I fully admit it - I'm a big fan of Martha Stewart's crafting projects. I was given a subscription for Martha Stewart Living Magazine for Christmas a couple of years ago and have kept every issue. But that one year is just a fraction of what appears in this new release from Random House Canada. It covers 17 years of craft content from the magazine packed into 32 chapters!
I have been reading (drooling over) Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Crafts for the last couple of weeks, savoring every last page (and there's over 400 pages!)
Each craft has an overview, the supplies needed, very explicit step by step instructions and many projects incorporating the techniques. All are accompanied by absolutely gorgeous full colour photos.
Many of the ideas presented are updated techniques on historical crafts such as candle making, soap making and quilling to name a few. Although some crafts may seem daunting on first view, they really aren't. I'm thinking of making candles for Christmas gifts next year. I could tin punch some holders for them. And then use stencilled gift wrap, stamped cards, origami boxes and calligraphic notes from other chapters to package them!
I've enjoyed working with stained glass before, but haven't tried my hand at glass etching. There are some great ideas for starting small with tumblers and working your way up to mirrors and hanging pieces.
Some of the ideas are so simple and yet so visually stunning. I loved the framed pressed botanicals. Sun prints were something I'd never heard of before. Using light sensitive paper, you burn the image in reverse and use it for a variety of designs.
Some of the chapters use newer techniques. I'm a dedicated sewer and had a huge light bulb moment when I came to the chapter on polymer clay. Buttons! I've always purchased those cute crafty buttons to finish off a child's outfit, but I'm going to try making some of my own.
I haven't even begun to touch on everything included in this truly encyclopedic book. There's beading, decoupage, gilding, mosaics, silk screening, wreaths and lots and lots more! There is a glossary in the back as well as templates and patterns for all the projects presented. I'm thrilled to have this book in my library.
I'll post some pictures of finished projects - but for now, I am happily rereading this book - there's just so much to take in in one read. One final word - I WANT TO LIVE IN MARTHA STEWART'S CRAFT ROOM!