I needed a little inspiration recently and headed over to my favorite local bookstore, Bookworks. I checked out their art section and found a wealth of great crafting books. I, personally, don’t have a great selection of crafting books other than a couple of origami books, so I decided to do a little research and found some beautiful books that you might be interested in! If you have a favorite craft book, let me know!
Even though I have linked the books to Amazon, please support your local independent bookstore!
The Art of Pressed Flowers and Leaves by Jennie Ashmore – The art of pressing flowers is enjoying a renaissance, and Jennie Ashmore teaches new fans how to make the most of this rediscovered craft. She covers everything from the choice of flowers (including roses, poppies, and seaweed), to the various methods of pressing them, to designing with the finished pressed flowers and leaves. See how to achieve symmetry, use color, and combine the flowers with watercolor and gouache, painted backgrounds, and gold and silver paper. There’s a range of insider tips on using the ribs of leaves to create pattern and movement, pressing both sides of a leaf, and capturing the seasons in a single, beautiful work. Templates will help you get started, and a plant directory at the back of the book shows you what various plants look like when pressed.
Crafty Chica’s Art de la Soul: Glittery Ideas to Liven Up Your Life by Kathy Cano Murillo – No one knows better than crafty chica extraordinaire Kathy Cano Murillo the satisfaction that comes with creating one-of-a-kind items. In Crafty Chica’s Art de la Soul, she offers thirty original projects ranging from colorful jewelry and elegant candles to hip Mexican coffee coasters.
Along with full-color photographs, step-by-step instructions, and a handy resource guide are Murillo’s fun and inspiring tips for connecting with your culture, tapping into your creative spirit, and finding new ways to spice up your love life, glam up your garden, redecorate your kitchen, and much more.
With Kathy Cano Murillo’s guidance and glittery ideas, crafty chicas of every age and skill level will be well on their way to developing their own personal sense of style while living artful lives.
Martha Stewart’s Encyclopedia of Crafts by Martha Stewart – For nearly 20 years, home crafters have turned to the pages of Martha Stewart Living for all kinds of crafts projects, each presented in the magazine’s inimitable style. Now, the best of those projects, including step-by-step instructions and full-color photographs, have been collected into a single encyclopedia.
Organized by topic from A to Z, Martha Stewart’s Encyclopedia of Crafts contains complete instructions and brief histories for more than 30 techniques, detailed descriptions of the necessary tools and materials, and easy-to-copy templates. Martha and her team of crafts editors guide readers through each subject, from botanical pressing and decoupage to rubber stamping and wreaths, with characteristic clarity and unparalleled attention to detail.
Crafters of all skill and experience levels will appreciate the many variations presented for each technique. For example, candlemaking presents a comprehensive array of poured, rolled, and cutout candles, including instructions for making your own one-of-a-kind rubber candle molds, floating candles, sand candles, and more. Each craft in the book takes on charming new dimensions with innovations that could come only from the team behind Martha Stewart Living.
In addition, each entry in Martha Stewart’s Encyclopedia of Crafts is chock-full of tips and advice. Handy glossaries in the entries–such as a comprehensive gem glossary, a glitter glossary, and a color glossary for making tinted wax–are valuable references that crafters will refer to again and again. What’s more, the Tools and Materials section outlines the best essential supplies that every crafter needs to have on hand, and the Sources pages clue readers in to the vendors and suppliers that the magazine’s crafts editors rely on most.
Filled with solid technical know-how, and presented with gorgeous color photographs, this handy guide can be read page by page and kept as a lasting reference by crafters and artisans alike.
Hand Dyed: A Modern Guide to Dyeing in Brilliant Color for You and Your Home by Anna Joyce – Hand Dyed is a modern introduction to indigo and fiber-reactive dye that every crafter should have. Exploring traditional techniques like shibori and using organic compounds, this comprehensive how-to guide offers everything you need know to create stylish, richly colored and patterned pieces. Classic techniques and natural materials make these projects beautiful and accessible, even for the beginner. Items such as an elegant robe, a duvet cover set, drum lampshades, and even a hammock will invite a new generation of design lovers and style mavens to fall in love with this traditional, magical, and surprisingly straightforward process. Anna Joyce is the perfect instructor to teach the skills needed to create more than 25 masterpieces for the home and wardrobe that readers will want to wear, live with, and most importantly, make by hand.
Make and Mend: Sashiko-Inspired Embroidery Projects to Customize and Repair Textiles and Decorate Your Home by Jessica Marquez – Requiring no special equipment other than a sewing needle and thread, Make and Mend introduces the incredibly simple technique of sashiko–a striking hand-sewing method using a running stitch to form pleasing geometric patterns. Sashiko is traditionally used to mend and repair clothing and textiles, but it can just as easily be used to create beautiful, decorative projects for the home. With fifteen projects applying a modern, on-trend aesthetic to this ancient craft, Make and Mend shows readers how to apply sashiko stitching to a variety of craft projects, such as repairing torn jeans, mending a ripped hem, and making decorative pillows, napkins, a tablecloth, and a totebag. Touching on the concepts of beauty in minimalism and resourceful simplicity, as well as a fascination with Japan and Japanese design, this easy and accessible book appeals to both the seasoned maker and total beginner.
