! The results are adorable, and fun embellishments add rich detail and character to each creature.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRomantic lace knitting : 20 gorgeous designs for every occasion / Monika Eckert, Stephanie van der Linden.
“While away magical hours knitting with delicate yarn and bright colors to create shawls and scarves to take with you wherever you go. There is a range of styles to suit everyone and every occasion – from festive and nostalgic to elegant and modern. With 20 gorgeous designs for shawls, wraps and scarves, this is an essential book for any lace knitter.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCutest ever baby toys to knit : over 20 adorable projects / Val Pierce.
Cutest Ever Baby Toys to Knit includes an introduction to basic knitting skills, techniques, and terminology. Altogether it is the ideal book for beginning knitters, while providing an enjoyable source of inspiration for those with knitting experience. Knitted toys and nursery accessories in soft, cozy yarns make wonderful gifts. Small rattles, cheery mobiles and colorful booties as a bonus. Clear instructions and a delightful photograph accompany every toy in the book.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book cover501 enchanting embroidery designs : irresistible stitchables to brighten up your life / Boutique-Sha.
“This fun embroidery book contains hundreds of creative designs you can use to personalize all sorts of things! From a little hand-sewn gift, to personalized linens and cushions, to a well-worn and well-loved pair of jeans. 501 Enchanting Embroidery Designs offers simple hand-embroidery motifs that highlight life’s small pleasures. These freestyle designs are easy even for novices and will add that special touch to anything–from an apron for your best friend to the neckline of your favorite top.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMini makers : crafty makes to create with your kids / Laura Minter & Tia Williams.
“You don’t need to be an arty creative type to be able to enjoy crafting with your young children. Mini Makers will give you the ideas and the inspiration to experiment with an explore the hugely rewarding world of making and creating together. Paint, draw, print, cut, stick, sew and bake your way through this book with your little makers. Projects include: Pebble dominoes, Clay tea set, Magnetic faces, Cardboard boat and No-sew cape.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCrochet taxidermy : 30 quirky animal projects, from mouse to moose / Taylor Hart.
Crochet Taxidermy puts a new twist on amigurumi , the popular Japanese method of creating considerably cute stuffed animals with oversized heads. In this delightful collection, heads of animals from farm and forest, sea and safari come to life with irresistible details like the drowsy eye (for the shy deer and sleepy octopus) and fuzzy yarn (for the skittery skunk’s stripe and lazy lion’s mane). Step-by-step instructions and adorable photos guide you through these 30 easy crochet patterns. Most require just one skein of yarn, so they’re affordable and quick to crochet!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book cover100 little christmas gifts to make.
“The projects cover a wide variety of crafts from including papercraft, sewing, knitting, crochet, sugarcraft, felt decorations, jewelry making, cross stitch, mosaic making, decoupage, polymer clay decorations and needlepoint. All projects are simple enough for experienced beginners and will also appeal to seasoned crafters. These charming Christmas items make fabulous gifts for family and friends.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Projects and designs to celebrate the season – craft picks for December

Give your creativity free reign to design your own projects with lots of inspiration from some of our latest craft books. They are filled with ideas and tips about crochet and embroidery projects, including how to make needle-felt Teddy Bears. And, for those of you who love paper crafts and search for fun projects to make with your kids, take a look at ‘Playful’ by Merrillee Liddiard. A delightful book to entertain your little ones and help them to learn useful techniques. Have fun!

