20 to Stitch: Mini Quilt Blocks (Twenty to Make) Carolyn Forster

51tAVhIwMnL._AC_US160_Pub:  Search Press(UK)

Ideal for patchworkers, quilters and sewists looking for ideas and inspiration, this book contains designs for 20 mini blocks, all measuring just 5 inches square, and all constructed from basic shapes including squares, triangles and rectangles. Mini quilt blocks are ideal for making small patchwork projects such as bags, pincushions, coasters and place mats, for incorporating into larger blocks, or for forming motifs within a larger quilt design.

Each project consists of a photograph of the block together with three diagrams showing variations, giving a total of 80 block designs. Each project is accompanied by the number and size of each shape in the block and instructions on the order in which to put the shapes together. General techniques at the start of the book will include how to cut out the shapes; how to layer and back the block and add an edging; and how to incorporate the block into a larger design. Instructions for cutting the basic shapes to create a 5 inch block are provided, with outlines marked on for creating 3 inch squares too.

 

My Review 

I love the 20 to Make series and each time I am always amazed at just how much goes into these fabulous books.

Mini Quilt Blocks is brilliant and I have made each block to accompany my review.

The blocks are small and simple to make, but are absolutely beautiful. Choosing a colour scheme for each block is the best part, and as you accomplish each one you will find your expertise grows and grows.

This is a fabulous book for beginner quilters, it covers each process, such as cutting your pieces, piecing them together and also handy hints and tips are given, so you really cannot go wrong. If you are already an advanced quilter this is a book that you find fun and the finished quilt is just divine.

The blocks are approx 5 x 5 inches.  All very different and cover a whole range of sewing skills.

Highly recommended, it is the perfect stash buster and absolutely worth a day or two sewing.

5*/5

 

I decided to make all the blocks from this book. 

This is a perfect stash busting project. Small pieces of fabric are all that’s needed.

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Each block is shown with a visual step by step and also come with written instruction.  Sizes of the pieces needed are listed and each piece is stitched with a 1/4 inch seam.

Here are my first three blocks.

You can see they are not very large, and with the beautiful colourful pictures you will find inspiration as well as a lot of quilting know how.

 

 

 

The seams of each block are pressed open, this helps reduce bulk and keeps your blocks looking beautiful. I have a small craft iron beside my sewing machine and I find this is perfect for these small pieces.

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The blocks do not take much time to make. To cut and sew each piece took about half an hour. Ensure you set each piece to the picture BEFORE you sew it together. It is very easy to misplace a piece and it saves unpicking 😦

So!!  Two days later…..

I have stitched all 20 quilt blocks. They have been trimmed and pressed and ready to turn into a beautiful quilt.

I love them and I am pleased how they have turned out. I must admit some were easier than others, but I had no problem understanding the process.

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After an hour or two I have now ‘sashed’ my quilt.

I think the black looks striking, and shows the blocks off perfectly. I used a 2 inch sashing so now it just needs to be ‘sandwiched’ and quilted.

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It is not a large size, but it’s perfect for a lap quilt for granny.

 

Happy Quilting x

The Author

Carolyn Forster started making quilts when she was a teenager and went on to study Textiles at the University of Bath. Since graduating, she has taught patchwork and quilting both in the UK and the USA and has had her quilts featured in a number of books and magazines, including Fabrications, Popular Patchwork and Patchwork and Quilting. Carolyn lives in Tunbridge Wells, UK with her husband and son.

 

@SearchPress 

 

 

Buy the book..

https://www.searchpress.com/book/9781782216698/20-to-stitch-mini-quilt-blocks

http://www.amazon.co.uk/20-Stitch-Quilt-Blocks-Twenty/dp/1782216693/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541581653&sr=8-1-fkmr1&keywords=20+to+male+mini+quilt+blocks

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Craft Yourself Silly

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If you are a regular follower of Postcard Reviews, you will have seen my last ‘Craft Yourself  Silly’ post.

I have exciting news!!

After I sent my ‘Furry Llamas’ embroidoodle sample, I was lucky enough to be asked to be on their DESIGN TEAM… I am ‘sew’ thrilled, as you all know sewing is my passion, and of course I said a very quick YES!!

 

My first two projects as a member of this dynamic and talented team are just as amazing as the ‘embroidoodle‘, and so much fun.

