Monday, November 9, 2009

Book Review: Beautiful Wire Jewelry for Beaders

While I'm waiting patiently for my next new book to come out (the graphic designer is finishing it today!), I thought I'd re-post a book review that I did last July on my other blog.
What prompted this idea? Well, the publishers (Kalmbach) contacted me today asking if they might quote parts of my review in some of their marketing materials for Beautiful Wire Jewelry for Beaders. I said sure, why not? Then I got to thinking that it might not be a bad idea to re-post the review on this blog for those of you who are regular readers.
I feel really confident recommending this book to you—and I don't often say that about jewelry books in general, wire-jewelry books in particular. Anyway, here's what I had to say about the book:
This is such a terrific book, I can hardly wait to tell you about it! A friend of mine purchased a copy of Beautiful Wire Jewelry for Beaders, and she recently loaned it to me because she was curious to see what I thought of it. I've seen all the jewelry making books out there, you see, and I own many of them, too. Would I be inspired by the author's designs, or bored by the same-old, same-old content that is typical of so many jewelry books these days?
Well, I'm so happy to report that this truly is a stand-out book on wire jewelry! Many of the author's designs are quite original and refreshing, such as her Whimsical Pins on page 48, her unique Wire Wrapped Heart on page 55, fantastic Zigazag Rings on page 65, and—my personal fav—the Beaded Leaf on page 78.
You know, when I first started perusing the book, I thought it was going to be ordinary. That's because the first 46 pages are taken up with the usual stuff: tools & materials, a discussion on wire, etc. plus lots of beginner-basics that we've all seen before: wrapped loops, spirals, attaching commercial chains to wire to make jewelry pieces, and lots of simple, easy projects for newbies.
Since I have written six art & craft books myself, I understand the importance of providing this information and instruction. It levels the field, making jewelry techniques more accessible to everyone. But sometimes, after picking up one book after another that is taken up with beginner basics, I just want to say, "please, no more wrapped loops!!!" Can't we get beyond that?
Well, no. I myself included plenty of beginner-basic instruction in my most recent book,Contemporary Copper Jewelry, which released in September. I had to do it—there's no way around it. But getting back to this terrific new book by Irina Miech: If you're an intermediate to advanced (experienced) wire jewelry artist, once you get past the first half of the book you'll be rewarded with some very rich and satisfying content.
I love the author's fun and whimsical yet sophisticated and feminine approach to jewelry design. Irina offers some really cute projects, some challenging ideas, designs that can easily be altered to your own taste, and—best of all—a wealth of creative options. I like her step-by-step instruction with full-color photos, her galleries of art jewelry that follow each project, and her originality. You'll find no copies of other artists' work here. The author shares some really terrific new designs that I have not seen elsewhere in other books or magazines.
One of the best features of this book is that the projects have been divided into Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced groupings. The publisher color-coded the pages with a strip of color to alert the reader: a burgundy strip for beginner projects, brown for intermediate, and green for advanced. This way, you can easily find the type of project you'd like to tackle based on your skill level. Brilliant idea!
I don't often find a book that captures my respect the way that Beautiful Wire Jewelry for Beaders has done. This title gets a very high recommendation from me! To order it for just $14.93, click here.
Happy wrapping,

1 comment:

Lisa ( nickname "L" ) said...

oooh I can't wait to get my crafty hands on your book! Looks like a whole lot of fabulous!