Syndetics book coverCrochet with one sheepish girl : easy lessons & sweet designs for wearing, living & giving / Meredith Crawford, onesheepishgirl.com.
“Crawford, creator of the popular crochet blog One Sheepish Girl, is known for her vibrant, vintage-inspired style. In her first book, the author shares a variety of projects suitable for beginning-to-intermediate crocheters, including accessories, home decor, and gifts. Most of the projects are fairly simple and quick to make, and there are quite a few makeover-style designs in the book, in which crochet is used to embellish a premade garment or object, such as a sweater or tote bag. There are more unusual projects as well, such as the camera-shaped purse and the adorable party hat and sno-cone garlands. ” (Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverDoodle stitching : the holiday motif collection : embroidery projects & designs to celebrate the seasons / Aimee Ray.
“The latest in Ray’s popular series of embroidery books (Doodle Stitching: Embroidery & Beyond; Crewel, Cross Stitch, Sashiko & More) focuses on Christmas projects featuring embroidery. This time, Ray has enlisted several popular embroidery bloggers, including Mollie Johansen and Carina Envoldsen-Harris, to bring their own style to holiday embroidery. The enclosed CD includes all of the motifs from the projects, plus a number of other holiday themes, and a selection for a variety of other celebrations such as Halloween, the Fourth of July, and Hanukkah.” (Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverHow to make little needle-felted teddy bears / Judy Balchin & Roz Dace.
Needle-felting is an easy and fun technique, requiring little in the way of expensive materials or equipment. Its accessibility means it’s becoming more and more popular, and here Judy Balchin and Roz Dace show you how to make 20 wonderful little teddy bears using this tactile technique. Each bear measures around 10-12cm tall and can be made in a matter of hours from a bundle of wool fibres, a felting needle and some carefully chosen embellishments. (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverPlayful : fun projects to make with + for kids / Merrilee Liddiard ; photographs by Nicole Hill Gerulat.
Playful : fun projects to make with + for kids is a charming collection of 26 unique, modern projects for parents (and other adults) to make for young children as well as an exciting assortment of projects that kids preschool age and up can make alongside an adult. Divided into five categories–Dress Up, Toys, Paper Crafts, Repurposing and Art–the low-skill/high-style/low-cost projects include fair maiden and knight dress-up smocks, a tiger pinata, a parade of paper puppets, a convoy of trucks, a dollhouse made out of cardboard and bright duct tape, an art table, a cloth trapeze doll and wooden pencil holders. Templates for artwork shown on projects are included with step-by-step, easy-to-follow instructions. Authored by Merrilee Liddiard and photographed by Nicole Gerulat, this enchanting book is sure to inspire many happy hours of making–as well as make-believe–among adults and the children they love. (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Creative craft ideas for winter – featuring literary knits!

Winter is a great time for cosying up with craft books and this inspiring selection of our latest arrivals, full with delightful finds, may be just what you need to lighten up the winter blues. Enjoy!

Syndetics book coverLiterary knits : 30 patterns inspired by favorite books / Nikol Lohr.
“More than 30 projects inspired by classic literature Literary Knits features 30 knitting patterns inspired by beloved characters from classic books; from Pride and Prejudice to Moby Dick, The Catcher in the Rye to The Chronicles of Narnia-and many more in between. Inspired by some of the most beloved characters from favorite books, including an elegant Daisy Cloche inspired by The Great Gatsby and a late ’50s-inspired Holly Golightly Dress imagined from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, the more than 30 knitting projects in this unique collection will inspire.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHand-stitched home : embroidered inspiration, ideas, and projects / Caroline Zoob ; photography by Caroline Arber.
“Projects for your home include a beautifully sheer patchwork curtain, an heirloom quilt that incorporates found and original embroidery, shelf edging embroidered with an array of kitchen motifs, decorative panels for glazed doors and a charming nautically themed laundry bag.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStitch it for Spring / Lynette Anderson.
“A gorgeous collection of Spring-themed quilting and stitching designs from top fabric designer Lynette Anderson, including table runners, wall hangings and larger quilts, as well as smaller, quick-to-stitch gifts, all featuring Lynettes new fabric range from Lecien. Beautiful fabrics, fresh colours and cute designs are enhanced by a book design that captures Lynettes heart-warming, quirky style.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLittle stitches : 100+ sweet embroidery designs – 12 projects / Aneela Hoey.
“Hoey’s name is familiar to many modern quilters-she’s one of the founders of the popular Fat Quarterly e-zine, and her fabric lines for Moda blend fairy-tale whimsy with cheery color palettes. In her first book, she applies her charming aesthetic to a variety of small-scale embroidery projects. After an introduction to basic embroidery stitches and their uses, Hoey presents a variety of projects that combine small embroidered designs with simple sewing. The motifs are interchangeable, and all are included on reusable iron-on transfers. -VERDICT Embroidery is gaining in popularity, especially among younger crafters. Hoey’s cute, vintage-inspired approach will appeal to novice stitchers.”

