A Great Beginning into Calligraphy

simcal

Simply Calligraphy is a great resource for the beginner Calligrapher, like me!  I have always had a love of beautifully scripted penmanship and always wanted to be able to create this for myself.
This book provides the reader with the all the basics needed to begin practicing and accomplishing their own beautiful style of writing.  The book is nicely sized so it is portable enough to carry along with a few pens and a sketch book which was very useful for me.  I practiced for a few hours outside on my deck and it was quite relaxing!
The chapters in the book cover everything needed from Tools and Materials, Getting Started, instructions on Small Alphabets, Upper Case and even some project ideas.
What would have made this book even more useful would have been if the author had included some practice sheets or overlays making the practicing easier and more effective.
As with any hobby, there are more advanced techniques, tools and ideas out there.  I suggest starting with this book, a less expensive pen/s and see if this is the art skill for you.  This book helps you get to that point.  I will keep practicing and hopefully get better at it than I am today!
**I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Blogging for Books**

 

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Something New & Patriotic

Longmay

I selected this because of its uniqueness and beautiful collection of vintage U.S. postcards.  It was fun to walk through history examining each card for its symbolism.  Each postcard is printed on high quality and glossy paper, measured and perfect for mailing or for some other type of use.  Every image is high quality and photographic, so very clear even though from some long ago.

Postcards displaying U.S. flags throughout history are portrayed as well as pictures of our military, objects and artifacts with our flag, etc.  Very cool collection!

This is the perfect gift for a U.S. History fan, teacher or for an artist who wishes to incorporate vintage pieces into their art.  I will be using mine for a U.S. collage, send a few as postcards and some as Ephemera.

What I also love is the very cool and useful decorative box that all the cards fit perfectly in.  It can be used again for something else once the cards are gone (if you choose to use them)!

I hope this creator repeats this effort into another subject.

**I received this collection from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review**

 

ABOUT LONG MAY SHE WAVE

From one of the world’s leading graphic designers comes a stunning tribute to America’s most enduring icon-the Stars and Stripes.The Revolutionary Congress resolved in 1777 that “the flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white, that the Union be 13 white stars in a blue field representing a new constellation.” Since that time, the American flag has been raised high in wartime triumph and peacetime celebration; burned in fervent protest; sewn lovingly onto quilts, caps, pillows, and bags; appropriated by the commercial sphere to sell goods as varied as cigars, and designer clothing, and rock-and-roll albums; and faithfully honored every 4th of July to celebrate America’s independence. This collection of more than 3,000 Stars and Stripes artifacts ranges from Civil War-era banners and Native American braided moccasins to an early 20th-century “friendship” kimono and original flag art by several of the world’s leading designers. In its deluxe format with over 500 illustrations, LONG MAY SHE WAVE gives wide berth to the flag in all its manifestations, and the result is a stunning visual history of America’¬?s most treasured symbol.Full-color throughout, with over 500 illustrations in a deluxe 11 x 14-inch volume-LONG MAY SHE WAVE is the perfect gift for folk-art appreciators, history buffs, and collectors.Features the 3,000-piece exhibit that was displayed at the American Institute of Graphic Arts and the San Jose Museum of Art in 2000. From toy soldiers to collectable spoons, cigar blankets to historic flags—the breadth of the collection is unrivaled.For a list of appearances by this author, check out our Calendar of Events.

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Cupcakes, Flowers and Birds, Oh My!

wonderland

Wonderland is a lovely treat for the senses.  While inspired by Alice in Wonderland, it is different enough to offer some new characters and images.  A charming Adult and/or Child’s coloring book, it is filled with images from flowers, peacocks, cats, teapots, jesters, etc. It offers hours of coloring fun, especially if you are a fan of the Fairy tale!
The book is done in Chapter Format which leads you through the Wonderland tale.  Filled with a cute poem to highlight the images within.  The book is made on high quality paper with the only drawback being that images are back to back, thus making alcohol markers a no-go (if you plan on coloring the image on the back side).  I recommend sticking to pencils on this one folks 🙂 
As a crafter, I plan on using some images on cards and tags, which I am sure will be charming once colored.  I have plans for this book for sure. 
Give this one a try whether this is your first or twenty-first Adult Coloring Book!

