Select Page
Fun Recycling Ideas

Fun Recycling Ideas

America Recycles Day is on November 15th, and many people are seeking ways to reuse, repurpose, and recycle simple items – recognizing the importance this day has on our environment. To help out, TheSoul Publishing, whose 5-Minute Crafts Recycle YouTube page has over...

Feminist Stitches Review

Feminist Stitches Review

This is a book and cross stitch set for feminists who have something to say about their place in the world. The projects are pretty straightforward and the book is very helpful, with a helpful intro for beginners. Some of the patterns juxtapose hardcore slogans with...

New Needlecraft Books from Dover

New Needlecraft Books from Dover

Bargello is a style of needlepoint embroidery in zigzagging geometric patterns which are meant to suggest flames. They were famously designed for the Bargello Palace in Florence, Italy, which is now an art museum. The vibrant designs are super colorful and radiant,...

Illustration Studio: Inking Florals Review

Illustration Studio: Inking Florals Review

The concept for this book is how to replicate paintings where watercolors color -- and fill in -- ink pen outlines. I'd seen these sorts of beautiful artworks and wondered how I might create my own outlined watercolor paintings? Here is my answer! These sorts of...

Happy Place Coloring Book Review

Happy Place Coloring Book Review

This is one of the finest coloring books I've ever enjoyed. The paper, printing, and binding are all top quality. Each page offers lovely illustrations of original floral, greenery, birds, and little animals. Each coloring page offers a light and happy design sense...

Clay Play! Animal Favorites Review

Clay Play! Animal Favorites Review

My young daughter wanted to learn how to make things with polymer clay. Her older sister made these when she was her age, and now works as a baker/pastry chef, where her fondant designs and creatures have become a way to make a comfortable living. So, I am happy my...

Cut And Assemble The Mayflower Model Review

Cut And Assemble The Mayflower Model Review

Wow, this is really impressive! It reminds me of the detailed plastic models that my dad and brothers would build when I was a child. My son wanted to learn more about old sailing ships, from watching pirate movies. And who am I to stand in the way of learning? So...

Stealth Aircraft Origami Review

Stealth Aircraft Origami Review

We used to live near an airforce base. All kinds of amazing aircraft would fly over us while taking off or landing. My son, naturally, because wildly enthusiastic about these fantastic feats of engineering. So, when he recently took an interest in simple paper...

Easy Aircraft Origami: 14 Cool Paper Projects Take Flight Review

Easy Aircraft Origami: 14 Cool Paper Projects Take Flight Review

I noticed my son was making paper airplanes. He spent hours at it, over the summer, trying to perfect them. I showed him a design I knew (ring-shaped), and he added that to his designs. However, I can tell the sleek jet aircraft look is what he's really going for. So,...

Origami Fold-by-Fold Review

Origami Fold-by-Fold Review

This is it. If you (like me) were looking for a book not just about origami but instead one that takes someone from nothing little-to-nothing, and helps them learn and grow their skills, this is the book you're looking for. The text, photos, and plentiful,...

Sayings & Expressions: Stained Glass Patterns Review

Sayings & Expressions: Stained Glass Patterns Review

No more cracked letters! If you've ever tried to make your own stained glass designs from scratch, then you know about disappointment. So, leaning on the experience of others can help (a lot). Yet, although artists have been including text in their visual works since...

3-D Papercraft: Create Fun Paper Cutouts From Plain Paper Review

3-D Papercraft: Create Fun Paper Cutouts From Plain Paper Review

I needed a cheap and easy way to jazz up my classroom decorations. I had some time, but next-to-zero funding. What to do? This book is my salvation. There are about 75 different specific pictorial objects, ranging from angel wings to wall racks, along with several...

Cat In My Pocket Embroidery Review

Cat In My Pocket Embroidery Review

This is a remarkable approach to embroidery. It shows how to create photo-realistic cats -- peeking out of pockets! The book is lovely and clear, concise instructions and step-by-step photos, along with patterns to trace and help format our stitching. Each cat project...

Adorable Fruits & Vegetables To Crochet Review

Adorable Fruits & Vegetables To Crochet Review

This is a well-made little book with wonderfully cute designs. There are numerous photos of the completed fruits and vegetables, but no step-by-step photos. Instead, the instructions offer traditional stitching guides, along with additional text descriptions of the...