Syndetics book coverStitched in Scandinavia : 39 contemporary embroidery projects / by Karin Holmberg.
“Karin Holmberg studied textiles in Stockholm, where her degree show exhibition was greatly admired for its original work stitching traditional Scandinavian motifs onto clothes from H&M. Her work has been exhibited internationally in museums and design fairs. Karin is the new star in the Swedish craft world when it comes to stitching, and teaches embroidery courses and workshops in Stockholm. She also takes on private commissions.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBlueprint crochet sweaters : techniques for custom construction / Robyn Chachula.
“An introduction to sweater and garment construction that will provide an understanding of working with crochet to make better-fitting garments. Robyn Chachula began her career as a structural engineer with a specialty in historic preservation and renovation, which uses her ability to take big projects and break them into little items anyone can understand. She is the author of ‘Blueprint Crochet: Modern Designs for the Visual Crocheter’ (Interweave, 2008). Visit her blog, crochetbyfaye.com.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDessert roll quilts : 12 simple dessert roll quilt patterns / Pam & Nicky Lintott.
“Pam Lintott opened her shop, The Quilt Room, in 1981, which she still runs today, with her daughter Nicky. Dessert Roll Quilts is Pam and Nicky’s ninth book for David & Charles following on from their eight extremely successful jelly roll quilt books including the phenomenally successful Jelly Roll Quilts and the last in the series Antique to Heirloom Jelly Roll Quilts.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverExploring canework in polymer clay : color, pattern, surface design / Patricia Kimle.
“An award-winning polymer and metal clay artist and designer,Patricia Kimle has contributed more than 30 project articles to magazines. She has written several successful books, including one published by Kalmbach, ‘Perfectly Paired’. She is a member of the International Polymer Clay Association and is a designer member of the Craft and Hobby Association.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAdditions to clay bodies / Kathleen Standen.
“Kathleen Standen studied ceramics at the London Metropolitan University. She was joint winner of the 2010 Contemporary Ceramics Award by Millcove Gallery and in 2011 her work was selected to represent Ireland in the FuLe Museum in Fuping, China. She has exhibited in the UK, Ireland and China and is a member of the Craft Council of Ireland.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMedieval-inspired knits : stunning brocade and swirling vine patterns with embellished borders/ Anna-Karin Lundberg.
“Inspired by 15th- and 16th-century church paintings in her native Sweden, Lundberg sought with her first book to recreate the stunning colors and all-over designs in knitwear. Swedish yarn and Scandinavian techniques are used to create the sweaters and accessories in this book, and each pattern includes narrative instructions as well as the necessary charts. The result is a close cousin to classics of colorwork like Alice Starmore’s long-out-of-print Tudor Roses-works of art made wearable. VERDICT Though this book appeals to a specialized audience-knitters with an interest in traditional stranded colorwork and the skills to make such detailed patterns-those knitters are passionate about their craft, and will appreciate Lundberg’s inspiring collection. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” (Library Journal)

Brighten your day with refreshing ideas

Welcome to this month’s selection of irresistible books on knitting, weaving and embroidery, as well as, beautifully finished accessories for your home. Satisfy your creative urge, experiment a little with new ideas and learn great techniques through the numerous step-by-step instructions and, if you fancy a pot of tea, take a look at the gorgeous collection of colourful tea cosies, created by J. Occleshaw. Enjoy!

Syndetics book coverKnit a monster nursery : practical and playful knitted baby patterns / Rebecca Danger ; [photography by Brent Kane].
“Knit up a delightful collection of fun yet practical monster themed projects your little ones are sure to love. From the creative mind behind the best-selling “Big Book of Knitted Monsters” comes an adorable collection of more than 16 knitted toys, clothing, accessories, and nursery decorations that you’ll love knitting for the little one in your life. Stitch a roomful of fun and practical items – suitable for both boys and girls, and for knitters of all levels – including an irresistible monster mobile, baby blankets, blocks, booties, bookends, rattles, hats, and more!” (Adapted from Amazon.co.uk review)