**I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review**

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Tasting Rome

tastingrome

The latest cookbook I have added to my ever growing collection is “Tasting Rome” by Katie Parla and Kristina Gill.
This book was a treat for the eyes, palate and soul!  I love the new cookbooks as they not only include wonderful recipes for the reader to try out but also include history, great photography and the ability to transcend the reader to the place of origin.
Recipes in this book include items from meats to sweetbreads and all things regional to Rome.
The pictures and steps to prepare are done well even for the beginner cook, although not all ingredients may be readily available based on where you live.
I appreciated the history of the region and the dishes and although being Italian I may know more than others who are not, I still learned some great new dishes I want to make.
Give it a whorl…Tortica Rustica, Pizza Al Contrario, I Cracker, Suppli Classici and Polpette di Bollito are now on my short list.
If you collect regional cookbooks, give this one a try!
 “I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.”
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Great Little Craft Book!

Littlefelted

I had the opportunity to review this book and it really packed a punch!  The book is a unique shape (rectangle but shorter than it is longer).  It easily fits into your craft bag or purse allowing you to take it with you if you craft on the go!
I fell in love with these petite felted dogs and had to have this book.  I am working on my first one and hope it comes out somewhat like the picture does.
This is my first time working in the felt material and with a needle.  This does take some practice, but the outcome will be well worth it.
The book has a section dedicated to 24 breeds of dogs, running the gamut from Pug to Bernese Mountain and everything in between.  Be sure to check this out if you are looking to learn a new craft.
The instructions are clear, and the beginning section provides for all the tools and essentials needed to get you started. The images, pre-construction and post are clear and very helpful.
Give this one a try!

ABOUT LITTLE FELTED DOGS

Create the cutest versions of your favorite dogs in just a few simple steps

Whether you adore dachshunds or dalmatians, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to make charming miniatures of them with a felting needle and some raw wool. Great for beginners, the two dozen projects in Little Felted Dogs provide surprisingly life-like results—choose from a litter of golden retriever puppies, a pug ready to fetch, a begging bulldog, a protective chihuahua, and more. Even better, you’ll go from ball of fluff to perfect pooch in no time at all!

“I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.”
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Delightful Cat Coloring Experience

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“Cats In Paris” is truly a magical coloring book. Although it comes under the category of Adult Coloring books, it clearly would be equally entertaining for the younger folk.

This book contains page after page of unique and quaint drawings of both attractions in Paris as well whimsical drawings of many varieties of cats.

Pages are devoted to the felines including: Abyssinian, Siamese, Black Silver Mackerel Tabby, Persian, Maine Coon, etc.

The book is well constructed with nice heavyweight paper. The only drawback is the designs are back to back. This book is not a good candidate for using markers that bleed through (alcohol markers). So stick to pencils with this one!

I am passing this book onto a friend of mine who adores Cats and is battling cancer. She will love it!
“I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.”

 

 

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A Great Book for Coloring & Reflection

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This is my third Adult Coloring Book and I will not be stopping any time soon! This book is set apart from the others, for it has both a Spiritual theme as well as a whimsical flair. As the title states; “A Coloring Book for Reflection and Worship”, it truly brings this to the reader/colorer. Each page consists of a Title, Scripture verse and lovely scroll-like designs and hand lettering. The page once colored can be incorporated in other other Art projects and Prayer Journals.

What I especially enjoyed in the book was that on the back of every design was the name of the design illustrator and on many pages were hymns inspired from the verses on the page.

Additionally the publisher supplies a link to a song playlist which the colorist can listen to as they color.

If you are looking for something really special and beyond what the typical Adult Coloring offers, give this one a try! This would be a nice gift for someone recovering from an illness or who loves meditation and reflection.

**I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an    honest review**

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About This Book

Color your way to peace and worship.

We live in such a busy, hectic world—but what waits for you inside this cover is a way to quiet the noise, express creativity, and spend some sweet time with God. Each page features an original design from one of a dozen different artists, beautifully illustrating a contemplative quote from an inspirational writer, a beloved hymn, or Scripture.

When we create, we echo the heart of our Creative God who designed everything and gave us the capacity to recognize beauty.

So go ahead! You have permission to pick up your colored pencil and be reminded of truth in a fresh way.

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