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Just Stitch


Product Description
Product Details

Table of Contents

The sewing baskets
New dimensions - exciting techniques
Projects and inspiration
Stitch glossary

About the Author

Lesley Turpin-Delport has a Fine Arts degree and post graduate teaching diploma and has been an enthusiastic teacher, lecturer and author in art and needlecraft since the early 1970s. She has taught needlecraft in many countries including Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, the UK and the USA. In addition to many exhibitions in Johannesburg, her work has also been on display in Japan, Maastricht and Olympia in London. Her daughter, Nicola Delport-Wepener, has recently joined forces with her and they offer classes and lectures internationally. Lesley currently lives in the Southern Cape in South Africa.


Just Stitch is a well presented book with excellent illustrations and easily understood text. The authors use flora and fauna for their inspiration drawing on their travel experiences and their homeland of South Africa.

'New dimensions - exciting techniques' is a section at the beginning of the book which explains with well written text and well used photographs the many different ways to create raised embroidery. These include using textured threads, beads, stumpwork, ribbons, trapunto quilting and much more.

The varied and original designs are organised in colour themes; these include beautiful flowers, very interesting insects and appealing birds. Each project has clear instructions, diagrams, photographs and include a variety of techniques often in different ways.

Just Stitch is a book that would appeal to someone new to stitching wishing to develop their skills or to the more accomplished embroiderer looking for fresh ideas. Each project could be worked as described or elements of several designs could be combined to create an original piece of work.

-- Carol Winter * Sew Region Magazine *

If you have a board of textured threads, beads and scraps of fabric and are wondering what to do with them look no further. The mother and daughter team show how to create works of art inspired by the natural world using a wide range of embroidery styles and assorted materials.

This is definitely one for the keeper shelf. Anybody who thinks that embroidery is all about six stranded cotton floss will be surprised (and thrilled) to see the richly textured and lifelike creations and, like this reviewer, yearn to start stitching. The first half of this book is about what you need and how to do a huge number of different techniques. The second half contains projects, grouped under color plus stitch diagrams. Total beginners to embroidery of any kind would do well to seek out a book that teaches one method in more detail before tackling a book like this, which is aimed at more experienced embroiderers up for a challenge. A wide range of techniques are explained briefly with examples, including projects in some cases. Have a go at stumpwork, beadwork, machine stitching, make photo transfers, use textured threads, net, ribbon and felt, make needlelace and more. Even though each section is short an experienced embroiderer can learn enough to have a go at one of the projects. The section containing these is organized in colors, each chapter beginning with a glorious double page spread of photographs showing both work and nature. In each chapter you can find two projects, one harder than the other depicting the flora and fauna of South Africa. Subjects include butterflies and insects, flowers such as agapanthus, passion flower and heather and my own favorite of a pair of young barred owls. Each project has a list of what you need broken down helpfully into the type of needles, threads, fabrics and more plus instructions that are detailed enough for anybody who has mastered the featured techniques. There is a list too of these techniques plus the stitches used and at the back several pages of diagrams. Some of these are patterns for the projects (many need to be enlarged) and some are for the stitches. This is a beautiful, inspiring book filled with inspiration and many lovely projects. Definitely one for the keeper shelf.

-- Rachel Hyde * *

What is particularly lovely about this book is that it is sectioned into 12 beautiful colour themes.

I adore embroidery, and the pinks, purples, blues etc, are stunningly showcased to show off their brilliant splendour.

The 3D effects of the projects are perfect to adorn and decorate or, as I am going to do, create bouquets and corsages.

The level of skill is amazing, but I think that every lover of embroidery will enjoy the process of learning, and will very quickly have something that they will be pleased with.

The colour in this beautiful book is astonishing, I loved the insects that are embroidered onto a hoop. It is the perfect beginners projects and the results are fabulous.

Applique and Ribbon are just two techniques demonstrated and even a section on how to photo transfer is shown.

Advice, with hints and tips are given along with all the necessary sewing equipment that is needed.