The Exquisite Book of Paper Flowers: A Guide To making Unbelievably Realistic Paper Blooms by Livia Cetti – The country’s premiere paper-flower artist, Livia Cetti is known for her high-style, gorgeous tissue and crepe-paper flowers―many of which are often mistaken for real flowers. The Exquisite Book of Paper Flowers is Cetti’s comprehensive how-to manual showcasing her until-now secret techniques for creating 27 popular blooms, including peonies, poppies, roses, and hibiscus. Clear instructions and stunning step-by-step photographs show crafters of all levels how to make individual flowers as well as how to combine blooms to form 20 exquisite garlands, centerpieces, wreaths, corsages, and boutonnieres.
Pattern Studio: A Creative Workbook for Sketching Unique Repeats by Shayna Kulik – This encouraging workbook for creating cool patterns is the ultimate tool for artists and designers seeking a creative boost. Inside are 50 playful exercises that prompt users to find inspiration in their surroundings by spotting patterns and sketching their own. At the back, 50 professional pattern designers are profiled in galleries of their work and share insights from their processes. The perfect place to brainstorm new ideas and have some creative fun, Pattern Studio is chock-full of inspiration for pro and aspiring designers, plus anyone who loves to draw.
The Art and Craft of Geometric Origami by Mark Bolitho – With the increasing popular interest in mindfulness—and seeking quiet in the tumult of modern life—origami, the centuries-old practice of paper folding, has enjoyed a tremendous resurgence. With origins possibly dating to sixth century Buddhism, the art of creating shapes from pieces of paper offers an appealing combination of calming concentration and the opportunity to create small works of art with our own hands. This mind-bending collection of geometric origami includes twenty-seven inventive shapes, from simple one-piece pyramids to beautiful and intricate starbursts, each carefully designed and explained with illustrated step-by-step instructions. Also included are thirty-two sheets of origami paper to get you started.
Lettering and Modern Calligraphy: A Beginner’s Guide: Learn Hand Lettering and Brush Lettering by Paper Peony Press – Learn to letter and create beautiful designs with this beginner’s guide and workbook! Every page is filled with tips, tricks encouragement and practice space to kickstart your lettering journey! Learn 5 different alphabet styles, upper and lower case letters, practice connections and dive into design and composition with this beautiful lettering book. At the end of this book, there are also 15 beautiful lettering projects to help you bring together your knowledge and skill and help you begin to create beautiful works of art! You can do this!! Let us teach you how to upgrade your handwriting and learn this amazing and fun form of art
Conceived and written by renowned artist, author, and teacher Gerald Brommer, Collage Techniques first presents the medium within the context of a wide variety of materials, including washi (oriental and rice papers) and watermedia; stained, prepared, and found papers; photographs; and fabrics and fibers. Each category of material is examined through a step-by-step demonstration and works by artists who approach collage in original and refreshing ways. The latest trends in technologically enhanced collage, including such high-tech applications as multiple photocopying and digital scanning, are also discussed. The author then explores how the elements and principles of design are used in collage, and how they in turn are employed in all the major genre, including still life, landscape, the human figure, abstraction, and nonobjective imagery.
Beautifully illustrated with the work of more than eighty noted artists, including Edward Betts, Jae Carmichael, Margo Hoff, Katherine Chang Liu, and Fred Otnes, Collage Techniques is an essential reference for all artists and illustrators, regardless of their creative focus or choice of medium.
How to Make Resin Jewellery: With over 50 inspirational step-by-step projects by Sara Naumann – In this inspiring book, well-known crafter Sara Naumann shows you just how easy and quick resin jewellery is to make, using minimal equipment and readily available products, and provides over 50 fabulous projects for you to try. You can add numerous items to the resin to achieve different effects. You can place paper in the bezels to act as a background to the resin such as old book paper, map paper, scrapbook paper and photographs. Paper can also be painted, stencilled, or layered with washi tape before being coated with resin. Try sheet music for a vintage vibe, or origami papers for a fresh, contemporary look.
In addition, you can also immerse various items in the resin before it cures, such as dried flowers and leaves, feathers, shells, beads and charms, or try adding glitter, coloured inks, nail polish and virtually anything else you can think of.
The versatility of resin jewellery is awe-inspiring, providing papercrafters as well as jewellery-makers with all the skills and inspiration they need to design and make their own stunning pieces.