Tuesday, 7 October 2008


Yesterday, I picked the Munchkin up from school and off we trotted to the post office to post a bag I had sold. Our post office has moved into WH Smiths which has proved dangerous. Obviously, it's necessary to have a mooch round once you've posted your parcel. Look what I found:

Aaaarrrggghhhhh! No waiting round for Amazon for me, some things you just need there and then so once safely inside its naff carrier bag, the Munchkin and I made haste back home where I fell upon Cath's latest book with greedy eyes!

This book is quite different from her other two, as it is (as the title may have given away) a book purely about making things as opposed to a nosy look round her lovely homes. I know "In Print" was about making things but it was not so much an instructional book like this. It comes with a "free tote bag" which is parcelled up inside the front cover, like so:

It's just a plain canvas tote, the idea being that you customise it using one of the projects in the book. You also get a skein of red embroidery cotton and a Cath K pencil plus a chart showing the other suggested colours of embroidery cotton that you will need. The book is then split into sections. It starts with general info about sewing techniques and embroidery stitches. If you've never embroidered before, I guess you will find this useful but you could get this sort of direction from any book on embroidery.

At the back , there are lots of templates (16) which you can copy/trace and use in the projects. One side of the page has the template in colour, the reverse has a mirror image in black and white, "stencil style". There's Stanley...

And yee-haw! The cowboy, sure to be a winner with a certain small person in the HenHouse...

The book then suggests how you might use the templates to produce various items.  Stanley can be used to adorn a cushion:

The cowboy can be put onto a skirt.  Ideal if you fancy a spot of line dancing...

The projects are split into sections as follows: Kitchen, Bedroom, Bags, Clothing, Kids and Gifts.  I picked out a few attractive pages:

I fancy making one of these pictures but they are not a patch on the beauties Kitschen Pink produces.

I like this cottage applique.  It is modelled on the cottage shaped sewing box for sale in Cath's shops.

I am also very taken with this bedding...

But I wonder if it will be practical; "No dear, they're not for actually sleeping on!"

Pretty appliqued pillow cases...

An embroidered bag...

This, I like. I have seen cardis with patchworked elbows in Cath's shops and have been meaning to get round to prettying up my old Boden one. Not sure I fancy the initials?

This one is very pretty too, probably quite a lot of work in it:

An attractive bag:

And finally, a gratuitous , but very pretty, shot of a sewing box...

On the one hand, I confess to being a bit disappointed by this book but that is mainly because it is called "Make" and actually, there are no instructions as far as I can see to actually make things. Rather, there are instructions on how to embroider and applique things, so you always start with a ready made item (or one you have made yourself via your own pattern). It should really be called "Embroider" or "Applique"! For example, the little green tweed bag with the embroidered flowers is lovely but I would have liked instructions on making the bag too. That said, there are some nice projects if what you want is to copy designs for Stanley or the cowboy and there is some opportunity to make things your own by choosing the colours and fabrics or by using the well-known design templates for Stanley/Cowboy/Boat in your own projects rather than the ones in the book.

I probably would always have bought this book because it doesn't exactly blow the budget (£14.99 cover price, £12.99 in Smiths, I think £7.49 on Amazon), I probably will use some of the ideas and templates and at the end of the day, it's Cath K and it's nice to look at!

I look forward to seeing what projects people make so please let me know if you make something from the book and have piccies of it...


  1. It looks fab. I too have been waiting for it on Amazon. I shall pop into WHSmith on the way home from work.

  2. OOHhhhhhhh....nice pictures! cheers!
    So looking forward to getting my copy!
    Will be nice to have ago at the bag as mini project!
    I'm with you...think i only really wanted it to be nosey and i can't resist CK!!!!!!!!
    Do like the Stanley cushion...might be an idea for my nieces Christmas pressie!
    Cheers for taking the time to do that!

  3. I am growing to like Cath K more and more through your blog posts, and that book looks like a fabulous find! I can't believe it comes with the tote bag and embroidery thread. What a treasure! Can't wait to see what you make first.

  4. Oh, I have it on pre-order from Amazon and have to wait now!

  5. I'm so jealous - I've had it ordered from Amazon, so will just have to be patient. Lovely to get a peek at it though. Thank you.

  6. Thanks for posting the great pics. This book isn't available here in the US yet, so your post is the only look into it I'll get for a while yet -- must be patient!


  7. going onto amazon NOW - looks fab - thanks for the shots!

