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Nicola Williams (Oxford, England)

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An Exquisite Sense of What Is Beautiful
An Exquisite Sense of What Is Beautiful
Price: 3.79

4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read, 15 Jan 2014
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I listened to this book via my kindle text to speech.
I enjoyed having this read to me, as its quiet a dry read. If I was reading this I would not have made it all the way through.

Lost and Found
Lost and Found
Price: 0.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Such a beautiful book to get lost into, 7 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Lost and Found (Kindle Edition)
It's been so long since I've found such a funny and heartfelt book. It was brilliant from start to finish. Two lost souls who eventually find their way.
A beautifully written book with humour, understanding of humanity.
I just loved it, and I really hope you will too.

Strip-Smart Quilts: 16 Designs from One Easy Technique (That Patchwork Place)
Strip-Smart Quilts: 16 Designs from One Easy Technique (That Patchwork Place)
by Kathy Brown
Edition: Paperback
Price: 16.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A revolutionary way of making THE most amazing quilts in 1 easy step!!!, 13 Dec 2013
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I first came across this book and the author on face book Martingale news feed, and EVERY QUILTER was raving about this book, so I just had to see what all the fuss was about? I was so thrilled when the book arrived today and I egaly poured over the pages, and my eyes just lit up, my brain realised the massive potential this author had discovered and created!!!
I'm not sure if you are like me, I see these interesting shape rules off the Creative Grid stand, not sure quite what to do with many of them and just stick with my normal quilters ruler, and 4"/8" blocks and that's about it. Well this author was the same, until one day for some reason she just picked up the ruler which has a normal ruler bottom, and 2 triangles on the top. Due to stress, being so over worked the author picked up this crazy looking ruler and thought she would cut up some stripped fabric with it and played around with the shapes. Within 3/4 hour, she had discovered she'd designed 30 quilts, in the simplist and quickest manor possible!!!!
The author demonstrated how to use this ruler which is very important.
This book shows you one very very easy method to make the most stunning quilts without fussy cutting and hours working out what goes where!!! This is a brilliant books for beginners too, as it will fill them so full of self confidence being able to create the most amazing modern quilts just by repositioning the blocks shown in this book!!!!
I have never been SO EXCITED about a quilt book as I am with this one!!!
I am a quilter with disabilities, so making quilts so simplistically with the most amazing designs has opened up my physical ability to quilt so much better, and feel so proud at what I've achieved!!!

This soft back book has 79 pages, and was published in 2011, but it's not dated at all.


The Secret of GRITS
One ruler + one triangle = Quilting fun!!!
Quilting ruler - Breaking basics

1. Hide n seek
2. Daydreamer Believer
3. Chinese Jump rope
4. Brownies a la mode
5. Fat man squeeze
6. Read all about it
7. The birds
8. Merry go round
9. The Twist
10. Pedal pushers
11. Box hockey
12. Romeo and Juliet
13. Penny Candy
14. Family vacation
15. Cupsicles
16. Pick up sticks

About the author.

If I could, I would give this higher than 5 stars, not just for the amazing quilting information, but the presentation is fabulous. Colour photos through out, the diagrams are all in colour, and very well presented, taking out all the difficulties many quilting books can present. Every effort has been put into this book by the publishers, which makes it a total joy to read cover to cover!!!
I normally find a section in books which bits have been missed out, or poor diagrams, but this book is the first quilt book which I cannot find a single down point, that's why it deserves more than 5 stars!!!
My new batik jelly roll arrived this morning, and I'm itching to unroll it and start straight away on one of these stunning projects, but I must finish my current quilt which I'm 1/2 way through!!! Come the new year, I will have one of these special rulers, and whizzing my way through spectacular quilts gallor!!!

