I've thought long and hard about this section. I've even taken books off the bookshelf to list, only to put them back again. There are probably more books in print now, on a wider variety of crafts, than there have ever been. Upon reflection, what makes them unsuitable for this blog, is the cost of the materials. I recently ordered a book, which was recommended, for learning to crochet. It is undoubtedly a lovely book but the yarn it recommends for it's lovely projects is beyond my pocket. Yes, I could substitute cheaper yarns but, as a beginner, how do I know which will be suitable? So I've decided to feature books of only those crafts that are cheap to pursue or which require only minimal cost to begin.
Weekend Projects Petra Boase
This book was originally published under the title Funky Junk, which I think provides a much better description of what it's about. Petra reycles and revamps lots of different things for the home, such as kitchen chairs, given a lick of paint, with a seat cover made from a felted wool jumper or by using wooden fruit crates for storage. A really good 'thinking outside the box' book.
Quick and easy handmade cards Petra Boase
Lots of ideas from Petra to get you making these yourself with templates to trace or enlarge and galleries of each card type by professional card makers for inspiration. Starts with a run through of tools, materials and techniques. Some of the tools and materials are ones you may already have for other crafts.
This need not be expensive if you start with a small project requiring only a handful of embroidery silks. Unlike knitting, where the amount of wool is calculated and you have none, or little, left at the end, you will have quite a lot of silks left in various colours. This gives you a chance to build up a stock for future use. The same with the Aida - the counted fabric with lots of little squares with holes in. I bought a biggish piece for an initial project and have plenty left for smaller ones, such as the 'Jessie' baby card.
Holiday Memories in Cross Stitch and Needlepoint Chris Timms
Patterns for big and small projects grouped into sections called 'Seaside', 'Farm Holiday','Floral' or 'Christmas'. Lots of choice for greetings cards and bookmarks, samplers and cushions. There is a section on basic techniques at the end.