Thursday 24 October 2013

Book Review: Hoop-la!

Today I'm taking a look at Kirsty Neale's new book, Hoop-La!: 100 things to do with embroidery hoops.

Kirsty used to buy felt from me (I shared some of her adorable finger puppets in a Show & Tell post a couple of years ago) and I've been a fan of her work ever since. I've been really looking forward to her book coming out, and was delighted when she asked me to take part in the blog tour for it.
Hoop-La! starts with some useful tips for working with embroidery hoops, and a great selection of ideas for decorating the hoops themselves - painting them, adding washi tape, stitching a crochet edging, etc.

Then it's on to the projects... all 100 of them! Most of the projects take up a page or half a page of the book, with a photo of the finished piece and step by step instructions. Many of the projects also include a helpful "top tip".


The designs range from simple to detailed, and from stylish to incredibly cute. The motifs include flowers, fruit, dishes, mushrooms, mixtapes, animals, people, birds, and geometric designs. There's also a typewriter, a chandelier, a little house, a paper plane... and much more.


There are also lots of different crafts and techniques covered in the book, including applique, embroidery, cross stitch, screenprinting, crochet, patchwork, stencilling, making sunprints, reverse applique, sashiko, crewel work, and beading.

Some of the hoops are used to display special pieces of fabric, embroidered and printed designs, or interesting objects. Others are used to create quirky wall art - like an appliqued giraffe that's spread across 3 small hoops, and a gorgeous diorama framed in a hoop. And several are used to make "practical" items, like a noughts and crosses game, a chalkboard, a mini photo album or a jewellery holder.


Then at the back of the book there's a comprehensive techniques section with lots of clear diagrams and photos. 

You can check out lots of the designs from the book in this cute little video (if the video isn't showing up for you, click here to watch it).

There's a really great mix of projects in this book! The designs themselves are lots of fun, and the techniques and ideas can also be easily adapted to make your own embroidery hoop projects. Hoop-La! is absolutely on my "to buy" list and I'm sure I'll be getting it off my shelves for many projects in the years to come. 

You can visit Kirsty's blog HERE and follow along with the blog tour HERE.

Hoop-La! is published by David & Charles. RRP £14.99. It's available from Amazon UK, Amazon USA, Stitch Craft Create, The Book Depository and many other bookshops.

[Disclaimer: David & Charles sent me a free PDF copy of this book to review. The Amazon & Book Depository links in this post are affiliate links]


The Rainbow Room said...

Looks like a wonderful book : )

Wendy said...

this book looks fab, I've got it on my wish list

Blooming Felt said...

This book looks fab and is definitely on my Christmas wishlist. Thanks for sharing the review xx

Kirsty said...

Thanks so much for the lovely review, Laura, and for taking part in the blog tour. Am so glad you like the book! x

Bugs and Fishes said...

No problem, Kirsty! Thanks for inviting me to take part x