The first is a new introduction to Craft Yourself Silly. and I think it is perfect for beginner embroiderers. They are also a chance for advanced stitchers to practice stitches they may not use as often, and act as a reminder.

The project is aptly named .. Naughty Needlework.

My sample is perfect for me, and it did make me smile.

Included with the sample piece is full instructions and a variety of thread. The fabric is beautiful. It has a gorgeous feel and the thread is divine. The colours are bright and silky and they ‘split’ really easily with no tangling.

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The stitches included are , Running stitch, Backstitch, Lazy Daisy, Satin Stitch, Chain Stitch and my all time favourite French Knots.

 

 

These panels are perfect for slow stitching and just sitting for an hour or two being creative.

Mindfulness is also key, and if you need a quiet moment then this is an ideal craft to master.

(Please excuse the difference in colour of the pictures, this was due to morning light!)

 

My second project was a bit more challenging..for me.

A stunning ‘Hummigbird’ that is completed with Bullion Stitch.

I have only used this stitch once before so I was a little daunted, however I am really chuffed with my results and quite honestly, with a little practice, it is not a difficult stitch at all.

Once again my kit came with several threads, in stunning colours. The picture of the Hummnigbird is amazing, and it is really intricate, which makes the pattern easy to follow and know where your stitches need to be. You just follow the colours.

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Bullion Stitch is a filler stitch, and looks very effective. This project was just like ‘colouring’ with thread.

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I loved the finished result of my work. I really recommend this project if you are stuck as to which design to choose.

 

 

I completed this project over two days, and it took approx 10 hours.

And here is my sample shown on the TV ..

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Craft Yourself Silly supply a number of craft kits from brands including Proggy Rag Rugging plus a range of needle felting kits and haberdashery fabric.

 

https://www.facebook.com/craftyourselfsilly/

 

Buy the projects..

http://craftyourselfsilly.com/

 

Craft Yourself Silly are regular guests on the TV Craft Channel Hochanda.

 

You can buy their products here…

https://www.hochanda.com/

@hochanda_tv

Tiny Stitches: Buttons, Badges, Patches and Pins to Embroider Irem Yazici

51wwdmFbGXL._AC_US218_Pub: Search Press Ltd

Draw attention to that neat coat lapel or jazz up the back pocket of your favourite denim pieces with little embroidered buttons, badges, brooches and more by embroidery fan and Instagram sensation Irem Yazici – A.K.A. @_.baobap._ Irem’s collection of mini accessories are not only sweet and off the wall, they’re practical pieces that you can wear, and are perfect gifts for the down-to-earth loved ones in your life! These embroideries are also smallscale canvasses for you to show off your new stitching skills: no more than 10 stitches are used for the 20 projects throughout, and range from beginner to intermediate in skill. Every project is explained with clear photography and easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions. Each one doesn’t use much in the way of materials and there’s no complicated finishing involved. These will be projects that you will finish! There are also 50 motifs included from you to choose from and play with, provided in a range of sizes and suitable for a variety of different projects, so you can make your own unique designs based on Irem’s edgy style. PLUS – Templates come in different sizes, so you can select the one you want to suit your own requirements. These are embroidered projects that you will want to make and wear.

 

My review

This beautiful book of embroidery is quite divine.

20 projects with 5 sheets of iron-on transfers are small but perfectly designed.

Used as clothing embellishment they can give an edgy look to a frayed denim jacket, or a badge for your tote bag.

There is a very handy ‘how to’ demonstrating how to make badges and buttons, as well as a basic embroidery technique guide. But do you know what I loved most about this book..well you do not need to be a fabulous embroiderer!!

I think the more ‘rustic’ your work, the better these tiny projects will look.

There are lots of templates too, that can be traced, and with the addition of sequins and beads, your final piece will be the envy of every trend setter.

Each project has a ‘process’ to follow, with types of stitch used and colour inspiration.

The designs are all different in style and variation and each can be changed and adapted as you work your way through each of them.

This is a good way to learn new stitches and practice your embroidery without being overwhelmed with a large project.

Pretty cool!!

5*/5

 

The Author

 

Irem Yazici is a hand embroiderer and designer, and the owner of the Baobap shop on Etsy. Irem loves to stitch tiny things and has gathered a worldwide following on social media for her miniature embroidered pins and patches.

