Three small project driven books

Boerens, Trice: Learn Huck Embroidery on Monk's Cloth. Berne, Indiana, Annie’s, 2014
Pan, Gail Patchwork Loves Embroidery. Bothell, Australia, Martingale, 2014
Fast Christmas Cards. Newton Abbot, David & Charles, 2012

Three for the price of one this month! That’s because all three are quite thin, project driven books, too straightforward for a review each but well worth drawing your attention to. They are all available through Auckland Public Libraries. 

The first two start with the basic tools and materials needed and general instructions on how to go about the projects. 

The huck embroidery book has several designs graphed out in colour. The graphs are easy to read and look as though they will be easy to follow – not that I have tried any! There are instructions to embroider items as small as a hot pad, through to a full sized afghan and many in between. The book is a good starting place if huck embroidery appeals. My one reservation is that I am unsure how easy it will be to source monk’s cloth but the patterns would be able to be worked on other counted thread cloths.

The second book contains delightful, mainly fairly small, projects, which combine patchwork techniques with embroidery.  The designs are charming and folksy. Many use redwork styled needlework, some worked in red, some in various colours. A sweet needle book particularly appeals to me, as does a bag, which I can see me making for one of my daughters-in-law. There is a quilt, pillows, wall hangings…if you like ‘pretty’, I think you will like this book. 

It’s never too early to think about Christmas if, like me, you like to make gifts and cards. The third book is a collection of  39 cross stitch festive greetings cards, designed by eight different women. Most of them are simple enough to be able to be stitched up quite quickly. A few will take a bit longer. The variety is attractive, although I confess to not being a fan of teddies or penguins at Christmas but we all have different tastes. Whatever yours is, you are bound to find something. 

All three books are attractively presented with colour diagrams and photos. They all include good instructions on how to finish off the projects. I hope you will find something which appeals to you in at least one of these books.

Erica Marsden