Friday 4 April 2014

Guest Post: Book Review: Wonderful Things to Make For Kids

Today's guest post is from Vicky, of Vicky Myers Creations who's reviewed a recent charity shop find.  

Today I am reviewing “wonderful things to make for kids” published by The Australian Womens Weekly in 1987. I stumbled upon this inspiring book in my local charity shop – what’s more it was on offer buy one a child’s book for 95p get a second free!

The book has no introduction it leaps straight into it’s many chapters covering a wide range of areas including Outdoor Play, Fancy Dress, Rainy Day, Wooden Toys and Party Time. The A4 soft back book packs in 91 projects. 

Each project has a photograph of the finished item, a diagram of the materials to be cut out in a grid format so you can scale up, and written step-by–step instructions. There is no indication of skill level required for the different projects, or photographs of steps in the making process.

The book appeals on various levels, one because it covers such a breath of projects for children but also because it includes many items I have not seen before (although that might be for a reason!). The images reveal the fact it is a 1980s book but many of the projects continue to appeal.

The instructions for the sewing projects on first appearance are brief however they make sense. With modern fabric many of the designs are easily modernised (for example boy’s dungarees).

The woodwork projects are beautiful and appeal to me but I have no woodwork skills what so ever, I haven’t a clue if the instructions are adequate to make the items!!
A colleague kindly had a look. He stated that the projects do require a level of competency in woodwork, having said that the instructions are follow able.  However the cost of the materials nowadays may make the project’s cost prohibitive. For instance the brick trolley is likely to cost more to make than to buy. Of course cost is not the only reason for making items, there is an intrinsic pleasure in making and creating.

The book concludes with a helpful page giving directions on how to scale up designs using grids. Plus an index of projects

Will I be making any of the projects?? There are projects which I definitely won’t be making! The eccentric hats definitely fall into this category but I will be recycling a jumble sale man’s shirt into a craft/art smock to protect my daughter’s clothes when the painting desire takes her.


Vicky is a blogger who is passionate about creating unique quality items from recycling materials. Vicky’s blog often shares tutorials of her original creations. In addition she runs an Etsy store selling a variety of her own designs of handbags. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook, and check out her blog post about making the art smock project from this book.

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