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Nicola Williams (Oxford, England)

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Quick & Easy Quilts for Kids: 12 Kid Friendly Patterns by Connie Ewbank (2012)
Quick & Easy Quilts for Kids: 12 Kid Friendly Patterns by Connie Ewbank (2012)
by Connie Ewbank
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent user friendly child based quilt book, 1 Dec. 2013
This is a brilliant bright, light and a breath of fresh air type of book!
Even though this is a quilt book for children, the author Connie Ewbank has designed this that some of the designs are great for older children, even adults, (you would just need to make it a bit bigger.) I really loved the heart quilt, stunning and I would love to make it as a wall hanging.

Most importantly the instructions are nice and clear, with colour illustrations each new section highlighted which is excellent.

This book has 47 brightly coloured pages.


1. Sweet and simple sampler
2. Baby blocks
3. Here's my heart
4. Let's go
5. Critters and crawlers
6. Check this
7. Chevron points
8. Leapin' nine-patch
9. Bugs
10. Baby bricks
11. Call of the wild
12. Around the block

I was very impressed the author suggesting making children's quilts for children in crisis charities, which is brilliant as not many authors mention. She mentions a variety of US charities, but as far as I know, The Linus project is the only one in the UK which everyone taps into. Most UK quilting shop will know of The Linus Project, and many work closely with the projects holding Linus project days within the store where customers can come, quilt for free with donated or end of sale fabrics from the store. The shops will send off your quilt to the charity direct for free. Many quilt guilds also have Linus project days too and know where their nearest drop off point is. You can look up The Linus Project on the internet for more details.

I really wanted to give this book 5 stars as it's so fabulous, but it lacked in a couple of areas.

1. There was no proper introduction
2. No details of content of the book
3. No visual sign of what level each project is based at. It's mentioned in small print inside 'project information'.
4. There is no basic guide section to help a new quilter, or refresher guide on how to put on boarders and how to make/attach bias binding etc. Which I think is fundamental in all good quilt books.
5. No mention on the best variety of wadding/batting which is safest for children to sleep with, within the quilt. Again I think this is an important issue. Good quality quilting shops will be able to advise. If a small shop just sells one, maybe 2 different waddings, go to a bigger shop with a wide selection, who can give a far more informative choice.
6. No mention was made about how to basically quilt (quilting the 3 layers together) the quilt together, which again is basic!

I feel important information is missing, and short cuts have been made which is disappointing with such a fabulous little book. I would have been very happy to pay a little more for this book with all the missing details included.
Apart from those issues the projects look great fun and are suitable level for beginners.
I really hope you will love making the projects!!

Strips & Scraps: Use Your Scraps or Jelly Roll Strips (Design Originals)
Strips & Scraps: Use Your Scraps or Jelly Roll Strips (Design Originals)
by Suzanne McNeill
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.77

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This book could have so much potential!, 30 Nov. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The cover gives the impression of being a bright and colourful book with lots of fun projects, 3/4 of this book is printed in black and white. Modern books have left those days long ago!

This book was published in 2009, and has 50 pages.
There are 7 quilts:

1. The humming bird
2. Hometown
3. Kansas winter
4. Grand old flag (USA)
5. Baby sampler
6. Cherry blossom
7. Something for everyone.

All the instructions are printed in black and white and on grainy cheep paper.
The instructions are the worse I've ever come across. I've come across instructions in this style before by the same publishers, and I've stayed well away from them. The publishers presume you are a 5 star quilter and understand everything possible to know about quilting which, I'm just an average quilter. 95% of the instructions are not even in full sentences. There are no step by step instructions and the odd diagram is very sketchy! The only colour pictures are just of the finished quilt.

The reason I gave this book 1 star, is at least it had full size patterns to trace from for the appliqué parts, which was its only bonus.
Please Design Originals, can you produce user friendly books, with full details of instructions instead of the instructions comprising of lists of colour, length and position, underneath is solid columns of numbers!!!
The instructions look worse than foreign translated ones!!!
This book has the potential of being nice, by the designer Suzanne McNeill, due to the publishers method of producing these books, it takes out any pleasure as you battle to decode how to read this let alone try and construct any of the quilts.

If I had the chance to see this before I bought it, I would have stayed well away, as I like my instructions in plain English and user friendly construction methods, plenty of coloured diagrams and be able to read full sentences!!! I like quilting books to be able to be used by beginners and well experienced quilters alike. Is that much to ask for in this day of age of publishing quilting books???

Quilting from Little Things... [With Pattern(s)]
Quilting from Little Things... [With Pattern(s)]
by Sarah Fielke
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.87

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous, bright and refreshing, 30 Nov. 2013
This book is like a breath of fresh air, with the use of scrumptious fabrics, bright colours and bags of imagination!

