I’m a person who has to always be doing something. I cannot just sit and watch tv or travel without having yarn to create a project. I believe it’s healthy for our mind, body, and spirit to get our fingers involved in a variety of crafts be they old school or new innovations. During the holiday season, we can encourage our kids and other family members to learn a new creative or artistic activity by giving the gift of craft books. Here are two books that children and adults may enjoy.
Origami is a centuries-old delicate Japanese art form where colorful paper is folded into objects like boxes, a crane or butterfly. But over the decades, creative artisans have been inspired to take this artistic craft to another level. The Origami Ikebana book has combined the art of origami – folding paper and Ikebana – the art of flower arrangements and the projects are stunning.
The Origami Ikebana offers instructions on how to create 30 different flowers and 8 different leaves. There are 128 pages of full-color photos and illustrations, tips, techniques, and clear step-by-step instructions. You’ll also learn how to construct stems using makigami paper rolling techniques. Plus, there is an instruction DVD included at the back of the book. There are also instructions on how to paint your leaves and flowers, make rocks and boulders and how to make arrangements. Create your favorite flowers from the Primrose to the Morning Glory to the SnapDragon.
Creative Beaded Jewelry
Go to any craft or handmade market and you’ll see several artisans who have created their own line of jewelry pieces using crystals, metal, wood and beads. Some are self-taught, others took classes, while others got their instructions on how to make beautiful jewelry from informative craft books like the Creative Beaded Jewelry. In this book you’ll learn how to make 33 gorgeous beaded jewelry projects influenced by the designs of Asian artists.
Creative Beaded Jewelry is divided into 5 chapters, Elastic Cord Bracelets, Memory Wire Jewelry, Wire Strung Jewelry, Knotted Jewelry, and Loop & Chain Jewelry. The onset of the book starts with material and tools you’ll need to create the included projects. From what I can see, it looks like all of these would be available at your local craft store.
As you crack open the book and explore each chapter, all the projects are featured with a full-color image of the finished jewelry. There is a bold colored box with each project called ‘You Will Need’, as a quick material reference. Written instructions, some diagrams and lots of helpful hints, tips, and techniques are included. There are no illustrated step-by-step instructions for each project per se, so if you are a novice like me, you may get a little lost. But, at the beginning of each chapter, you’re walked through the basic techniques for using that specific string method. It’s a great book for newbies wanting to learn to make their own jewelry or for seasoned crafters looking for new ideas.
Disclaimer: I received complimentary products to facilitate a review. All opinions are my own, yours may differ.