This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
Accompanied by beautiful and inspiring photography, both of the finished piece and close up shots of more detailed stitching, each project is clearly laid out, with detailed instructions and illustrations.


The author, Clare Youngs, turns each project into a mini story by sharing her influences, Scandinavian folklore and traditions, including handy tips and alternative suggestions of materials for each individual piece.


Projects include simple folk-heart egg cosies, which are perfect for beginners, right through to sami felt mittens, embellished with rich, vibrant pattern work and adorned with pompoms for the more experienced stitcher.


There are 21 pages of templates and colour coded stitching guides, detailing each type of stitch required for the chosen design, including bullion knots, seed stitch and couching.


The techniques section towards the back of the book explains the basic sewing skills required and details step by step all of the different stitches used and how to recreate them with accompanying illustrations.


My one criticism of this book would be the templates section. Unless you have unlimited access to a photocopier, some of the larger scale templates are fiddly to reproduce.


The author does however explain how to alleviate this by making registration marks. The majority of the designs require enlarging by 200 percent or more.


I chose to make the bird pillow featured on pages 72-75, a simple cushion that is heavily decorated with appliquéd felt.


I selected beige linen for the pillow instead of the wool suggested, which I lined with calico to give extra strength, and omitted the fish design. Unfortunately, I lost a small part of


the template in the photocopying process but this didn’t seem to alter the overall effect. I found the hand sewing really relaxing to do. It was a project I could lift and play with, and was akin to playing with fuzzy felt!


This book would certainly give me confidence to try out some of the more advanced stitches as they are broken down step by step with designs built up in layers – perfect for beginners and experienced sewers alike.


‘Scandinavian Needlecraft’


encompasses hearts, flowers, birds and fish motifs, married with a practical yet cosy feel. A great all round craft book that I am sure I will be dipping in and out of for a long while yet…that’s if I ever get it back from my Swedish friend!


Scandinavian Needlecraft by Clare Youngs


ISBN: 978-1-907030-22-2 Winter 2010 | ukhandmade | 85


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