Sunday, August 13, 2017

SEPT/OCT BLOG 2017 COMING OCT 19th. See you then!

           JULY/AUGUST BLOG 2017

                 Books are keys to wisdom's treasure;
                 Books are gates to lands of pleasure;
                 Books are paths that upward lead;
                 Books are friends, come let us read.
                         Emilie Poulsson (1853-1939)

Books are not only friends they are teachers. I've been into books since I was two years old and drove my mother crazy begging her to read to me. She did. But her time was limited since she had my new baby sister, Lynn, to care for so I struck out on my own looking at pictures but I was desperate to read those black "squiggles" on each page.

I've been reading those "squiggles" for many years now and I have never grown tired of reading. I have a constant stack of "must read" book next to my bed and each evening I make time to read. What pleasure! Another world to discover between those pages. I can't imagine not having books in my life.  That's me the bookworm!

Since you are visiting this blog I am sure you feel the same about book. That is why I offer a 20% discount to all book lovers who visit this site.  Just look for the discount code in one of the following articles, call me with the title or titles of any new book in this blog (or the previous blogs) and I'll be happy to send them to their new home.  We take, Master Card, Visa, American Express, and Discover.  Or you can send a check - no problem!  (Look at the end of this blog for that information.)

Have fun reading the blog and I hope you find a book or two that sounds delicious to you.  If you do, please give us a call at 602-943-0738 or e-mail us at:  We welcome comments and suggestions and love to hear about your favorite book titles. 


I found this great series on textiles on Search Press North America. I love Search Press needlework books as they seem to have their finger on the pulse on what needleworkers want. (Wait until you see what is coming out from them this fall in my next blog!) Search Press has won a number of awards including best Independent Publisher of the Year, Best Book Publisher in 2016, and a Silver Award for new best craft book.

If you are into working with textiles take a look at what this great publisher has been offering:

Small, Ann - The Textile Artist: Layered Cloth - This author's imaginative use of cutting and manipulating techniques, and her layering and colouring tricks, makes this your go=to guide for bringing form and texture to your fabric artwork. This book is a rich resource and reference for textile artists seeking new ideas and who want to experiment with reverse applique and related techniques such as layering, trapunto, stacks, puffs, and fabric manipulation. It in includes three wearable projects. Clear, close-up images make layering enjoyable and accessible.  $35.00  Due out in September 2017.

Midgelow-Marsden, Alysn - The Textile Artist: Stitch, Fibre, Metal and Mixed Media -  Alysn shows us how to use both textle-based and mixed media techniques to create beautiful artworks using metal in the forms of shim, foil and woven fabric alongside many other materials. She shares her expertise in an inspiring variety of techniques from free machine stitching to gilding, embossing, needle felting, beading, printing, applique, making stitched foil fabric and using dry decal transfer images. There are eight beautiful projects to inspire and instruct textile artists everywhere, including a lampshade, bauble pods, a memory lampshade, decorative panels and a tablet cover. Artists can take inspiration from the individual  surfaces that make up the pieces, the completed projects, and from the developments from each project, which have full, instructive captions.  $35.00

Mill, Abigail -The Textile Artist: Applique Art - This book features five beautiful step-by-step projects as well as themed galleries of her contemporary, ethereal artworks. The book touches on Abigail's inspirations and influences and looks in detail of the elements that bring her work to life; colour, texture, pattern, and free machine embroidery techniques. From fraying and layering to free machine embroidery and embellishment, this gorgeous book teaches the reader how to recreate Abigail's unique, contemporary style, and will inspire them to create wonderful pieces of your own. $35.00

Hughes, Valerie - The Textile Artist: Felt and Fibre Art - Tactile and sensuous felt is at the heart of this author's textile artwork. Explore her extraordinary collections of wearable art, while she leads you through the history, landscapes and imagination that form her inspiration. Valerie's collections showcase their versatility with stunning panels, wearable art, wall hangings, bags, jewelry and accessories. She shows you how to use your senses and emotions as inspiration for your own incredible textile artwork, and how to use wool and water to bring them into reality as felt.  Clear step-by-step instructions.  $35.00

