News Blog > quilting

Quilting, knitting — why not both? New Craft books in June

This month’s selections are packed with a great variety of quilting and knitting ideas for the new season! Browse through Pat Sloan’s teaching instructions and learn amazing quilting techniques. Explore some modern and chunky knitting patterns and choose your favourites for you and your family. Happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverPat Sloan’s teach me to machine quilt : learn the basics of walking-foot & free-motion quilting / Pat Sloan.
“Popular teacher, designer, and online radio host Pat Sloan teaches all you need to know to machine quilt successfully. In this book of her beginner-friendly “Teach Me” series, Pat guides you step by step through walking-foot and free-motion quilting techniques. First-time quilters will be confidently quilting in no time, and experienced stitchers will discover the joy of finishing their quilts themselves. No-fear learning for quilting novices — Pat covers all the information you need to quilt from start to finish and guides you through simple and fun practice projects, including a strip-pieced table runner and an easy applique design.” (Book Cover)

Syndetics book coverPat Sloan’s teach me to appliqué : fusible appliqué that’s soft & simple.
“Offers step-by-step, illustrated instructions for a variety of fusible appliqué projects for machine-stitched quilts, including bed quilts, banners, and wall hangings.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverPat Sloan’s teach me to sew triangles : 13 easy techniques plus 12 fun quilts / Pat Sloan.
“Pat Sloan–well-known teacher, designer, and online radio-show host–teaches all you need to know to create triangles with ease. Take your skills to the next level with this second book in her beginner-friendly “Teach Me” series. You’ll discover 11 different ways to sew triangles–at least one method will be just right for you!” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverLucky charm quilts : 17 delightful patterns for precut 5″ squares / compiled by Lissa Alexander.
“Join the Moda All-Stars as they use 5-inch charm squares to make scrappy quilts with style. Got one charm pack, two packs, or three? Make the most out them with quilts that use up nearly all of the charms in your favorite packs. You don’t need a huge fabric stash to achieve a dynamic, scrappy look–just your choice of charm packs. Make a range of projects, from table runners to lap-sized quilts, all by top Moda designers. Tips and tricks from each designer are included to help you show off your unique collection of charm squares.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book coverBig knit love : 20 chunky knit fashions / Linda Zemba Burhance.
“Big yarns make big style! Knitting with chunky yarns bulky, super bulky, and roving has been called one of the most important trends. Modern chunky knit garments and accessories have been all over the runway this season and knitted home decor items are hot. Chunky knits work up quickly and feature lush stitches that have a rich texture. 30 patterns from knitwear designer Linda Burhance are organized by type of big yarn and are complete with easy-to-follow, step-by-step instructions for beautiful garments and accessories for you and your home.” (Library catalogue)

Syndetics book cover60 quick knitted toys : fun, fabulous knits in the 220 Superwash collection from Cascade Yarns / the editors of Sixth&Spring Books.
“Knitters will love creating this collection of 60 cool toys, which range from tools like a saw, hammer, and screwdriver to a ballerina doll. Whip up a menagerie of stuffed hippos, owls, foxes, and monkeys; games like a jumbo knitted tic-tac-toe board and penguin bowling; or a unique medieval set that includes a king, a queen, an adorable dragon, and a building-block castle! Every project will capture your heart.” (Amazon.com)

Cool designs for warmer days – New Craft books for December

Give your creativity a fresh start with gorgeous ideas from this selection of our latest craft books. Discover some glorious designs for quilts, inspired by the rich colours of the terracotta walls and the white churches of the Mediterranean. Happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverKnit together, share together : simple knitting for all the family / Marja de Haan ; translated by Barbara Mee.
“Knitting can bring generations together. This practical and beautifully illustrated book, which contains step-by-step knitting instructions and patterns, was inspired by a granddaughter knitting a simple doll’s sweater, her grandmother knitting the doll itself, and the girl’s mother knitting a matching sweater for her daughter. Even young children can learn to knit the basic stitches, and this book features projects suitable for every age and stage of experience. Knitting not only stimulates the mind and develops motor skills and dexterity but is also a way of creating something useful, with love, which can be cherished.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKnitting for the outdoors : merino handknits for active Kiwis / Gillian Whalley-Torckler ; photography Darryl Torckler.
“Merino wool is the best for warmth and comfort, especially in garments for active outdoor people. This book features quick knits in modern designs and includes hats, gloves, mittens, scarves, hoodies and vests which look good anywhere and appeal to men and women, girls and boys.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKnitting short rows : techniques for great shapes & angles / Jennifer Dassau.
“Shape your knitwear seamlessly–using short-rows! Add seamless curves, soft angles, and depth to your finished pieces with Knitting Short Rows. Inside, Jennifer Dassau teaches you this essential technique in a beautiful package, providing know-how and design inspiration. Whether you want to enhance your knitting repertoire or are seeking great new designs for your knitted wardrobe, you’ll find just what you’re looking for in Knitting Short-Rows: Techniques for Great Shapes & Angles.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEasy toys to knit : cute and cuddly dolls, animals and toys / Tracy Chapman.
“Adorable, soft, and colorful, and just the right size for little hands, these knitted toys will be welcome additions to any child’s cuddly collection. From playthings for the very young–like blocks and balls–to dolls, Teddy bears, and a cute kangaroo, each pattern is carefully explained, with charts and detailed instructions. Many even come with alternative outfits and accessories. Whether you want an easily made gift or a more complex knitting project to really get into, these loveable toys are irresistible.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCrochet : 20 projects for friends to make / Super+Super ; [text, Claire Culley and Amy Phipps].
“Gather your friends and make it a crocheters’ night out! Think of it as a book club for people who love to crochet–where instead of talking about a great novel, you all roll up your sleeves to make one of the 20 projects in Crochet. (Throw in a few beverages and snacks and you’ve turned this gathering into a party!) This quirky workshop-in-a-book from Super+Super gurus Claire Culley and Amy Phipps makes it easier and more fun to start a new crocheting project because you’re doing it with others. There’s no end to what you can create when working simultaneously with friends!” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverScrap quilt secrets : 6 design techniques for knockout results / Diane D. Knott.
“Turn your scrappy mess into a quilting success! Armed with the easy-to-use S.C.R.A.P.S. system (style, contrast, repetition, accent color, palette, and selvages), you’ll sew extraordinary quilts from every last bit of the fabric you love–even the tiniest scraps. Personalize 16 beginner-friendly quilts using the blank coloring pages, or apply the concepts to tackle any scrap quilt you want to make. These 5 must-know scrap secrets will forever change the way you look at scrap quilting!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Bible sampler quilt book : 96 quilt blocks inspired by the Bible / Laurie Aaron Hird.
“Devotion meets design in a stunning sampler quilt honoring both the Old and New Testament! Evoke the spirit of favorite Bible passages in fabric with this gorgeous how-to guide from renowned sampler-quilt author Laurie Aaron Hird. In The Bible Sampler Quilt, Laurie pairs scripture with beautifully pieced blocks representing significant people, themes and events from The Bible. Inspired by well-loved Bible passages, The Bible Sampler Quilt invites you to create a quilt that is both beautiful and spiritually uplifting.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKaffe Fassett’s quilts in Italy : 20 designs from Rowan for patchwork and quilting.
“Che bella! Kaffe’s inspiration for the 20 new quilts in this book was drawn from the exquisite, richly colored villages of Cinque Terre on the Italian Riviera. The region, with its terracotta walls and handsome black and white churches set off by jewel-like glimpses of the Mediterranean, is beautifully reflected in the colors and patterns created by Kaffe and his team of designers. In addition to the gallery of quilts, the book provides detailed information on how to make each featured quilt, along with general practical patchwork and quilting information and a visual summary of Kaffe’s latest fabrics.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Celebrate the season – New craft books for March

Find inspiration and have fun browsing through this collection of newly arrived craft books we have selected for you. Add excitement to your wardrobe with some adorable new designs of scarves, shawls and wraps, read about how to make eye-catching bunting to spice up your home or check out the delightful crochet flowers made from scraps of yarn.

