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An Embroidered Christmas
Cheryl Fall

Stackpole Books (Distributed in the UK by Search Press)
31 August 2015 / ISBN-13: 9780811714365
Genre How-To Books / Embroidery / Holiday: Christmas

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


Make your own Christmas decorations this year and embroider them by hand. Whether you fancy having a go at freestyle, cross stitch or counted thread and prefer modern or traditional there is a design here to suit your holiday décor.

You don't even need to have done any before, although this book is not specifically aimed at the beginner and some basic knowledge is always a help. This is a book that obligingly stays open when placed on a table, a real plus in any practical primer. Sections at the front on materials and techniques give a good grounding in what you need to know and obtain, and at the back there is an excellent chapter on all the stitches. There are not many of these and include most of the basic ones complete with helpful captions. All the diagrams are large and easy to follow, and there is another chapter on making up and finishing techniques such as mounting for framing, fraying a fringe and the best ways to prepare a stuffed shape for turning. The projects include stockings, hanging ornaments, napkin rings, mats, Nativity figures and tree centrepieces. Several are Scandinavian in style, others have a simple traditional look while things like the felt peppermints and"naughty or nice"picture are contemporary. Patterns are full sized (always a bonus) and each project has exhaustive but easy to follow written instructions, some diagrams and photographs of the finished items in situ. I reckon a beginner could tackle most of the projects without too much trouble, and have a houseful of festive decorations to be proud of. A really user-friendly and beautifully laid out book.

If you cannot find a good range of origami materials locally try for a list of suppliers.

UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in Sewing World, Sew Hip, Popular Crafts and other magazines. Her craft blog is Green Thoughts
Reviewed 2015