I really hope this book revolutionises your quilting experience and you will be so excited reading this amazing book.
I hope this has been of use to you.
Happy quilting!!!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 2, 2014 1:44 AM GMT

Crafting Christmas Gifts: 25 Adorable Projects Featuring Angels, Snowmen, Reindeer and Other Yuletide Favourites
Crafting Christmas Gifts: 25 Adorable Projects Featuring Angels, Snowmen, Reindeer and Other Yuletide Favourites
by Tone Finnanger
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

3.0 out of 5 stars Plain but nice without the normal Tilda normal magic!, 11 Dec 2013
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I am a very big fan of Tilda books, but am a bit disappointed with this book as the design team have taken one concept, ie a certain style of snow man and replicated the same design in several different ways. If you only have 25 projects and they are replicating many of the designs, you are not getting a full 25 eclectic individual designs as you might hope. If the design team want to do this, then fine. It would be so much nicer to compensate the reader and make this book value for money by adding in additional designs into the book.

This soft back book has 96 pages. It was originally published in 2003, came over to the UK in 2006, and has been in reprint which doesn't surprise me as Tilda is famous world wide, originating in Norway.
The photography is always exceptional with all their books, with well instructed details and lovely illustrated diagrams.


Fabrics and materials
Making a good stuffed figure

1. Rocking reindeer
2. Santas
3. Angels
3a. Goodnight angel
4. Pyjama snowmen
5. Hearts
5a small and medium size
6. Mice
7. Cornet angels
8. Striking appliqués
9. Christmas hanging with reindeer and sleigh
10. Christmas stockings
10a. Long and short stockings
11. Christmas hanging with snowmen and penguins
12. Stylish wall bags
13. Gift sacks
14. Small sacks
15. Snowmen tea cosy
16. Gingerbread men
17. Gingerbread men decorations
18. Little snowmen and snow angels
19. Penguins
20. Christmas tree
21. Painted Christmas motifs
22. Craft ball snowmen
23. Paper cornets
24. Christmas cards
25. Christmas gift tags


There are projects for kids big and little, which is always nice.
One of the big thumbs up for me is the FULL SIZE patterns which is excellent.
The only reason I gave this book 3 stars, was its repetitive designs, also it lacked its vintage unique style projects which sets Tilda's stunning craft projects so high above the rest.
This book does have some very nice patterns, but it's not special unfortunately.
If you have not come across Tilda then you are in for a treat. Being a collector of the Tilda books, this one for me was not my favourite.
I do hope you will enjoy this book very much and try out some of the other books in this amazing collection of craft books.

Betty Bib's Fairy Field Guide: The Illustrated Handbook of Fairies and Their Habitats
Betty Bib's Fairy Field Guide: The Illustrated Handbook of Fairies and Their Habitats
by Betty Bib
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fabulous magical book for little and much bigger kids besides :), 11 Dec 2013
As a child, I was read and loved books about fairies and this book is just one of the very best!!!
This book is a brilliant combination of immaculately hand made fairies and stunningly illustrated ones too!!
This book is no ordinary books on fairies, we have international fairies, and all the fairies have such different rolls and what they do in those rolls which is so captivating! The author's fairies made out if dried flowers are so artful. I do art and textile deign, and could not resist making a Christmas fairy a couple of years ago, and they are not as easy as they look at all, but great fun to make. A great project to get children to do, specially using natural bits and pieces for their clothing, fabric, sequins, paper and glitter etc. This is not designed as an arts book, but I just found it totally inspiring to have a go!!!
My copy is a hard back book, with 72 pages and it was published in 2005.

Section 1. Common field fairy queries
A. How to spot a fairy
B. what are fairies like
C. How big is a fairy
D. What do fairies look like
E. Where do fairies sleep
F. Where do fairies come from
G. How does a fairy grow
H. How does a fairy learn how to fly
I. What does a fairy need to know

Section 2. Fairy directory

A. Domestic fairies
B. sock fairies
C. Needlework fairies
D. Cake fairies
D1. Fairy cake recipe/decorations
E. Tea time fairies
F. Teabag fairy

Section 3. Nature fairies

A. Garden fairies
B. seed fairies
C. Royal garden fairies
D. Faded-flower fairies
E. Wild flower fairies
F. Royal clover fairies
G. Mushroom fairies
H. Primula fairies