For those of you who are interested in joining the library knitting group, you are welcome to join us at the Central Library to share your ideas and enthusiasm, with our devoted “Knit and chat” library knitters. A delicious morning tea is provided, and the latest craft books and magazines are offered for inspiration.

The group meets on the last Saturday of every month on the first floor behind the escalator from 10am to 3pm. The next meeting will take place at Easter Saturday, 28th March – contact Sue Dale if you have any questions (phone 801 4146 or email sue.dale@wcc.govt.nz)

Syndetics book coverKnit scarves and shawls now.
“Discover over 40 fresh new designs for scarves, shawls, capelets, wraps and cowls that will add excitement to any wardrobe. Scarves and shawls are extremely versatile and are perfect for adding colour and character to an outfit. These designs range in style and shape and, depending on the yarn you choose, can be light & airy, thick & bulky, or elegantly lacy. There are plenty of projects to suit every knitter’s taste and experience level.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTen adorable teddy bears to knit : plus all their clothes and accessories / Rachel Borello.
“In Ten Adorable Teddy Bears to Knit, knitting enthusiasts will find: 10 bears to handcraft from detailed patterns, with suggested yarn to use, needle size, finished measurements, and more. A collection of 15 accessory patterns to knit for the bears that can be mixed-and-matched, including a hat, scarf, cardigan, and more accessories such as a cable knit sweater and a seed stitch bear-sized backpack introduce new skills to beginners and more challenges to advanced knitters.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBanners, buntings, garlands & pennants : 40 creative ideas using paper, fabric & more / Kathy Sheldon and Amanda Carestio.
“Festive and eye-catching, banners, buntings, garlands, and pennants add visual fun to almost any type of celebration or space. These 40 quick and easy projects–made of paper, fabric, felt, and more–make beautiful displays. Use them for special events, for holidays, when entertaining, or even just to spice up a room. A basics section gives beginners a primer on the materials and techniques they need.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAdventures in Pompom Land : 25 cute projects made from handmade pompoms / Myko Diann Bocek.
“Enter the wonderful land of pompoms, where cute critters and creative adventures await you. All the projects in this unique collection begin with handmade, not pre-purchased, pompoms, and every step is beautifully laid out with easy-to-follow instructions and plenty of images. Crafters can then create 25 charming creatures–from a sweet little bluebird to a lop-eared bunny–out of wool yarn, roving, and felt. It’s fun to do and every project is off-the-charts adorable!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe farmer’s wife sampler quilt : letters from 1920s farm wives and the 111 blocks they inspired / Laurie Aaron Hird.
“In 1922, The Farmer’s Wife magazine posed this question to their readers: “If you had a daughter of marriageable age, would you, in light of your own experience, have her marry a farmer?” The magazine at the time had 750,000 subscribers, and received over 7,000 letters. The best answers to this question are included in this book, along with the traditional quilt blocks they inspired. Laurie Aaron Hird provides everything you need to be inspired and create your own sampler quilt, and 42 letters from the 1922 Farmer’s Wife contest to give you a priceless glimpse into the country’s past.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCrochet flowers step-by-step : 35 delightful blooms for beginners / Tanya Shliazhko.
“Stop and crochet the flowers! Crochet flowers are a favorite with needlecrafters because they can be made from scraps of yarn, they’re small and portable, and they are so versatile. Geared toward beginners, each of the 35 crochet flowers patterns in this book comes with a clear, easy-to-follow photo sequence linked to a chart. Use them to add charm to home decor projects such as pillows, towels, or napkin holders, or gather them into a pretty corsage for a lapel or hat trim. Once the seed is sown, you won’t want to stop making these adorable embellishments.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Hooked on Crafting? New Craft books in May

Find lots of ideas and easy to follow designs in this brilliant collection of crochet, knitting and quilting newly arrived library books.
It’s the perfect time now that winter is approaching to knit a stylish sweater or wrap yourself up in a crochet shawl and feel warm and elegant!
And if you are a pet lover, take a look at some modern and functional design ideas for your cat or dog. Until next time, happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverCrochet so lovely : 21 carefree lace designs / Kristin Omdahl.
“Enjoy 21 beautiful crochet patterns that you will wear again and again in Crochet So Lovely. Author Kristin Omdahl offers a collection of crochet lace patterns along specific themes–creating interesting lace by playing with gauge; creating allover lace; keeping lace as the focal point; and working motifs–as well as the time-honored techniques of broomstick lace, Tunisian crochet, and Bruges lace. Wrap yourself up in crochet accessories like shawls and cowls, along with sweaters, cardigans, and tunics. You will find a veritable orchestra of crochet ideas to choose from, even felting, in the form of a sumptuous felted handbag.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKnit wear love : foolproof instructions for knitting your best-fitting sweaters ever in the styles you love to wear / Amy Herzog ; photography by Karen Pearson
“In Knit Wear Love , Amy Herzog guides us through picking a base pattern that not only works for our inherent shape, but also suits our size and style–all with the skill of a top-notch teacher and designer and the honesty and humor of a BFF. Known for her uncanny ability to simplify what might initially seem complex, Herzog masterminded for Knit Wear Love an easy mix-and-match pattern system that allows us to choose among the eight key sweater forms; eight fashion styles; a trove of customization details; ten sizes; and three gauges of yarn. The result? Sweaters we can knit with confidence, wear with pride, and love for many years to come.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book cover1000 quilt inspirations : colorful and creative designs for traditional, modern, and art quilts / Sandra Sider.
“As one of the core, traditional crafts, quilting is enjoyed by countless enthusiasts around the world – and its popularity is only growing. This collection of one thousand quilt blocks builds upon this interest, showcasing some of today’s most innovative and beautiful patterns. Whether a quilter or a collector, a craft-lover or an art enthusiast, 1000 Quilt Inspirations is sure to inspire your admiration and appreciation of the art of quilting. It’s also likely to get you itching for some fabrics of your own!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe quilter’s practical guide to color / Becky Goldsmith.
“Did you know that the biggest struggle for quilters of all types is color selection? Unlock the secrets to winning color combinations from best-selling author Becky Goldsmith of Piece O Cake Designs. Learn how every quilt has a foreground and a background, how to use clear versus gray colors plus other essentials that will shake up your design process. Quilters of all skill levels will appreciate Becky s practical, easy-to-understand advice. Put your newfound knowledge to the test with 10 pieced and appliqued projects designed to focus on specific aspects of color. Includes visual examples to explain all color topics.”” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKnitted rabbits : 20 easy knitting patterns for cuddly bunnies / Val Pierce.
“Toy rabbits are always popular, and have been for many years. With their long ears and cute, fluffy tails, they are loved by children and adults alike. This book contains a wide variety of rabbits to knit, from fun and quirky, to cute and cuddly. There are twenty patterns to choose from, and each one is accompanied by a beautiful, full-colour photograph of the finished rabbit, clear instructions, and a comprehensive list of the yarns, needles and embellishments you need… ideal for beginners as well as more experienced knitters.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverVery British baby knits : 30 stylish designs fit for a royal baby / by Susan Campbell.
“Susan Campbell’s beautiful, hand-knitted designs ranging from baby clothes to toys and accessories that will make gorgeous gifts for any baby. Each project reflects the classic elegance of British design accompanied by easy-to-follow instructions and beautiful photographs. Knitters of all abilities will relish making these gorgeous gifts which, with the author’s royal connections, are fit for your own little prince or princess!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCats in hats : 30 knit and crochet patterns for your kitty / Sara Thomas.
“Deck your cats out in hats that suit their many personalities! With The Punk Mohawk for edgier cats, The Unicorn for cats who are having identity issues, and The Cat in the Hat for any cat that loves great literature, there is a pattern in this book for every feline friend in your home. Complete with a breakdown of skill level and method of working (knit or crochet), suggestions for yarns, and written patterns and charts where necessary, you’ll be able to whip up amazing headwear, whatever your cat’s character.” (Syndetics summary)