This book was published in 2011, the author Sarah Fielke is not only a quilter, but a tutor, designer and author. She has co-authored in two very well known quilting books - Material Obsession, Material Obsession Two, Contemporary Quilt Designs and Shared Inspiration.
Sarah also publishes patterns for quilt magazines around the world, including Down Under Quilts, Quilters Companion, my favourites Quilting Arts and Quiltmania and Quilters Newsletter. This lady is very well experienced, and highly accredited.

Is book contains 216 pages.


Choosing fabrics
Before you begin

Row by row construction

1. Diamond chips
2. Botanical garden

Strip piecing
1. Rebel with a rotary
2. Sandwich short of a picnic

Deconstructed piecing
1. The woodpile
2. Dandelions

Appliqué with bias strips
1. Spring
2. Whirligig

Flying geese and foundation piecing.
1. Geese around the world
2. North by North east

Inset piecing
1. Peaks and troughs
2. Stars in your eyes

Needle-turn appliqué
1. A little Silhouette
2. A wing and a prayer

Using Wedges
1. Fanfare
2. Hanging lanterns

Step down piecing
1. A step down
2. The night garden

Feathered blocks
1. Reflections in a lake
2. Flock together


Sewing techniques
1. Foundation piecing
2. Appliqué


Constructing your quilt
1. Adding borders
2. Layering the quilt
3. Basting
4. Quilting
5. Binding

Full size patterns inserted in pocket of back cover.

This book is suitable for beginners right through to the well experienced, and an excellent book to learn so many different methods in quilt construction.
I love this book for its modern country style which enables you to be free thinking and use many of its ideas to suit your own taste.
The instructions are very user friendly, informal, and beautifully hand drawn illustrations, as well as close up photos, making the projects look fun and easily achievable!
There is so much knowledge packed in the pages, making you want to learn more!!

If you wish to experience Sarah's work before you buy this fabulous book, you can find her:
1. [...] where she is the creative editor, a website for all things sewn
2. [...]
3. [...] her popular blog

I hope you get great pleasure from this amazing book, ENJOY :)
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 30, 2013 4:22 PM GMT

The Truth About Cats
The Truth About Cats
by Alan Snow
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars A timeless classic for children and adults alike, 30 Nov. 2013
This review is from: The Truth About Cats (Hardcover)
This fabulous little paper back was published in 1995, and was probably my daughter's and I favourite childhood book of hers, which has been read endlessly when she was younger. I still have her drawings and water colour pictures she made for me from this book for Mothers Day.
This book would be equally great for girls as well as boys, as there are several stories, including Mission to Earth, operating on earth, using a robot cat showing a slice through so you can see how it all works, and how the cats operate it!!
The illustrations are so fabulous, bright and vibrant, which makes it even more appealing to children.
This book is so much fun from beginning to end and totally timeless. This is the only book my daughter did not give away when sorting out her small book case as a child. I now look after it as she's 24!!! It's a very special book with the happiest of memories.
I really hope you get as much love and joy from such a special little book!

Christmas Papercrafts
Christmas Papercrafts
by Bradd Corinne
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A great Christmas crafts book to fall back on for many years to come, 30 Nov. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Christmas Papercrafts (Paperback)
This is a lovely little paperback book with 128 pages.
It was originally published in 2009 and twice in 2011, which just goes to show its popularity.

My daughter and I are very much into our arts and crafts. I bought this as a joint project book we could share and craft together over the Christmas period, which I just love to do! This book I feel would require adult participation for children under the age of 8yrs old, maybe older if using some of the adult based tools.

The projects in here are so multi purpose, that we did felt crafts using this book, using ribbons instead of paper strips for the stocking project which she gave away to her friends as a Christmas tree decoration.
Since 2009, this book comes out every year for inspiration and idea tips.

I gave this book 4 stars as some of the projects use some expensive pieces of equipment, meaning not all the projects are accessible to everyone.
This book is 4 coming onto 5 years old, the designs I hope will last for a few more years before the projects start looking out dated.
I hope you will enjoy this book very much.

Fun-to-wear Fabric Flowers by Searle, Elizabeth Helene (2006)
Fun-to-wear Fabric Flowers by Searle, Elizabeth Helene (2006)

2.0 out of 5 stars Shame books like these can become so out dated so fast, 29 Nov. 2013
This lovely look was produced in 2006
They have some lovely fabric flowers to make, but with all things fashionable, they go out of date quite quickly, as it's 7 coming onto 8 years old and the clothes reflect the same issue.
That's the only issue I have with this sweet book.
When I bought the book, I would have given it 5 stars. My daughter and I made a couple of these flowers too which was great fun.
For those who love making fabric flowers I hope you enjoy this book very much.

Silk Painting Made Easy (Crafts Made Easy)
Silk Painting Made Easy (Crafts Made Easy)
by Susan Penny
Edition: Hardcover

2.0 out of 5 stars A beginners book for young people, 28 Nov. 2013
I enjoy silk painting, and making silk painted greeting cards. This book is good for small projects.

