Thursday, 3 January 2008

Notes from the librarian...

I was the incredibly lucky recipient of all these lovely sewing books this Christmas! First up is Amy Butler's Sew It Kit - this is a little box of recipe-card-style sewing patterns, including some gorgeous fabric to make a tissue box cover! It has quite a few of the same patterns in as Amy Butler's In Stitches, which I already have, but there are some new ones thrown in and I love the format.

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!

15 comments:

  1. Wow! That's quite a collection you got there - lucky girl!

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  2. I'm terribly envious of all you delicious new books! Enjoy them!

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  4. Hi Florence, thanks for your comment the other day about craft book ideas. This post has certainly given me some more ideas for my wish list. In the end I plumped for the Gentle Art of Domesticity too and you're going to love it! Fabulous pictures! Mr Bee is getting sick of me showing him things from that book - I spent the whole of New Year's Day curled up on my sisters sofa reading it :) and I'm now full of ideas and plans! Speaking of sisters, I saw your sister's book in Borders the other day - they had a little display devoted to it and it looks great :)

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  5. i love all those books! i too have had my eye on them for a while now.

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  6. so much book-goodness! i have several of the same...truly inspiring. enjoy your collection! i'm off in search of miss pettigrew now after your recommendation : )

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  7. what a lovely little library of books! I got sew pretty homestyle which I love!

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  8. You lucky girl! Thanks for all the mini-reviews, especially of Midwest Modern. It sounds so nice, but the reviews on Amazon are so negative, I didn't know what to think! I believe you much more. I'm off to Amazon to update my wish list now!

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  9. What a fabulous library collection! I have found the Sew Pretty Homestyle in our library and am planning some makes from there! You will have great fun deciding what to make over the coming year.

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  10. We share a very similar 'new book' pile, but I failed to snag 'Midwest Modern'. Never mind, I'm sure there'll be an Amazon order with my name on it in the not too distant future...

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  11. Lovely new books! I have had my eye on Last minute patchwork gifts for a while and am so tempted to buy it. Please post pics of the things you make!
    I also love Persephone books - a friend gave me 'It's hard to be hip over thirty' by Judith Viorst for my thirieth, and it now lives by my bedside. They really are beautiful books.

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  12. lol! I have most of those on my amazon wish list, and also got a couple for christmas!!! Have a fun time reading them all!

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  13. So glad to find your blog! Amy Butler, Jane Brockett, Persephone Books... all favorites. And your other new books look fabulous, as well!

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  14. So many lovely books - all that inspiration will last all year. I am looking forward to seeing the crafty results.

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  15. Hi Florence, thanks for visiting my blog..
    I have been wishing for Amy's book for a long time, the images on your blog make me want it even more! Lovely blog by the way x

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x