Printmaking: How To Print Anything On Everything Review

Printmaking: How To Print Anything On Everything Review

A few weeks ago, my kids were talking about wanting to make their own t-shirt designs, wishing it was easier to do online. When I told them that I knew how to make my own t-shirts, silkscreening designs in high school, they were stunned, LOL. After a week or so of...

Joyful Mending Review

Joyful Mending Review

This book is such a wonderful concept! It explains how to fix and actually "darn" (more than simply stitching) everything from socks to sweaters. The goal here is to come up with something fun to make and see, celebrating the unusual while adding a little creativity...

Meditative Stone Art Review

Meditative Stone Art Review

My family is finding this book inspirational on several levels. First, one of my daughters has been enjoying painting these and turned around using many of the styles and techniques in her other artworks and her pastry business. Another is using the painted designs to...

Jane Austen Embroidery Book Review

Jane Austen Embroidery Book Review

This is a lovely book filled with lovely patterns from the Regency era which ran, more or less, from 1795 to 1835. This is the setting of the works of Jane Austen, inventor of the novel as we know it. Wonderful books! And this book is a wonderful addition to any...

Shine Bright Book Review

Shine Bright Book Review

This fun and engaging book offers some excellent coloring pages -- very well done, with larger designs which work well even if you're younger. Or, have the patience of a younger person. Either way. There are drawing prompts, showing the steps to draw a simple...

Lovable Felted Animals Review

Lovable Felted Animals Review

These felted figurines are so darling -- super cute yet so realistic, all at once. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to get the proportions right, but this book has been a big help. The book is paperback, large, and really high quality, with lavish photos...

Origami Boxes Review

Origami Boxes Review

This is a great gift for anyone interested in learning how to create little folded papercraft boxes. There are several pages of general instructions, too, which help to understand the consistent and well-designed folding instructions later. There are eight tutorials,...

Mexican Drawing & Sea Glass Notecards

Mexican Drawing & Sea Glass Notecards

This must be the "bible" of Mexican papier-mâché sculptures, which are known as "cartonería." Everyone is familiar with these delightful sculptures, especially through piñatas. Some artisans have taken their medium to new levels, though, raising their work to the...

Watercolor Success In Four Steps Review

Watercolor Success In Four Steps Review

This is a wonderful introductory guide to would-be experts in watercolor painting. It includes 150 single-page, four-step lessons. Most are single objects, individual items that might be arranged in still-life paintings. I love the style of painting shown, which is...

Fun Painting Book Reviews

Fun Painting Book Reviews

In life, I often look for short cuts. Yet, it's so seldom I find real ones that really save time and money. This book is the real deal. It spells out the specifics of what acrylics you really need (or ought to get) and how best to use them, to save time yet accomplish...

Gourd Crafts And Form Follows Technique Book Reviews

Gourd Crafts And Form Follows Technique Book Reviews

When I was young, I discovered (what now seems to be a fairly obvious) pattern in popular music. Many singers were, more-or-less mimicking, the sounds of the instruments they sang alongside. Yet my formal instruction taught me the opposite -- instruments were invented...

Paper Arts & Crafts Book Reviews

Paper Arts & Crafts Book Reviews

Stippling is an important aspect of drawing but my art classes in school didn't have enough time for me to actually become expert at it. His book seems to be the ultimate guide to catch up and bring my illustrations to the next level. Yet this book is readily...

How To Draw Without Talent Book Review

How To Draw Without Talent Book Review

My daughter has been wanting to learn how to draw better. I have heard before that everyone has 10,000 bad drawings in them, so it's best to get them drawn while we're young. So I was happy to find this engaging and colorful activity-slash-guide book! It is like a...

Sloth Journal Review

Sloth Journal Review

I needed more time to focus in my life, and I thought that a writing journal would be helpful in lots of ways. So when I saw this cute sloth journal, encouraging me to "slow down and reflect," well, it was perfect. I love the design, with the cute sloths, and the...

Fun Knitting Book Reviews (and Origami)

Fun Knitting Book Reviews (and Origami)

Such a clever concept! This coloring book features all-original designs based on 30+ drawings of knitted projects, still lifes, and images both realistic and whimsical. Since they're knitted, there are many tiny areas drawn out, but since they are generally part of a...

Fun Quilting Book Reviews

Fun Quilting Book Reviews

I remember my grandmother, and mother making quilts, so I guess it's not surprising that I've taken up this wonderful hobby creating these beautiful and useful works of art. Over time, I've come to realize, though, that one of the reasons I have such vivid memories of...