Marvellous crafts to explore and discover

Find lots of inspiration and practical ideas in our latest library craft books. Start your crafting adventure reading about artists who are enjoying sharing their knowledge and ideas with young crafters about knitting, crocheting, sewing, stitching and hand weaving – without spending a fortune! A fantastic way to learn how to make beautiful things that work for you and your family, satisfy your creative urge and have fun!

Syndetics book coverChloë tells you how… to sew : more than 30 things to make, do, and sew / Chloë Owens.
“Chloe Owens brings the past to life. Chloe Owens is inspired by all things vintage – much of her work is made with groovy fabrics designed in the 1960s. But she also has a passion for the annuals she read as a child, with their story strips, brightly-coloured two-tone illustrations, and snippets of instruction mixed in with activities, puzzles and games. In this book, she has created a truly unique blend of beautiful craft projects and stylish, retro artworks and design in this blend of old and new. The projects include everything from egg cozies to upcycled chairs, and display her trademark eye for fabrics, and embellishment with applique and embroidery. Whether you are already a fan of Chloe’s work or you are discovering her for the first time, this combination of practical projects with illustrations by some of the best contemporary artists will delight you.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverSew bunting : simple and stunning garlands to style your home / Debbie Shore.
“Her imaginative, modern designs give a new twist to these traditional decorations, making them ideal for adorning special celebrations, your garden or your home. With 29 eye-catching projects to choose from, all accompanied by simple, easy-to-follow instructions and step-by-step photographs, you are sure to find something in this book to excite and inspire you. Choose from romantic Valentine bunting, festive advent calender bunting, fragrant lavender bag bunting, as well as Halloween bunting, felt bunting, frilly bunting, and lots more. All you need is a sewing machine and a basic sewing kit, and with all the basic techniques explained clearly at the beginning of the book, there is nothing to stop you getting going on a project straight away, even if you are a complete beginner.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverStitch and structure / Jean Draper.
“Diagrams, drawings and easy-to-follow instructions take the reader through each technique; beginning with recording information for translation into stitch, then moving on to constructing with threads and linear structures and making experimental textiles and structures using stitched fabrics.” (Back cover)

Syndetics book coverKnitting with giant needles : simple projects to knit and crochet / Hanna Charlotte Erhorn.
“Enjoy quick and easy knitting and crocheting using giant knitting needles and thick yarns with Knitting with Giant Needles. Use a few relaxing hours on the sofa to catch up with the latest trend of knitting with giant needles and create beautiful and unique accessories for your wardrobe and home in no time. You can choose from 35 gorgeous, inspirational projects to fill your weekends, from scarves and shoulder bags to cushions and blankets. You can even choose from variations of the projects to ensure you get your perfect crafty creation, ideal for creating individual accessories or gifts. Whether you are an experienced knitter or just starting out, step-by-step knitting pictures show basic techniques, making knitting easy for everyone.” (Adapted from Amazon.co.uk)

Syndetics book coverBoycraft : loads of things to make for and with boys (and girls) / Sara Duchars & Sarah Marks ; illustrations by Nicola Kent.
“Duchars and Marks note, “There are plenty of craft books out there for girls, but even the ones that don’t have pink frilly cupcakes on the cover are often full of handbags, fairy wings and princess tiaras.” No such items are on display in this book, which targets “boys and tomboys” with lots of messy, spooky, and recycled crafts; boys will like the can-do attitude of this book. A particular standout is the totally enthralling papier-mache landscape that truly does look like it will offer days of fun. American readers will have to overlook some British English, a small quirk. A larger concern is the haphazard arrangement of the projects. In the sewing chapter, for example, making a large stuffed animal is followed by instructions for making the simpler giant beanbag chair, which is followed by instructions for simplest-of-all beanbags, sequenced in the exact opposite of skill-building order. And directions are far from comprehensive; trying to make the bird feeder Duchars and Marks offer will lead to heartbreak. Still, these low-key projects will inspire outdoorsy kids who might not otherwise be interested in a crafts book.” (Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverWise craft : turning thrift store finds, fabric scraps, and natural objects into stuff you love / Blair Stocker.
“Stocker, a blogger who had a career in apparel and textile design before staying home to raise children, offers 60 projects in four seasonal chapters, with holiday nods going out from May Day (sheet music and paper bag floral cones) to Halloween (naked zombie Barbies, painted delightfully white). Most undertakings require only an open mind as a skill set, though a bit of sewing (patchwork jeans from thrift store shirts or the picnic blanket fashioned from men’s apparel) or crochet (glass fishing bobbers as casual decor or tree ornaments) skills will help. Even the most gifted repurposer should find inspiration in the woven chair back, crafted from yarn and a lucky side-of-the-road find (a set of mid-century modern dining chairs). “Sometimes,” says Stocker, “what seems blah at first glance just needs an open mind and a little love to be completely transformed.” A keeper for thrift-store divas and dumpster divers.” (Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverMade by yourself : 100% handmade designer DIY projects for the home, from furniture to accessories / Peter Fehrentz.
“DIY is all the rage and handmade objects guarantee individuality and sustainability–and for this reason they have once more become highly sought-after. Made by Yourself’s ideas for furniture and small decorative crafts are 100% individual, while the step-by-step instructions, sketches, and patterns guarantee that they are surprisingly easy and fun to make. The many different kinds of materials–stone, wood, paper/cardboard, glass/porcelain, metal, plastic, textiles and leather–combined with the imaginative ways they fit into their environment make this both a practical and atmospheric book filled with sophisticated and creative ideas.” (Adapted from Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe art of tinkering : meet 150+ makers working at the intersection of art, science & technology / Karen Wilkinson & Mike Petrich.
“ Every day, there is something new and wildly wonderful out there that someone has made by hand a city built out of 100,000 toothpicks, a musical instrument that’ s powered by the ocean, or a pop-up book that lights up, too. In “The Art of Tinkering,” you will be introduced to the individuals behind these and many more marvellous works, find out how they create, and get inspired to start tinkering yourself. “The Art of Tinkering” is a collection of exhibits, artwork, and projects that celebrate a whole new way to learn, in which people create their own knowledge through making and doing, working with readily available materials, getting their hands dirty, collaborating with others, problem-solving in the most fun sense of the word, and, yes, oftentimes failing and bouncing back from getting stuck. Each artist featured in “The Art of Tinkering” goes through this process, and lovingly shares the back story behind their own work so that readers can feel invited to join in on the whimsy. The stories, lessons, and tips in The Art of Tinkering offer a fascinating portrait of today’s maker scene. (Adapted from Syndetics)

