Here we are! That illusive book review that has taken me so long to write up.
I was approached by Bernadette Noll and Kathie Sever, the authors of “Make Something Together” a few months ago, before their book was released. They asked if I would like to be part of their book blog tour and although I have never said yes to a giveaway on Filth Wizardry before, and I was just about to give birth, I wanted to say yes to this particular book. The way they described it to me, it sounded quite lovely and totally in keeping with the vibe of our home, so I wanted to be involved in helping to promote it in some way.
Now that things have reached some sort of rhythm in the newborn department and I’ve had a chance to really sit down and read through the book and see how the projects and philosophy are applicable to our own family, I’m ready and able to write about it and of course offer a copy of the book to one lucky commenter on this post.
Bernadette and Kathie, the authors of this book, have had a lot of experience with collaborative crafting, especially with children. Bernadette co-founded Slow Family Living and Kathie is the creator of Ramonsterwear. Together they have formed Future Craft Collective to find ways that families can be creative together in a sustainable fashion. At the start of the book, before you get to the detail of the individual projects, they take the time to share their experiences and talk about the “why” and “what to expect” aspects of creating with your family. This part of the book, as well as being very well written is also extremely encouraging to those that are nervous about setting the right environment for a pleasant crafting experience when children are involved.
I think the thing that I like most about this book is that it is relevant to a large range of ages and abilities. Out of the 24 projects, some are simple projects that younger children can use as an initiation into sewing and to gain confidence quickly, but there are also more complicated projects that preteens will be able to throw themselves into. As much as I can see me and my five and six year old making some of these things together, I can equally imagine that the book is still going to be in use when my older girls are ten and eleven and they have their little five year old sister to help join in with the making too.
The other thing that stood out to me when I read through this book was that the projects are all real keepers. You're upcycling, reusing and recycling materials, but in a way that creates family items that will really become part of the home atmosphere and traditions. Most of the upcycling that I do with the kids when we craft is making things that are fun and yes they use recycled materials most of the time, but they aren't things that I can see us having and still using say ten years from now. In contrast to our usual fun with recycling, I'm excited to make some items from this book, such as the table runner and napkins or the family flags, that can be more permanent creative fixtures in our family's home for years to come.
I've wanted to sit down at the sewing machine with my older girls, who are five and six years old for some time now, but deciding on what we should try and how to go about it has delayed me taking the plunge. I think it's this book that's going to ease us into the process of sewing together and I'm looking forward to it!
If you'd like a chance to win your own copy of "Making Stuff Together" then just leave a comment on this post and I'll announce a winner on Wednesday next week.
Disclosure: Bernadette and Kathie gave me a copy of this book for myself as well as one to give away on Filth Wizardry, but all the views I have expressed above are my own and this also means that the book the winner gets won't have little jammy fingerprints all over it from my children ;)