  8. I am cross with Amazon as I pre-ordered it too and yet it has been in our local WH Smiths for weeks. I had to flick past your lovely photos as I want to wait until I have my book but I did get the general impression that it was more about embroidery then making too.

  9. Great pics Hen but I have got my new book from Ginny to work through now - can't wait. Like you, I love a new sewing book. xx

  10. I've popped in again....showing my sister the book...she is here now...and wants a copy!!!
    We are both huge CK fans!
    I'm going to the trafford centre tomorrow...they have a CK concession!
    News to me........!xxxx

  11. This looks lovely. I've also had it on pre order, I check it over the weekend & there was nothing to say it was out yet...I'm very cross. My whsmiths is rubbish so I don't think they'll have it. I'll pop in tomorrow still have a birthday voucher....:)

  12. Thanks so much for sharing all the lovely photos! I live in Portugal so I'll have to wait until the book is available on Amazon... I can see that it's not great at instructions but I'll buy it for inspiration. :)

  13. Now, this looks like a great book - full of wonderful ideas and projects. Thanks Hen!

  14. Hi Hen,
    Thanks for the preview...I wasn't sure if I would buy this book..... like you, I think the only project I like is the embroidered clutch purse, but I could do that on my own....It's all a bit TOO Cath for my liking (one big advert?) ....thanks anyway, its made my mind up about it.

  15. Ah what a great review Hen, you have pretty much summed up what I thought of the book when I browsed through it in Smiths last week. I like some of the motifs and ideas but wasn't overwhelmed by it.
    The photos you took of the pages do look lush on your blog though!

  16. Thank you Hen for showing us all this book.
    Yes it has lovely photographs but if all the instructions amount too are how to embroider/applique well most of us probably have umpteen books showing us how to do that all ready.
    So although it is lovely to look at I think I too will be giving it a miss.
    Thanks for saving me some pennies!

  17. Thanks for taking the time to write a review, really interesting. Pretties up the bookshelves if anything else :) X

  18. Hi!
    Thanks for blogging about this fab book, I have all Cath's other books and I didn't actually realise this one was coming out. Your review is great, thank you for giving us a preview and getting me down to Smiths! I bought it this morning....great!
    Vintage Floral and Gingham

  19. Think you might enjoy my post today!!!!!xxx
    Oh and mu book has not come!!!

  20. Thanks for sharing this book ~ I was just looking at it this morning and wondering if it was worth buying ~ The Book People are selling this one at £4.99!!

  21. Just spotted your comment on the flower holder.......I love it.....the lady who owns this shop is lovely....and yes it is that make of car....I would love one of those if i won the lottery!
    Lovely green one!
    I think you wouls enjoy a visit there......maybe when you stay with your Sister next.....you said she lives near the TC.....lovely to have the chance to visit!
    Next time you do i can give you the addresses of many like wise shops!

  22. Hen brill post as ever..Thanks for sharing. Just to let you know for CK 15th birthday tomorrow (9th Oct) there is 15% off in store and online (Quote CKB15)! Just incase you fancied a little shopping! It's tomorrow only though.
    Jane. x

  23. Thank you Hen for showing off the new book, its a shame there is no paterns in it as it would have made the Title a whole lot more interesting.
    Thanks again.
    Toodle pip.

  24. Thank you for sharing inside this latest CK book. I've put it on my Christmas list and now if Santa chooses to drop it off I will be even happier to find it!

    Victoria x

  25. OH! No making in a book called Make! That is a bit disappointing! I've just ordered copies from The Book People at £4.99. I am giving them to teenagers for Christmas, so actually it will work out ok - but I am a bit sad as I hoped to find whole projects!
    And you've made me blush with your lovely link. xxxx

  26. I won't be buying it, but it was interesting seeing the photos. I'm sure we could all create such a book - with instructions - which would be very saleable. Perhaps all crafty bloggers should club together and add a pattern each!

    Shall be popping back to read more of your lovely posts.


  27. Hi again Hen

    Yes, the Giant Flea Market this coming Sunday at Shepton Mallet (the Royal Bath & West Showground), which is hopefully not too far from your cottage either. Let me know if you can get there and perhaps we can meet to say hello. I shall be in my usual spot in the Showering Pavilion.

    Of course, if you like to visit Dairy House too, that would be wonderful!


  28. Found you via That Silly Little Doe - dying over the Make book, and thank you for showing us peeks inside. I'm just drooling!


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