Posts Tagged ‘Book Review’

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If you love paper you will love this book!!!! Here is my review of the paper back edition

Over 40 Exquisite Paper Folding Projects

Paper Fold It by Steve and Meguimi Biddle

Published by David & Charles www.davidandcharles.co.uk

ISBN 13;978-0-7153-2585-8

ISBN 10:0-71553-2585-X

Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Paper-Fold-Exquisite-Folding-Projects/dp/071532585X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226072228&sr=8-1

As the title suggests this book shows you many projects created using assorted paper folding techniques.  There is an introduction to the various types of paper available and the tools you will need for the projects shown in the book.

The book takes you through three projects in each of the following paper crafts;

Teabag folding


Iris Folding


Tissue Folding

Modular Folding

I bought this book on impulse after a quick flick through it. I almost put it back as Iris folding just isn’t my thing, I don’t have the patience for it. Having had some time with it, I am now so glad I decided to buy this book. It is a very inspiring book, once you have created some of the projects you are bound to come up with new ways of using the folds to create all kinds of gifts and embellishments.

As well as the projects there is an excellent reference section at the back with details of suppliers around the world, of paper societies and also templates for some of the projects in the book.

This would make an excellent gift for anyone who loves paper. It is an excellent introduction the the various paper crafts mentioned above with enough information to encourage and inspire without overwhelming the reader. The projects are shown step by step with plenty of photos and drawings to enable everyone to get started really easily. I definitely recommend this book to everyone interested in trying new techniques with paper crafts.

Best wishes and thank for reading


Billie 🙂


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Welcome Back

The book I am reviewing today is;

Compendium of Celtic Crafts by Judy Balchin, Courtney Davis, Vivien Lunniss and Suzen Millodot

Compendium of Celtic Crafts

Published by Search Press; www.searchpress.com

ISBN 13 978-1-84448-355-6

Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Compendium-Celtic-Crafts-Courtney-Davis/dp/184448355X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226072783&sr=8-2


Anyone who has a keen interest in Celtic artwork will recognise the names of the authors above. This book appears to be a blending together of several sections from other books brought together in one publication. If you have other books on the subject by these authors you would be advised to see this book before you purchase. I have at least one of the individual books by Judi Balchin on Celtic glass painting but still bought this book as it was nice to have the information all in one place and the jewellery section alone was worth the price.

The topics covered in this book are;

  • Celtic Illumination
  • Celtic Calligraphy
  • Celtic Knotwork Jewellry
  • Glass Painting
  • Paper Crafts

Each of these sections is broken into four with excellent information for how to create your own knotwork, Zoomorphic designs and jewellery following the knotwork patterns. There are templates for the glass painting and plenty of useful examples of all the subjects shown and the book is in full colour.


If you have never bought a Celtic themed art book this is a great introduction to the varied styles that were used at the time. Definitely worth buying.



Courtney Davis; http://www.celtic-art.com/

Judy Balchin; http://www.judybalchin.co.uk/indexframeset.htm


Best wishes and thanks for reading


Billie 🙂

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Since we dedicated last week to tutorials on paper coloring techniques I thought this would be a good time to do the review on this excellent book;

Paper Transformed A Handbook of Surface- Design Recipes and Creative Paper Projects by Julia Andrus


This book is wonderful and full of inspiration. You will find a selection of techniques using all manner of supplies, to transform your paper from plain to just plain beautiful. Here are some of the projects covered in the book;

  • Marbling
  • Watercolours
  • Paste Paper
  • Pastels
  • Original Designer Papers
  • Metal Look-Alikes
  • Special Paper Treatments
  • Alcohol Inks
  • Beeswax
  • Dry Embossing
  • Stamping Techniques
  • Stippling, Spionging and Stenciling
  • Paper Finishews
  • Aging Techniques
  • Dying and staining
  • Sparkling Paper Projects


 This book is suitable to paper crafters of all levels, the materials listed in the book are widely available either from craft suppliers or art stores. If you have enjoyed the type of projects I covered last week then you will love this book. This is the sort of book that will always be on your worktop, there is just so much that you will want to try. The book has finished examples and lists materials and instructions for all the techniques it covers. It also has a recipe for Cooked Cornstarch paste so if you would like to try paste paper there is help here. Julia designed the Perfect Pearls range of pigment powders and these feature heavily in the book.


To give you just a taste of the sorts of things covered in the book here are a few links;

 http://www.juliaandrus.com/ This is Julia’s website

http://uk.youtube.com/user/JuliaAndrusDotCom  This is Julia on You Tube

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=y_hIllTPG-A&feature=related The video Julia and Suze Weineburg have produced and put on You Tube. I think it is this one that shows the book???

