At 5.15 last night I rang up Heffers the bookshop. Yes, they had just taken early delivery of that particular book, would keep a copy aside for me and they were open until 6pm. 'Go, go!' said Mr P, so I went. I got there with 5 minutes to spare, panting and huffing, and bagged an early copy of Kirstie Allsopp's 'Craft'.
I legged it out of the house like that because I contributed a tutorial to the book.
My tutorial explains how to make little silver button medallions out of silver clay using vintage buttons to imprint patterns on their surface. Silver clay has shot up in price in recent months so I tried hard to keep the cost low and to replace expensive tools with everyday household items wherever possible. The clay can be fired on a camping stove or ordinary gas hob so no fancy kilns or fiery furnaces are required.
There are 49 other craft tutorials in the book from willow weaving (I WILL be making the nest box below) to needle felting; soap-making to applique. It's a very lovely book and perfect for Christmas present ideas (or as a present itself). I am thrilled that my little project was included.
The book accompanies Kirstie Allsopp's new series 'Kirstie's Handmade Britain' in which she is taught to make a variety of lovely craft projects and submits them anonymously into Agricultural and Country shows to be judged by the likes of the WI and NAFAS. Apparently she won at least one first prize with a cake decorated with beautiful frosted flowers. The first episode will be screened on Wednesday 19th October at 8pm on Channel 4. I expect I will be glued to it.*
The styling is beautiful and I love the sheer range of crafts in this book. I think it will help to raise the profile of our wonderful Agricultural and County shows too. They are creative, quirky and fabulous events that celebrate our countryside heritage and I always make a beeline for the craft and display marquees. What's not to like about a pampered pig or a perfectly baked Victoria Sponge?
I have two copies. You've guessed it - I'll be giving one away. Stay tuned....
*A small selection of the tutorials made it into the programme and my button project was not chosen but I am truly and thoroughly excited that it was included in the book. My grammar has flown out of the window. I'm not going to worry about split infinitives today.