Section 4. Seasonal fairies

A. Royal spring fairies
B. Royal autumn fairies
C. Royal summer fairies
D. Royal winter fairies

Section 5. Special occasion fairies

A. Birthday Fairies
B. Christmas fairies
C. Fairy light fairies
D. Bridal fairies

Section 6. Stationary fairies

A. Thank you fairies
B. stationary fairies
C. Airmail fairies

Section 7. How to attract fairies

A. With sweet things
B. with pretty things
C. With little things
D. Fairy queen

Lots and lots of imagination has gone into this small book, and many happy hours have been enjoyed reading it.
This book won't go out of fashion or look out dated but one to be kept as something special.
I really hope you will really enjoy reading this, and have found this useful. ENJOY!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 29, 2013 5:08 PM GMT

Friends Forever Quilting Together
Friends Forever Quilting Together
by Nancy Smith
Edition: Paperback

2.0 out of 5 stars So disappointing, 11 Dec 2013
I bought this book as I just loved the front cover, it looked so bright and fun, but I'm so sorry to say inside is a totally different story which is such a great disappointment!!! 90% + is printed in black, greys and white, totally uninspiring to me personally. It feels very early 1980's in design, the photography, the fabrics are so out dated and so are the patterns!
This book has 104 pages, only 16 have coloured photos of the finished designs.
It was published in 2001.

1. Friends forever
2. True blue
3. Messages from the heart
4. Friendship blossoms
5. Log cabin pillow
6. Bread cloth
7. Teach a friend to quilt
8. Best buds
9. Grandmother's garden
10. Remember when
11. Milky Way
12. Simply charming
13. Signed with love
14. Knock three times
15. Block party
16. Fireside comfort
17. Friends are like flowers
18. Heart in hand
19. Staring my friends
20. Sister's choice three colour version
20a. Sister's choice scrap version
21. Kitchen chicks, pot holder, chair back,

Cooking recipes
1. Busy day brownies
2. Medley of bean soup
3. Blueberry-ginger muffins
4. Delicious date muffins

This book has so much potential but I feel it's been let down by the publishers by making it so gloomy printing it in black and white and greys :(
I gave it a positive 2 stars, as it has full size patterns for the appliqué. I'm suspicious about the sizing of the foundation piecing pattern as it's very very small for what looks like a wall hanging?
I think the cookery section in the back is a very sweet touch.
PLEASE NOTE: this is an American book, so all the measurements are in yards and inches.
If you don't mind working without colour in a quilting book, you may really enjoy this book.
I have dyslexia, as may creative people are known to have. Working in black/white/greys is very difficult for me. I have to work so much harder, which takes out all the fun and inspiration unfortunately. I do like the appliqué patterns.
I will keep hold of the book just for that reason and create my own quilt design incorporating them, which is easier than following their patterns.
I hope you will enjoy this book more than I have managed to do.

Half Yard Heaven: Easy Sewing Projects Using Left-Over Pieces of Fabric
Half Yard Heaven: Easy Sewing Projects Using Left-Over Pieces of Fabric
by Debbie Shore
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.99

19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Who would create a craft book with no available patterns???, 11 Dec 2013
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I think this is a fun book for all ages, but it is aimed at younger stitchers. I would have loved this book when I was 15-16 and would have devoured the projects!
Most of the projects involves edging everything in bias binding, which gets a bit boring after a while!
The photos are nice and clear, some important ones are too small.
There are a couple of projects I would like to make from this book.
There are 96 pages. Published 2013.

