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BellaOnline's Sewing Editor

Happy Stitch Book Review

As part of my current obsession with sewing felt, I am pleased to review Happy Stitch: 30 Felt and Fabric Projects for Everyday.

Happy Stitch is written by Jodie Rackley, a self-taught crafter and artist. She is known for her use of bright colors and whimsical designs that have a vintage feel. She has been featured on various online crafting venues such as MarthaStewart.com and SublimeStitching.com.

She produces a line of hand-stitched gifts under the brand Lova Revolutionary that can be found in gift shops or through her online store at http://lovahandmade.etsy.com.

From beginning to end, this book draws you in with its bright, colorful photographs and charming critters. Full of fun and easy projects, this book is perfect for a beginning stitcher or someone looking for a quick project.
Happy Stitch Cover

I like how the book is organized because before you jump into any project making, the author provides a brief introduction to needed supplies and techniques and includes up close photographs of the various embroidery stitches used. One particular note that I found helpful was that she suggests using several type of scissors for the different kinds of cutting needs (a sharp fine-tip pair for cutting felt vs. craft scissors for cutting out the templates). Even if you are an experienced crafter, this section has a number of helpful tips that can make stitching more enjoyable.

The project list includes cozies for electronic devices, hair ornaments and jewelry, bags in various sizes, mini softie pins and key chains, place mats and other home decor items, softies and a few small holiday projects. Several embroidery designs are also included and can be used in many ways beyond how they are utilized in the projects.

All of the project patterns and templates are provided in the back. They will need to be enlarged and the author suggests that they be traced onto heavy paper or cardstock to make it easier to cut the shapes (the projects vary in how much they need to be enlarged, so be sure to note this before enlarging). Felt, being thick, is difficult to pin and can overwhelm regular paper, so this is a good tip.

The project directions are illustrated step-by-step and are clearly explained. I like that the author includes side boxes with tips for modifying the projects by adding details or making small changes in how it is put together. This keeps the projects fresh and unique, especially if you are making multiples for gifts.

Overall, I heartily recommend this book to anyone that enjoys stitching with felt. The projects look fun and a number of them would make nice holiday gifts. I have no complaints other than the fact that a couple of projects were less inspiring to me than others, but with 30 to choose from, I can live with a couple of duds (in my eyes). And, no, I'm not telling you which ones because those are probably your favorites and then we couldn't be friends anymore.

Happy Stitching!

Looking for more quick stitching projects? Take a look at these books!

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