{gotta brag}

Well, I have to take my car to the shop today ... something I hate more than almost anything. And something that I will often procrastinate doing to the point where my poor car's being held together with duct tape and a prayer.

I hate sitting there, waiting while it's fixed (since it's *rarely* one of those "leave it for a couple of days" type of repair). I mean, while mechanics can be the nicest people, they're not too cool about letting you hook up your sewing machine in the middle of their waiting room. Believe me, I know.

Sew ... to keep my hyper brain amused, I went to the bookstore yesterday, intending to only get a few mags to keep me occupied. I got the usual round of suspects (McCall's Quilting, Creative Home, etc) and then, I wandered over to the real-live book section. Not really thinking I'd find anything that A) I don't already have or B) really "spoke" to me. But lo and behold, I found three awesome books that while they don't do me much good whilst I wait today (that's what the maggies are for), they *will* provide more than enough inspiration and guidance that they're well worth the $!!

The first (and my most fave) is "Craft Challenge: Dozens of Ways to Repurpose a Pillowcase" by Suzanne J.E. Tourtillott. OMGosh, is it full of clever ideas and sweet projects! I just can't stop flipping through this book -- and I'm not even going to start describing how badly I'm jonesing for a trip to my local Thrift Store to search for some vintage-y pillowcases.

(I ought to mention here that I tend to be really ... jaded? about patterns. I don't mean that I look down on patterns that don't fit my taste, but I'm less apt to buy one if it's been done a gazillion times by a gajillion different companies. I like uniqueness. I like cleverness. I like -- you guessed it -- creativity! Like the music I listen to, the pattern or project has to ... speak to me. It has to *mean* something to me. It has to provide, at least, a jumping off point for my own creative inclinations.

That's actually one of my pet peeves about maggies. Most of the time, it's just a reworked pattern that's been around for ages. And most of the time, it's not even *really* been reworked, it's just been made in a different color fabric. If I had a nickel for everytime that a new book came out that just recycled the same-old-same-old ideas just with different fabrics, I'd own my own fabric shop (of which you guys would be heartily invited to come and grab)!)

*sigh* rant over.

But that's why I just *LOVE* this book. Some are kinda recycled ideas, but most (I'd say about 90%) are NOT. They're fresh, clever, and sweet. Love, love, love, LOVE this book!

The second book that I just *had* to have is "The Embroidery Stitch Bible" by Betty Barnden. Yeesh. I *thought* I knew how to embroider. I *thought* I knew the coolest stitches. Well, thanks-a-pant-load-Ms-Barnden, but now I know I don't! o_O

Over 200 stitches. And it's easy to understand. Easy to follow. Well, we'
ll put Ms-Smarty-Britches to the test this weekend. I'm going to embroider a wee something using the hardest stitches she has. Then we'll see. ;)

(The above was meant tongue-in-cheek, btw -- I have NO doubt that her book will enable me to make the most beautiful stitches ev-ah!)

The third book is a follow-up to another book I already own: "More Machine Embroidery Essentials" by Jeanine Twigg. Since I just got my first ever embroidery machine, I'm scared to death to use it. Her previous book, "Machine Embroidery Essentials" has made it easier to get over the fear that if I touch one wee button, it'll fall apart. But, I need more help (obviously).

Okay, they're ALL super awesome books. And I am loving them (ain't it obvious?!). But I think ... I'm going to pick up another copy of the "Craft Challenge" and have a give-away for it. Some things are really just too durn good not to share.

But if the maggies start paying me those nickels for the "same-old-same-old" patterns, I can afford to get you ALL a copy. Then we'd all be pillowcase-hoarding fools. And very happy. ;)

1 comment:

TiLT said...

cool...I'll have to see if my library has the embroidery bible book...I just started embroidery & know, oh, 5 basic stitches. I am already wanting more :)

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