Monday, April 9, 2012

Book Spotlight: Button It Up

Isn’t it interesting how our crafting backgrounds can influence the way we view and categorize materials? To a crafter or seamstress, buttons rule, and beads might just be pretty once-in-a-while embellishments. To a beader, buttons might be considered sewing mediums that can masquerade as wonderful components. To some beaders, buttons are just another kind of beautiful and versatile bead.

However you look at buttons, it’s true that they can be great when used for jewelry designs or beaded crafts. After all, they have holes, come in a variety of shapes, colors and materials, and are often inexpensive. Some of the most beautiful buttons fall into the realm of vintage finds, which also makes them incredibly trendy for jewelry projects.

In the pages of Button It Up, button enthusiasts and crafters of all skill levels will find an amazing array of beautiful projects to use for showcasing fabulous buttons. Author Susan Beal is a serious button aficionado, and begins with a detailed history of button making and collecting, including popular styles and materials throughout the past few centuries.

This intriguing read is followed by a wonderful basics chapter, which covers a variety of sewing and jewelry making techniques, as well as tips for making and embellishing buttons. There is even a brief tutorial on making your own resin beads from vintage molds. Each tip includes clear diagrams to help you get started.

Then it’s on to the projects. Susan has just about covered it all in this book. Beginners, and crafters who want some instant gratification projects, will love the easier designs. The projects gradually progress to more complex techniques and design styles.

There are nearly 50 jewelry and accessory projects to try, including necklaces, bracelets, earrings, rings, and hair pins. Each one explores a different method or approach to showcasing marvelous buttons, so you’ll never run out of ideas or inspiration for putting your own button collection to use.

There are also several sewing and home décor projects, including embellished tops and skirts, pillows, curtains, handbags, magnets and more. Some of my favorites include an adorable and chic collage wall hanging, using fabric scraps and lone buttons.

Although many of the projects use simple, classic techniques like hot gluing, the designs are very classy. Readers will love the full color photographs, and be inspired to create their own variations. There are no step-by-step photographs – each project is very straight forward, and includes detailed instructions for completing the design.

Button It Upalso includes a thorough alphabetical index and reference guide, plus bios of the many guest designers that contributed button projects for the book. Some notable designers include Leah Kramer, Jennifer Perkins, and Christy Petterson.

Copyright 2012 Inspirational Beading
Susan Beal and Taunton Press
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  1. thanks for the tip , i ordered it ;)

  2. Super! It's a really fun book, and the projects are all so do-able.

  3. This is one of my favorite craft books. Great review!


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