by Lesley Riley
Scrapbooking and quilting are each two-billion-dollar industries.Combine the two crafts and you've got a collection that will fly off the shelves.
A scrapbook gets put away; a quilt goes on display -- perhaps framed and hung on the wall, or draped over the couch, placed right where everyone can see it. These 24 original quilts incorporate the same treasured photos and memorabilia that normally go into a scrapbook, but in a unique and unusual format. And they're fun to make too, thanks to the many innovative techniques that are both easy for a beginner to master and excitingly new to the experienced quilter. Direct print favorite pictures on fabric with an inkjet printer. Arrange images on the quilt to tell a story. Tea-dye material to make it will look antique, creating a perfect background for those vintage photos. Extensive opening sections on art and design basics provide a plethora of invaluable tips, from how to mix and match colors to how to use pattern and texture. (There's even a list of the 10 most common composition mistakes.) Quilters, collage artists, scrapbookers, and those who work with mixed media and assemblage will be thrilled at the abundance of breathtaking ideas on these pages.
by Debbie Stoller
Debbie does crochet! Debbie Stoller, the "knitting superstar," has been leading an entire movement of hip young knitters with her New York Times bestseller Stitch 'n Bitch and its follow-up, Stitch 'n Bitch Nation, together with over 521,000 copies in print. But guess what? For every one knitter in the world there are three crocheters -- which translates into millions of hip, crafty, 18- to 35-year-olds ready to be happy hookers with Stitch 'n Bitch attitude, sexiness, ingenuity, and cool.
Written in the author's cheeky chick style, this heavily illustrated book --featuring full-color photographs and instructional illustrations throughout -- is chock-full of instruction, inspiration, and to-die-for designs, from a Fishnet Skullcap to a lacy evening wrap. For knitters and new crafters exploring the hook comes the primer: the advantages of crochet and the ways in which knitters (and nonknitters) benefit by learning this sister craft; a discussion of tools; all the cool yarns available, and what the different gauges mean; plus basic techniques and stitch patterns-including the chain stitch, picot, flowers, filet crochet, changing yarns, and finishing. Then come 40 fabulous, funky projects -- the kind that make Stitch 'n Bitch rule -- for crocheters: Pom Pom Capelet, Retro Clutch Purse, Anarchy Irony Hat, Ms. Pac Man Change Purses, Doris Daymat, Va-Va-Va Voom Bikini, Animal I-Pod Cozies, Kid's Sock Monkey Poncho.
No, these aren't your grandma's doilies.
by Alan Bridgewater
Flying a beautiful kite is exhilarating and all the more thrilling and rewarding when the kite soaring in the sunshine is your own creation!
This exciting practical guide helps even new kite makers to experience the adventure of constructing and flying nine original kites based on traditional designs from around the world. Step-by-step instructions and detailed diagrams take you through the process of assembling, testing, decorating, and flying each of the kites. Finished kites must be aerodynamically sound, but the authors allow plenty of leeway in construction: "In kite making, precise measurements are less important than balance, proportion, and symmetry." And although materials are specified for each design, the easy-to-follow directions allow for a variety of lightweight, durable substitutions.
Beginners and children will want to start with the simple, universally familiar European Diamond Kite. But neither the intricate, unusually shaped Oriental kite nor the scientifically sophisticated, efficient High-Tech Box Kite is very hard to make. The spectacular Guatemalan Sun Kite is a high flier that sings as it soars, the result of four easy-to-make "buzzers" that vibrate in the wind. Designed to be flown at night and illuminated with flashlights, the intriguing New England Ghost Kite is an excellent "swooper." Each design has a unique flying style: the Chinese Yuan flies well in a light-to-moderate wind while the High-Tech Box requires a good stiff breeze; the Chinese Dragonfly and Oriental Butterfly are low, steady fliers, and the Guatemalan Sun and Korean Warrior are showy high fliers. All are magnificent examples of a 2,000-year history of kite flying.