Beautiful things made with style: New Craft Books in March

It’s been an exiting time for our crafty library team, cataloguing and sorting out all these cool and ‘delicious’ craft books, which are packed with inspiring knitting, quilting, crocheting and sewing projects. If you are ready for an artistic journey take a look at some of our latest arrivals. Get inspiration with new ideas and learn great techniques through the numerous step-by-step tutorials and tips. And, there is much more… You are offered guidance on how to market your craft business, ways to engage with customers, sell your work online and move your business forward with confidence. Happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverOnce upon a knit : 28 Grimm and glamorous fairy-tale projects / Genevieve Miller. “Iconic fairy-tale characters from storybooks, movies, and television inspire this collection of magical knitting patterns perfect for modern knights, villains, and princesses. Once again, Genevieve Miller taps a wide range of contributors (from knitwear designers to students) to create a collection of 28 wearables, accessories, and toys that can be knit for adults or kids. Inspired by the recent resurgence of fairy-tale and fantasy characters, these projects draw from classic stories as well as pop-culture phenomena featuring romantic, feminine costumes. Projects range from kid- and teen-friendly animals hats to an Alice in Wonderland beret to a crystal-embellished vest fit for a Snow Queen, adding a little dress-up fun to knitters’ everyday wardrobes.” (Provided by publisher)

Syndetics book coverQuilting with a modern slant : people, patterns, and techniques inspiring the modern quilt community / Rachel May. “May, a founder of the Boston Modern Quilt Guild, has created an encyclopedia of modern quilting. So-called “modern” quilting labels the latest category of quilting, following “traditional” and “art.” Modern quilting-admittedly hard to pin down, but proudly inclusive-is a hybrid of the other two, resulting in quilts that “perform both a design and functional purpose.” May divides her book into seven sections with titles that reflect the whimsy and experimentation that help define modern quilting, including “A Sense of Play,” “Improv,” and “For the Love of Color.” Within those chapters, she presents modern quilters (“Meet”), such as Angela Walters, David Butler, and Caro Sheridan; offers directions (“Project”) for techniques like paper piecing and for quilts, like Sherri Lynn Wood’s modern t-shirt quilt; and covers history and museums. Sidebars cite quilters’ blogs and places to donate quilts, among other information. Crawls at the bottom of pages define words (“Quilt Lingo”) and blurbed quotes from quilters and their blogs are scattered throughout for encouragement. Like a good host, May serves as an enthusiastic introducer, teacher, and cheerleader.” (Adapted from Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverBaby crochet / Sue Whiting ; [photography by Sian Irvine and Paul Bricknell]. “Create beautiful baby clothes with these quick- to-make designs. 24 gorgeous designs for babies, ranging from pretty cardigans and cosy jackets to hats, bootees, mitts and toys.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverWeekend : 30 quick projects to make for your home and to wear / consultant, Nikki Trench. “Weekends are all about slowing down and taking it easy, and crochet is a wonderfully restful hobby. Why not spend a weekend creating some gorgeous items for your home and your loved ones? Don’t forget to treat yourself – there are plenty of ideas for everyone, from snuggly hot water bottle covers with pom poms to cosy jumpers…  and more!” (Adapted from Amazon.co.uk summary)

Syndetics book coverVintage crafts : 75 do-it-yourself decorating projects using candles, colors, and other flea market finds / author & photographer, Clara Lidström ; translated by Anette Cantagallo. “In this book, which is based on her blog, Lidstrom plays that pretty, talented friend who makes flea market finds and shabby chic decor seem enviable. The author makes make-do and mend look like high design, from her collection of “beloved” vintage dresses to a “scrapbooked” linen cabinet decorated with wallpaper. The author never lets her flea market evangelizing (“I fear that we’re annihilating our heritage in the rush to constantly consume what’s new and modern.”) overtake her enthusiasm at remaking a great bargain. Her favorite thing to do is to “pimp” her finds: a set of old speakers with lace, notebooks with vintage girls’ book covers, and a lampshade. The book contains a few gems, such as a recipe for wallpaper paste using water, sugar, and potato flour, as well as tips for freshening up old clothes with flaxseed oil soft soap. Her advice isn’t always new-using newspaper to form cups for seedlings or attaching jar lids underneath a shelf-but no matter. The book is less a practicum and more an idiosyncratic and inspiring romp through the charming space that Lidstrom has created from scraps and paint. Framing that world is a series of gorgeous, light-filled, photos, in which the author and her son often play a supporting role to the author’s lime-and-red retro kitchen or her tastefully unkempt vegetable garden.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverMade for baby : more than 50 fabulous gifts for babies / [editor, Hilary Mandelberg]. “This book features more than 50 fabulous homemade gifts for babies. Make over 50 beautiful, creative and personalised gifts for newborn babies to one year olds with Made for Baby. Homemade, personalised presents for babies are more popular than ever. Made for Baby includes a range of projects, from easy to complex, ensuring you can make beautiful gifts for babies to cherish whatever your craft skills. You can make anything from a button bunny to an appliqued cushion cover or spoil the new mum with a cupcake gift set. Other adorable projects include a night sky mobile, a sleepy dog rattle and wooden stacking blocks. Indulge in sewing, painting, paper crafts and more to make gifts for all occasions, including baby showers, new baby congratulations and first birthdays. Made for Baby is perfect for anyone looking to make and give gifts that will be cherished.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMade for you : homemade gifts to give / Jenny Occleshaw. “Helps you create gifts for your friends, family and loved ones using your sewing, beading, knitting, crochet, felting and embroidery skills. This book features projects that are divided into the following sections: Gifts for children, ladies, gents and the home. It is suitable for experienced crafters and newcomers alike.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book cover “Make your own cute and easy pompoms / by Kazue Kasuga, Ryoko Nishizua, Naoko Nakui, Idea Oshima ; Kevin Wilson, translator. “Most crafters are familiar with pompoms as embellishments for hats or scarves. The authors, a collective of Japanese fiber artists who call themselves Pompoms, banish the “embellishment-only” point of view with this series of whimsical projects that use creative placement of yarn and shaped trimming techniques to create pompoms featuring patterns or pictures. No specialized equipment is needed-either a piece of cardboard or a standard pompom maker will do; the magic is in the way the yarn is wrapped around the pompom maker. There’s a lot of counting involved, since the directions are given in number of wraps of each color of yarn, but the end results are surprisingly detailed. Standouts include a variety of pretty floral pompoms, as well as a pompom matryoshka set. – These easy projects require simple equipment and inexpensive supplies, making them appropriate for all ages.” (Library Journal)

