Monday, 13 February 2012

New Year reading

I'm sure many of you have had some lovely handicraft books for Christmas or in the January sales and as I've seen other bloggers do the same, I thought I'd share with you the pile that is currently sitting next to my bed to tempt me.

I got two book from my sister this Christmas, the Liberty Book of Home Sewing and Made in France: Sweet Treats in Cross Stitch.  I've always been a bit of a Liberty fan and collected items in one of their tana lawn patterns for years (until it was discontinued - sob!), so this book was bound to tempt me.  The projects in it are all gorgeous and look stunning in Liberty prints.  I'm sure they'd be lovely in other prints too, but it is difficult to beat good old Liberty (in my opinion anyway).  I'm not sure where I'll start with them, but my mother-in-law has already asked for one of them as her Christmas present this year (plenty of warning!).  I was quite tempted by a quilt though.  I've fancied making one for years, but always been a bit scared by the scale of it.  But this book has persuaded me to start collecting Liberty prints to make an heirloom quilt for our bedroom.

The second book, Made in France: Sweet Treats in Cross Stitch by Tinou Le Joly Senoville, probably isn't one I'd have gone for if I'd seen it in a shop, although I'm sure I'd have enjoyed thumbing through it.  But, once again, there are some lovely projects in it.  They're all sweet-related (really?!!) with a bit of a  French twist - macaroons, French slogans, the odd Eiffel Tower, and in really pretty LadurĂ©e macaroon colours.  I think I may try to adapt some of the Christmas charts for some decorations and use up some more of my stash of crafting supplies in the process.  I'll try and keep you posted on my progress - if I make any!

The third book is one I found in one of those bargain book shops, although it wasn't reduced by all that much.  It is Scandinavian Needlecraft by Clare Youngs.  This is a completely new style for me, but the Scandinavian style is so clean and fresh it was sure to appeal to me.  And there's a Swedish connection on my husband's side too, so I felt I was supporting the 'team' at the same time (well, that's my excuse and I'll stick to it!).  Once again there are some gorgeous projects - many using felt and various embroidery stitches (running, whipped backstitch, french knots ...) which is a change for me from my usual cross stitch.  There are some delightful little felt baby slippers, which would be lovely to enlarge, but I may just find a use for the emblem on them instead.  I love the felt Christmas decorations too (yes, I have a bit of a thing about Christmas decorations from central and northern Europe!) and some may creep on to our tree next time around.  They'd be great gifts too, as they'd be so light to post.

Other craft reading material I love is Martha Stewart Living magazine.  If you aren't familiar with it, it is packed full of home-making tips and ideas, from organising cupboards and drawers to bunting for parties/celebrations and recipes.  This month she had me drooling over the 'home making room' and all the beautifully organised shelves and cupboards she has there.  Just the thing for the organised person in me trying to get out!!
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