One thing that I love is when a book inspires me to do something that I wouldn’t attempt otherwise. Craft Activism by Joan Tapper and Gale Zucker managed to do just that.
I belong to a few websites that offer copies of books for bloggers to review. We aren’t obliged to post about the books, but I love to share when I find a good one. When I saw Craft Activism listed on one of these sites, I was really excited. I’ve heard great things about this book, and the topic is one that is dear to my heart.
Craft Activism is a celebration of people who are passionate about DIY, creating and making a statement. Some of the ideas are ones that get a fair amount of press (yarn bombing, quilting to raise awareness, etc.), whereas others are ideas that I’ve never heard of apart from this book. One such crafter is Ruth Marshall, who hand knits some amazing, intricate “pelts” of big cats and other animals. She is trying to raise awareness about poaching and other issues that are threatening wild animals. For each crafter who is profiled, there is also a pattern so you can join in on their movement. For Ruth Marshall, there is a scarf pattern that looks like an ocelot. The pattern for the color work is breathtaking. I can’t wait to try it!
Some of the other projects in the book include a sassy sweater with pro-cycling (as opposed to anti-cycling) color work, a small quilt with a message for peace, a pattern for sewing an adorable, modern housedress, a crochet granny square greenbag, and so much more. The project pages are widely varied, and I think anyone could find something to try. I love that they encompass so many crafts, and not just one or two.
I was inspired by the section on embroidery to pick my needle back up. I haven’t embroidered (apart from the small amount done on knit toys) since I was a child. Reading the section on embroidery with attitude made me really miss it. I had so much fun tracing the pattern onto the tea towel and firing up my needle. I’ve since remembered how relaxing embroidery is. How could I’ve forgotten?! Watching me embroider inspired my 8-year-old daughter to pick up her needles too, so now we’re sharing the craft together. She has decided to work on a fairy design. If you’d like to try the pattern that I’m working on from the book, there is a copy of it here. It is a tea towel that says “Hot Stuff” and has a volcano. It is so cute.
There are so many projects in this book that I can’t wait to try. I love that it has helped me think of new ways to express myself through crafting. It has really encouraged me that I am not alone in my desire to share my passions by creating. It is such a beautiful portrait of the many faces of crafting and how we are all so different and yet so alike. I hope you check it out and enjoy it too!