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Book Review : Bead & Fiber Jewelry

Bead & Fiber Jewelry : Elegant Knotted Designs by Jane Olson-Phillips released by Lark Books is a book about micro-macramé jewelry techniques, which are very popular right now.
I know when I think of macramé, I tend to think of some of the gorgeous or tacky things done in the past, vests, owls, waterfalls and plant hangers, or I think of friendship bracelets and hemp jewelry. This book is another sign of how far it's come as an art form.
For basic instruction, there is a great section at the end of the book to show you how to do the basic knots, and at the beginning of the book is a list of tools and supplies you'll need, as well as a nice list of cord types and the pros and cons of each one.
The projects are arranged in order of difficulty, so you can build up to the next project, with the easy ones being simple knotting techniques and comparatively fast to complete, and the advanced ones are amazing wearable sculptural pieces that combine color and texture in ways that make me wish the pictures were 3d so I could feel them under my fingertips. One of the final projects in the book is a fiber ruffle necklace that looks so much like a colorful dutch spiral it just stunned me to think it had been created with knots. The easy projects are just the thing for someone who's made friendship bracelets and is ready for the next step in making jewelry with macramé. In the intermediate section, there are some bracelets that I'd like to try out.
My one issue with the book is that there isn't a supplier page in it,but you can find a supplier list at Lark Books. Most of the supplies can be found fairly easily at local craft and bead stores with one exception. The final project in the book, the Drusy Stone pendant calls for something enigmatically called "hangers" which is actually a glue on slide bail with holes, so if you have problem finding hangers, look for glue on slide bails.

I really like this one, and after seeing some of the work in it, and some of the things people on the net have been doing with micro-macramé, I'm really excited about trying more advanced projects than I have in the past.


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