Next was Doodle Stitching by Aimee Ray, which I've been desperate to look through for a long time now. I haven't had a chance to really look at this properly, but the pictures look inspiring and as though it may give good clear instructions on some of the embroidery stitches. Some of the ideas seem more suitable for the younger market (i.e. teenagers)...but it doesn't actually detract from the book as it provides ample inspiration to do my own (more fogeyish) take on things!
Last Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts (below) by Joelle Hoverson is the book I was really most desperate to look through, as I'd seen snippets of it on other blogs and become increasingly flibberty to look at it RIGHT NOW! It doesn't disappoint and the photos of the yummy projects do much to increase one's online visits to Purl Soho - the fabric shop co-owned by the author.
After hearing Jane Brocket of Yarnstorm on Radio 4 I really wanted to own her book, The Gentle Art of Domesticity. This isn't a pattern book in any way, but I'm convinced that if you love sewing, textiles and noticing the things around you, this book will be just as inspirational and generate just as much creativity as any book of patterns that could be bought. I was particularly delighted to find the below shot of books published by Persephone Books, as when I saw it I was in the middle of reading Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day...which is a brilliant book anyway, but the experience of reading it is so greatly enhanced by how beautifully presented it is! Persephone publish the rediscovered manuscripts of old authors that were somehow overlooked when they first wrote their novels. The whole concept is just dreamy and so perfectly executed!
Amy Butler's Midwest Modern had somehow escaped the far-reaching grasp of my Amazon Wish List, but when my mother saw it in Liberty and had a look through its lovely pages, she knew that I would love it. She was so right. It is full of lovely pictures of Amy's perfectly-wonderful looking life and is an excellent partner to her pattern books - I love hearing more details and this has it all - the way she works, her home around her. Fantastic! My 'quick look' through it on Christmas day must have been actually quite thorough, for each year Ian does a Christmas Quiz for our whole family and his chosen specialist subject for me (unbeknownst to me) was Amy Butler. He wanted to know who took the cover photo for this book (David Butler), what his relationship was to Amy (her husband) and what her husband's job was (photographer and he also helps her do all the difficult computery stuff like working out pattern repeats)! Weirdly I had taken in these bizarre facts (which indicates the reason as to why I am never able to remember anything that actually matters in day-to-day living!) and got them right straight off (our team still lost though!).Finally Sew Pretty Homestyle by Tone Finnanger, a(nother!) present from Ian. This book is pink and lovely. It also has some really original ideas in it (see horse above!) and the demonstrated projects use some really lovely fabrics. There is lots of embroidery and applique and nearly everything in there is something I would like to make.
Bedtime reading is quite fabulous this month!