Butterfly Stitches Catherine Redford

Butterfly Stitches: Hand embroidery & wool appliqué designs
Pub: C&T Publishing

Beautify with butterflies! Appliqué and embroidery designs for nature lovers with international teacher Catherine Redford. Customise designs for 36 unique looks to add to your next sampler quilt, pillow, or small project.

My review

You have to see the wonderful creations in this book to see just how beautiful they truly are.

The delicacy of the embroidery bring the creatures to life and they really are just amazing.

The author gives a stitch guide and instructions to make the butterflies, and templates are littered throughout the book for each design.

I just adore the colours she has chosen and the look is that of folk art, which is very on trend at the moment in the crafting world.

These butterflies can be used as brooches or decorations for cushions, bags and so much more.

Slow stitching is very mindful and the techniques involved in the making of these beauties will ensure some quiet time and give endless pleasure.

About the Author

Catherine Redford is an award-winning fiber artist who still loves to learn and pass that knowledge on as she teaches quilting and embroidery around the United States and beyond. She has been married to Steve for very close to 40 years. They have four children who are all married and producing the most wonderful grandchildren. She lives in Illinois, USA.


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Stitching Classic Americana Masako Wakayama

Stitching Classic Americana with Masako Wakayama: 12 projects feature quilting, sewing, embroidery & more
Pub; Stash Books

Masako Wakayama shares 12 feel-good projects in the American design aesthetic. Sample techniques feature sewing, wool appliqué, punch needle, quilting, and embroidery!

My review


This book is amazing.

12 different projects using quilting, sewing and embroidery techniques that are absolutely stunning.

I know everyone may believe that quilting is quilting, but wether it is English, American or something else each style is completely different in both design and techniques.

I love Americana, and this book really is a delight. Applique, foundation piecing and even punch needle are included in the creations. You will learn several techniques and be given the chance to learn new skills as well as advance your current know how.

The New York bag is delightful but my favourite was the Thank you America quilt design. These projects use up the tiny pieces in your stash box and there are template sheets included.

This book is fabulous

About the Author

Born in Tokyo, Masako Wakayama had her first introduction to quilts in the American Pavilion of the 1970 Osaka EXPO. Smitten by her discovery, Masako quickly learned to sew and subscribed to quilting magazines as she began the slow process of teaching herself to quilt. She opened Crib Quilt, her studio and storefront in 1987. Over the past three decades, Masako has carefully honed her craft and is now a world-renowned quilter who also specializes in crochet, EPP, punch needle, applique, cross stitch, and embroidery.

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Punch Needle Embroidery for Beginners Lucy Davidson

Punch Needle Embroidery for Beginners
Pub: Search Press

Punch needle embroidery is back!

It’s a simple technique inspired by rug hooking that involves nothing more than a punch needle – it’s like a normal sewing needle, but with a handle and the eye of the needle at the stabbing end! It can be used on any loose-weave fabric using either yarn, fabric strips or embroidery thread/floss, and creates a textured, raised finish that’s soft to the touch and beautiful to look at.

The easy-to-learn technique and repetitive action makes this the perfect, mindful pursuit, and projects from wall hangings and cushions to children’s toys, bags and purses can be worked up quickly and easily with minimal effort. 

Author Lucy Davidson’s imaginative designs are stunning, and will appeal to anyone with an eye for clean, modern design. All the techniques you need are described at the start of the book, with information on how to hold the needle, how to start and finish a thread and how to achieve a variety of interesting textures and colour combinations. There are then 12 projects to try, all accompanied by charts, written instructions, a full-size template and beautiful photographs of the finished pieces. 

My review

Working with different textiles has always been interesting to me and Punch Needle Embroidery has been quite a fascination.

I love the difference between the back and front of the work and the effect of the final piece.

This book covers everything you need to know about the craft, including how to make your own wooden frame.

From beginners to advanced crafters this book is filled with inspration and beautiful projects.

There is a huge double page template sheet and the projects include a simple pillow to decorating your own clothes.

If you have never tried Punch Needle craft then this book will guide you and teach you everything you need to know as well as giving you inspiration and the chance to create your own designs.

About the Author

Lucy Davidson is a freelance graphic designer who teaches punch needle, weaving and macramé in workshops across the UK and in Europe. She also runs her own craft and lifestyle blog, Peas & Needles, which has led to her writing tutorials for numerous craft and interiors magazines  – from Mollie Makes and 91 Magazine to Elle Decoration and KOEL. Lucy was featured on Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas, teaching Kirstie how to create natural dyes, and in 2018 published 40 Knots and How to Tie Them (Pavilion).

Lucy lives in West Sussex with her husband and baby daughter. 

Instagram (@peasandneedles)

Facebook (@peasandneedlesblog).