Instagram @_.baobap._

baobap.bigcartel.com.

 

@SearchPress

 

Buy the book..

http://www.searchpress.com/book/9781782217114/tiny-stitches

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tiny-Stitches-Buttons-Patches-Embroider/dp/1782217118/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1541410138&sr=1-1&keywords=tiny+stitches

fast2mark (TM) Embroidery Stencils: Essential Collection Christen Brown

51a6+NziuEL._AC_US218_Pub: C & T Publishing

Popular author and crazy-quilting and embroidery expert Christen Brown has put together this collection of 4 easy-to-use stitch templates. Just position the stencil where desired and mark your designs with a quilter’s pencil to get your embroidery off to an accurate start! The expert instructions and tips in the complete how-to booklet give you confidence in where and how to make your stitches, while the decorative and inventive designs add an unexpected creative element. Laser-cut durable, translucent, medium-weight plastic, the stencils are easy to handle and create perfect markings every time.

 

My review 

What is fabulous about these Embroidery stencils is that they are made of durable and flexible plastic.

There are 4 stencils, with 90 designs that vary in size. These can be used singularly or using more they can made into a beautiful sampler.

Easy to use, there are hearts, flowers, curves and swirls, these along with a little imagination are perfect for small projects, decorating cushions and much much more.

The included booklet is filled with stitch ideas and demonstrates how to combine the collection of designs to make something pretty and purposeful.

These stencils are a fabulous addition to your embroidery tool kit, and can be used over and over.

5*/5

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The Author 

Christen Brown has been creating with fiber and fabric since childhood. She studied fashion design in college and has been creating wearable art since 1986. Her ribbon work has been featured worldwide in galleries, fashion shows, and magazines such as Martha Stewart Weddings. Christen lives in San Diego, CA.

http://www.christenbrown.com

 

@ctpublishing

@SearchPress

 

Buy the product..

http://www.searchpress.com/book/9781617453175/fast2mark-embroidery-stencils

http://www.amazon.co.uk/fast2mark-Embroidery-Stencils-Essential-Collection/dp/161745317X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541168891&sr=8-1&keywords=embroidery+stencils

Snowday B R Maycock

 

thumbnail_Snowday Final Cover

Sometimes hot cocoa just isn’t enough to keep you warm in the snow…

Eloise is too busy juggling the chaos of three kids, an ever present ex-husband and a demanding boss to even remember the last time dating crossed her mind.

But as soft snow falls silently all around, romance twinkles with the flakes.

After being single for so long, Eloise suddenly has a lot of choices.  Too many choices.   Will anyone be worthy of melting the guard around her heart to let love in? 

A fun-filled, festive read for fans of Christie Barlow, Fiona Gibson and Colleen Coleman

 

 

My review 

When the weather man declares it a Snowday, Eloise’s life takes a turn…

With 3 kids and a husband who in her youngest child, Bab’s words has ‘found someone else to kiss’, her days go from bad to worse and back again. In fact, Snowday is littered with Bab’s words of wonder about her mother, from her cooking (or not cooking) to worrying about where her paints are. Her childish honesty is just brilliant, and her one liners are hilarious.

I chuckled and snorted my through this book. Eloise is a fabulous character, and the author has portrayed her superbly.

She rumbles through life trying to make it work, and this is what makes her real and lovable.

I really rooted for her and I adored the romance and drama, and how she didn’t quite get it right at times.

Filled with fun and sparkle, this  is a gorgeous festive read and is the most perfect book to curl up with….snowday or not!!

4*/5

 

About The Author

When Bernadette Maycock isn’t dreaming up vibrant leads for romantic comedies, she’s ingesting books for her blog (https://brmaycock.wordpress.com/), in particular chick lit (her first love!) books, romantic comedies and thrillers. She can also be found playing footie or watching Marvel, DC or Star Wars movies and cartoons in Co. Westmeath, Ireland with her brilliantly out there husband, Keith, and their four epic little men.

Her debut ‘It Started With A Snub’ and Christmas romantic comedy ‘Snowday’ are available now on Amazon, and Bernadette is currently working on a three part series about AbbeyGlen Village, whose luck is about to change …

 

@BRMaycock 

brmaycock.wordpress.com

Buy the book..