Syndetics book coverKnits at home : rustic designs for the modern nest / Ruth Cross ; with photography by Ben Anders.
“One of the trademarks of Ruth Cross, the knitting design company British knitting designer Ruth Bridgeman founded in 2004, is the use of traditional stitches – garter, stockinette, seed and cables – to create texture on items not normally covered with wool, such as vases or furniture. But the traditional nature of Ruth Cross designs is also one of the book’s weaknesses. While the book includes 22 projects, ranging from sachets to rugs, it offers nothing the enterprising knitter could not achieve on his or her own with existing stitch dictionaries. Another weakness is the narrow palette of grey, cream, and black used in almost every project. Such limits are a barrier to inspiration from the otherwise excellent photographs. Still, for the knitter who wants to incorporate his or her craft into her home decor, this book offers a one-stop shop for is pretty patterns for pillows, throws and wall hangings. And the real value of the book lies in the author’s organic approach to knitting, building one stitch on top of another to achieve texture, while her mantra that knitting should always be fun will serve knitters of all levels well. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.” (Publisher Weekly) (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverKnitted letters : make personalized gifts and accents with creative typography-based knitting projects / Catherine Hirst and Erssie Major.
“This is a knitting book full of great ideas for knitting with typography. It’s suitable for all knitting skill levels. The introduction includes how to customize projects, information about yarn and gauging and fairly complete diagrams for a beginning knitter. My favourite stranded projects include the Slab Serif collegiate looking children’s backpack, the French press cozy with the word CAFE in a stenciled inspired font (pictured on the cover) and calligraphic black letter e-reader cover with the words “ex libris”. There are a lot more projects than that, including some great children’s projects. The 3D letters pictured on the cover are more involved with more seaming and shaping, and more advanced knitters would have fun with those. As well as the LOVE pillows, there are also bookends that are the letters A and Z for witty knitty fun.” (Adapted from Amazon.co.uk review)

Syndetics book coverThe shape of knitting : a master class in increases, decreases, and other forms of shaping : with 20+ projects / Lynne Barr ; photographs by Thayer Allyson Gowdy ; photostyling by Karen Schaupeter.
” Lynne Barr is one of my favourite brains in knitting. She’s not afraid to explore, de-and re-constuct to hit on something new and inventive. In this book Lynne searches methodes for shaping flat and dimensional knotted fabrics, as well as, new techniques she has mastermanded. Twenty-four fashion-fresh projects make exploring these skills a fascinating adventure!”–Publisher’s description (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverTea cosies / Jenny Occleshaw.
“This book has a delightful collection of unique, easy-to-make tea cosies to cheer every table. It includes projects duitable for experienced crafters and newcomers alike and, every project is explained using easy-to-follow instructions”.–Publisher’s description (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverAlastair Morton and Edinburgh Weavers : visionary textiles and modern art / Lesley Jackson.
“Edinburgh Weavers was one of the most important textile companies of the twentieth century. Alastair Morton, visionary art director of the company, commissioned a remarkable series of textiles from leading British artists, including Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth and Elisabeth Frink, as well artist-designers, such as Marion Dorn, Ashley Havinden and Lucienne Day. Morton was also a gifted artist, textile designer and weaver in his own right. This long overdue study traces his wide-ranging career and records the history of Edinburgh Weavers and the glorious textiles it produced. Drawing on the V&A’s extensive archive this impressive book features over 300 images of artists’ textiles unparalleled in quality and scope and is an invaluable resource.”–Publisher’s description (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe spinner’s book of yarn designs : techniques for creating 80 yarns / Sarah Anderson.
“According to the introduction, Anderson’s goal here isn’t to teach readers how to spin, but to share the information that she has collected over the 35+ years that she’s been creating her own yarn. The first half of the book covers spinning basics, from fiber preparation to spinning singles to a variety of plying techniques. The second half covers advanced techniques for spinning novelty, textured, and art yarns, including boucles, crepe yarns, and coil yarns. Anderson includes ample photographs, many of them including callouts describing the makeup of the yarn being discussed. VERDICT Most recent spinning books have focused on one type of yarn, and Anderson’s more general approach offers enough variety to keep spinners busy. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” (Library Journal) (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe art of modern tapestry : Dovecot Studios since 1912 / edited by Elizabeth Cumming ; with an essay by David Weir.
“Setting out to celebrate, document and discuss the work and role of an international tapestry workshop, Dovecot Studios, since its foundation in Edinburgh in 1912, this ground-breaking publication uniquely explores the artistic value, nature and identity of modern tapestry through images, essays and the commentaries of weavers, artists and patrons. Dovecot Studios has constantly evolved since it was established before the Great War. Initial Arts and Crafts ideals developed into a more proactive engagement with modernism from the 1950s, when designs came from leading British artists such as Graham Sutherland, Henry Moore, Stanley Spencer, Cecil Beaton and John Piper. In the 1960s international ambition partnered a quest for experimentation, as characterised by collaborations with artists such as Eduardo Paolozzi, David Hockney, Robert Motherwell and Louise Nevelson”–Publisher’s description (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverEmbroidery : traditional techniques and contemporary applications for hand and machine embroidery / Sophie Long.
“Needlecrafts are currently enjoying a healthy revival as a whole new generation of crafters pick up their needles and get involved. With a plethora of social groups, blogs, and websites such as Etsy and Design Sponge now targeted specifically at a younger, hipper demographic, embroidery has cast off its image as an old fashioned hobby to become more popular than ever before. With its combination of step-by-step tutorials, practitioner profiles, and inspirational galleries full of bang up-to-date modern pieces, Embroidery introduces an authoritative new style of reference that is guaranteed to appeal to a new generation of embroidery enthusiasts, sewers, and needlecrafters of all levels.”–Publisher’s description (courtesy of Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverHappy home : everyday magic for a colourful life / Charlotte Hedeman Guéniau ; foreword by Holly Becker of Decor8.
“This book shows people how the basics of everyday life can be made so much more enjoyable by bringing colour and a sense of fun to daily living, whether by using colourful accessories in the kitchen or by introducing colourful fabrics, textures and hints of humour in to the living room. Danish design is not all about cool and calm interiors. It is all about fun, colour and enjoyment. The book features RICE style applied to a variety of homes, from a contemporary Copenhagen apartment to a simple country retreat, a comfortable family home to an ultra modern studio space. Happy Home is a beautiful demonstration of the RICE ethos, and how its warm and caring, fun and funky aesthetic can be applied in living spaces, kitchens, bedrooms, children’s rooms and outdoor areas.” (Adapted from Amazon.co.uk review)

