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Modern Beaded Lace
Cynthia Newcomer Daniel

Interweave (distributed in the UK by Search Press)
16 January 2017/ ISBN 9781632502940
How-To Books/Jewelry Making

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


If you love the look of delicate lace and fancy creating some beautiful jewelry, here is a book filled with lovely off-loom projects. It has the added appeal of looking contemporary and vintage at the same time, and of appearing as though some advanced skills might be essential. This is an illusion, as all the stitches used only take up a few pages and are simple to learn.

You don’t have to be able to already do stitches like right angle weave, ladder stitch, peyote stitch and netting, as they are all explained with the aid of some clear diagrams. In fact, this is one of the best books I have come across to learn them from as the instructions are so concise. Too many books make a meal of some of these stitches, which look daunting, but here the emphasis is on how quickly you can learn to do off-loom beadwork. The basics are soon dispensed with and the rest of the book contains only projects, all of which are designed to teach you something new about this type of beadwork so you learn as you go along. Choose from a wide variety of necklaces, bracelets, earrings, a pendant and a ring inspired by different type of lace, as well as historical styles and the natural world. Each project has a large photo of the finished piece plus several details, as well as full written instructions and clear diagrams. This is quite a large format book so the information is well-spaced and the print of a decent size, although the lists of what you need are rather small and fine on a gray background. One plus for anybody not in the US is you don’t have to gaze wistfully at beads and findings unavailable in other countries, as all the components here are easily sourced. Seed beads, pearls, fire-polished facets, rivolis and crystals are all widely available, and some of the smaller finer pieces are ideal for using up leftovers from other projects. You don’t need many tools either, just pliers, needles and scissors and some basic findings. This is one of the most inexpensive jewelry books I have seen as it really does show how to make a little look like a lot. Highly recommended for all the right reasons.

If you cannot find a good range of jewelry making 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.
Reviewed 2017