Sew Cute Quilts & Gifts Atsuko Matsuyama

91wKoLY1XiL._AC_UL320_ML3_ Pub: Search Press

Make 30 colourful quilts, bags and accessories using patchwork, appliqué, embroidery, beading and other techniques.

A colourful collection of quilts, bags and accessories from talented designer Atsuko Matsuyama, this book showcases the author’s inspiring use of colour and retro design style. With over 30 projects to choose from, you can create multifaceted designs using patchwork and appliqué, along with embroidery, beading and other special embellishments.

Try your hand at some of these sweet, scrap-friendly projects: the Dancing Flowers Purse, Yoyo Bucket Bag, Blooming Flowers Quilt, Strawberry Blossom Wreath, Dancing Dresses Quilt, Sunbonnet Sue Mini Quilt, Pastel Hexagon Purse and Strawberry Ruffle Pouch. Step-by-step instructions are included for all projects along with lovely illustrations and beautiful photographs showing the finished items. Full-size templates for all the projects are provided at the back of the book.


My review 

This bright and colourful book, really is filled with cute quilts and gifts.

I just adored the Dress Quilt that is on the front cover, but the other ideas and designs are just as gorgeous.

There are full sized templates, which in my opinion is always worth a five star review, and these will need to traced or photocopied as they are double sided.

Measurements are given in inches and cm, and all instructions are simple to follow. There are some handy hints and tips to follow.

Each design is beautifully made, you can see from the pictures that Atsuko is a very accomplished maker. The colours just ‘pop’ and the projects have been well thought out.

Although some of the pieces are small, the enjoyment you will get from each idea will make the time spent worth it.


I really wanted to make a start on the Dress Quilt.


I traced my design from the pattern sheet.

You have to add a 1/4 inch seam around each piece. So after cutting out the pieces and marking them, I used a fabric glue stick to keep them in place. I arranged them in order to stitch, making things easier for me.

The first block.. just needs a press and a border added ….



Happy quilting x



About the Author

Atsuko Matsuyama is one of Japan’s leading quilt artists and fabric designers. In 1989, she opened her quilt studio, A-Two. She often exhibits her work at the Tokyo International Quilt Festival and she makes regular television appearances. Matsuyama also designs fabrics for Yuwa, Japan. Atsuko lives in Tsuchiura, Japan.


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Wedding Jewelry Sian Hamilton

51CGJviCkGL._AC_UL320_ML3_Pub: Guild of Master Craftsman Publications


This fabulous new book from the editor of Making Jewellery magazine is the ideal resource for jewellery makers keen to learn the intricacies of creating wedding jewellery. From elegant earrings to eye-catching headpieces, along with necklaces, bracelets and brooches galore, there are plenty of imaginative and stylish pieces to complement any bridal outfit. The book is divided into five inspirational collections in a range of captivating styles: Classic, Vintage, Lace, Nature and Floral, with six pieces of jewellery in each one. Each chapter also features at least one special technique which is unique to that particular collection. Although some jewellery-making knowledge is assumed, all the basic techniques are covered in a separate section. There is also a discussion of the tools and materials required, so the book is suitable for beginners as well as experienced makers. Every bride should feel like a princess on the big day and with the help of Sian Hamilton’s gorgeous jewellery she’ll look like one, too.

My review 

Wedding Jewelry is a beautiful book. It is full of inspiration and the 30 designs are simple but stunning.

They are classic, feminine and also quite vintage, so they are definitely going to give you an ultra modern look.

I loved the Tiara, I will be making it to wear to my New Years Eve party.

Every jewellery maker will love this book.

The instructions are easy to understand and each step is in full colour photography,

There is a detailed material guide, which explains each piece of kit and what it is used for, so even a beginner will be able to make something divine.

The technique section, once again, gives a full description and really is a lesson in understanding and learning.



I loved the Tiara, so obviously this was the first piece I made.

The design is simple but beautiful, and can be made as small simple piece or much larger depending on your personal style.


I added small gold beads to my design.

2019-10-19 12.06.51


Happy crafting x





About the Author

Sian Hamilton has been making jewellery for more than 30 years. She is the editor of Making Jewellery and Superfood magazines and has written several jewellery-making books, all available from GMC Publications.


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Beginner’s Guide to Tunisian Crochet Emma Guess


71CtN-PiYfL._AC_UL320_ML3_ Pub:  Search Press

Tunisian crochet is a great way of producing stunning creative textiles and in this gorgeous book Emma Guess will show you how. Offering the perfect challenge for seasoned and new crocheters alike, Emma takes you from the absolute basics of Tunisian crochet. She then demonstrates how to develop your skills to create unique designs and textures.