New Year Inspirations

Take a look at this eclectic mix of new craft books, featuring clever and creative ideas to help you kick off the New Year. Experience the contemporary culture of craft with gorgeous crochet and embroidery projects, passed down through the generations, from mothers to daughters and learn new techniques. And, if you like to add dimension or shine to stitchery, designer Yasuko Endo provides all the basics and plenty of inspiration in her book ‘Bead embroidery stitch samples’. Enjoy the challenge!

Syndetics book coverSimple crochet : with more than 35 vintage-vibe projects for your handmade life / Sara Sinaguglia.
Crafter and blogger Sara Sinaguglia has created 35 easy-to-make crochet projects for everyday life. From cushions, coasters and bags to toys, scarves and pot holders, bring a little of Sara’s stylish vintage vibe into your crafting life. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCrochet workshop : learn how to crochet with 20 inspiring projects / Erika Knight.
Crochet Workshop is the perfect book for the beginner. Under Erika Knight’s guidance even those who have never picked up a crochet hook before will soon be making gorgeous projects and all the while learning new techniques and adding to their skills. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverHomespun vintage : 20 timeless knit and crochet projects / Jane Crowfoot.
The craft skills that have traditionally been passed down through the generations from mother to daughter are as popular as ever, boosted by the current vogue for all things vintage. Drawing inspiration from the interiors and fashions of the 20th century, this book is packed full of knit and crochet projects which will fit perfectly into any vintage-inspired interior. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFree-form embroidery with Judith Baker Montano : transforming traditional stitches into fiber art / [Judith Baker Montano].
“For embroiderers ready to make the leap of faith from pillowcases with kittens stamped in blue to fiber art, Montano’s newest serves as a beautiful bible. Having embroidered dancing spoons on dishtowels helps, however, because “transforming traditional stitches into fiber art” requires knowing the basics. In the introduction, Montano, an award-winning fiber artist, author (Elegant Stitches), and teacher, encourages embroiderers to leap from traditional to free-form stitchery by describing her own journey from a frustrated little feather-stitcher to a fiber artist, honoring her influences in her account. She annotates supply lists: threads and ribbons, yarns and fabrics, hoops and tools. “Techniques” starts with choosing background fabrics and ends with framing finished work. Montano’s abundant stitch guide, a quarter of the book, ranges from A for arrowhead to W for whipstitch. The guide moves seamlessly to “Combining Stitches,” which illustrates ways to thread trees, vines (even “evil” ones like kudzu), and shrubs via photographs and drawings; ditto, flowers and fish. Montano marries an embroiderers’ guidebook with a nature study to produce eye candy. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved” (Publisher Weekly). (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBead embroidery stitch samples / Yasuko Endo, CRK Design ; [photography by Yoshiharu Ohtaki, Nobuei Araki ; translated by Sean Gaston, Yuko Wada, Takako Otomo].
“Embellishing embroidery with beads is a good way to add dimension or shine to stitchery. This book by designer Endo provides all the basics and plenty of inspiration, instructing stitchers on how to add beaded embroidery to a variety of fabrics. The book’s organization is unusual. Beaded stitches are presented in a stitch dictionary format on the left-hand pages, while the right-hand pages are devoted to stitch techniques. Project ideas are interspersed throughout, but directions beyond the colors of floss and beads used are not included. The last segment of the book gives diagrams for each of the beaded stitches. VERDICT Unusual organization aside, this is a lovely guide for stitchers who want to add embellishment to their handwork. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” (Library Journal). (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStitch New York : 20 kooky ways to knit the city and more / Lauren O’Farrell.