Bowdabra: Make Adorable Bows At Home!

Bowdabra: Make Adorable Bows At Home!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMkidWItvvU I'm really loving my Bowdabra! It's so easy to make perfect, gorgeous bows at a fraction of the price I would have to buy them for at the store. And, honestly, no stores around me have bows as cute as the ones I can easily...

Harry Potter Crochet Kit Review

Harry Potter Crochet Kit Review

This is an authentic Wizarding World set that's perfect gift for my Harry Potter-loving daughter! She loves the whole Harry Potter world, and merchandise, but I wanted to give her something more than just a trinket. So this is something we can do together while...

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Flying Machines Kit Review

Leonardo Da Vinci’s Flying Machines Kit Review

The works of Leonardo da Vinci appeals to lots of different kinds of people, including artists, engineers, historians, scientists, designers, inventors -- and my two kids. One enjoys old books and calligraphy, while the other finds any machine that flies, magical. So...

Naomiki Sato’s Origami Roses Review

Naomiki Sato’s Origami Roses Review

This is a really clever origami guide to making different kinds of flowers. Each design is so lovely! They look surprisingly realistic and so ornate in their details, with their organic, overlapping petals. The book is well-written with concise descriptions, nice...

The Art For Joy’s Sake Journal Review

The Art For Joy’s Sake Journal Review

This is truly a keepsake gift for any artist, even if the artist is yourself. I've been designing professionally, day and night, for years, so my own art, and my own enjoyment, seems to have kind of gone out the window, some days. That's why I'm so thrilled with this...

Inspiring Proverbs Coloring Book Review

Inspiring Proverbs Coloring Book Review

I found this a lovely and inspiring coloring book. Each page is printed on a single side of each of the 31 pages. Each design appears to be all-new. The book exemplifies good coloring book design. It is drawn with a consistent line width, without any black fills or...

The Ultimate Fluid Pouring & Painting Project Book Review

The Ultimate Fluid Pouring & Painting Project Book Review

There is a growing appreciation of non-traditional artists, who rely more on pouring techniques instead of careful brushwork. The acclaim such artists can receive these days extends author-and-illstrator Eric Carle selling multi-million copies of his children books,...

Mastering Modern Calligraphy Book Review

Mastering Modern Calligraphy Book Review

As a graphic designer, I've been studying calligraphy for decades. I've owned and studied dozens of books on the topic, many of them classics, focusing on the long tradition of lettering. Yet, I must say, for calligraphers today, this is likely the finest book on the...

Creative Candle Making Review

Creative Candle Making Review

This is a lovely set for would-be candlemakers to help them not only learn how, but to actually begin, right away. The book is printed on quality paper in full-color. I love the exceptionally beautiful photography throughout. The layout is clever, clear, and lovely,...

New Craft Books From Dover!

New Craft Books From Dover!

Raising my kids today, I feel like they need to be doing "real life" things to feel good about themselves -- in real life. Online is online, but we actually live out here in "Real." One of my daughters has taken to knitting, while the younger is still looking for...

The LEGO Castle Book

The LEGO Castle Book

I love how my kids find such a sense of pride in accomplishing things IRL with LEGO. And how my husband's hobby has become a way for he and my children to bond over their shared love and creations. Yet, in my family of eager LEGO creators at least, there are two big...

New Craft Book Reviews

New Craft Book Reviews

For those of us who really enjoy working with our hands, it can sometimes be difficult to explain why we find creating things so fulfilling. So, I really appreciate this lovely little book. The author understands, deeply, where people like us are coming from. And it...

Amigurumi Candy Corn

Amigurumi Candy Corn

Here's a free crochet pattern for adorable Amigurumi Candy Corn from the Craftsy blog. What a fun treat for kids for Halloween, plus it's sugar free!!

Beautiful Ribbon Crafts

Beautiful Ribbon Crafts

Today I'm sharing two ideas with you for making fun craft projects using May Arts ribbons! May Arts offers a variety of different products featuring: Decorative Ribbons for Apparel, Crafts, and Floral Design Lace Ribbons 100% Silk Ribbons May Arts’ Signature Adhesive...

Birds From Bricks

Birds From Bricks

Birds from Bricks offers straightforward steps in building all sorts of birds from around the world. My son is really enjoying it and has built several already. The Albatross, penguins, and canary are my favorites so far. He says there are clever techniques for...