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Big Book of Christmas Crochet

Big Book of Christmas Crochet: 31 festive designs for the holidays!
Pub: Annie’s

If you are looking for whimsical, traditional and farmhouse-style Christmas ideas, then look no further! This book is filled with 31 amazing holiday designs to deck your halls, plus designs that will help you give the perfect handmade gift to anyone on your list! Designs include an on-trend deer plaid afghan, a whimsical Santa afghan, mug rugs, ornaments, a gnome scarf, baskets, an angel doily, a snowman, slippers, farmhouse-style pillows and so much more! Most projects are made using worsted-weight yarn or size 10 thread.

My review

I loved looking through this book to see which designs I would crochet first, and the one that stood out was the Postcard Gift Tags and Boxes.

This is a very old fashioned traditional project that is just stunning.

Of course, each design is amazing, the Angel Doily is just beautiful and very simple in the design.

The projects are all appealing, and every crochetter will find their favourite. From pillows to throws to slippers, they all shout out to a snuggly and seasonal Christmas. You can even crochet a bauble cover!

This is an amzing project book, and I highly recommend it.

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Christmas Quilting

Christmas Quilting: 8 timeless projects
Pub: Annie’s

Create a quilted masterpiece that will stand the test of time. These gorgeous projects are just what you’re looking for to add that special touch to your home over the festive period. You’ll find each of these eight timeless patterns are irresistible to make!

My review

What would be a more special gift at Christmas than a handmade quilt.

8 stunning designs full of colour that portray the meaning of Christmas are in this beautiful book.

With names like ‘Take a Breath’, ‘Silent Night’, and ‘Star of Wonder’, you cannot help but be inspired to create something beautiful for a loved one.

From beginner to advanced levels, any lover of quilting can recreate one or more of these quilts. Tips and inspiration are included to ensure your finished piece is personal and unique.

A lot of information on quilting is included and from start to finish you feel like you are guided through each process to get a prefessional finish.

Templates are included and the colours of the fabrics used in each design help to influence you to use your own imagination.

It’s beautiful.

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Spooktacular Halloween Quilting.

Spooktacular Halloween Quilting: A project for every room 10 creative quilted treats to decorate your home
Pub: Annie’s

Spooktacular Halloween Quilting is a unique collection of 10 patterns for decorating your home for Halloween. There’s everything from table toppers to bed quilts. Each project was designed by one of our many talented designers just for you. There’s something for every quilter, beginner to intermediate in skill level and everything from fast and easy to challenging.

My review

What a joy the quilt designs in this book are.

Black cats, Pumpkins and a Haunted House are showcased beautifully and I think they can be made into so much more than a quilt. I love the idea of mug rugs, pillow cases and bags.

This is a book that really does inspire and help you with your creative flow of ideas.

Some templates are included and all measurements are given. Each project has a skill level, and full instructions are included.

The designs are for all ages. but they are all just amazing and really beautiful. I think they would be fun to make and give endless hours of pleasure.

Simply divine.

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Spooktacular Crochet

Spooktacular Crochet: 20+ bootiful projects for Halloween
Pub: Annie’s

Set the scene for Halloween! This book includes all the crochet patterns you need to decorate and entertain for the perfect Halloween party. Plus, you can stitch many of these 25+ patterns as fast as the flutter of a bat’s wings!

Crochet a spellbinding throw! Worked in a bright Halloween palette, the enchanting Esmerelda Throw captures the whimsy of the season. The throw is crocheted in rows of bewitching stitches that include clusters, bobbles and spike stitches. A monster face at every place; create some Spooktacular Mug Rugs each featuring a Halloween monster stitched in bright colours. Your guests can pick their favourites for party favours. Add a touch of drama to your dining room with a monochromatic Spooky Table Runner featuring the spooky silhouette of a cat perched upon a classic jack-o’-lantern.

My review

This book is filled with fun patterns for the spooky season.

I just loved the Esmerelda Throw shown on the front cover, and to be honest if I changed the colors it could quite easily become a Christmas throw.

The projects are very cute, and with the simple instructions, they can be achieved by everyone who loves crochet.

Each project has a skill level from 1-6. There are over 20 projects in all, including a Halloween Bowling set made up of ghosts, witches and more, it’s amazing.

The projects vary and are all so fabulous, it will be hard to decide which one to crochet first.

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Kids Knit Kerry Kimber

Kids Knit: 20 Projects with Fun Techniques to Learn

Kids Knit is a stylish and aspirational book containing age- and stage-appropriate knitting techniques and patterns. The projects enable children to learn the basics of knitting and start creating simple items very quickly. Kids Knit has beautiful photography, knitting jokes and activities and attractive illustrations. The start of each level contains photographed step-by-step tutorials covering new skills to make learning straightforward.