Dolan, Wendy - The Textile Artist: Layer, Paint and Stitch - This beautiful book guides you through Wendy's inventive style of work; From piecing and patching fabrics and creating textures to painting and embellishing with hand and machine stitching. This book is a wealth of inspiration for any textile artist, showing them how to create gorgeous, textured pieces of art and then, in the final chapter, offering inspiration how to transform these pieces into three-dimensional items such as cushion covers, notebooks, 3-d vessels, and even a wedding dress. This book contains six beautiful step-by-step projects, broken down into three chapters: Architecture, Landscapes and Flower, and at the end of each section there is an inspiring gallery of Wendy's work. $35.00

Edmonds, Janet - The Textile Artist: From Art to Stitch - Janet Edmonds creates amazing textile pieces inspired by the artists Chuck Close, Van Gogh, Kandinsky, Matisse, Hunderwasser, John Piper and Giorgio Morandi. She outlines each artist's work, sharing what inspires her, then creates a series of artistic projects using various media and techniques, exploring this inspiration. These works lead in each case to a stitching project, with a stitch sampler to introduce each one. Her finished textile pieces include stitched squares, a portrait, a purse, a landscape, a box-framed 3-D piece, embroidered boxes , stitched panels with casting and more. $35.00


It's A Bead-A-Ful Book!

This book, The Art of Bead Embroidery Japanese-Style,  is an answer to my wishes for a great book on this art. By using the time-honored techniques and traditions of Japanese embroidery, beautiful beaded motifs are brought to life. Discover a whole new world of beading through the pages of this gorgeous, superb book which includes detailed step-by-step diagrams, full descriptions of the techniques involved and fabulous photos. Nine wonderful projects are included ranging from simple beginner designs to a sumptuous evening bags. Softcover - 116 pages with perforated lift-out pattern sheets.  $35.95

The author is Margaret Lee who brought us the wonderful, The Art of Chinese Embroidery, I featured in my May/June 2017 blog.  $34.95. 

Her new book on bead embroidery is due in September for $35.95. 

Two other great bead embroidery books by Yasuko Endo:

Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples - Since more and more needleworkers are adding embroidered details to their work this is perfect to learn to create delicate and striking trims and embellishments. These stitch patterns range from elegantly simple single motifs, to complex all over patterns to three-dimensional designs. Along with step-by-step instructions are numerous examples of how to use and place the motifs on hems, pockets, cuffs, collars and handbags; or as home décor on pillows, curtains and more. $17.99  (discount code: Kiss17)

Bead Embroidery Stitch Samples: Motifs - This is a collection of 123 embroidery motifs using beads. Patterns emphasize beaded edgings and trims, with step-by-step instructions and numerous examples of how to use and place the motifs on garments, accessories, and décor items. Great for the beginner and advanced embroidery enthusiasts.  $17.99

This next book is a great place to get acquainted with all bead embroidery techniques.  A-Z of Bead Embroidery - Country Bumpkin (brought back into print as a classic by Search Press), features more than 30 stunning and versatile projects. With over 440 step-by-step photos, it brings bead embroidery to life. Find out how to work tambour beading, beadpoint, padded beading, how to handle sequins and bugle beads, and so much more. Discover the best tools for the task and learn to identify different beads by their size, shape and finish. Full of hints, tips and historical insights, and all patterns are provided.  $19.95

And While I'm excited about beading I'm including a blurb about Beadventures next exciting beading tour: They are off to Paris and the south of France with a great itinerary and a great beader to guide through new beadwork: Cynthia Rutledge from October 2 -16th 2017. If you are passionate about France and beading they might still have room for you to join in the adventure.