 

Adventivity House Tracey Tucker

61jAXsSxLAL._AC_US218_ Pub: QED Publishing

Celebrate this year’s festivities with Adventivity House, a countdown to Christmas with 25 activities to brighten your home.

Includes all the push-out designs, stencils and creative card components you need for 25 different fun and festive decorations for your home. The sturdy card calendar can be reused year after year. Each door reveals a surprise related to the decorative project the book sets out for that day.

 

The 25 festive activities include:

• Christmas gift bag • Festive mug • Decorative doilies for Christmas table; Unique Christmas tree decorations

• Tiny cottage gift box • Sparkling paper chandelier • Festive door wreaths • Santa for the mantelpiece

• Holiday cake stand • Paper plate angels Festive window hanging • Scented sachet

• Bird food garland for the gardeners.

 

My review 

With the festive season fast approaching, we are all thinking how to decorate our house and keep the little ones amused.

This amazing ‘to do’ book has all the answers…

With 25 activities, the paper-crafting fans among us will absolutely adore this project book.  One for each day, it includes all the know how and cute cut outs to keep everyone busy.

A step by step is included with the projects, along with a list of items you will need.  To be honest, almost everything is included, so you can started right away.

It is colourful and brilliant. The paper is of good quality so will last until the party is over, and the projects are simple but lovely.

I just love the last project.. a stunning Christmas Carousel, but the Christmas Crackers and the Chocolate Baubles are equally divine.

This is a fabulous ideas book and I highly recommend it.. it is lots of fun and will keep everyone entertained.

5*/5

 

The front cover of the Adventivity House is a clever Advent Calendar

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Each of the projects come with an easy to follow step by step and there are pages and pages of colourful ‘pick outs’…no scissors required.

 

 

The Author 

Tracey Tucker lives in a small fishing village by the sea. How she came to be there is a long, and winding tale, but it’s the perfect spot for an artist and she feels inspired living there. It’s like living in one of the books that she illustrates.

 

@QEDPublishing 

@GMCbooks 

 

Buy the book..

http://www.thegmcgroup.com/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=7510&idcategory=0

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Adventivity-House-Tracey-Tucker/dp/1784933716/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541164293&sr=8-1&keywords=adventivity+house

Cross Stitch: Floral Summer Days Durene Jones

61fbfJ6K8gL._AC_US218_Pub:  Tuva Publishing

From picnics to garden themes, this book features lovely, happy cross stitch charts for both beginner and advanced sewers. The featured patterns can be used for any number of projects. Many of them are smaller in size and would be ideal for home crafting projects such as cards, pictures, cushions, sachet bags, or pincushions. The cohesive floral theme makes it easy for the sewer to create larger and more elaborate patterns. Crafters are sure to enjoy this collection of pretty, colorful designs.”

 

My review

This is a lovely book, filled with tiny cross stitch patterns that are both simple and delightful.

Pretty and colourful they are designed to be used for home and other projects and can even be adapted for a larger sampler project.

For beginners and advanced cross stitchers, this wonderful book has Butterflies, Bees and other designs which are all beautifully showcased with easy to follow pattern guides and stunning pictures.

Durene Jones is a master at what she does, and here she shows us how easy cross stitching can be.

Counted cross stitch is not difficult to do, just count the stitches and follow the design. The patterns are large enough to follow by eye.

The designs are small enough to be completed in just a few hours, and can be a mindful exercise to be enjoyed.

5*/5

 

With just a few threads these gorgeous designs can be stitched in just a few hours.

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I have always enjoyed the quiet time of cross stitching and chose a beautiful Bee design. To get started, you usually have to find the center of your work..just fold your aida into four. I used 14 count aida.

 

With the design I chose I decided to start from the top. I like to cross stitch by colour on a small project.

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It soon begins to come to life..

 

And here is the finished look..

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Happy sewing!!

@TuvaYayincilik

@SearchPress 

 

The Author

Durene Jones is a cross stitch designer whose designs have been published in many popular cross stitch magazines. She lives in Durham, England.

http://www.facebook.com/DureneJonesCrossStitch/?ref=br_rs

 

Buy the book..

http://www.searchpress.com/book/9786059192217/cross-stitch-floral-summer-days

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cross-Stitch-Floral-Summer-Days/dp/6059192211/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541135982&sr=8-1&keywords=floral+summer+days