Charm Love Friendship Bracelets

Charm Love Friendship Bracelets

I've been a big fan of Charm Love Friendship Bracelets's author Sherri Haab for many years. I bought a simple kid's book about crafting with polymer clay and gave it my daughter. She started out using the ideas in it with playdough and then moved on to polymer clay....

Sea Glass Jewelry

Sea Glass Jewelry

I have been fascinated with sea glass my whole life and an avid collector of it as well. I was excited to find ways to transform my collection into jewelry and I also enjoyed the information on the origins of sea glass. Sea Glass Jewelry has lots of great tips, like...

Dreamcatchers, Watercolor Pencils & More Craft Book Reviews

Dreamcatchers, Watercolor Pencils & More Craft Book Reviews

Wow, what a beautiful book! It's so fitting that such a lovely and carefully made book for such a lovely and carefully made craft. The excellent layout showcases step-by-step photography alongside clear descriptions. The dream catchers range from traditional to...

Coloring, Knitting & Craft Book Reviews

Coloring, Knitting & Craft Book Reviews

This is an excellent coloring book revolving around a nature theme. The artistry of the illustrator is really distinct and inviting, with short simple and consistent lines used to create interlocking natural designs that really lovely and relaxing to color and enjoy....

Adventures In Mochi Mochi Land

Adventures In Mochi Mochi Land

I've enjoyed the other cute knitting books from this author, so I was excited to see this new one that comes with a fun story, Adventures in Mochimochi Land. It also comes with complete directions for making all of the adorable, tiny knitted characters in the story. I...

Woven Bracelets, Haunted Houses And More Reviews

Woven Bracelets, Haunted Houses And More Reviews

Woven bracelets have been super cool for trendsetters for, well, it seems like decades. And the more, the better. But when I've bought them online, they seem to inevitably be too... small, large, much, little, something. And as a personal statement, it's the kind of...

Beading Jewelry Technique Books

Beading Jewelry Technique Books

I've started making some simple jewelry and I'd love to even sell it one day. This book is small and easy to flip through. It's a comprehensive resource book for basic wire jewelry techniques with lots of good tips. I appreciated the info on which width of wire to use...

The Gnome Project

The Gnome Project

I read The Gnome Project in one afternoon, I found it to be compelling and very interesting to get a glimpse into the author's life with its joys and sorrows, hardships and hope. I admired her ability to create something wonderful every day and receive solace in the...

Playing With Surface Design

Playing With Surface Design

The author of Playing with Surface Design has very creative ideas using materials that I almost always already have in my house. I especially liked the ideas that centered around recycled items, like using bubble wrap and a fabric-safe ink pad to decorate a tea towel....

Zentangle Dingbatz Review

Zentangle Dingbatz Review

This doodling book encourages extending the "zentangle" method for doodling and illustration in a specialized direction by focusing on ornamental designs. The system uses a basic set of lines as a framework and then repeating very simple lines to create an infinite...

Christmas To Color

Christmas To Color

I have a large collection of grown up coloring books and I enjoy them all! Christmas to Color is my latest and it is so gorgeous! It's one of my favorites, it has so many amazing festive designs. Everything looks lush and stunning and I like to put on some holiday...

The Shirtmaking Workbook

The Shirtmaking Workbook

I started sewing classes at 11 and I have been enjoying it ever since. There are some clothing pieces that I was always a little nervous to make though, included shirts. The collars were especially intimidating to me. The Shirtmaking Workbook includes instructions for...

Paisley And Mandala Coloring

Paisley And Mandala Coloring

I've been a fan of mandalas for many years and I'm really enjoying this Mandalas coloring book. I haven't ever taken the time to learn how to draw them, but I love the chance to get in there and color them. Since this book is geared to artists, some of the patterns...

Amazing Wood Burning Book Reviews

Amazing Wood Burning Book Reviews

It's really fun to see crafting methods, that I remember seeing as a young child, returning now that I am old enough to do them myself. Here, this fascinating book shows how to use traditional pyrography methods, with the latest tools, via step-by-step instructions,...

Adventure Time Crafts

Adventure Time Crafts

Given that I have two avid Adventure Time fans in my home who also happen to be crafters, I knew that Adventure Time Crafts would be a big hit. It actually ended up being even more fun and cute than we had expected and I think my kids were pretty much thrilled to see...