This book was published in 1998, but feels more like the 1980's, as it's quite dated.
I liked this book as it is very user friendly, but the motifs are so so childish, which I really don't understand why, as the projects were not child based projects and there are many of these designs unfortunately.

To be honest, there are much nicer silk painting books available.

The Glass Painting Book: A Complete Introduction, Including Over 20 Projects and 100 Trace-off Motifs
The Glass Painting Book: A Complete Introduction, Including Over 20 Projects and 100 Trace-off Motifs
by Jane Dunsterville
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun glass painting book, 28 Nov. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a great hard back book of glass painting, from 1996-1998 as it was re published 3 times, which is unusual for craft books, but it just shows how popular this book was I expect.

This book isn't bogged down with too much information I'm glad to say.
There are tons of pictures to trace off. For the big projects you will need to have them professionally copied.

The pictures are varied, for different ages, children included. I will say the pictures do reflect the period the book was published, but some styles carry through ok.

I am a multi skilled crafter. I have done a lot of glass painting at home, decorating large windows, doors and mirrors.
I bought this book as I also do silk painting, and I make silk painted greeting cards and was looking for some fun motifs I could use. Books like these are very handy as they can span many different crafts.

I gave it 3 stars only because the author decided to print the motifs on coloured paper which is a bit dark when trying to trace! This will make tracing the designs more tricky than plan black on white paper specially for children, or people with any visual impairment. To over come this hopefully, it may be best to photo copy the designs, and attached that to your glass work, or plastic OHP (overhead projector) sheets, which can be trimmed off with scissors after.

Happy crafting!

Creative Quilts from Your Crayon Box by Kygar, Terrie Linn ( Author ) ON May-10-2012, Paperback
Creative Quilts from Your Crayon Box by Kygar, Terrie Linn ( Author ) ON May-10-2012, Paperback
by Terrie Linn Kygar
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars A new and different way of blending colour on fabric, 28 Nov. 2013
A year a go, I did a brilliant internet course on where the tutor showed how to use and blend pencil colour on fabrics to get spectacular results followed by free motion machine embroidery.
Wether using pencil or wax crayon pigment is the key to get in depth colour.
As I got stunning results using coloured pencils, I heard brilliant reviews of this book from my craft friends in America, and had to see what the hype was about????

This is a beautifully illustrated book stuffed with lovely coloured pictures, and you are not bogged down with too much method and info. It looks very user friendly. If you are exploring a new technique, you want to know the key information to get you up and running, without reams taking the excitement out of it.
The patterns are full size which is impressive.

The paperback book is 79 pages

The Contents

Melt and blend basics
Learn to colour
Assembling and finishing your quilt


Pinwheel flowers 1
Pinwheel flowers 2
Kristy's Toohoops
Grandma's fruit cupboard
Garden Royalty

Quilt gallery
Parting words
About the author

I was very impressed with the author as she has more patterns and details online to go with this book.
I give the illustrations 3 stars, as they could be more imaginative, and seem basic in many of the projects. I think the choice of design will become dated in the near future.
The main issue, is learning this tutor's amazing methods which are easy and user friendly.
Do not worry it's not like encaustic art. You do need an iron, but that's to press fabric and iron a non stick heatproof sheet.

This book is great for those who love to explore new methods while creating!!!
Enjoy being a big kid with those lush boxes of crayola crayons and colour!!!
This is not suitable for children as you need to use a lot of heat on the sheet and the fabric, plus you are working with melted wax.

The Next Place
The Next Place
by Warren Hanson
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant small book for children dealing with the difficult issue of the death of a loved one., 28 Nov. 2013
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This review is from: The Next Place (Hardcover)
I heard a professional discussing this book on a pod cast last year on "Books on the night stand".
In the US hospices hold copies of this specially to help children cope with this extremely difficult subject in the gentlest, sweetest, positive way possible.
The whole book is so beautiful in every way.
The illustrations are beautiful, depicting different coloured sky scapes with the gentle peaceful words floating across the page. The sky changes from light to dark with light poking behind the dark clouds, rainbows in dark and light sky's and birds drifting on the breeze with the words. There is day time drifting into night with magical music shown drifting in the sky. There is the cosmos (not in its true form) it has a blazing sun in the centre, with the different formations of the moon, and theoretical stars drawn like children do. You have the seasons, with drifting leaves and beautiful snowflakes, and hand prints in the sky by day and by night. There is the weather portrayed.
Near end of the book it focuses on love and love shared and friendship.

This book is not religious. I personally do not know about all the different religions in the world, but I would not think this could be seen as offensive.

This book just covers the basics.
This would not be suitable for young children, as the subject of death is not an easy one, but for those children who are asking the question "why" this book may well help a parent explain in a very gentle tactful way.
As an adult, this is a nice way dealing with this subject in a more positive way too, but bare in mind it's designed for children.

I can see why professionals use this book in helping children, if parents are too distressed to help a child understand.

I hope this may have been of some help.

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