Cynthia Rutledge - Timeless Beadwork Designs - One of the foremost names in beadwork creates 15 great projects. Widely regarded as one of today's finest teachers of beading, Cynthia Rutledge reveals her creative process and presents stunning designs that explore color, three-dimensional form, and mixed media. The pieces include a classic Renaissance Cameo Necklace, a pearl-and-glass Florentine Rosette Cuff, and Hebe's Floral Earrings.  $27.95.


Brown, Sian - Twenty to Knit - Knitted Baby Mitts - Cute! Cute! Cute! Inside this book are 20 patterns in a range of styles for girls and boys, from traditional stripes and cables to whimsical rabbits, frogs and ladybirds. Each design can be knitted in three different sizes suitable for 0-3, 3-6 and 6-12 month=old babies, with the option of including thumbs in the largest size. Clear step-by-step instructions and full-colour charts provided. Each project comes with a list of yarns and needles required. $9.95

Chalmers, Jamie - The Mr. X Stitch Guide to Cross Stitch - more than 20 beautiful, innovative cross stitch designs that push the boundaries of this ancient craft. Mr. X Cross Stitch shows you how to the frontiers of cross stitch design from absolute beginners to those who want to do something different. The book aims to appeal to men as well as women. He offers designs of urban flavors, glow-in-the-dark threads and stitching on metal. This book also showcases the work of other contemporary cross stitchers who are pushing the boundaries of their craft.   $19.95

Ishii, Sachiyo, Mini Felt Christmas: 30 decorations to sew for the festive season - Well-known crafter Sachiyo Ishii shows the reader how to make fabulously cute and easy-to-make felt decorations to adorn their home during the festive season. Ready-made felt is easy to come by and a joy to work with since it cuts easily without fraying, and there's no need for seams or edgings. 30 gorgeous projects to make that include: numerous tree decorations, fun penquins and a snowman; as well as larger projects that include Santa Claus complete with sleigh and reindeer; a yule log with little mini bakers; a stunning gingerbread house; a felt holy wreath; and the complete Christmas Story. The techniques and stitches needed to make all the projects are explained carefully through clear, step-by-step photos at the beginning of the book, and all the templates are provided at the back.  $17.95

Pennell, Suzanne - The Art of Gold Embroidery from Uzbekistan - Since ancient times Samarkand and Bukhara, have been thriving centres of craft production due to their location on the main routes of the ancient "Silk Road". The commercial, religious and political experience of these oasis cities had major lasting influences on craft production, Gold Embroidery was no exception. Detailed examination of historical sources related to gold embroidery or zarduzi, showed that, until the Bolshevic Revolution in 1917, consumption of gold embroidery was restricted to the wealthy middle class and court elites. It was most spectacularly employed in displays of power and wealth among the courts of the Emirs before the Russian invasion in 1868 and produced by ustos, or masters in court ateliers. Follow zarduzi to the present day. $38.00

Powell, Michael - Twenty to Make: Christmas Cross Stitch - This book features the author's unique designs, each with a festive theme. He shares his distinctive cross stitch style to make Christmas cards or samplers as special gifts for friends and family. Designs range from festive candle arrangements to vintage winter street scenes, wintry chapel, Christmas bell, starlit stable, stack of gifts and much more. Each design is accompanied by an easy-to-follow stitching guide.

Browne, Clare, et al - English Medieval Embroidery: Opus Anglicanum - I mentioned this book before but I feel it is so important I am mentioning it again. This book was published to accompany the exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1st October 2016 to 5th February 2107. Stunningly wonderful reviews.  $125.00

Gone Stitching - Holey Stitches!: A Guide to Judaic Themed Needlepoint Canvases - If you are looking for stitch help for a Judaic piece this little book will give you the help you need. Look below in Golden Oldies for Gone Stitching's other wonderfully informative needlepoint book.  $15.00