Macrame, Origami And Milliner Book Reviews

Macrame, Origami And Milliner Book Reviews

True Story: Before I left for a job overseas, a friend of mine told me he was thinking of making hats to sell at a boutique in Hollywood. I thought it a little odd, but it seemed harmless, so I encouraged him and left. When I returned, I found his hats had become the...

Polymer Clay Fun Book Reviews

Polymer Clay Fun Book Reviews

My daughter has gotten quite good at making little clay figurines, foods, and more. She's getting a little older now, though, so I thought she might want to use her creations to make some simple jewelry for herself and her friends, and wow, that was a good guess. So,...

Cats In Paris Coloring Book

Cats In Paris Coloring Book

A few members of my close relations (I'm not naming names) are completely obsessed with cats. Old comfortable cats. Young frisky kittens. Their's. Others'. Yours and mine included. If that sounds familiar, Cats in Paris is the ultimate coloring book. The illustrator's...

Creative Lettering And Beyond Review

Creative Lettering And Beyond Review

In the area where we live, there are several small workshops/factories who produce interior design decor. Much of what they do revolves around the re-emergence (after many years) of lettering in wall art. As a work-a-day graphic designer, who often incorporates...

Easter Mesh Wreath

Easter Mesh Wreath

Learn how to make a gorgeous wreath for Easter, all with materials from the Dollar Tree! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAaRPqUsZ0A

Cats In Origami Book Review

Cats In Origami Book Review

My daughter loves both cats and origami, so she's been having a great time trying out these adorable crafts. The book itself is softcover, with a clean-and-clear layout, step-by-step descriptions, color diagrams, and plentiful photos. It features both sitting and...

How To Color Like An Artist

How To Color Like An Artist

I've gotten many all-ages coloring books over recent years, but over time, have become a little frustrated with the my own coloring and the colored versions often shown on coloring book covers. My coloring is, too often, flat with single colors, uneven tones, and the...

Fantastic Origami Kit Reviews!

Fantastic Origami Kit Reviews!

This is a delightful set which features games and activities you, and your children, can assemble and play with -- all through the wonders of origami. The games and activities include things like a mini bowling set, catapults, jumping frogs games, finger football, and...

‘Tis The Season To Be Felt-y

‘Tis The Season To Be Felt-y

I loved the authors' previous felt crafting book for the holidays, so I was excited to see their new ideas in ’Tis the Season to Be Felt-y. I have a stash of felt that my kids and I use for all kinds of creations, it's so easy to use and fun to work with. There's so...

Super Cute Origami Kit Review

Super Cute Origami Kit Review

This is a delightful origami set, with a cute and helpful book, and hundreds of decorating stickers, sequins, rhinestones, and more. The book itself is the same size as origami paper -- with dozens of sheets included in this set, as well. I found the book to be...

Mini Rainbow Balloon Arch

Mini Rainbow Balloon Arch

This cute little balloon arch would dress up any birthday party table! http://ohhappyday.com/2015/02/mini-rainbow-balloon-arch-diy/

The Little Book Of Rock Painting

The Little Book Of Rock Painting

My daughter loves rock painting. It's a way for her to practice painting, doing henna designs, painting her (and her friends') nails, etc. So she's loving this book which offers friendly and engaging instructions that are straightforward and easy to follow, along with...

Royal Stickers, Origami And More Dover Craft Book Reviews

Royal Stickers, Origami And More Dover Craft Book Reviews

This wonderful, full-color activity book is what children can only wish their worksheets in school were like. They're exceptionally well-designed, with great use of color, with professional and engaging illustrations throughout. The activities are truly fun and would...

DIY Folding Bar

DIY Folding Bar

Woodcraft is sharing an awesome DIY folding bar that is perfect for spaces big and small. You can make it from from just a few pieces of scrap wood and a few supplies. This fun weekend project is such a great idea for outdoor entertaining!

Every Little Thing Coloring Book

Every Little Thing Coloring Book

First things first: Every Little Thing Coloring Book has nothing to do with the song by The Police (lol!). Instead, it offers a wide range of little, hand-drawn animals, plants, foods, and other everyday objects and shapes. The outlines are just that -- simple...

Cute Crafting Books!

Cute Crafting Books!

What mosaic is to painting, and origami is to sculpture, quilling is to wrought iron or bas-relief sculpture. It is a Renaissance crafting activity which, nowadays, revolves around using long, inexpensive strips of paper sold wherever crafting supplies are found. The...