Friday, 5 July 2013

Book Review: All Things Paper, by Ann Martin

All Things Paper

By Ann Martin

Tuttle Publishing, 2013

Paperback, £14.99

You know how you still read papery books even though you have a Kindle? Each has its place, right? Well, this delightful new title is like that. All Things Paper – the book is an outgrowth of All Things Paper – the blog. I wouldn’t want to do without either one.

Ann Martin’s blog is a cornucopia of papercrafts from around the world. It’s a place to discover new techniques and appreciate the ingenuity and skill of papercrafters and paper artistes. (Ann is a quiller herself. It is on her blog that I first saw the fantastic new trend which combines quilling with typography.) All Things Paper – the book  captures the spirit of the blog. The spotlight is on the talented contributors, each  represented by a  project in their area of papercraft expertise. 

The book has the warmth and buzz of an open studio/workshop day. There’s a capsule bio of each contributor. Then a step-by-step project (20 of them).  Each project is photographed by the contributor – logistically necessary to keep costs down – you couldn’t exactly fly everyone in from around the globe for an in-house photoshoot. This practical measure, which might have resulted in a patchwork of projects, has actually been an enabler. Each contributor takes the brief very seriously and does an ace can-do job. There are plenty of tips, extension ideas, and insightful asides.

Like Ann’s blog, you find techniques in the book that you have not seen elsewhere. For example, Linda Thalmann’s gossamer beaded Fine Paper Yarn Necklace (I’m familiar with paper cord, but paper thread of the fineness used here is new to me); or Benjamin John Coleman’s Loosely Braided Makigami Pendant, which is made with a sort of sophisticated version of pâpier-maché.  There are also a couple of exceedingly clever recycled projects  Richela Fabian Morgan’s Everyday Tote Bag, which is constructed from brown bag handles (lovely texture, and on trend with kraft paper), and Alison Patrick’s Phone Book Letter Holder, which has a jumbo quilling vibe.

At the end of the book, there’s an Artist Gallery and Directory – so you can check out the contributors' blogs, websites, and/or on-line shops after your book browse.

Note: I won my copy of All Things Paper – the book, in the worldwide book giveaway on Ann’s blog. Thanks so much, Ann – for the blog, and the book.

Visit All Things Paper: