The Bookshelf

I’ve just added a new page to the blog: My Bookshelf. It’s where I’ll list the books in my massive book collection. The permanent link to it is on the header bar above. I’ll update you here when I add to it.

Right now, I have only 5 books listed, but I’ll be adding more soon.

Vintage Sewing Book Love


My mother’s friend Eve gave me a book and, oh, it is a good one. Here’s a pic.

It makes me happy just looking at the picture.

It’s the Reader’s Digest Complete Guide to Needlework. It covers embroidery, needlepoint, knitting, applique, quilting, patchwork, macrame, crochet, rug-making, and lacework. (Drool over there… away from my book, please.)

Macrame. Pure. Awesome.

And because it was published in 1979, this is the real macrame – this is not the sanitized, sterilized, modernized, ” new and improved” macrame you find in most of today’s instructions. Oh no, there’s a better than even chance that a real, live, bra-burning, war-protesting hippie wrote these instructions. This book is the genuine Holy Grail of macrame.

Aside from practical instructions for general macrame knots, it has a window shade project detailed in it. I’m not making the window shade, but it is a thing of seventies beauty to behold.

But wait! There’s more. There’s a section on tatting. Do you know how hard it is to find detailed, complete, easy-to-understand tatting instructions these days? Nigh on impossible, I tell you.

The blackwork section answered a few questions. And the needlepoint section made me want to try.

There are a few seventies-rific pictures that make me laugh, particularly a picture of a snazzy proto-yuppie man in a patchwork vest, Rolex, and business suit. He owns a BMW with sheepskin seat covers and a giant cell phone installed. He’ll have a “Baby on Board” sign stuck to the back window of that BMW in a few years. You can tell these things from photos.

There’s another picture of a completely adorable toddler in coveralls with his name appliqued on the front. I guess that picture was taken before parents figured out that putting a kid’s name on their clothes isn’t such a good idea. Stranger danger and all.

Funny seventies pictures aside, it’s wonderful book. I’m completely grateful to have received it.

If you ever see this book out for sale somewhere, get it. It’s glorious and instructive.