Syndetics book cover “How to show & sell your crafts : how to build your craft business at home, online, and in the marketplace / Torie Jayne. “Online marketplaces like Etsy have opened up a new world for crafters who want to make money from their work, and UK-based Jayne, whose aesthetic is part English country house, part “put a bird on it” quirk, enlists the help of a number of successful craft entrepreneurs for this collection of tips for making a living selling creations. Though the title is presented as a book on showing and selling crafts, it comes across as more of a lifestyle manual, with cutesy projects taking the place of practical advice. Some of Jayne’s suggestions are a little odd-does it really matter if you cover your storage boxes with floral wallpaper, or if the chair you sit in to work is “stylish”?-but her tips on branding will be helpful to those who are new to marketing their wares. Those who have already mastered the basics and are looking to take their fledgling businesses to the next level may prefer Kari Chapin’s Grow Your Handmade Business, which focuses less on making your workspace pretty and more on selling handmade goods as a livelihood. VERDICT Crafters who are just starting out may find some handy tips here, but only if they’re willing to wade through all the style-related fluff to find the nuggets of wisdom.” (Library Journal)

New Year Inspirations: New Crafting Books

Enjoying crafting? Start this New Year with lots of inspiring ideas and smart choices found in this fabulous collection of new library books. Have fun with yarn and fabric and make use of treasured possessions to create your own piece of history. Look at some enchanting knitting designs of unique accessories, as well as, innovative jewellery, quilting and stitching projects for you and the family. Enjoy the challenge!

Syndetics book coverBead embroidery jewelry projects : design and construction, ideas and inspiration / Jamie Cloud Eakin.
“Life is too short to wear ordinary jewelry, Eakin pronounces in the introduction to Bead Embroidery Jewelry Projects. The book begins with basics of design and construction and encourages the individual design process, including creative exercises. The designs are then grouped by necklace style, and the last three chapters cover earrings, pins, and bracelets. Each chapter begins with an explanation of the style of jewelry and basic techniques. Some of the projects are beautiful and elegant, like the classic super simplicity necklace, pendant style, while some are fun and whimsical. Got a Vegas vacation coming up? There’s a fun collar necklace just for that. There are plenty of diagrams and pictures, a techniques index, and tips scattered throughout. This book will be loved by jewelry makers looking to learn a new technique or try design.” (Adapted from Booklist)

Syndetics book coverThe sparkle factory : the design and craft of Tarina’s fashion jewelry and accessories / Tarina Tarantino.
“The cover photograph of celebrity jewelry designer Tarantino will give readers a good idea as to whether her aesthetic suits their tastes. Those whose reaction to her candy-pink hair and bright, oversize, kitschy jewelry is “I love it!” will enjoy this book, while those who think it looks like the aftermath of an unfortunate incident in a costume jewelry factory aren’t the intended audience. Tarantino provides a peek at the steps she took to get her business off the ground, the places she looks to for ideas, and simple projects that reflect her fun-loving credo. The photography is gorgeous; even the images of basic supplies look like still lifes with rhinestones. Furthermore, the projects themselves are easy enough for most crafters to attempt successfully. Verdict? Part collection of projects, part feel-good inspiration, Tarantino’s print debut will appeal to those who believe that there’s no such thing as too much sparkle.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverVintage projects / Vivienne Bolton.
“Things which though they’re old, have now become fashionable again. This book shows you how to make over 15 lovely projects – ranging from brooches, gloves, guest towels and scented cushions – using genuine family keepsakes, or fabrics, trimmings and other knick-knacks that have a nostalgic feel and style.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverFun with yarn and fabric / Susanna Zacke & Sania Hedengren ; photos by Magnus Selander ; translated by Ellen Hedström.
“A translation of a Swedish crafting book by two authors who are apparently quite prolific in their homeland, this slim volume is wonderfully illustrated with beautiful full-color photographs by Magnus Selander in the Swedish minimalist style that is beloved in the U.S. To this bare stage, the authors add pops of color in the form of eye-catchingly cheerful crocheted projects, including an unusual- and if not quite the “easy” of the title, at least simple-African Flower stole; covers for a car’s headrests; and a stunning Large Granny Squares bedspread. There are also a handful of knitted and embroidered designs, although many of those rely on purchased embroideries. What Zacke and Hedengren don’t offer are detailed instructions, beyond a handful of stitches in the back; one project, a necktie cross-stitched with a phrase, begins, “Think of what you want to write. Cross-stitch patterns for letters can be found online.” Since the materials used are Swedish (and not sourced) and the text is awkwardly translated at times, readers are advised to enjoy the lovely photographs and project ideas and to glean inspiration from them. Full-color photographs.” (Adapted from Publisher Weekly)

Syndetics book coverGreat projects for guys / compiled by Barbara Delaney.
“Perfect gifts for the men in your life. Make a messenger bag, a tie portfolio, an e-reader cover, and much more.” (Book Cover, Page 4)

Syndetics book coverChildren’s spaces : from zero to ten / Judith Wilson ; photography by Debi Treloar.
“A brilliant book for design-conscious parents and kids alike! Children’s Spaces helps you to plan all the practical aspects of children’s rooms and provides plenty of affordable ideas and inspiration when it comes to their design and decoration. Judith Wilson looks at rooms for children between birth and ten years old, with chapters on babies’ rooms, rooms for girls, rooms for boys, and shared bedrooms. There are also chapters on sensible storage and areas that children and adults share – bathrooms, play areas, eating areas and outside space. Children’s Spaces contains a wealth of inspiration drawn from the homes of real families, with real kids, which amply proves that children and great design can happily co-exist without compromising on style.” (Publisher’s description)

Syndetics book coverKnits from an English rose : 25 modern – vintage accessories / Louisa Harding ; [photography by Stephen Jessup].
“Timeless, accessible, and unabashedly romantic: this collection from renowned knitwear designer Louisa Harding will charm knitters of all levels. Inspired by Edwardian style, these 25 accessories all feature Louisa’s signature touches: subtle shaping, masterful and delicate stitch pattern combinations (especially cables and lace), beautiful embellishments, and exciting fibers. The fashionable, feminine projects range from capelets, collars, and cowls to gloves, hats, purses, and scarves-and include notes from Louisa.” (Publisher’s description)

Syndetics book coverStitching : 35 cute sewing projects to turn everyday items into works of art / Fiona Goble.
“Stitching offers cute and quirky embroidery ideas to add a light-hearted touch to your clothes, home accessories and gifts. This fabulous collection of simple and fun motifs will inspire even a complete beginner to take up a needle and thread. Each design is shown on a different object, whether it be a French café on a apron, cheerful weather clouds on canvas shoes or a beaming moon on a lampshade, and is accompanied by straightforward instructions and suggestions for other uses.” (Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverQuilters : their quilts, their studios, their stories / Jo Packham.
“Every quilt tells a story – carefully preserved with fabric and thread by a purposeful hand to be cherished and passed down to keep the narrative alive. Learn about the personal biographies and stories of the contributing artists and the most important aspects of quilting and be inspired by an array of memorable quotes.” (Book Cover)

The joy of crafting

Welcome to 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 knitting, crochet and quilting projects, passed down through the generations from mothers to daughters and learn new techniques. We hope you have lots of joy with the adorable and fun to craft ‘pom-poms’ and ‘woolbuddies’ projects! Happy crafting!

