Three Delightful Books

Authors: 
Pan, Gail Bothell Patchwork loves embroidery too: 14 delightful handmade treasures
Smitke, Adrienne Lunch-hour embroidery: 130 playful motifs from A-Z.
Morgan, Cristin Hoop art: 20 stylish projects for the modern embroiderer.
Review: 
I have decided to review three delightful books in one hit. Why? Well, I think any one of these books would make a delightful gift for someone just dipping their toes into our favourite pool, whether that someone is very young or has more days behind them than in front of them. 

Patchwork loves embroidery too: 14 delightful handmade treasures. Pan, Gail Bothell, WA, Martingale, 2018 ISBN: 978 1 60468 900 6 80 pages 

The utterly charming motifs in this book are worked in 8 simple surface stitches, all explained in a stitch dictionary near the back of the book. The motifs are all presented as a decoration on a small patchwork project. The colour palette is mostly muted. Templates for the motifs are full size. Instructions for each project seem to be well written. I seldom use the word cute, but the ‘Bunny Delights’ bag is just that! Do have a look at this book. The projects are delightful. 

Lunch-hour embroidery: 130 playful motifs from A-Z. Smitke, Adrienne (illustrator) Bothell, WA, Martingale, 2018 ISBN: 978 1 60468 898 6 64 pages 

The title of this book says it all really. The motifs are playful and whimsical and yes, I really do think each one could be worked in an hour…as long as you already have each project set up on your fabric before you start. There is an ‘embroidery basics’ section at the front (wash your hands is the first instruction!) followed by a dictionary of the 10 simple surface stitches utilised in the motifs. Each letter of the alphabet has three accompanying motifs worked in clear, bright colours. I particularly like the caravan which is one of the motifs for the letter C. The motifs are fresh and original. 

Hoop art: 20 stylish projects for the modern embroiderer. Morgan, Cristin Wellford, Kent, Search Press, 2018 ISBN: 978 1 78221 636 0 128 pages 

 This is a special book which will particularly appeal to younger embroiderers. The contents page reveals four main themes – Just Hoops, For Your Home, For You, and finally, Techniques And Stitch Directory. The projects are delightful. They all have a contemporary feel; look at pp 98–99 and the lipsticks embroidered and painted on a makeup case. Gorgeous! Each project includes a list of the materials needed along with a coloured photo. Instructions follow of how to go about making each item. Each step is illustrated with clear photos. The photo on page 7 of the author reveals an attractive young person with tatts on her forearms (no Nana images here to put the young reader off) and on page 9 is a photo of her sitting stitching, with the by line, ‘in my happy place…a source of great joy’.  

Erica Marsden