Useful things section
Before you start section
Project 1. Book bag
Project 2. Wet-wipe sachet cover
Project 3. Tote bag
Project 4. Make-up bag
Project 5. Child's apron
Project 6. Make-up brush roll
Project 7. Peg bag
Project 8. Pocket apron
Project 9. Glasses case
Project 10. Craft caddy
Project 11. Neck cushion
Project 12. Owl and the pussy cat
Project 13. Chicken door step
Project 14. Padded coat hanger
Project 15. Rosette headband for children
Project 16. Place mat.
Project 17. Oven Gloves
Project 18. Notice board
Project 19. Pincushion
Project 20. Slippers
Project 21. Coat-hanger tidy
Project 22. Pan holder
Project 23. Tea-cosy
Project 24. Sewing machine Dust cover
Project 25. String of hearts
Project 26. Tissue box cover

The reason I've highly down graded this book to 2 stars, is there are NO PATTERNS for any of the projects!!!!
You are EXPECTED to draw and create ALL THE DESIGNS YOURSELF, which for a craft book I think is dreadful!!!
It shows you how in small photos what to do, but not everyone has the confidence or the skill to do this!!! For such an excellent crafts publisher as Search Press it is dreadful, as they have always produced such high quality books!!! You have 26 projects, some complicated which you have to create all your own patterns, how many people will enjoy doing that? One of the main focuses behind a craft book, is some one has created fun projects to make AND produced the patterns to help you create these projects!!! It's like you have only getting 50% of the book!!!
The other reason I've down graded the book is the fabrics uses are not particularly nice, and already look out dated in many of the projects, giving it an 80's feel about it, why when there are so many exciting fun fabrics available does the designer choose dowdy fabrics, not at all inspiring!!!
This book is not worth the money, which I'm really sad to say.
My book will be donated to my local library.

Tilda's Winter Delights
Tilda's Winter Delights
by Tone Finnanger
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous book!!, 10 Dec 2013
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I was totally thrilled when my long awaited book arrived this morning! I poured over it and read it in great detail with bags of excitement as Tilda books are so unique, and you are whisked back to a magical world. For all Tilda fans, this is another must have book to add to your amazing collection of pure inspiration!
This book has 46 pages of beautiful pictures, and most importantly FULL SIZE patterns (how rare is that these days?). The fun paper projects are in the back of the book ready to photo copy onto stiff paper, with the beautify of which you can reproduce Father Christmas's head and then decorate his body as many times as you wish, great projects for children to do. Plus the paper ladies are fun too, big and little girls can make all sorts of amazing skirts and use the dolls to string together etc!!!
There are all sorts of decorative little pictures within each page which you can photo copy to add as additional extras for your projects, so don't miss out on those as you look through the book.
The instructions are excellent in some projects and non existent in others (I will explain more further on).


Project 1. The skating angel
Project 2. The pretty pentagon patchwork balls (for the polar bears)
Project 3. The hexagon patchwork placemat
Project 4a. The patchwork pillowcase
4b. The textured patchwork quilt
Project 5. Decorative skates
Project 6. The polar bears
Project 7. Father Christmas
Project 8. Paper angels
Project 9. The chalet girls
Project 10. Christmas stockings

Suppliers for the UK & US

I was torn to give this book 3 or 4 stars. There are a few issues I do have as a very accomplished craft and textile arts lady.
The instructions are good, but what happened to the instructions for projects 4a and 4b???
There are no size dimensions, no fabric quantities, no instructions on making the roused up pillow case and no details at all for the quilt. Maybe they are project suggestions on using their exclusive fabrics, but it's naughty of them to add this project in the book and leave out all the critical details!!! I have books on quilting I can use to get these details, but not everyone has. Also to create this semi smocked effect, you would need specialised very strong thread to prevent snapping. Non of these details are in this book??!! A bit crucial really!
With Tilda you always expect that extra beauty and vintage feeling. Who was in charge of designing the Christmas stockings, what a total let down, they don't fit in with the beautiful vintage feel of the Tilda designs. They are the most boring Christmas stocking in all the craft books I've ever read!! They look like a poor after thought, why??? Plus there are lousy instructions for the quilted stocking, and no detail if you added the semi smocked/gathered look, it will decrease your fabric size, plus you will also need wadding and backing fabric for the front and back sections again this has been left out!

