Several weeks ago, I mentioned that
Shakespeare’s Flowers in Stumpwork
by Jane Nicholas was gear up for pre-gild, and you’ll be happy to know that information technology’s now out in several places.
Thank you to Jane, my copy came a couple weeks agone, and now that I’ve had a gamble to peruse information technology thoroughly, I’ll review it for you!
Shakespeare’due south Flowers
book. Information technology’s a somewhat heavy, hard-leap book with 272 pages – quite a tome! And so it should be, if you retrieve most it. Yous’ve got 2 rather complex subjects right in that location in the title: Shakespeare and stumpwork!
It is a cute book, equally far as the projects go and the visual layouts. I’m e’er a little disappointed in the quality of larger Milner Arts and crafts Serial books (flimsy paper, non the all-time binding in the world), only given the size of the book and the cost point, it’s understandable.
When I opened the book, I was delightfully pleased with the inside championship pages. There are some fantastic black-and-white pen drawn backgrounds here, very 17th-century-embroidery-pattern-ish, which gave the book just the right “atmosphere” from the very first pages.
And of course, at that place are, throughout the volume, nice smatterings of Shakespeare’due south references to flowers. If you like Shakespeare, information technology’southward but dreamy!
There’s also a very nice introduction, with historical information, explanations, and and then forth. It’s well washed and worth reading. I beloved information technology when there’due south a good overview of historical context in embroidery books. It puts things in perspective and keeps the thread between past and present art intact.
After the introductions all effectually, we motility into the projects.
Now, technically, the book sports 14 separate projects – 12 modest floral elements that can exist worked a number of different ways (I’ll explain in a moment), plus an Elizabethan panel and a garland of leap flowers, the latter 2 being separate projects birthday.
Concerning the 12 small floral elements, these make up the projects in ii sections of the volume. The frame, above, is one possible projection that tin exist worked with the floral elements, and it is the focus of the first section of the book. The following section offers other possibilities with the same floral motifs.
The project section begins with patterns for both the overall project and any small stumpwork elements within information technology. These are offered equally traceable line drawings, and they are all quite small. Seeing the actual size of the patterns in the book (which are given at actual size – they aren’t meant to be enlarged), I was pleased equally dial! The projects become much more manageable in the heed, when yous realize they aren’t big.
Post-obit the patterns, yous’ll discover a listing of overall requirements for the project in that section. With this particular project – the frame – the listing is quite long, since information technology involves all the supplies for 12 private petty projects all rolled into one project.
The requirements list covers everything, from fabric to thread to tools to wires and chaplet and needles of diverse types and sizes. In short, everything you demand to work the project.
The next department covers grooming – how to set up your material, transfer your design, and then forth.
This is all text at this point, then if you’re used to highly visual books jammed with lots of pictures, understand that Jane’s books are not really that fashion. There’s a lot more text in her books than in nearly instructional needlework books today. Personally, I think this is a practiced thing. Information technology doesn’t exit yous guessing. As long every bit you can read, and every bit long equally the writer knows how to write and instruct (which Jane does, to a tee), y’all’ll understand what to practice. When an prototype is necessary to clarify, y’all’ll detect small line drawn illustrations.
Next upwards, the project is broken down in parts. For the frame, that ways each floral element is featured, with a supply list and instructions on how to consummate the floral elements.
Again, you won’t meet a lot of step-by-step photo instruction here. It’s all text, illustrated in the margins with close-upward photos of the completed element relating to the particular instructions.
Where diagrams are required to analyze, y’all will find small-scale line drawn diagrams in the margins next to the instructions.
The adjacent chapter of the book focuses on the samplers. These consist of all the floral elements in the frame, rearranged as small samplers.
Incidentally, you lot don’t take to arrange them in groups. You lot can work each element individually, in layouts of 4, of six, of twelve arranged vertically or horizontally. Jane offers several layout arrangements for the samplers. I’k kind of taken with the idea of working them individually instead of in groups. There’due south lots of elbowroom hither for arranging things, anyway!
Next up, the Elizabethan Bloom Console, a lovely project which I showed you in the previous article on
Shakespeare’s Flowers. The presentation of the project is the same – patterns, requirements, training, instruction.
The the Garland of Spring Flowers is the final project in the volume – information technology’s a lovely floral garland with snowdrops and pansies, featuring some piddling flowers made with beads.
Only to show you what I mean by the pattern sizes – that’southward my pollex in the lower left corner, and then yous can get a sense of the size of the projects.
The concluding part of the book is devoted to techniques and stitch instructions. As y’all work through the projects, you’ll refer to this section for instructions on specific stitches or techniques if yous need to.
The instructions are simple diagrams and text, and they are very articulate.
The book features absolutely cute projects, as all of Jane’s books do. It’s delightful to flip through to see the pictures of the projects and to read some of the niggling extras in the book. In that sense, it makes a great inspirational book and a pretty prissy display volume, as well! If I had a coffee table, I’d accept no problem keeping information technology there.
Mostly, though, information technology is an
book, and it is primarily text-based educational activity. If yous’re dandy to work the projects inside, be prepared to read! I don’t call back there’s anything wrong with this – I
text-based instructions. But I know that there are many visual learners out in that location who are more than used to photo and epitome-based instruction and who might observe it problematic. Just and then you know!
And that being said, this is not a beginner’s book, unless you’re an admittedly determined beginner who likes a claiming. If yous’ve never washed any stumpwork before, you might first with a beginner’s book and so progress to this. If you’ve worked your way through at least one stumpwork project before, though, you should take no problem with this book. Information technology’s accessible.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading the volume cover to cover, and I accept to admit, it’s given me the itch to piece of work up some of the floral motifs. Should I give in? Probably!
Where to Find It?
You lot can find the book through the following book affiliates:
In the United states of america, yous’ll discover
Shakespeare’s Flowers in Stumpwork
available through Amazon.
Worldwide, you can find
Shakespeare’due south Flowers
available through Volume Depository, with free shipping.