Craft books designed to inspire

Handmade holidays are the best and with your library card you can check out these new craft books and create some unique and thoughtful gifts.

‘Make Thrift Mend’ by bestselling author of “Mending Matters” and slow fashion influencer Katrina Rodabaugh is a comprehensive guide to building a wardrobe that matters. Whether you want to repair your go-to jeans, refresh a favorite garment, thrift-shop like a pro, or dye, tailor and reinvent clothing you already have, this book has it all. Woven throughout are stories, essays and a slow fashion call-to-action.

“DIY Guide to Tie Dye Style” by Liz Welker and Sam Spendlove takes tie dye to the next level with this in-depth visual guide. Capture bursts of color in intricate waves and patterns with expert tips from the women behind Pretty Life Girls, one of the top U.S. craft and lifestyle blogs. Move beyond the basic T-shirt to tie-dye sweats, masks, home décor, and so much more. Start simple with standard binding patterns, and then build skills to more advanced techniques. The book includes 20 projects with step-by-step instructions guaranteed to make you fall in love with the art of tie dye.

“Modern Wool: 12 Applique Projects to Get You Stitching” shows you how to take wool appliqué and make it bright, bold and modern. Contemporary quilters can now experience the joy and satisfaction of working with wool but with a fresh twist on color combination and design choices. The 12 projects are made with beginners in mind and include helpful step-by-step commentary. The projects are beautiful, forgiving, mobile and satisfying.

“Pottery for Beginners” by Kara Leigh Ford. If you ever daydream about delving into pottery but aren’t sure where to begin, this is your book. Ford provides inspiring projects and primers on equipment, technique, clay types and setting up a workspace that will make pottery approachable for complete newcomers as well as budding potters who want to hone their skills. Each stand-alone piece builds upon a skill introduced in the previous project. Craft all 10 and you’ve learned pottery’s fundamentals.

“Modern Folk-Art Cross Stitch” highlights six talented designers. From the magazine “The World of Cross Stitching” comes a broad collection of modern folk art cross-stitch designs. It has instructions to cross-stitch flowers, animals, nature, and so much more with helpful guides to each project. The designs range from beginner-friendly to more advanced, and with more than 50 designs there is plenty to practice and experiment with. The book is loaded with clever designs from some of the most popular cross-stitch designers.

“Quilts in an English Village” by Kaffe Fassett. Fassett has chosen the medieval English village of Lavenham in Suffolk to show off a exquisite new collection of 19 quilts set off against ancient half-timbered Tudor houses. Included in the set of designs are those by Fassett and several by his longtime friend and co-designer Liza Prior Lucy. The collection of quilts features both new fabric designs and his classic unique color palettes. The book includes a range of quilts for all skill levels and has practical information for less experienced quilters.

“Mystical Stitches: Embroidery for Personal Empowerment and Magical Embellishment” by Christi Johnson. Anything but ordinary, “Mystical Stitches” combines the beloved and accessible craft of embroidery with a spiritual element, introducing a rich treasury of 200 magical symbols you can use to set an intention and create personal icons to wear or embellish items in the home. Johnson offers unique patterns inspired by botanicals, animals, numbers, the cosmos, earth elements, zodiac signs and mythical beasts, for novice or well-practiced crafters to combine into talismans with personal meaning. Johnson’s folk art style is vibrant and unintimidating and provides a framework for bringing spiritual elements into physical form.

Library Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; closed Sunday.

Tina Winstead is director of Huntington Memorial Library in Oneonta. Her column appears in the community section of The Daily Star every Tuesday. Her columns may also be found online at

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