Cute, quirky and slightly insane, this unique knitting title will show you how to knit all the most famous New York people and places. Inspired by and created for city chicks who don’t like rules but love knitting. Projects are simple enough for beginners, yet bonkers enough to inspire more seasoned knitters. Brilliantly written in Lauren’s sassy style, with clever tips and techniques. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBowerbird : creating beautiful interiors with the things you collect / Sibella Court ; photography by Chris Court.
Sibella Court’s wanderlust has made her one of the world’s most sought after stylists and creative directors. Much like her avian counterpart the Australian bowerbird Sibella is famous for creating interiors that entice and inspire from found objects beloved mementos and upcycled furniture. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDaring adventures in paint : inspiring techniques with collage and mixed media / Mati Rose McDonough.
“Daring adventures in paint is a colorful, whimsical adventure of a book that explores inspirational paint and mixed-media techniques. Written by the well-loved artist/illustrator/blogger Mati Rose McDonough, this book’s approach to making art is a bit like uncovering a hidden treasure, a treasure that resides within each aspiring artist. Through a myriad of both practical applications and creative exercises, Mati shows artists how to ‘find their magic’–the place of confidence from which they can access the vision of what they want to share with the world”–Publisher’s description. (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEmbellish me : how to print, dye, and decorate your fabric / Laurie Wisbrun.
“*Starred Review* Persuading other designers to collaborate on a crafts book is unusual but certainly nothing new. What stands out in first-time editor-author Wisbrun’s collection is her joy with (and space devoted to) 10 designers, all of whom boast growing international renown. Each contributes not only a handful of step-by-step photographic how-to’s on her particular specialty but also spotlights her work in a four- to six-page gallery and submits to an interview. The 30-plus choices of embellishment techniques range from old (applique, dyeing, and embroidering) to new digital-like methods, such as cyanotype printing (a photographic process that uses sunlight to print an image). Nor are the initial stages of embellishment neglected: Wisbrun covers a wide span of tools and techniques as well as fundamental fabric abcs, while Maine artist Heather Dutton provides a good overview of how to design a pattern. A further bonus is a final chapter on going pro, complete with three perspectives cum interviews.–Jacobs, Barbara Copyright 2010 BooklistFrom Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.” (Booklist)

October: Crafting in the Sun!

The stitching is going well! So far there have been no little mishaps which is great. My main problem is choosing between my cross-stitch, my ribbon work or my blackwork! Decisions, decisions….
If you are short of choices check out some of our new books:

Syndetics book coverFuroshiki : the art of wrapping with fabric / Kumiko Nakayama-Geraerts.
“In Japan, gift wrapping is an art, and furoshiki-traditional Japanese wrapping cloths-are used to wrap gifts and as makeshift bags for carrying everything from books to lunches to a futon. … All of the steps are nicely illustrated, and there’s a full-page photograph of each wrap. Furoshiki is an eco-friendly alternative to consumable wraps such as plastic bags or paper gift wrap,…interest.c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” (Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverCountdown calendars : 24 stitched projects to celebrate any date / compiled by Susanne Woods.
“Make every occasion even more special! Today’s top designers share their ideas and techniques on how to commemorate life’s special events. Equal parts inspiration and how-to, this collection of custom-crafted countdown calendars is packed with creative ways to say 3.2.1.it’s here!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMy grandmother’s knitting : family stories and inspired knits from top designers / Larissa Brown ; photographs by Michael Crouser. We all have those jumbers, cardigans and hats that Grandmother’s have knitted. This book pays tribute to all those Grannies with all those needles from a range of great knitwear designers including Ysolda Teague and Anne Hanson. Crafty Librarian.