Pierce, Val - Twenty to Crochet - Crocheted Baby Shoes - If these aren't the cutest baby shoes in the world please show me what are. Size and suggestions are given for each project, from birth to nine months, but general advice is also given at the beginning of the book on how to increase or decrease the size of the projects. Each pair of shoes requires relatively small quantities of yarn and can be crocheted quickly, easily, and on the go using the clear instructions provided. Each project is accompanied by lists of the materials and equipment required and inspiring photos.  $9.95

Rowe, Lynne and Betsan Corkhill - Knit Yourself Calm: A creative path to managing stress - The therapeutic benefits of knitting have long been recognized and holistic health expert Betsan Corkhill, together with knitting designer Lynne Rowe, create beautiful projects designed to calm and soothe. Suitable for beginners and more experienced knitters, discover how the repetitive process of knitting can relieve stress and improve your well-being. $15.95

Shore, Debbie - Sew Advent Calendars - This is the perfect guide to sewing fun, personalized advent calendars for loved ones. These are perfect for filling with festive treats and handpicked goodies. There are 20 designs included, from traditional flat pocket calendars to hanging cones and festive pouches, for both aduilts and children alike, along with a great-filled calendar for the family dog!  The book contains all the techniques needed to make the calendars, and every project is shown clearly step-by-step, with helpful tips and advice throughout. Using Debbie's easy-to-follow instructions, you will want to get crafty and create new festive family traditions.  $19.95

Stratford, Sue - Knitted Cats and Dogs: Over 30 patterns for cute kitties and perfect pooches - The designs are fun and quirky, easy to follow and come in a range of characters, styles, shapes and sizes to suit knitters of all tasted and abilities. Each pattern comes with a comprehensive list of the yarns, needles and embellishments you need, and there are general notes too on basic techniques, materials, equipment and making up.  Some of the dogs and cats also have outfits to wear and the patterns for these are included too. There is a materials section at the beginning and also a section on basic knitting and joining techniques as well as stuffing the animals and surface embroidery. This book is aimed at knitters of all abilities who are looking for cute and quirky projects that work up quickly.  Have fun!  $19.95

Shore, Debbie - Half Yard Vintage - This book features 23 beautiful vintage-style items to sew that will bring a touch of elegance to the home and make wonderful gifts for friends and family. It contains beautiful accessories including a lacy pillow cover, a bucket-style wash bag, a dressing table cover and cones for displaying posies of dried flowers; gorgeous projects perfect for an afternoon tea cosy, made-to-measure tray cover and a cake frill; and accessories for a vintage Christmas such as a stocking, advent calendar and wreath all from left-over pieces of fabric.  $19.95


I have discovered so many needleworkers are looking for or missed some great books so I try to include these classics in issues of this blog. These are in-print so the 20% discount applies on all of these. Here are some great ones:

From the Little Shoppe of Canvas:

Stitch Landscape - This neat, bestselling book covers natural scenery such as mountains, valleys, trees, rivers, water, clouds, flowers, grass, sand, sky, etc. Stitching landscapes, choosing stitches, and selecting threads can be tricky. This great needlepoint book is designed with categories of multiple stitches to choose from. It also provides in each category, how to optimize stitches and thread choice. Each chapter begins by showing an example of a stitch, thread choice, and how to create an interesting effect. $39.95

Stitch Ins and Outs - In this book interiors and exteriors and all new stitches are categorized and organized to stimulate interior and exterior structures. Challenging sections such as Baskets, Trim and Border sections have been included. Also included are Stitch Hints to optimize stitches and thread choices for each categories. Create new and interesting effects using combinations of thread and layering of threads.  $39.95

Stitch Winter - This book has a new innovative spin on stitching shapes and base patterns. The book strives to incorporate many different winter shapes such as angels, bells, bows, candy canes, holly, Judaica, holiday lights, snowflakes, trees, gifts and more.  $46.95

From Gone Stitching -

Got Stitches? Multi-Layered Stitches for Needlepoint - This portable encyclopedia of multi-layered stitches categorizes stitches by the number of threads per each stitch. whether you have two, three, or four different threads, we have the perfect stitch for your project. For the adventurous stitcher, they have included chapters on trame and trellis stitches.  Have fun! $25.00

