Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Crafty Book Review: Doodle-Stitching by Aimee Ray
Doodle-Stitching: Fresh & Fun Embroidery Designs for Beginners by Aimee Ray
2007, Lark Books; 128 pages
Summary from GoodReads.com:
"Asian-inspired lampshades embellished with flying fish. Canvas sneakers decorated with pink and white swirls. A pretty pillow adorned with a sleeping bunny, sweetly curled up. All it takes to create these appealing projects—or add charming embroidered touches in no time at all—are a few simple stitches, some easy techniques, and the nearly 30 projects in this book. Begin by learning several styles for outlining, filling, decorating, and appliqué. Find out about floss, fancy threads, fabrics, and needles. Get the scoop on hoops, and the lowdown on transferring your very own designs onto every type of fabric. The fresh ideas, witty patterns, and clever color illustrations take stitchers from novice to accomplished in a blink of the eye!"
I picked this book up on a whim when I was in one of my "I need inspiration" moods. I'm so glad that I did. I LOVE this book. Did you catch that?
Love. This. Book.
Do you doodle while you are on the phone? You can do this. Like to draw on a scrap napkin? Yep. You too. Copy, alter, or start from scratch with your own original design with a doodle. It's completely approachable after you've read this book!
I don't have much experience with embroidery. I've done a bit here and there, but my hand-stitching is typically limited to finishing work and the occasional cross stitch project. I've tried my hand at embroidery a few times but honestly there are some basic stitches that my mind just wouldn't allow me to see. Aimee Ray does a fantastic job explaining the how along with the why in each basic and decorative stitch. She also tells you how a stitch might morph into another, or how two may be paired together. The photographs along with her description create some kind of magic because I GOT it! I can actually see how these elements come together to create patterns! This is earth shattering people. Seriously. It is.
Another great bit in this book comes by way of explanation of fabric and method. Each is explained (again with photos), and best yet even the patterns tell you step by step which method of transfer should be used, to hoop or not to hoop (not a question after you read her description) and how to make changes to make the piece YOURS. I tend to be a "buck the system" kind of gal. I always make changes. If a craft requires me to copy a work in full I tend to work through half and never finish. I honestly think that I will finish any project that I choose from this book. Best yet, because there are photos of motifs created in slightly different ways or with slightly different materials to illustrate the flexibility in design my mind's eye has already started coming up with designs.
Practically speaking this is a great book to grab if you are new to sewing and would like to embellish a purchased item to give it that hand-made touch, and yet it is also a good book for the shelf of a seasoned crafter. Pick it up and enjoy.
Now, go stitch something!