Accompanied by clear, step-by-step photography you ll learn the basic stitches, then how to combine stitches and colour changes to create exciting new textures. There are three easy projects to practice your new skills, followed by ten stylish and modern projects for you to create. You can make a beautiful chunky blanket, a pair of mittens and matching scarf, a stylish shoulder bag, a chevron cushion and more. Emma’s unique style is fun, exciting and instantly alluring and these sleek and sophisticated projects will complement your home and make lovely gifts.

My review

I am new to Tunisian Crochet and I have always found it very interesting, so I really wanted to learn to master the craft.

The Beginners Guide is a simple and easy to understand tutorial and with the photographed visual instructions it really is a brilliant teaching book. I loved how the author has dedicated each stitch to it’s own section. There are diagrams as well as photographs and each step is explained in full detail.

This is a book for total beginners, with 10 stunning projects.  From bags to wall hangings they are useful and ideal for home or gift giving.

This is the perfect book to start with, and it comes highly recommended.



From the Author

Emma Guess is a fashion design graduate who was taught to crochet by her mother – she has been hooked ever since. She constantly strives to challenge stuffy misconceptions about the craft and makes modern and quirky crochet designs that will not only appeal to established and new crocheters alike.She shares her creative ideas and has had numerous design commissions from a variety of magazines. Emma lives in Middlesbrough, UK.



Instagram.. @sylviamargaretdesigns


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Fat Quarter Vintage Susie Johns

81WrleQ6E+L._AC_UY218_ML3_ Pub: GMC Publications

Fat Quarter: Vintage is the latest addition to a fabulous series of stash-busting sewing books. Separated into five decades, from the 1930s to the 1970s, each chapter contains five projects using fat quarter fabric or scraps that reflect the era. The projects have clear step-by-step instructions and beautiful accompanying photography, and there’s a useful tools and technique section for those who are new to sewing. This book is ideal for using the leftover remnants of fabric, and the projects make great gifts. Projects include: 1930s pin cushion, 1940s flower brooch, 1940s sewing machine cover, 1950s apron, 1950s sunglasses case, 1960s child’s dress, 1970’s draft stopper, 1970s shopping bag


My review 

Set into sections of years, from 1930 to 1970, this is a book filled with simple but beautiful sewing projects.

25 stash busting projects  from bags to table runners come with easy to follow instructions and templates that need to be resized to scale on your photocopier.

Each design is amazing. Simple for even a beginner sewist, all the things you will need is listed and along with the written instruction there is a wonderful visual photographed step by step.

There are things for children, for the home and some you can give as gifts.

I loved the Embroidered Cushion and the Owl Mobile is very cute.

This is a great book for inspiration and advancing your sewing skills without using up too much fabric.



I just love book covers and with that idea I came up with a book bag with handles, making it perfect for my commute and to protect he corners getting squished as what usually happens when it’s in the bottom of bag.

I even added a handy pen tab.

I had some gorgeous Wonder Woman fabric…..

so I made another three which are available to buy. If you want one let me know!

(UK Postage only)


About the Author

Susie Johns is an artist and designer who has written dozens of craft books, mostly on knitting, crochet and sewing, including Knitted Pets, Knitted Woodland Creatures, How to Embroider and Fat Quarter: Bags & Purses (GMC Publications). She lives in London, UK.




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Sarah Payne’s Quilt School Sarah Payne

81aWUqlHGTL._AC_UY218_ML3_ Pub: Search Press

Step into Sarah Payne’s world of sewing and learn from the expert the basics of quilting and patchwork.

In this fun and practical introduction to quilting and patchwork, well-known TV personality Sarah Payne leads you through a series of techniques to build up your skills.

Each chapter includes a number of different-sized step-by-step projects, including quilts, cushions, tote bags and table runners. Sarah discusses different shapes (squares, circles, triangles) and different techniques (appliqué, piecing blocks and curved piecing) in turn. She also includes information on basting, layering, quilting and binding, as well as pre-cuts.

Filled with guidance and helpful tips and tricks, this book will equip you with all you need to know to get started on your quilting adventure. Put your skills into practice and at the same time create beautiful projects to keep or give as gifts.


My review 

I have been watching Sarah Payne on TV for quite a while and love her zest for all things stitchy. So when I heard that she had written a book I was very excited.

Ms Payne has not disappointed me. From beginner to advanced sewist, everyone will take something from this book, whether it be a new skill or a fabulous idea.

The book is sectioned in ‘lessons’.  So from beginning to end, each project introduces a new skill.

With simple language, easy instructions that are in written and visual format and brilliant hints and tips, there is no reason why you would not get a professional finish to your very usable project.

Quilts, bags, runners and cushions are all included and each step is easy to follow.

The bright glossy pages showcase the projects and the colours ‘pop’ giving you so much inspiration and they will definitely  boost your creativity and imagination.

I loved this book, it has a wealth of information of fabric, fat quarters, thread and gives expert advice on what you will need for your sewing journey.



