Forgotten Household Crafts Hardcover – 2 Aug 2007
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This may be just the thing for your coffee table--especially if it's an antique or homemade one. (The Greenville News) John Seymour takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the worlds of traditional craftspeople... (Country Home) Each segment presents a text lavishly illustrated with DK's traditional verve; no one who dips into the wealth of information available here will remain ignorant of the how-tos of his forebears. (Richmond Times Dispatch) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
John Seymour was an active campaigner for the countryside and the environment and is the acknowledged founding father of the self-sufficiency movement. Students still come from around the world to learn first hand about his lifestyle and philosophies at the centre that he established in southern Ireland. He died in 2004.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a truly rare, charming and simple book capturing lost details of the lives our grandparents and ancestors lived closer to the land. Do not be misled by the title into thinking this is just about housekeeping. Much more is included than you would guess, inlcuding keeping livestock and bees, providing water, ale, beer, wine and cider making, cheese making, textiles, chimney sweeping, gas and electrical lighting, stoves, bathrooms - everything to do with home life in old times. The text is personally and charmingly written but what holds my interest for hours with this book is that the text is accompanied by many, many well done and accurate drawings and pictures of authentic old equipment! Now I can really SEE and understand how things were done, and picture exactly how my ancestors lived - and what so many of those odd looking antiques are. Just the page on irons must have twenty drawings of old irons and equipment. The many types of tools and untensils and also the ways grandmother used to feed her family ever fascinate me but I had never seen a picture of a 'wooden moliquet' used to froth the milk and eggs that made hot chocolate. I did not know there were so many shapes and types of bobbins and spangles for lace making. Under cider and ale making you will find a rare drawing of the names and sizes of barrels - who any longer recalls that a puncheon was exactly 72 gallons! Or have you ever actually seen how people cleaned their chimneys with bunches of holly twigs? Well, there is just too much more to tell you.Read more ›
The sheer breadth of scale is amazing for such a small book - everything is covered from boat building to thatching, from blacksmithing to dry stone walling and everything in between. If I only owned a single book, it would be this one.
'Forgotten Household Crafts, recaptures the self-sufficient life of a bygone age.'
From the introduction:
'..this book describes the art of housewifery through the ages, buy it is not just a `museum on paper'. Many of the activities may be seldom practised nowadays - some of them are sadly dead and gone - but many of them are living activities and several of the skills that seemed to be dying are now being revived, for many people have passed right through the pimply-adolescent stage of post-industrial civilisation.
They have tired of the take-away way of living and the machines-for-living way of living.....this book records the past, and that in itself can be quite a useful thing, but it has been written also to inspire and instruct us for the future. For I am convinced that the future does not lie in the direction of fish fingers, and telly snacks, and `Formica' and other plastic rubbish. It lies in the recreation of the real homes....'
Written with the typical John Seymour charm, this delightful book of forgotten skills is illustrated throughout in black and white.
A marvellous source for school projects when Grandma's recollections are not enough to fill two A4 sheets - but, overall, it makes us realise just how lucky we are that technology has answered some of the more arduous of chores, especially in the Laundry Craft section:
'In these days of turbo-boost washing machines and tumble driers, it is difficult to appreciate just how arduous doing the laundry was in the last century. Washing machines were not generally available until the 1880s and even then much energy was required to operate them, as they were hand cranked.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The person I bought this book for is over the moon, very informative on forgotten crafts.Published 4 months ago by susan
tells about the past skills but not the depth I had hoped forPublished 9 months ago by mrs s grierson
A bit more worn tha expected, but it is not a coffee table book, so I am satisfied!Published 16 months ago by Dukken Birkeland
This book will come into its own again soon, of that I am sure.We have gone through a generation and more of wanton waste and unbridled consumerism, almost for its own sake. Read morePublished on 19 Aug. 2011 by Oul-hand
An excellent book. It covers so many of our fast disappearing crafts in detail. Fully illustrated and helpful hints throughout. Read morePublished on 16 Jun. 2011 by Sheila T,
Yes I had forgotten it is a revelation with some terrific practical advice and some historical references also. Read morePublished on 23 Jan. 2011 by lindalesley