Embellish Me: How to Print, Dye, and Decorate Your Fabric by Laurie Wisbrun
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
If you want to fill your head with cool ideas of things to try, this is a great book. If you want a beautifully put-together treasure trove of great project photographs, interesting interviews, and introductions to various kinds of embellishment techniques for fabrics, this is a fabulous book.
If you are looking for serious instruction in any of the techniques contained in this book, chances are you will be at least somewhat unsatisfied. Speaking as a lifelong embroiderer, for instance, the embroidery section–spanning a couple of pages–spent more time on instructions for transferring patterns to fabric than the actual embroidery. Transferring patterns is very important, yes, but so is the difference between a running stitch, a back stitch, a french knot, satin stitch, split stitch, and chain stitch. Yet oddly, instructions on different kinds of stitches are not there.
So a 5/5 for brainstorming and inspiration. A 2/5 for technique and skills-instruction. It has given me some wonderful ideas for dyeing fabrics and making my own patterned fabric, but I’m thinking I’ll need further details from other sources on the actual execution.