From Carolyn Hedge Baird -

Teeny Tiny Needlepoint Stitches - This is always asked for since its publication in 2015. This is her compilation of small stitches with good graphs showing by numbers the direction for stitching each good stitch and what the stitch is good for. She also included an index of stitches in  alphabetical order.  $30.00

Need Help Finishing? Try These -

Brown, Marcia - Distinctive Presentations in Needle Art: A Complete Guide to Professional Finishing for Your Needlework - This author has been serving the needle art industry since 1979 providing finishing services for retailers throughout the United States and other countries as well as for private clients, students and designers. Marcia, having run a successful finishing business for 35 years, reveals her special techniques for creating wonderfully finished pieces.  $65.95

Higgins, Sandy - Sandy's Finishing Touches: A Step By Step Guide to Finishing Needlework - This classic in finishing needlework is in its seventh printing and considered a classic. Spiral-bound, this book includes blocking, finishing pillows, other edge finishing, Christmas finishing, brick covers, special effects, and much more.  $26.95

Arthur, Sandy - Can Do Hairdos: Techniques, Threads and Stitches for Hair - This highly respected needlework designer, teacher and author brings us a neat little best-selling book on how to create realistic hair in needlework such as braids, buns, curls, curly, straight, wavy and whimsical. Color pictures of the her examples are wonderful.  $25.00

Mystery Corner

Cass, Laurie - Wrong Side of the Paw - As the bookmobile rolls along the hills of Chilson, Michigan, Minnie and Eddie spread good cheer and good reads. But when her faithful feline finds his way into the middle of a murder, Minnie is there, like any good librarian, to check it out.  Eddie turns a routine bookmobile stop into anything but when he makes a quick escape and hops into a pickup truck...with a dead body in the flatbed. The friendly local lawyer who was driving the pickup falls under suspicion. But Minnie and Eddie think there's more to this case than meets the eye, and the dynamic duo sets out to leave no page unturned.  $7.99

Conte, Cate - Cat about Town: A Cat Café Mystery - This first mystery in a new series is set in a small New England town. Maddie James has arrived in Daybreak Island, just off the coast of Massachusetts, eager to settle down and start her own business - and maybe even fall in love. When a stray orange tabby pounces into her life she's inspired to open a cat café. But little does Maddie know that she's in for something a lot more catastrophic when her new furry companion finds the dead body of the town bully. Now all eyes are on Maddie: Who is this crazy cat-whisperer lady who's come to town? If her pet hair-maintenance and crime-fighting weren't keeping her busy enough, Maddie now hs not one but two eligible bachelors who think she's the cat's pajamas and will do anything to win her hert. But how can she even think about happily-ever after while a killer remains on the loose - and on her path?  $7.99

Flowers, Jean - Addressed to Kill - Love is in the air for postmaster Cassie Miller and the residents of North Ashcot, Massachusetts. Valentine's Day is right round the corner, and the town is gearing up for a special dinner dance at the senior center. With the local musical group performing at the dance displaced from their regular practice location, Cassie is all too happy to host them during off-hours at the post office. But not everything is coming up roses. When one of the musicians, Dennis Somerville, is found shot in his home, rumors swirl over who might have wanted him dead. Cassie must determine if there is a link between a string of recent break-in's and Dennis's murder before another victim winds up with more than a broken heart.  $7.99

Hechtman, Betty - A Tangled Yarn - Casey Feldstein has her hands full with preparations at the Vista Del Mar hotel on the scenic Monterey Penisula as another yarn retreat begins. The retreaters will be thrown for a loop this time, learning the trendy art of arm knitting and finger crocheting. But not everyone is enthusiastic about trying something new, and Casey is forced to come up with an alternative craft for her less adventurous pupils. Things go from worst to worsted when a travel writer from a neighboring retreat group is found dead in his room among a sea of feathers. When one of the owners of Vista Del Mar pleads for help, Casey gets hooked into the case and must unravel a delicate skein of secrets to catch a killer. $7.99