Syndetics book coverModern top-down knitting : sweaters, dresses, skirts & accessories inspired by the techniques of Barbara Walker / Kristina McGowan ; photography by Gudrun Georges.
“In this sophisticated womenswear collection, designer Kristina McGowan presents streamlined, feminine dresses, tunics, and skirts; elegant cardigans and pullovers; and stylish go-to accessories like hats and mitts. Step-by-step photo tutorials make top-down techniques easy to understand and sizing and style adjustments a cinch to achieve. Detailed instructions are also included for finishing garments with couture-quality trims and linings, so they look just as elegant on the inside as they do on the outside.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverWarm mittens and socks : dozens of playful patterns and skillful stitches to knit, crochet, and embroider / Eva Trotzig ; photography by Malin Nuhma ; translated by Ellen Hedstrom.
“Knitting buffs and crochet enthusiasts, stay cozy any time of the year with warm mittens and snuggly socks-made by you! In Warm Mittens and Socks, needlework queen Eva Trotzig shares her generous collection of tips, wisdom, and, of course, patterns that are perfect for crafting comfy knits for the whole family. Containing a colorful mix of styles, techniques, and projects, this is the perfect guide for hands trained in the basics of knitting and crocheting. Discover elaborate loops, delightful details, and patterns to make cold-weather clothes playful and fun to knit, crochet, embroider, and wear.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverLittle Aran & Celtic knits for kids : 25 designs for babies and young children / Martin Storey ; photography by Steven Wooster.
“Rowan Yarn’s master knitwear designer Martin Storey shares twenty-five beautiful patterns for babies and toddlers. Featuring soft colors, a mixture of traditional Aran patterns, touches of Intarsia colorwork, and sweet knitting pattern motifs that both children and parents will love, the projects in this book will make the perfect addition to your little one’s wardrobe or room decor. Traditional cabled and Celtic patterns, plus rabbits, cats, anchors, hearts, and birds adorn a wide range of garments and accessories from cardigans, sweaters, dresses, and skirts, to blankets, scarves, socks, and gloves. All the designs are knit in Rowan’s cozy and comfortable natural wool yarns–and range from simple to challenging–so there’s something for every knitter to enjoy. The twenty-five adorable designs in this book are sure to become special keepsake handknits that will be treasured for years to come.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book cover101 fabulous small quilts / [managing editor, Karen Costello Soltys].
“This is a fabulous collection of fun and easy small quilts in a wide variety of colour and styles. You can find a new favourite quilt with fantastic collection of 101 fun and inspiring patterns in a wide array of colours and styles. You can create doll quilts, wall quilts, table runners, candle mats, lap quilts, and so much more from popular designers such as Country Threads, Kathleen Tracy, Kim Diehl, Little Quilts, Lori Smith, and Mary Hickey.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverVintage quilt revival : 22 modern designs from classic blocks / Katie Clark Blakesley, Lee Heinrich, Faith Jones.
“Vintage Quilt Revival is a resource for quilters of any age or style who love to use today’s modern colors and fabrics. With fresh quilt layouts, detailed instructions on foundation piecing, and a wide variety of traditional blocks and modern projects, Vintage Quilt Revival is at the forefront of the burgeoning interest in the “traditional-made-modern” movement.
Join the authors and make 20 traditional quilt blocks. Use them to sew a sampler quilt or explore the authors’ tips and modifications for making the blocks fresh and appealing and use them to create quilts with a modern flair. Projects range from full-size quilts to a pillow, table runner, bag, and zipper pouch. Learn bits of quilting history throughout the book and see design tips on how to take traditional quilt blocks and piecing techniques and give them a modern spin. If you’re already knowledgeable about piecing, basting, quilting, and binding, this book is an essential addition to your library.” (Summary adapted from Amazon.co.uk)

Syndetics book cover“The new crochet : a beginner’s guide : with 38 modern projects / Marion Madel ; photography by Hiroko Mori ; styling by Maki Nakahara ; [translation by Ben Ross].
A beginner-friendly book from French designer and crochet teacher that gives Crochet a chic makeover. It features 38 quick and easy projects such as oversized scarves, cozy cowls, lacy shawls, decorative embellishments, bags and more. In 25 lessons, it helps beginners to steadily build their repetoire of crochet skills.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverVintage & retro : 30 quick projects to make for your home and to wear / consultant, Nikki Trench.
“The Easy Crochet series features six new project collections, so you can find a great project, whatever style you’re looking for.
Each book features a range of patterns to make for the home, to wear or to give, so you will find plenty of projects for a whole range of needs. Whether you’re reviving your love of crochet or you’ve just discovered this restful and soothing pastime, there is an Easy Crochet book for you, and with every project tried and tested, and each technique fully explained, they’re perfect for both beginners and experienced crocheters. Revive the groovy patterns and styles of yesterday with this collection of designs for colourful folky pieces that will work as stylish statements in the home and in your wardrobe. Create a selection of beautiful crochet blankets for an easy way of introducing the vintage look, or reinvent a plain dress or top with a beautiful scalloped collar… or try one of the many more patterns available!” (Summary adapted from Amazon.co.uk)

Syndetics book coverFelt fabric designs : a recipe book for textile artists / Sheila Smith.
“Learn to create a huge variety of different felt fabrics with this handy set of recipes from a leading feltmaking expert. From delicate nuno felt and adaptable open-work fabrics through to more hardwearing felts, sumptuous layers and gorgeous embellished felt designs. Create each type of fabric with suggestions for ongoing uses and easy-to-follow projects. Illustrated with an outstanding range of different felt fabrics, this book is a great source of inspiration for your own textile arty projects” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverPom-poms! : 25 awesomely fluffy projects / by Sarah Goldschadt and Lexi Walters Wright.
“They’re soft, they’re colorful, they’re fun to craft, and they add a touch of whimsy to everything they meet. They’re pom-poms! And they’re more adorable than ever. This delightfully photographed craft book takes readers through more than 25 pom-decorated crafts, from cozy home decor projects to fun outfit accessories to festive party supplies and embellishments. Readers will use yarn, tissue paper, coffee filters, cupcake wrappers, and a host of other unexpected materials to make these insanely cute balls of fluff. With easy-to-follow instructions, tons of gorgeous photos, and a fresh take on a perennial subject, Pom-Poms! will delight crafters of all ages.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverWoolbuddies : 20 irresistibly simple needle felting projects / Jackie Huang ; photographs by Antonis Achilleos.
“Wool felting is surprisingly easy; all crafters need to get started is a felting needle, a piece of soft foam to use as a felting pad, and some colorful scraps of wool roving. Huang, who began felting so he could make toys for his daughter, has a background in animation, which is apparent in the expressive faces of his creations. The projects are arranged by level of difficulty (simple, moderate, and challenging), and full instructions are presented along with accompanying photographs. Beginners will appreciate the introduction, which provides the basics in a clear, concise, easy-to-follow manner. Verdict? There are many felting books that focus on creating small animal toys, but few contain projects with as much verve as those in this book. Felters will love making these little woolbuddies, and children will enjoy playing with them.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Craft Objects Of Desire

This month’s splendid selection of crafting books offers exciting vintage projects including seasonal sewing, knitting and quilting, jewellery making tips and techniques. Be inspired with some fabulous ideas on how to beautify your home and create stunning crafts for yourself or as gifts for friends and family. Enjoy the challenge!