Syndetics book coverCountryside softies : 28 handmade wool creatures to stitch / Amy Adams.
“All a crafter needs to bring these adorable critters to life is a little time, a few supplies, and a dash of creativity. Whether it’s a fuzzy rabbit personalized as a gift, or a charming family of birds to display in the home, this playful guide features easy-to-follow patterns, clear instructions and enchanting photography of the creatures in their natural habitats. Best of all, each project is graded according to difficulty (easy, moderate and slightly tricky) so both experienced and beginner sewers can share in the fun.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverQueen of crafts : the modern girls’ guide to knitting, sewing, quilting, baking, preserving & kitchen gardening / Jazz Domino Holly. Never made jam before? Want to try sewing? Here is a great guide for trying all those things you are not sure on. Instructions are clear to follow and use modern techniques. Crafty Librarian.

Syndetics book coverCross-stitch and embroidery for babies, toddlers and children / Isabelle Leloup ; photography by Hiroko Mori.
I am generally a little sceptic about combining knitting and embroidery, however this book has some lovely ideas for babies and toddlers without going to over the top. Crafty Librarian.

Crafts Extravaganza at the Central Library

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The month of May has seen unprecedented activity at the Central Library in the field of Crafts.  Two Showcases on 13 and 14 April brought an enthusiastic crowd to the first floor where members of the public, young and old, watched, shared and experimented with a wide range of crafts experts.

On 21 May guests were invited to mingle with our crafts collection afterhours, during our Crafts Lock-in where they could share and exchange craft techniques and secrets with fellow crafters. Participants had a chance to review and borrow the latest in our crafts books collection, to everyone’s delight. The event was an all out success.

Yeah it is Winter! (well Autumn, same thing!)

I am sure all the crafters out there are rejoicing in the cold weather, nothing like staying in and crafting the weekend away. Which leads me to a question, why is my jobs list longer than my weekend? So much craft so little time.

Syndetics book coverMaking vintage jewellery : 25 original designs, from earrings to corsages / Emma Brennan.
“The vintage look is hot. Beginning jewellers can update their own collections with these timeless, handmade pieces that bring individual flair to even the most basic outfit…. There is also a comprehensive techniques section with lavish photography to guide the novice through all the basics, from working with wire to sewing on sequins.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLinen and thread : creating homewares embellished with embroidery and ribbon / Monique Lyonnet ; photography by Frederic Lucano.
I have not got my hands on this one yet, but I loved “made in France’s” black work book, if this is half as good I will be impressed!

Syndetics book coverCoffee cozies.
“What does the well-dressed coffee pot wear? All knitters are sure to have their favourite among the 30 colourful, fun designs in this great new addition to the popular “Cozy “series. The cozies–all created and contributed by the readers of “Knitting” magazine–use a wide range of techniques, …And because cozies are small and quick to knit…. –it’s a great place for beginners or experienced knitters to polish their skills and learn new techniques.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTimeless quilts : / designs by Ruth van Haeff and Janine Flew.
A friend did one of the quilts from this book and it turned out beautifully!

Syndetics book coverNew decoupage : transforming your home with paper, glue, and scissors / Durwin Rice ; photographs by George Ross.
“Inexpensive and remarkably easy to do, decoupage is enjoying a resurgence of popularity …..With a brief history of the art and a review of all the fundamental decoupage techniques, plus an exciting look at the future of decoupage, New Decoupage puts a fresh face on an ever-popular traditional craft. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSweet treats in cross-stitch : 53 delightful projects to embroider / Tinou Le Joly Sénoville ; photography by Frédéric Lucano ; styling by Sonia Lucano ; [translator, Melissa McMahon].
The “recipes” in this are lovely, but they do make you hungry!

We are having a number of events through May so keep an eye on the craft blog and see you there!