Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Craft Book Review - Adding Layers

Good morning ladies.  I have another book review for you today, and a massive failure!

Today I'm going to review Adding Layers: Color, Design & Imagination (affiliate link - if you do click over and buy something, I'll get a few pence towards an Amazon voucher).

image source Amazon

I was given a review copy of the book by C&T Publishing however this review and all opinions are 100% my own, I was not told what to say.

This book contains 15 projects, broken down into 3 sections - Working the Stash, Working with Templates, Working with Scale.  The book opens with a few pages of general quilting information, then has some advice and tips on working with templates and speciality rulers.  This information was quite interesting to me, as I've never worked with either before.

Kathy starts each pattern with a bit of an explanation of why she chose that block and fabrics, then moves right on into the instructions.  I have to be honest, this quilt is not for a beginner and I was a little out of my depth.  But you know me, I jump right in with both feet.  I chose to make a Follow the Sun block from the first section, thinking it could be my purple block for the RSC.

It didn't quite work out.  I followed the cutting instructions and cut out the fabrics using two templates.  I then cut out the centre.  To do so, I had to draw and cut a circle of a certain size.  I do not own a pair of compasses.  I stalked around the house, tape measure in hand, until I found a round object of the correct diameter.  I can't help thinking they could have included a circle template.  Now, I'm pretty sure the experienced quilters amongst you can see what went wrong...

Yep, that circle was too small.  Or rather my pieced ring was too big.  I suspect it was sloppy seams.

I tried giving it a good press to make it work.   Yep, good move Wendy, it looks perfect now (!)

I need to unpick and resew some of those seams.  Some hints and tips in the book for perfecting that stage would have been extremely welcome.

So not a success for me.  Having said that, I do like the patterns in the book and think that a more advances quilter could make some beautiful quilts using the patterns provided.  I'm going to put this one back on the shelf (or back in the folder on my computer) and come back to it in a couple of years when I'm (hopefully) a more competent quilter.

Book stats:

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Stash Books (7 Feb 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607058472
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607058472
  • Product Dimensions: 25.3 x 20.7 x 1.1 cm


I was given a review copy of the book by C&T Publishing however this review and all opinions are 100% my own, I was not told what to say.  Amazon links are affiliate links.

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Craft book review - Jewelry for All Seasons
Craft book review - Wild Blooms and Colourful Creatures


Rachel said...

It does look like a challenging design. Curves can be very tricky!

Anonymous said...

That looks like a very complicated pattern, so well done for giving it a go. It's a pity the publishers don't give the unpublished book to someone for testing before it goes to print just so these helpful hints can be acted upon!


Jo Ferguson said...

I've not done a lot of curved piecing but I do know that the correct measurements are important (as in any quilting). I agree that the book should have included a template, for the circle. I'm sure it would have given you a result you would have been much happier with. So....I think it was lack of instruction and not lack of experience, that was missing.

JennyPennyPoppy said...

I just received a book that I'm not happy with and am returning. Lots of good projects and ideas but not quite what I expected. Thx for the review.

Highland Monkey's said...

Oh dear what a shame. I don't have a compass either, usually use a plate/saucer! I bet when you get it out again, all will be clear......hopefully!

Celtic Thistle said...

Drives me mad when books come with no templates or templates that need to be resized, certainly would put me off buying what might otherwise be an interesting book.

Janice / Dancing with Sunflowers said...

Well that's a very fair review, Wendy. I agree - when you need a circle of the exact right size, it would be a good idea to put one in the book, to be traced. I'm sure we have a compass somewhere, but I'd have to raid my kids' old school pencil cases to find it! At least you have all the other lovely projects in the book waiting for you when you feel you've progressed to the right level. And after all, it's perfectly reasonable for an author to pitch her book at the more advanced quilter - there are plenty of them out there!

Melissa said...

What I love is that you gave the review and showed us your project! Thank you!!

JoJo said...

well at least you tried....I'm sure you can salvage it for another project!

Sarah in Stitches said...

Sigh... Yeah, there are so many pretty designs I wish I could attempt, but I'm not nearly good enough at patchwork. One day!

margaret said...

I was reading about this book only yesterday in a book review and was tempted but looks way above my level, how lucky are you to get given these books

Jane Galley said...

Hope you manage to find a way to get it to work, it's a lovely pattern

Jacqui S. said...

It looked okay after pressing, it is a lovely design and I especially like your choice of fabrics. Thank you for visiting me, too.

Jillayne said...

And. Good review it is... I think you were very fair in your observations - and the whole jumping in thing??? Well, that's what I love and admire about you - you'll give it a go. Good for you!

Pam @Threading My Way said...

I bet you've mastered this block in way less than two years, Wendy. Templates would definitely have made it easier for you. Thanks for an honest review.

Sandra :) said...

The curves we get from eating too many cookies - are easy curves to achieve. I should know - I have many! The curves we get in sewing - NOT SO MUCH! I avoid them like the plague, but when I do need to do them (like - if I ever have a curve sewing emergency?!) I like the Jodie Davis paper piecing method - she tucks the fabric nicely and calls it done - HA!!