Syndetics book cover101 ways to stitch, craft, create vintage : quick & easy projects to make for your vintage lifestyle / project editor, Jane Trollope.
“Be inspired to get crafting with this fun collection of 101 unique vintage-themed projects. Create stunning crafts for yourself or as gifts for friends and family, with a huge selection of vintage projects to choose from, including a vintage button necklace, suffolk puff rings, fondant fancies, fabric pin cushion, crochet hot water bottle cover, and vintage tea stand. The beautiful projects cover food and drink, home and garden, fashion, and gifts giving you the opportunity to try something new and expand your crafting skills from sewing and knitting to papercraft and cake decorating! Every project is quick and simple to make with easy to follow step-by-step instructions and there is a helpful techniques section at the back at the book, so you’ll be a crafting pro in no time. This stunning collection of craft projects will inspire you to stitch, craft and create your very own vintage lifestyle!” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverMake your own lampshades : 35 original shades to make for table lamps, ceiling lights, and more / Elizabeth Cake.
“Lighting is one of the most important elements of a room’s decorating scheme. It is functional but it can also create drama, warmth, atmosphere and a sense of fun. This fabulous new book with 35 wonderful projects from lampshade designer Elisabeth Cake shows how a beautiful and unique lampshade can completely transfer a room.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverStitch it for autumn : seasonal sewing projects to craft and quilt / Lynette Anderson.
“Transfer your home with these beautiful seasonal craft projects to stitch and saw. Lynette Anderson’s quirky designs and distinctive palette are perfect combination for this gorgeous collection of sewing ideas.” (Adapted from Publisher’s Description)

Syndetics book coverThe knitted slipper book : slippers and house shoes for the entire family / Katie Startzman ; photographs by Mika Nakanishi.
“Katie Startzman writes about knitting and other crafts (including making her own leather sandals and building a chicken coop in her backyard) on her blog, DuoFiberworks.com, which she shares with her sister. She sells individual knitting patterns from her blog and on Ravelry.com. She lives in Berea, Kentucky.” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverKnit your own zoo / Sally Muir & Joanna Osborne ; photography by Holly Jolliffe.
“Knitting patterns for 25 wild animals. There is something here for everyone, with instructions for knitting spots, stripes, fur, scales, trunks, wings and beaks! The animals are surprisingly easy to make. It will only take a few evenings to create yourself an exotic pet or reproduce your favourite species. These knitted animals in miniature are much easier to look after than the real things – they don’t need feeding, they won’t make a mess and they take up hardly any room!” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverHome / Beci Orpin.
“Home will appeal to fans of Beci and to those who loved her previous publication, Find and Keep. Filled with 25 creative projects, each individually imagined by Beci, and designed especially for the home environment, Home will make you fall in love with your house, all over again. Similar to Find and Keep, Home is filled with inspiration and crafty ideas, along with projects designed by Beci, but this time specifically created for you home. The book is separated into three spatial areas: Living Space, Working Space and Sleeping Space. Each chapter is filled with photos and quirky illustrations from Beci, along with solid ideas on how to beautify your home, Beci style. At the end of each chapter there is a collection of projects created by Beci especially for this book, each with a varying level of difficulty, but definitely something for everyone. Try your hand at making cushions, or creating your own duvet cover. Be inspired to design your own wall art, or perfect your workspace with carefully designed space-saving techniques that are both beautiful and functional. Enter the world of Beci’s Home and be inspired to make and create objects and artwork that will enhance your living space and make your house feel all brand new again.” (Summary adapted from Amazon.co. uk)

Syndetics book coverCloth : over 30 beautiful projects from linen, cotton and silk to wool and hide / Cassandra Ellis ; photography by Catherine Gratwicke.
“Organised into five sections — Cotton, Wool, Silk, Linen and Hide –Cloth provides insight into their craftsmanship and history and includes striking projects that make the most of each fabric’s properties, such as using antibacterial hemp to make napkins.” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverSnug as a bug / Melanie McNeice.
“Melanie McNeice is a pattern designer based in Melbourne, Australia. Melly’s adventures in sewing began six years ago when she discovered, as an at-home mother, that she still had the desire to be creative and productive. Her passion for sewing quickly grew and only 12 months after starting to sew she began designing under the pattern label Melly & Me. Melly’s goal was to develop a range of contemporary sewing patterns that included bright and quirky toys, wearable purses and lively, modern quilts. Her aim is to design items that are original, fun and achievable in a day, as well as being completely usable in everyday life.” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book coverThe polymer clay artist’s guide : a directory of mixes, colors, textures, faux finishes, and surface effects / Marie Segal.
“Contains three sections. The first covers the types of clay and other materials, tools and equipment, and setting up a workspace. The second section uses step-by-step color photographs to demonstrate the core techniques for working with polymer clay, including health and safety, baking, mixing, cutting and sanding. The Directory of Effects comprises the bulk of the book. Organized by color and then by technique, there are 100 polymer clay swatches with detailed captions identifying the technique used and cross-referencing to the page showing how to recreate it. As well, the captions give ideas for how the effect might be used in jewelry and other applications.” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Syndetics book cover350 jewellery making tips, techniques & trade secrets / Xuella Arnold & Sara Withers.
“This book packs in the combined wisdom of two writer-educators who are consummate problem solvers when it comes to jewellery making.” (Adapted from Syndetics Summary)

Celebrate Spring

Spring is upon us and it’s the perfect time to refresh and rediscover your love of craft, with new ideas and inspiration from the latest library arrivals! Take a look at some vibrant tie-dye and crochet designs, as well as various innovative quilting and sewing projects for you and the family. And, if you are looking for something different, you might like to experiment with beads and wire to create cute and clever jewellery or ornaments using innovative techniques by Amy Kopperude. Enjoy the challenge!