Hamilton, Victoria - Muffin to Fear - While Merry is distracted by her quickly planned marriage to Virgil Grace and a blissful honeymoon in New York, her friend Pish invites the ghost-hunting crew from the TV show Haunt Hunt to investigate Merry's home, Wynter Castle. Merry soon discovers that only only is the crew out of sync, there are so many feuds and squabbles, it's a miracle they get a show produced at all. It all goes from bad to worse when the show's psychics claim to have contact with people murdered on Merry's property. When two cast members are found dead, Merry and Virgil must figure out who's picking off the Haunt Hunt team before their hard-earned happily ever after is cut short.  $7.99

Holmes, Julianne - Chime and Punishment - Years ago, the serenity of picturesque Orchard, Massachusetts, was shattered by a fire that destroyed the town's beloved clock tower. Ruth inherited the dream of repairing it from her late grandfather. Now that she has retuned home to run his clock shop, the Cog & Sprocket, she's determined to make it happen, despite wrenches that are being thrown into the works by her least favorite person, town manager, Kim Gray. A crowd of residents and visitors are excited to see the progress of the tower at a fundraiser for the campaign, until Kim is found crushed under the tower's bell, putting an end to the fun. The list of suspects is so long it could be read around the clock, and includes some of Ruth's nearest and dearest. Time's a-wastin' as Ruth tried to solve another murder in her beloved Orchard while keeping the gears clicking on her dream project.  $7.99

Marks, Mary - Knot What You Think - Martha Rose is alarmed by the discovery of Dolleen Doyle's dead body, especially when evidence suggest a fellow quilter committed the crime. Set on clearing her pat, Martha searches for answers - but with ties to a convicted fraudster's stolen millions and a secret office room, the victim's past raises even more questions. As Martha inches towards the culprit, she learns that wrapping the case up-and living to baste another square will be trickier than she ever imagined.  $7.99

Vallere, Diane - Dressed to Confess - It's no secret around Proper City, Nevada, that the Sagebrush Festival, the town's annual family-friendly event, is the place to be. This year's theme of board games has everything from Conspiracy to Clue. Margo Tamblyn's costume shop, Disguise DeLimit, has been tasked with providing costumes for the festival headliner, the Domino Divas. But on the night of the performance, one fallen Domino threatens to bring down the whole show when head dancer Ronnie Cass is found in her dressing room, unmasked, unprepared, and very, very dead. As the police investigate, Margo learns that Don Digby, her father's best friend, is the prime suspect, tied to the victim by an unsolved robbery connected to Proper City's past. As conspiracies abound and theories are debunked, Margo seeks to unmask the real killer before her dad's buddy winds up in a costume made with prison stripes.  $7.99


I hope you enjoyed your visit. If you haven't visited before I'd like to introduce you to our business. We've been in business over 25 years.  We have set up book shops at both the ANG and EGA Nationals and regional seminars and for other needlework organizations.

Can't find a certain book? Give us a call whether the title you want is in or out-of-print. We have a huge selection of out-of-print needlework books available.

We have a website too:

Questions or Orders?  Give us a call Monday through Saturday at 602-943-0738 between 8am and 6pm Arizona time.  Yes, we in Arizona are the people who never change our clocks forward or backwards. If the phone is on message I'm probably in the middle of help Mark, my chronically ill husband or taking books to the post office.  I will return your call ASAP.  PLEASE! Don't be shy about leaving a message. If you prefer you can e-mail me at: To contact us by mail: Ruth Kern Books   7235 N. 9th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85021.

REALLY IMPORTANT! Don't forget to find the discount code in this blog that gives you a 20% discount on any new book you order.

I look forward to visiting with you again. New Blog: September 10th 2107.