A perfect gift and an amazing project book, I absolutely loved it.

-- Tracy Shephard * Postcard Reviews *

Oct/Nov 08

From simple stitchery to mixed media embroidery, this delightful book is crammed with ideas and projects that will get you stitching. The techniques section includes instructions for working with textured threads, ribbon work and creating 'elevated' shapes using wired and unwired methods. Divided into colour-themed chapters, each offering two projects within the spectrum, there are in-depth descriptions for certain projects and techniques, while other images allow you to interpret them in your own way. There are lots of traditional techniques, but they are often combined in fresh and inspiring ways.

* Stitch *

Issue 57

Lesley and Nikki offer a wonderful range of three-dimensional textured embroidery projects featuring plants, animals and insects. Techniques include ribbon work, applique, fabric manipulation, beading and stitching. The projects range from a quick and easy dragonfly or butterfly to exotic three-dimensional fruit and flowers. The smaller designs are ideal for adding to a quilting project or for embellishing bathroom, dining room or bedroom linen. Step-by-step instructions guide you through each project and are accompanied by helpful stitch diagrams and templates. This is the ideal time for using up some of those hand-dyed fabrics and textured fibres you've got in your stash and you can of course adapt the designs to suit your own tastes and level of ability.

A fabulous book with wonderful photography and even if embroidery is not perhaps your thing - it will be once you open up the pages - believe me!

* Fabrications *

April 09

A lovely book filled with three-dimensional textured embroidery...Offering a fantastic array of flowers and insects, this book is packed with mixed media technqiues such as ribbon work, applique, fabric manipulation, beading and stitching. Projects range from a quick and easy dragonfly and a nesting bird to exotic passion flowers and three dimensional fruit. Includes stitch diagrams and templates. Forgetting the contents and title, it's the first book we've seen in a long time that will teach and inspire you to combine colours for stunning effects.

* Machine Knitting Monthly *

Nov 08

Here is a book with real "wow" factor, undoubtedly my favorite craft title of 2008 unless something pretty amazing comes along between now and the end of the year. If you think that embroidery is a bit prissy and traditional for you, yet you yearn to get really creative with fibers and a needle then you need this book, you really do. Not just the usual threads either, but anything you can couch down or stitch with from fluffy wools to metallic threads, boucle yarns to fine silks. This is surely embroidery with the lid off.

Grab some cloth - anything will do, and some yarns and get inspired by nature. Take some photos, and you are ready to go. This is all about applying yarn to a surface and making at least part of it three-dimensional in a variety of ways. It is not aimed at beginners - much of it looks rather advanced - but this is perhaps looking at the book from the wrong end. As long as you know some embroidery stitches and have an encyclopaedia with some more in to hand (you won't learn many in here) then you can happily discard many rules and have a lot of fun. I particularly love the way the book is divided into colors, and each section begins with a double page of inspiring photos of all sorts of things that color. As for what you need it depends on what you want to make, so settle down for a roller coaster ride of not only freestyle embroidery but applique, beadwork, ribbon embroidery, stumpwork and more. Very highly recommended.

* *

Dec 08

This book is dedicated 'To all who enjoy the inspiration of antiquity and the Pleasure of Stitching', which gives you a clue to its target audience. But this book should not be discounted by those who prefer a modern approach to textiles. You wouldn't buy this book unless you did have some interest in hand embroidery, but if you are interested in creating 3D flowers or insects to incorporate into your work, then there is a wealth of instruction in doing this. Divided into chapters of colour inspiration and projects, there is a variety of projects to tackle and there is also a useful introductory section which gives advice on using textured threads, creating simple photo transfers and using wire, ribbon and beading. Some of the projects produce amazing results, especially the 3D gerbera flower and beaded dragonfly on tulle, which would make a great embellishment on a hand-made bag. After thinking that this book would have nothing to offer me, I was pleasantly surprised to find that several pages have been bookmarked and I am procrastinating about handing it over to my Mum, who is next in line for a look.

Samantha Packer

* Workshop On The Web *

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