Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Just Stitch
BY Lesley Turpin-Delport, Nikki Delport-Wepener


Metz Press (distributed in the UK by Search Press)
24 April 2018 / Out in US 2 October 2018 / ISBN 9781782216810
How-To Books/Needlework

Reviewed by Rachel Hyde


If you have a board of textured threads, beads and scraps of fabric, and are wondering what to do with them look no further. The mother and daughter team show how to create works of art inspired by the natural world using a wide range of embroidery styles and assorted materials.

This is definitely one for the keeper shelf. Anybody who thinks that embroidery is all about six stranded cotton floss will be surprised (and thrilled) to see the richly textured and lifelike creations and, like this reviewer, yearn to start stitching. The first half of this book is about what you need and how to do a huge number of different techniques. The second half contains projects, grouped under color plus stitch diagrams.

Total beginners to any kind of embroidery would do well to seek out a book that teaches one method in more detail before tackling a book like this, which is aimed at more experienced embroiderers up for a challenge. A wide range of techniques are explained briefly with examples, including projects in some cases. Have a go at stumpwork, beadwork, machine stitching. Make photo transfers, use textured threads, net, ribbon and felt. Make needlelace and more.

Even though each section is short, an experienced embroiderer can learn enough to have a go at one of the projects. The section containing these is organized in colors, each chapter beginning with a glorious double page spread of photographs showing both work and nature. In each chapter you can find two projects, one harder than the other, depicting the flora and fauna of South Africa. Subjects include butterflies and insects, flowers such as agapanthus, passion flower and heather, and my own favorite, of a pair of young barred owls. Each project has a list of what you need broken down helpfully into the type of needles, threads, fabrics and more, plus instructions that are detailed enough for anybody who has mastered the featured techniques.

There is a list, too, of these techniques, plus the stitches used, and at the back, several pages of diagrams. Some of these are patterns for the projects (many need to be enlarged) and some are for the stitches. They have been drawn in black pen and, although the simpler ones are clear enough, I have seen better diagrams. This minor gripe aside, this is a beautiful, inspiring book filled with inspiration and many lovely projects. Definitely one for the keeper shelf.

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

Reviews by other titles by Lesley Turpin-Delport and Nikki Delport-Wepener

Embroidered Flora and Fauna


UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in The Bead Magazine, Making Jewellery and
Reviewed 2017