Syndetics book coverTie-dye : dye it, wear it, share it / Shabd Simon-Alexander.
“Tie-dye has grown up and resurfaced as one of todays most inspired looks. Whether dip-dye, shibori, ombre, or the traditional circle pattern, the new take on tie-dye is amazingly fresh, fashionable, and fun. In “Tie-Dye: Dye It, Wear It, Share It,” acclaimed fashion designer and artist Shabd Simon-Alexander shares her techniques for creating the innovative styles that make her own hand-dyed collection so popular. Packed with Shabds design secrets, colour guidance, expert tips on making each piece distinctly your own, and twenty-two step-by-step projects for garments, accessories, and home decor items, this book will soon have you creating sophisticated dresses, leggings, scarves, tees, and more. Once you experience tie-dye like this, you’ll never think of it the same way again.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverThe collage workbook : how to get started and stay inspired / Randel Plowman.
“The author of The Collage Workbook has been making at least one small collage per day for many years and has chronicled his work since 2006 on the blog acollageaday.com. Plowman covers design basics, tools, and techniques before inviting readers to make their own mixed-media found-object artworks using 50 short exercises. Hundreds of examples of inspiring collages are included. A companion website to the book, thecollageworkbook.blogspot.com, provides links to sources for public-domain imagery and a place for readers to share work. Verdict? This book will help readers see creative possibilities in mundane and unusual places.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverThe Belle & Boo book of craft / [projects conceived and made by Lucinda Ganderton and Lisa Pendreigh] ; illustrations by Mandy Sutcliffe ; photography by Laura Edwards.
“’The Belle & Boo Book of Craft’ provides all the inspiration and know-how needed to bring to life a magical world. Sewing projects include an irresistible cuddly rabbit toy, a washingline wendy house and an explorer’s canvas satchel for playtime as well as a robust beanbag and stylish toy storage for your child’s room.” (Global Books)

Syndetics book coverModern holiday : deck the halls with 18 sewing projects : quilts, stockings, decorations & more / Amanda Murphy.
“Fabric and quilt designer Murphy brings her bright, modern aesthetic to holiday sewing in this collection of Christmas-themed projects. She begins with nine quilts, most of which are the perfect size for snuggling on a cold winter’s night, and then follows with nine home decor projects. For many of the patterns, especially the quilts, a different choice of fabric or color palette would make them more suitable for everyday use, rather than as holiday gifts. Several of the projects incorporate intermediate or advanced techniques, such as precision piecework and hand or fusible applique, but directions are provided. Verdict? Holiday projects are ever popular, and summer is the time to start thinking about handmade gifts. Modern quilters will enjoy this fun collection.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverSimply retro with Camille Roskelley : fresh quilts from classic blocks : use precut jelly rolls, charm packs, fat quarters & more / Camille Roskelley.
“In her second book, fabric and quilt designer Roskelley (Simplify with Camille Roskelley) returns to her area of expertise-traditional-style quilts with modern flair. The collection includes 11 designs in a variety of sizes, from wall hangings to baby quilts to a queen-size bedspread, most sewn in the aqua, red, green, and white palette that has become the author’s trademark. Once again, she focuses on time-saving precut fabrics, although directions are provided for quilters cutting from yardage. Verdict? Roskelley’s designs are popular among the online quilting community, and her designs are contemporary enough to appeal to modern quilters yet classic enough to appeal to traditionalists.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverGrowing up modern : 16 quilt projects for babies & kids / Allison Harris.
“For busy moms who want to quilt, 16 one-of-a-kind quilt projects to make for babies and kids, Almost all the patterns offer sizing for baby quilts and 7 of the patterns easily adapt to fit size crib and twin. Also includes instructions for a pillow and quillow, Fun, full-color photographs throughout the book are sure to inspire both beginner and expert sewists.” (Book cover)

Syndetics book coverCrochet-opedia : the only crochet reference you’ll ever need / Julie Oparka.
“Crochet instructor Oparka has gathered a collection of crocheting wisdom, information, and projects into this reference. Though supplies and equipment for crochet are amply covered, the focus is on technique, and Oparka covers everything from getting started to specialized techniques such as Tunisian crochet and hairpin lace. This will prove useful to experienced crocheters who need a refresher on a particular technique or who are looking for projects to expand their skill set. Verdict? Crochet reference works are much less common than ones for knitting, and this one has all of the basic information crocheters will want to have on hand.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverCrochet at home : 25 clever projects for colorful living / edited by Brett Bara.
“Get 25 small and quick crochet projects from top designers to add color and cheer to your home! In Crochet at Home, editor Brett Bara and a team of crochet experts bring 25 exciting home projects to life. Explore a collection of practical, pretty pieces for your kitchen, living room, and bedroom: from a riotously colorful blanket, to a delicate bunting of crocheted snowflakes, to flower-inspired trivets that are anything but dull-and even a full-sized ottoman! Techniques such as felting, lace, and crocheting with wire will appeal to beginner and advanced crocheters alike. Projects are made in affordable yarns, especially for large pieces and ones that take a beating, like kitchen accessories. Join Brett and her team of all-star crocheters in this cheerful, affordable, and occasionally humorous take on home decor in this new and approachable resource.” (Publisher description)

Syndetics book coverAimee Ray’s sweet & simple jewelry : 17 designers, 10 techniques & 32 projects to make / Aimee Ray with Kathy Sheldon.
“Ray (Doodle Stitching) and Sheldon (Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk! Make Stylish Shrink Plastic Jewelry) have curated a collection of fun and quirky jewelry incorporating a number of techniques such as embroidery, needle felting, and basic bead stringing. Most of the projects require only entry-level skills (and entry-level tools), but the results are surprisingly sophisticated, and the standouts are reminiscent of the trendy accessories popular on Etsy (or in funky craft boutiques). Vedict? DIYers with a taste for cute crafts will appreciate this book, and these introductory projects may whet their appetite for more advanced work, especially in embroidery and needle felting.” (Adapted from Library Journal)

Syndetics book coverFashion jewelry : the collection of Barbara Berger / text by Harrice Simons Miller ; photography by Pablo Esteva.
“Recognised as one of the world’s foremost collections, Barbara Berger’s costume jewellery portfolio features many of what are considered the twentieth century’s most significant designs. Fashion Jewellery: The Collection of Barbara Berger highlights over 200 beautiful and noteworthy examples from her more than 4,000 pieces. From legendary couturiers such as Chanel, Elsa Schiaparelli, and Valentino to contemporary designers including Daniel Von Weinberger, Iradj Moini, and Kenneth Jay Lane, this title presents the jewellery of over 60 designers, many of whom are among the industry’s most revered names. Published in conjunction with the Museum of Arts & Design’s Bedazzled exhibition, this book is the first definitive title on Barbara Berger’s costume jewellery anthology to date. With original photography and an informative text written by leading expert Harrice Simons Miller, Fashion Jewellery: The Collection of Barbara Berger is the ultimate accessory for jewellery aficionados and fashionistas alike”. (Global Books)

Syndetics book coverBead bugs : cute, creepy, and quirky projects to make with beads, wire, and fun found objects / Amy Kopperude.
“Creepy-crawlies take a turn for the ornamental in this collection, which features designs for 23 different insects and sea creatures (and, oddly, an owl). In her first book, Kopperude heads off the likely question-What would I do with an insect made out of beads?-by presenting each insect as part of a project, such as an ant magnet, a fly tie tack, and a spider sun catcher. Most of the projects require simple tools that should be in most beadworkers’ collections, such as pliers, wire cutters, and craft adhesive, and the projects themselves are simple enough for beginners to tackle. Verdict? The theme is unusual, but it works. Projects like the dragonfly wine-glass charms might appeal to wedding crafters, and some of the creepier designs, like the bat mobile, are perfect for those decorating for Halloween.” (Adapted from Library Journal)


  • Archives

  • Categories