Today I’m going to be reviewing what is probably the best craft book I’ve seen in a very long time. A few months ago The Taunton Press contacted me and asked if i’d like to receive an advanced copy of Print, Paint & Ink by Andie Powers & Emily Grosse of Assemble Shop & Studio when it was ready to ship. (affiliate link) I was able to skim a few of the projects and knew it was something I would probably be interested in (Hello, cute egg cups!), and buy myself if I saw it on the bookstore shelf. That’s always an important consideration to me when i’m going to review a product. I need to be sure it’s something I would spend my hard earned money on, and I don’t typically spend money on something I’m not going to like (so be ready for a very positive review).
When the book arrived a few weeks ago I immediately started flipping through the pages and was like: I want to make that….and that….and that…. to almost every single project. That is a good sign. What is an even better sign of a great craft book is that I actually made several of the projects! I just couldn’t stop myself. They were all easy, simple in their construction, and basically projects that I had most of, or all of the supplies on hand to make. If you’re like me and like crafty tools of all kinds, your bound to have most of what you need on had, too. It’s not just that the projects are do-able, but they are also projects you want to make, and even better, give as gifts.
I started off stamping on fabric because my book came with a mini kit from the authors. They included the fabric, stamps and ink, but I went ahead and used an inkpad I already had on hand, because I wanted white bears pretty badly. I don’t know why, but I did. The project was simple and gave instant gratification. Being a quilter I of course love the idea of printing on my own fabric to use in projects. I’m pretty sure this will find it’s way into a special little project for my boy.
The instructions are easy to follow, and perhaps one of the best things I liked about the book was that the authors not only told you what materials and tools you needed, but they also had another section below that called “What we used” so that you could use items they did if you so choose. I’m sure i’m not alone when I say that I like to use the same things someone else uses when recreating a project. At least the first time, then after that I like to experiment. But the first time I want to do it just like the sample piece and knowing what was used is such a great help.
I couldn’t find egg cups in town, and our Crate & Barrel is about an hour away, so I had to settle for doing something other than egg cups for now. I found this cute little sauce dish at Target to use instead. I really wanted that little bear face, with his cute necktie, so he found his way to the bottom of the bowl. Again, so easy and instant gratification. I will of course be making the egg cups as soon as i’m down the C&B.
I made some adorable eraser stamps with pencils I picked up in the dollar section at Target. These are so small and easy to grab that I will never find an excuse NOT to use them.
My son and I are getting ready to go out of town on a trip, and the first part of our journey includes a flight, so I thought one of these little jouranals would be perfect for him to draw in on the plane or use to record parts of our trip. Since I homeschool him I like to think of ways for him to constantly be learning while we’re on the go, so I really hope I can talk him into using this each night to record what the best part of his day was. Instructions for book construction were very simple and it was so relaxing making the plaid cover myself.
The final project I got made before this post was the adorable Poplar Nesting Boxes project. I didn’t actually do all the sizes, but I did make two of the small size. I had plans of doing this all on my own, but my husband can never resist helping with power tools are involved. We both enjoy making things out of wood, so it was nice to get together and do this. I already have plans of making these as Christmas gifts this year for all of my family and friends. I gave them a quick coat of acrylic paint and they are all ready to be used.
I made all of these projects in bits and pieces of spare time over the last week (or so). The instructions were clear and easy to follow and all of the projects compiled were well thought out. I truly enjoyed this book and have so many more projects I want to make from it. For the past two weeks I’ve been sharing and posting peeks at the projects on my Instagram story feed, so be sure to check in over there to see more projects made this fall. I highly recommend this book for your shelf if you love these types of crafts. There are 20 projects total and i’m sure you’ll feel just as I did – you’ll want to make everything!
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Published (and provided) by The Taunton Press (August 2016)
Projects: Block-Printed Furoshiki Wrap (p. 20), Teeny Tiny Eraser Stamps (p. 44), Poplar Nesting Boxes (p. 56), Friendly Porcelain Egg Cups (p.76)