About the Author

Sarah Payne is a popular quilting teacher, designer and TV demonstrator, well known on Create and Craft. She started crafting at a young age, under her mother’s watchful eye, but went on to study Economics and pursue a career in IT.

In 2011, Sarah decided to take a break and rediscover the creative side of her nature. She started by opening a fabric shop and training centre, before becoming a regular contributor to all the major UK quilting magazines. She has launched a successful range of quilting kits and now designs her own fabric range for Craft Cotton Company.

Sarah lives in Peterborough, UK.



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Willing Hands Inspirations Studio

51PygwAFFiL._AC_UY218_ML3_ Pub: Inspirations Studio

Worked in counted thread techniques using hand-dyed silk threads, each etui is adorned with exquisite motifs based on themes including antique toys, Elizabethan caskets, pioneer samplers and beloved fruits and flowers. Betsy has designed a charming selection of small projects to match each etui including scissor sheaths and fobs, thread winders, needlebooks, pincushions and thimble cases. Eight captivating etuis with coordinating accessories are included, along with colour charts to guide every stitch. Detailed instructions are provided for every step from stitching to construction.


My review 

This is a beautiful beautiful book. I just adored it as soon as I set eyes on it and I am sure lovers of embroidery will love it as much as I do.

An etui is ‘a small ornamental case for holding needles, cosmetics, and other articles.’. They are absolutely exquisite and Betsy Morgan  is brilliant at her craft.

Photographed in full colour, you cannot help but be amazed at how delicate and stunning these little cases are, and the accessories are just as amazing.

Button boxes, needle cases and so much more are showcased and easy to follow instructions are given in visual and written format.

Using the finest silks and counted linen, each piece on it’s own is beautiful, but when put together with the added accessories, I can see many an embroiderer wanting to make them over and over again.

Given as gifts they would surprise and delight, but of course I want to keep some for myself. I made a button box in a few days, and cannot wait to get started on my next piece.




Although the recommended fabric is 32 count linen. I did not have any in my stash of fabric. I do have some on order, but in the meantime I could not wait to get started on one of these exquisite pieces. So….. I used 14 count aida, a staple in every cross stictchers collection.

I made the ‘Button Box’ that accompanies the ‘Toy Chest’ Etui.

I used the same amount of stitches that are used in the pattern, but obviously my finished piece is bigger than the piece in the book.


As you can see, the pictures are beautiful and easy to follow.

I stitched my outline using a big cross stitch. the four sections are the box and the separate one is for the lid. I found this quite simple, but as I am not using the correct fabric I did have to think about my stitch size.


I cut around my fabric and made a thin card insert, this is to stiffen the box. I glued the edges of the box to the card and held it in place with pegs. I also placed some wadding in the lid and the bottom of my box pieces.


I then stitched up the sides of the box and added the lid. I used a handmade button from own collection to finish it off.. I am pleased with how it turned out and it just shows how well the author has created her designs. I love that I can use different fabrics and still get a good result.



happy crafting x




About the Author

With a rich history forged with needle and thread, Inspirations publishes the world s most beautiful needlework books and magazines.

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The Storyteller’s Sampler Quilt Cinzia White


A1e-9K43DgL._AC_UL320_ML3_ Pub:  C&T Publishing

Raconteur–The Storyteller’s Collection, an award-winning quilt, is your next take-anywhere project. Sew a collection of miniature pieced hexagons, making the king-size quilt your next long-term project, or pick and choose from 363 block designs to make a project of any size! A mix of hand-stitched and machine-pieced blocks are organized in 59 collections. Full-size foundation paper patterns are included for many of the blocks, with tips for English paper piecing.

My review 

Making a quilt is always a challenge. The Storytellers Quilt is a beautiful piece of work consisting of 359 blocks.

I loved the story behind the creation of this quilt and for the designer it was definitely a labour of love.

With full sized templates and detailed instructions, this isn’t a task for the faint-hearted, but while it is a challenging quilt, it is beautifully designed and very colourful.

Using Paper piecing, foundation piecing and 59 collections it is one of those projects that will bring frustration and joy.

I loved hexagons and that’s what drew me to the design. I will be using a mixture of new fabric and recycled fabric from precious clothing I have been wanting to use. So for me it will be a memory quilt, as well as something useful for my home.

Every part is explained fully, and with a lot of visual images you really cannot go wrong. From start to finish Cinzia White takes you through the process and with her expertise you can guarantee a perfect result.


2019-10-01 11.20.22 I traced the templates and laminated them to make them easier to use.


About the Author

Cinzia White has been quilting for over thirty years, has published numerous patterns in patchwork magazines, and has taught throughout Australia. Cinzia has created many award-winning quilts and enjoys stitching and appliquéing by hand. She lives in Gerringong, NSW Australia.




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