Journey of self discovery + some quirky crafts

by kath_red on 01/03/2012

in Books, Newsletter

As you know I finished by Scrappy steps afghan and mentioned that I was hunting around for a new crochet project. I have settled on Bullseye (which I fell in love with back here and again when Kate made it). I have made a bit of a start – my first circles are pictured below, and so far I am finding it meditative and interesting. I am going for clashing contrasting colours this time around and have chosen a very dark grey for the background (Rustic Graphite 8 ply). I am mostly using wool from Bendigo woollen mills — I love them because they are Australian, I can buy online, they are wonderful quality and because you can get 200gram balls for the price of a 50gram ball. 

Also this week my boy was in the paper (he is the cute blondie with the big smile) because of the controversy over compulsory national assessment in schools. The irony of course is that his school did really well even though they don’t agree with the process. The article is here.

In other news: I launched our latest Action Pack Magazine just for kids — it’s the Mad Scientist Issue: In our 9th issue of Action Pack Magazine for kids, we continue to encourage kids to think and do for themselves, to be independent and creative learners, they are able to explore science through art, cooking and experimentation. We also encourage parents to become observers and co-learners rather than having to take control in a teacher role. In this issue kids are able to go through a journey of self discovery and learn that science is indeed fun and real! You can purchase a copy here.

And because I am already thinking ahead to the next Action Pack (Go Tribal) I came across these cute arrow and feather inspired crafts: make an arrow necklace :: make newspaper feathers :: tribal inspired bangles

More cool and quirky crafts:

On my coffee table:

Doodling books: Both of these books have a similar aesthetic — a little bit bohemian and a little bit street — Creative Doodling & Beyond by Stephanie Corfee (published by Walter Foster December 2011), is a brilliant activity and tutorial book. As well as tips and tutorials throughout, there are blank pages to practice the excercises and practical ways to then use your new found doodling skills. Plus its a lovely big book with nice paper and rounded corners – I do love a thoughtfully presented book. Doodles Unleashed by Traci Bautista (published by North Light Books February 2012). This mixed media class in doodling takes you through a whole bunch of techniques and mediums and also includes a section on digitizing your art.

Spinning books: Two incredibly art yarn books that will teach you how to spin textured art yarn — it’s not easy, and is not for beginner spinners, but once you have mastered the basic techniques of spinning then you can move on to create some fabulous art yarns. Hand Spun by Lexi Boeger from Plucky Fluff (published by Quarry Books February 2012), is aimed at the beginner art yarn spinner, there are techniques to get started creating your interesting yarns and some really cool projects to use them on too. Spin Art by Jacey Boggs (Interweave Press January 2012) is aimed at a more advanced level of spinner. Like all interweave books the photography and level of instruction are excellent — plus there is a DVD.

Knitted toy books: Fast & Fun Knits is by knitting legend Claire Garland (Published by David & Charles October 2011), she has a blog where she shares tutorials and she is on Ravelry too. This book is a little quirky and aimed at kids/teens who want to get into knitting. But the projects don’t condescend – there are simple socks, toys, hats and even knitted fruit! Knitted Dinosaurs is written by Tina Barrett (Published by STC Craft/A Melanie Falick Book [USA] and Guild of Master Craftsman [UK] October 2011). I love the personality of these guys, dinosaur loving kids everyone will want you to make them one of these.

[Thanks to publishers and distributors for sending me books to review, I don’t get paid to post reviews but I am an amazon affiliate] (Australian’s can purchase craft books online through can do books or booktopia or else browse booko for the best prices.)

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