I just think it's so important for those who are buying this book, who want to make these projects, to get the full amount from this book, you need to have good knowledge in crafts and textiles. Some people buy these books as beautiful books just to enjoy and that's ok too.
I really want you to buy this book it and get the most from it hopefully, and have no unexpected surprises!
I hope this has been of some help :)
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 29, 2013 4:56 PM GMT

Super Cute Felt
Super Cute Felt
by Laura Howard
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.39

4.0 out of 5 stars Much nicer inside than the cover shows, 1 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Super Cute Felt (Paperback)
I bought this book for my daughter as she was enthusiastic with some of the projects inside.
I really liked this little book too as there are some fabulous patterns inside, but some I would use fabric and wadding to make the very sweet tea cosy, rather than thin felt, plus it would wash much easier too.
There are projects for all age groups which I think is great.
This book was publish 2011 and it's starting to look out dated, which is very sad, not all the projects just some.



Chapter 1

Bunny broach
Pansy hair clips
Kitty purse
Feather headband
Dachshund cuff
Retro corsage
Bird on a branch necklace

Chapter 2

Hedgehog phone case
Bumblebee lavender sachet
Fruity pincushion
Mug cosy
Rainbow rosettes
Under the sea notebook cover
Angel teddy
Forget-me-not heart
Cat and mouse puppets

Chapter 3
Home wares

Owl egg cosy
Little house doorstop
Flower napkin ring
Squirrel and oak coasters
Tea time cosy
Toadstool hot water bottle
Butterfly cushion
Lovebirds mobile
Lion coffee cozy

Chapter 4

Peacock mask
Easter wreath
Birthday bunting
Bat ornaments
Snow globe door hanger
Embroidery hoop ornaments
Gingerbread cookie garland
Mitten ornaments


The reason I gave this 4 stars is that 7 of the project templates need enlarging 200% or there about.
I really dislike it when publishers do not give crafters full size templates in the back of the book.

I really hope you will enjoy making the sweet projects in here.

The Magic Of Drawing: Bring Your Vision to Life on the Page
The Magic Of Drawing: Bring Your Vision to Life on the Page
by Wright Cliff
Edition: Paperback
Price: 9.31

5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favourite children's illustrators!, 1 Dec 2013
This is a fabulous book with a wide eclectic rarity of different illustrations, from Harry Potter to much younger readers called The Three Bears, and other illustrations I am unsure which books they may have come from.
There are more adult, mythical scenes to beautiful birds

This book is an art tuition book, where you learn from an international acclaimed artist.
He covers all the basics from the ground upwards, materials, shape, form, shading, texture, patterns, light, shade, physiology, etc.
The author breaks down the drawing and gradually builds it up.

This book has 127 pages crammed with information, to bring your vision of drawing to life.


Author's notes
An invitation

Part 1
How we see

Part 2
Towards a fine touch

Part 3
From imagination to page


Within those sessions there are sub sections

Learning to see
Seeing workshops
Drawing from silence
Seeing the bigger picture
Learning to observe
Observation workshop
Discipline leads to freedom
Do something new
Using your other hand
Drawing from memory
Looking deeper
Capture movement
The journey so far
Tools for the job
How to sharpen your pencil
The full range of a pencil
Free form drawing
Explore a line
A touch with different media
Controlling your touch
Capturing light and shade
Observing light on hands
Observing light sources
Refining your touch
Drawing small
Using a delicate touch
Negative space
Feeling faces
The Masters
Feel your imagination
The art of doodling
Open your mind
Drawing from life
Developing a character
Complex characters
Humanizing a character
Composing a picture
Using repetition
Using composition
Thumbnail sketches
Breaking the rules
Using space
Composing with space
Developing the story
Setting the scene

I love this particular tuition book, as it's not like your normal 'how to draw' books. The illustrations are captivating, due to their playful, natural and mythical touch makes the projects more modern and fun to learn.
I would think this book would be great for age 12 upwards, as there is a lot of comprehensive information which I think younger children may not understand.

I was very lucky to meet the author at a very large arts and crafts event in Oxford, where he displayed the original illustrations of this book, which was fabulous. I was amazed at the size of these original watercolour pictures!!!
I bought my book at his stand and had it autographed which was an added bonus.

I really hope you will enjoy this book.

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