The Christmas Book Hardcover – 1 Sep 2008
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If ever there was a book that could evoke the true spirit of Christmas, it's this one. (Country Living )
About the Author
Sheherazade Goldsmith led the life of a typical London girl until she had children. Concerned by the poor quality of food, she started up an organic delicatessen that soon specialized in wholesome home-cooked food for babies and young children. She also wrote a column for the Sunday Times Style magazine focusing on the importance of local and organic food.
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Top Customer Reviews
I do have some quibbles..... Some of the projects are - lets be very honest here - basic. This does make you think that maybe they are fillers? An example of what I see as a filler is: Christmas tree in a pot (yep - putting a christmas tree in a pot.....).
Projects contained include:
Plant a winter garden
Cinnamon spice bundles
Advent calendar sacks
Seaside foot scrub
However this book is a lot weaker than the previous title. The pictures aren't tempting, especially of the dried orange tree decorations - they look (to me) disgusting, old and dried up! It also has some factual errors such as claiming that if your Christmas tree goes to landfill it will take "hundreds of years" to rot down. Hmmmm.... And many of the craft projects are the kind of thing where it looks like a good idea at the time (making felt birds for the Christmas tree); but where eventually you realise it's going to take about 3 days of solid work and a lot of shopping and money to make these so-called "simple and homely" decorations...
If you are a real fan of Sheherezade you might enjoy the book but NB that she was the editor, rather than the writer, and the only bit copyrighted by her is the introduction - she is clearly credited on the cover as "editor in chief", not the author.
I totally agree with what Village Preservation Society says in her review - it's sweet, and it's a goal we all want to aim for. But honestly, lots of the stuff (like sticking dried seed heads to a photo album cover) look as if they will fall apart instantly, which nobody wants! Sorry to be so down on the book, because it's a nice idea, but it's just NOT done nicely enough for me to give it more of a recommendation.
The crafts are simple yet inspiringly easy, and it encouraged me to dust off the sewing machine and give it a go. So far I've made the fireplace garland, walnut bread and leaf wreath - all of which were simple and stress free. The items I made actually looked like the pictures too. Other items I intend to make are the gooey brownies, raspberry gin, stockings and stocking garland and home made christmas cards and wrapping paper.
True there are some duff ideas, such as potting a christmas tree, but this book is so big it's not really a problem as there are plenty of other decent ideas to make up for it. And yes, some of the ideas are pretty simple, but I hadn't thought of them before and they only added to my enthusiasm for the simplicity.
Beautiful, I can see I will be referring to this book many times over the next few years.
However, I am constantly on the look out for good gingerbread and christmassy ginger biscuit recipes, and so I felt that this was still money well spent. What I think I'm trying to say is: there may be things in here that are just what you're looking for, but don't expect it to revolutionise your Christmas preparations.
This book gives good ideas for a real Christmas which is not pandering to the commercialism of modern times. It is aiming for a more relaxed Christmas with loads of ideas for homemade decorations and gifts which will not stretch the budget. It gives ideas which can be acted on throughout the year to provide you with things you might use from the garden or your store cupboard to minimise the stress of Christmas preparations.
The first chapter "Welcome" includes inspiring ideas on how to create a warm and festive atmosphere indoors and outdoors. It provides useful information on how to grow a winter garden, tips on how to make a wood fire and scent a room in a natural way, as well as detailed instructions to create dried leaf wreaths, festive fabric garlands and even edible bird decorations for the garden.
The second chapter "Christmas Tree" has everything we need to know about the Christmas tree. It provides information about choosing, caring and recycling real cut or potted trees to decorate for the holidays, and it gives information on energy-efficient lighting for our Tree. In addition this chapter has detailed instructions for many great decorations for the tree, like recycled paper and fabric ornaments and natural and edible decorations.
The third chapter "Giving" has fantastic ideas for home made gifts. Great ideas any crafter will enjoy making like "Natural Christmas Cards", "Hot-water Bottle Cover", and "Fabric Notebook". There are also beautiful and practical home made gifts for the bathroom like "Seaside Foot Scrub" and "Glossy Lip Balm". And last but not least home cooked gifts like "Pear Chutney", "Fruit Jam", and "Flavored Oils"
The fourth chapter "Table" has detailed instructions to make fantastic festive candleholders and centerpieces for the Christmas table.
The fifth chapter "Food" has recipes for delicious and traditional festive foods like "Mince Pies", "Christmas Cake", "Honey Roast Ham", "Spiced Nuts", "Preserved Lemons" and "Cranberry Jelly", to mention just a few.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Best mulled wine recipe I've ever had in this lovely little book! :)Published 7 months ago by Blair B Baker
Absolutely fab, soooo many things that I would like to make and everything in one place, and they seem so easy and effective - this is the only book you will need, thank you... Read morePublished on 5 Feb. 2012 by Mo
The Christmas book is full of practical, workable items to make for the home or great as gifts.
Easy to follow instructions with lovely illustrations. Read more
I had this book already and enjoyed the ideas so much I bought it for a friend of mine. I look forward to, and plan for, Christmas all year!Published on 8 Oct. 2011 by Harley Diva
This wonderful book definitely has great appeal, although the coffee table style cover is perhaps misleadingly trendy for what turns out to be very traditional and nostalgic... Read morePublished on 2 Mar. 2011 by HEY JUDE
...unless you have a cornucopia of organic, eco friendly, natural items already in your house, you will find yourself having to go out to source these (rather expensive!) items. Read morePublished on 6 Dec. 2010 by H. P. Holland
You need to start reading this book in April in order to experiment with the many different crafts and recipes. A wonderful book.Published on 21 Oct. 2010 by J. C. Roberts
I am very glad I borrowed this from the library rather than buying it as I'd have wasted my money
I felt it was unoriginal and uninspired. Read more