Crafts & DIY Reviews | May 15, 2013

Library Journal Reviews starred review Box, Richard. Basic Drawing Techniques. Search. Jul. 2013. 48p. illus. index. ISBN 9781844488902. pap. $7.95. ART INSTRUCTION

Unlike most drawing guides, this svelte handbook does not limit itself to black-and-white line drawings but instead devotes a good portion of its pages to color, covering colored pencil, pastel, crayon, and chalks as media. Box (Drawing Step-by-Step) discusses how to mix the colors of a limited palette to produce vibrant drawings. Materials, mark making, tone, texture, and composition are also explained. VERDICT Teens, young adults, and beginning artists of all ages may pick up this guide for quick drawing inspiration.

Kopperude, Amy. Bead Bugs: Cute, Creepy, and Quirky Projects to Make with Beads, Wire, and Fun Found Objects. Creative Pub. 2013. 128p. illus. ISBN 9781589237322. pap. $22.99. CRAFTS

Creepy-crawlies take a turn for the ornamental in this collection, which features designs for 23 different insects and sea creatures (and, oddly, an owl). In her first book, Kopperude heads off the likely question—What would I do with an insect made out of beads?—by presenting each insect as part of a project, such as an ant magnet, a fly tie tack, and a spider sun catcher. Most of the projects require simple tools that should be in most beadworkers’ collections, such as pliers, wire cutters, and craft adhesive, and the projects themselves are simple enough for beginners to tackle. VERDICT The theme is unusual, but it works. Projects like the dragonfly wine-glass charms might appeal to wedding crafters, and some of the creepier designs, like the bat mobile, are perfect for those decorating for Halloween.

Smith, Nicole. Skirt-a-Day Sewing. Storey. May 2013. 240p. illus. index. ISBN 9781603429740. pap. $19.95.FIBER CRAFTS

In her first book, Smith, a sewing instructor and marketing and merchandising specialist for online craft behemoth Etsy, teaches sewists how to draft custom patterns for four basic skirt shapes—wrap, straight, flared, and high-waisted—and provides seven variations for each shape. The garments include plenty of simple, straightforward, beginner-friendly basics, as well as variations that demonstrate more advanced techniques. Even beginning sewists will feel confident drafting their own patterns under Smith’s guidance.VERDICT There are plenty of books out there that explain how to sew a skirt from a commercial pattern, but this is one of a few beginner-appropriate books that covers pattern drafting in an unintimidating manner.

The following titles are reviewed in the February 1 print issue. Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.


Smith, Ray Campbell.Perspective. Search. Jul. 2013. 48p. illus. index. ISBN 9781844488896. pap. $7.95. ART INSTRUCTION


Hayakawa, Hiroshi. Paper Pups: 35 Dogs to Copy, Cut & Fold. Lark Crafts: Sterling. May 2013. 144p. illus. index. ISBN 9781454703921. pap. $17.95. CRAFTS

do it yourself

Trask, Crissy. Go Green, Spend Less, Live Better: The Ultimate Guide to Saving the Planet, Saving Money, and Protecting Your Health. Skyhorse. May 2013. 272p. index. ISBN 9781620872109. pap. $14.95. DIY

fiber crafts

Oparka, Julie. Crochet-opedia: The Only Crochet Reference You’ll Need. Griffin: St. Martin’s. Jun. 2013. 224p. illus. index. ISBN 9781250020338. $24.99. FIBER CRAFTS

Roskelley, Camille. Simply Retro with Camille Roskelley. Stash. May 2013 112p. illus. ISBN 9781607056843. pap. $22.95. FIBER CRAFTS

interior design

Country Living Decorating with White. Hearst: Sterling. May 2013. 160p. ed. by Gina Hyams. ISBN 9781588168603. $24.95. INTERIOR DESIGN

Gross, Steve & Susan Daley. Farmhouse Revival. Abrams. 2013. 192p. photogs. ISBN 9781419705861. $40.INTERIOR DESIGN