My review

This is a great book if your child wants to learn to knit.

It is also brilliant if you yourself want to learn as it simplifies the process and and has fabulous step by step photographs and easy language with no ‘jargon’.

The projects are small, useful and fun to make.

I loved the knitting rhyme.. it gives the learner something to repeat while learning to knit and you are even given the chance to make up your own rhyme using key words.

From casting on to casting off, everything is included in this bright colourful book. The 20 projects, each teach different techniques and patterns.

Kids Knit inspires, informs and educates about yarn, where it comes from, the history of knitting and there is a ‘test’ at the back so your child can see how much this book has taught them.

There are templates included and these can be traced or photocopied.

Kids Knit is an amazing book and highly recommended.

About the Author

Kerry, a life-long textile maker, studied tapestry at Edinburgh College of Art before becoming an Art and Design high school teacher. Her passion for teaching and encouraging people to be creative with fibres inspired her to start Knitting For All in 2010. Her goal is to deliver structured professional knitting and crochet classes through a network of teachers around the UK, and to teach adults, kids and teens to learn to knit and crochet through various programs. Kerry recently joined Rowan Yarns as their Education Manager. She lives in Edinburgh with her husband, four children and a crazy collie called Autumn.

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Lace Reimagined Elizabeth Healey

Lace Reimagined: 30 inspiring projects for making and using lace creatively
Pub: Search Press

Typically associated with frilly hankies and flouncy collars that are time-consuming to make and invariably white, the 30 projects in this book span the colour spectrum and make use of a range of media including paper, fabric, thread and even concrete!

This original and exciting guide to lace is a visual feast of 30 inspiring step-by-step projects. It includes in-depth features and fascinating asides relating to the history of lace and it will encourage you to experiment and inspire you with handy tips. The projects use bobbin lace, needle lace, needle weaving and drawn-thread work, all of which are clearly illustrated for beginners. Some projects feature techniques such as using concrete and papier-mâché; some feature ready-made lace, either entirely, or as something that can be added to. 

My review

Getting creative with lace is what this book is all about.

There are 30 projects using lace, whether that be handmade, shop bought, vintage or scraps.

The designs of each project in this book are both unusual and unique. I love the quirkiness that is incorporated in the projects and I think this adds to their beauty.

It is well worth reading this book beofre you dive into any of the projects. There is a lot of information and the illustrations do help with the understanding of working with lace and lace making in general.

There are templates included, and I just reading the stories about lace that is littered throughout the book.

This interesting book is quite appealing, and whatever you think about lace in general be prepared to have a change of thought.

It’s amazing….

About the Author

Elizabeth Healey originally trained as a graphic designer at the London College of Printing, after which she worked in various design groups before gravitating to the world of illustrated books. For as long as she can remember she has made things – usually with yarn or cloth, but sometimes with paper and clay. She is particularly interested in utility stitching and tries to use recycled textiles wherever possible, in a way that looks fresh, modern and urban rather than old and fusty. Elizabeth has contributed articles to the following magazines, Knitting, Making, Crafty, Felt Matters and Pretty Patches. Her first book, Stitch, Fabric & Thread was published in 2016.


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Quick and Easy Cake Toppers: 100 little sugar decorations to make

Quick and Easy Cake Toppers: 100 little sugar decorations to make
Pub: Search press

This book contains 100 gorgeous decorations to make using sugarpaste, all carefully chosen from Search Press’s best-selling 20 to Make series. There’s a handy tools and techniques section at the start of the book, followed by 100 fabulous projects covering a wide variety of themes – from Christmas decorations, dogs, brides and grooms, to flowers, shoes, bags and animals. Why not make a mini version of someone’s favourite dog to decorate their birthday cake, or a cute dinosaur to take pride of place on a toddler’s birthday cake? There’s plenty in this book to inspire you to create stunning, personalized celebration cakes for your family and friends. 

My review

Sweet and sugary is the name of the game with this book, but lets also add cute and fun into the mix.

There are 100 sweet creations that cater for every event.

Using sugarpaste, the designs include birds, fairies, bags and shoes, flowers and various animals. Each one beautifully created to give your cake that extra pizzazz!

Not only can you top your cake, but these sugar decorations can be given as a single gift.

Everything you need to know, from tools and food stuffs are included and the step by step instructions are very infromative and easy to follow. There are photographs to give an idea of what your sugarpaste should look like and the finished product is given a stunning picture display.

Some cretaions are simply designed, but others, such as the Rose is absolutely exquisite and really deserves a mention, it is divine and a real work of art.

Fun for children and adults, I think this book will be used over and over again throughout the year.

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