It's book review time again, crafters! This week we're taking a look at three titles from Chronicle Books—Paper+Craft: 25 Charming Gifts, Accents, and Accessories to Make From Paper by Minhee N Truman Cho, Every Day's a Holiday by Heidi Kenny, and Silhouette Art by Vana Chupp. Plus, enter to win your very own free copy of Silhouette Art courtesy of Chronicle Books!
After the jump, check out some of the projects from these great papercrafting titles and enter to win.
Some of my family members joined me in trying crafts out from these books. First up, we looked through Paper+Craft: 25 Charming Gifts, Accents, and Accessories to Make from Paper by Minhee and Truman Cho. My mom-in-law Carole paged through the book and decided to try out one of the keepsake boxes on page 67:
We were impressed with the templates for this book that you download from the Chronicle Books website–it makes it so easy to print out just the projects you're working on, which saves on paper! Carole also mentioned that having the templates available online probably saved on printing costs, making the book that much more affordable. Carole found the directions for the keepsake box easy and enjoyable to follow, and she made this great Christmas-themed one.
If you're like me and you have a plethora of fun crafting papers, making the flag banner project on page 17 is an awesome way to quickly put some of them to use for party time fun. I made lots of different triangles from different patterned papers, cutting them in two slightly different sizes for more interest. Assembly of the banner was super easy to do, as well, making this a really fun project for all ages.
Don't let anyone tell you stripes and stars and polka dots don't go together–as long as your patterns have similar colors in them, they'll have a really festive feel when they hang together for your party.
My husband Josh was inspired by the Moustache Drink Toppers project on page 105, and made a quick milk moustache for our newborn son Phil:
We all found this book to be chock full of great papercrafting projects for all ages–some projects are quicker than others, and some (like the Beehive Garden Stakes on page 113) would be really great executed in a heartier material than paper for use outside as well.
Check out more papercrafting adventures on the next page.
When I started paging through Every Day's a Holiday by Heidi Kenney, I was really excited by what I was seeing. The subtitle on the book's cover is “Year-Round Crafting with Kids,” and the book delivers with fun holiday-specific crafts you can do with the little ones in your life. Biggie holidays like Valentine's Day and Thanksgiving are covered, as well as lesser known holidays like Ice Cream Day and Eat Your Veggies Day (that last one may be a made-up holiday to trick the kiddies into eating healthier).
As I paged through the book, I found the Peace Crane ornament project on page 136.
I knew it was trouble from the start, since I'm what you could call “less than stellar” at figuring out origami directions. But I always get an A for effort, and I decided to give this one a try! It turns out I'm lucky I made mine out of paper instead of the stiffened fabric the book suggests… becuase like I said… I'm not so good at origami.
After a few attempts, I asked my sister Danielle for help… turns out the “less-than-stellar-origami-ist” gene runs in our family:
So we asked my husband Josh for help. And he was able to get his origami crane to look like a hat.
This project in particular may not be the best for young children, and a solid understanding of origami may be needed to follow the folding directions as printed. The comedy that ensues when I try to attempt origami doesn't mean this book isn't great for kids, though–in fact it's perfect for kids! To prove it I tackled another one of the holiday projects in the book, the Turkey Day Greeting Card on page 156.
The great thing about this book is the crafts for different levels of crafters and different ages. While the origami crane ornament was a little more advanced, this turkey card is one that requires little to no adult supervision. It's also a quick easy project your little ones could knock out before heading to a relative's house before Thanksgiving.
Basically, what I'm telling you is there are craft projects in this book that anyone can do.
On the next page, check out one more papercrafting book and enter to win it!
The last book we took a look at was Silhouette Art: Papers, Instructions, and Patterns for Making Modern Heirlooms by Vana Chupp.
There's a lot of great things about this book! I love that it takes an old art form and updates it for today with projects that are more contemporary feeling.
It's also completely awesome that this particular book includes all kinds of craft papers for your silhouette-making projects. There's patterened papers, classic black silhouette papers, silhouette templates, all packaged with an informative booklet of fun silhouette ideas.
The book starts by giving you an introduction to silhouettes, including a brief history. It offers you tips on photographing people for picture perfect silhouettes, and then gives instructions for a classic silhouette project.
That's where the fun gets going–once you have an understanding of how to create a good silhouette, you can learn how to make all kinds of fun projects like this silhouette pendant project on page 14.
Would you like to win a copy of Silhouette Art for yourself? It's simple! Leave a comment on this blog post about anything at all before midnight on Friday, October 8 and you'll be automatically entered to win. Comment as much as you like, but only one entry per person will be counted, and the winner will be chosen by www.random.org. If you've won a Gettin' Made giveaway in the last 30 days, you'll be ineligible to win so others have a chance at awesomeness!