Do watch this video it has a wonderful technique http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=VDz1o42QVn0


If you deserve a treat by yourself this book, if you know a fellow artist or crafter who deserves a treat by them this book too.


Best wishes and thanks for reading

Billie 🙂

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Welcome Back

Today I would like to share a review of the following book;

Cover to Cover; Creative Techniques for Making Beautiful Books, Journals & Albums by Shereen La Plantz.

This is published by Lark Books and the ISBN

13:0-937274-81-x (hardcover) 0-937274-87-3 (paperback)

10:0-937274-81-x (hardcover) 0-937274-87-9 (paperback)



  • Bookbinding Basics
  • Pamphlet Stitch
  • Basic Codex
  • Stitches
  • Stab Bindings
  • Fold Books
  • Combination Books
  • Unusual Bindings
  • Presentation Counts



The book starts with an overview of the tools and equipment needed to get into bookbinding, there is a recipie for Wheat Paste, this is a form of adhesive used when PVA would show through your cover material.

All the projects in this book are described in step by step format and have pictorial diagrams of what is being described. There are also plenty of photographs of finished books that have been created using the form of binding that has just been shown. This is inspirational for the new binder as it shows you what you can expect your finished project to look like, and how others have varied the technique and used different card/ paper to get a variaty of finishes.

The contents list doesn’t do justice to the scale of the viariety of projects described under each heading. There are several projects within each style so there is plenty for the beginner to try as well as more challenging binds for the more experienced.

I believe that this book is currently out of print, but it is well worth searching for this book as it has a wide range of projects to get your teeth into what ever level you are at.

Best wishes and thanks for reading


Billie 🙂


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Welcome Back

Today I bought a Dream Kuts machine by a company called Zutter, and having had a brief play here is my review.










Ease of Use 10/10

The packaging says ‘So Easy, so fast. Slice through cardstock a dream. Cuts perfect pages in seconds. I would agree with all of that. Does what it say’s on the box!

Value for Money 9/10  

If you want to cut lots of card stock easily this is the one for you.  If you have trouble cutting cardstock either cutting it straight or for dexterity issues, this makes it easy.

Build Quality 8/10 

Excellent blades give a clean accurate cut on cardstock, the mark would be higher but on paper of 80 gsm it is a little more difficult to get such an accurate cut.

Eye Candy 10/10

A silly thing to review on but to some this is of importance so here it is. Looks pretty in a nice blue, doesn’t take up too much of your table either.

Not wanting to repeat information that is already available for the machine on the manufactures web site http://www.binditall.com/  I have tested for the following;

Accuracy and quality of cut

This performs well on 160 gsm cardstock, and standard scrapbook card. I used Die Cuts With A View mat stack and it worked fine. The machine leaves a very clean cut.  The cut was a little more difficult to control on very light weight paper of 80gsm. To get around this on such lightweight paper I did put two sheets through together and this did improve how the machine performed. Only do this for light weight paper, the machine states only to put single sheets through for cardstock.


This machine is very well designed; the handle is grooved making it easier to grip. The action is very smooth and this would be suitable for users with dexterity issues. I have weak hands and reduced grip and it caused me no problems. You require no more pressure to send cardstock through than you do for paper. No MAN muscles required 😉











All the paper feed trays fold back and store flush to the unit so it is easier to store. If you want to know dimensions with all the panels folded this unit measures; 17.5” long, 6.5” wide and 6” tall.



The packaging says under 6lbs. Good combination of light enough that you can move it around your craft room easily but robust enough to do the job. Rubber feet keep it still on your worktop.


This machine is being sold primarily as a sister product to a tool called a ‘Bind-It-All’ made by the same company. That tool punches holes through pages and boards, you then thread a wire binding on and use the machine to close and there you have a book. The Dream Kuts was designed to enable you to quickly and easily create pages for yourself out of coloured 12 x 12”card stocks. To promote the Dream Kuts only for this purpose seems to sell it short in my humble opinion. There are some size limitations to what the machine will cut, which I will go into later on but this machine would be very useful to anyone wanting to easily and accurately cut card for all sorts of craft projects not just for making books. Card makers can cut A4 down smaller size for their cards and mats. Scrapbooker’s could use this also for cutting coloured panels for their projects. As previously mentioned anyone with dexterity issues will find this very helpful for cutting their card to size as it requires no strong man muscles to use.


Just for reference ONLY the single blade has an adjustable paper guide. The other blades that cut the paper into three pieces ONLY fit 12 x 12”. For trimming A4 card stock you can ONLY use the single blade that will cut your card/paper in half. Bear in mind if you want some combinations of sizes, to cut the half sizes first leaving your card stock at 12” long to be able to cut the card into thirds.




You Tube Video Demo




If you have any questions just leave me a comment and I shall do my best to answer them.

Best wishes and thanks for reading


Billie 🙂

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