Paperback: 96 pages
Publisher: Kalmbach Books (November 5, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 8.2 x 10.8 inches
Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (213 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #26,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #1 in Arts, Crafts & Sewing > Beading & Jewelry Making > Jewelry Patterns #4 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Crafts & Hobbies > Jewelry & Beadwork > Beadwork #6 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Crafts & Hobbies > Jewelry & Beadwork > Jewelry
I own dozens of beading books, and this one is truly exceptional -- even the book design deserves an award! I am fairly new to 8-strand beaded kumihimo, and this book has clear and well-illustrated answers to all my questions, from selecting the right-sized cord and combining fibers, to braiding with large or multiple sizes of beads, to incorporating pendants and multiple focal beads on a braid. Combs' projects each introduce a new technique, but it's not just "follow these instructions and make what I made." For the various projects, she explains why it works, how to modify it, and how to change the length. Her many "Troubleshooting" pages are invaluable, as are her easy-to-follow explanations of "Kumihimo Math". She also shows you how to arrange both different colors and larger-scale beads (teardrops, magatamas, etc.) to achieve different patterns. Her explanations are so clear, I feel like I'm sitting in the same room with her. I am not someone who usually writes book reviews (this is my first!) and I don't know Rebecca, but she's definitely written a classic.
Whether you are a beginner or even an intermediate braider, this book lays it all out. I especially appreciate the detailed explanation on alternate approaches to finishing besides the bulky knot, trim and glue. Answers questions both verbally and visually on layout of colors (fiber or with beads, adding focals etc. Couldn't ask for more, no exaggeration! Design suggestions are for wearable pieces with materials that are available to all; (doesn't leave me yearning to make a piece for which I have no chance of ever finding all the elements, a real frustration with other beading publications. The repeated placement of "kumi math" boxes throughout the book is a real stroke of brilliance. Have been waiting months for this book in hopes it would be an improvement over other kumi publications, and have not been disappointed.
First of all, I love this book. It is well designed. The instructions are clear. Every piece is something I'll try. Kudos to the author for doing a great job.Okay, the only problem I have with it is the following statement. "The jewelry designs in KUMIHIMO BASICS & BEYOND are the copyrighted property of the author, and they may not be taught or sold without permission. Please use them for your education and personal enjoyment only".Let me start by stating that I'm a retired librarian and, I know a little bit about copyright protection and believe in it. No problem copyrighting this book start to finish. No, you can't copy it, sell parts of it, use it as the basis for a class. Just fine. Just what copyright was meant to do. Three cheers for you.But then it goes terribly wrong. The designs in it are your interpretations of existing designs. You may have used colors in each project t that are unique but how would you know even that. I have many books on kumihimo with projects just like yours. In fact, I would be concerned, if I were you, claiming copyright on any of the designs you feature. They are everywhere.What you did better than anyone was write and excellent tool for learning to do kumihimo. That you can copyright proudly. The rest, seriously? Kumihimo has been around for a very long time. I venture to say there is little original anywhere..Copyrighting ideas that are not your own cheapens the intent of copyright protection.Enough said
This book is so easy to understand and follow, especially for someone who is pathologically right brained. Rebecca, very gently, I might add, leads you by written word and thoughtful photography through her beautiful designs. They are so attractive and wearable and she makes the adventure exciting. Using a very conversational tone, she writes exactly as she teaches, with humor and great foresight. She knows exactly what the student is thinking when that "deer in the headlights" expression takes over your face. There are many brilliant artists with published books that have frustrated me not just by what is written in them, but by the smallest of phrases that are not fully expanded or are simply missing altogether. Not so with Rebecca. She truly wants her students to succeed and she has won my total respect for her as a designer, artist and a teacher. She shares her passion fully and wants us to know how, too.
The text and photos make it easy for a beginner to understand. The "math" (for example, the length of cord required for a desired final braided length) for each project is clearly stated. The projects are in a logical sequence and build upon each other. Can't wait to try many of the projects, now that I have finished my first round braid.
I am one of the very fortunate people who has taken MANY classes from Rebecca in person and she is a truly dedicated and outstanding teacher. Her love and gift of teaching in this, her first of what I hope to be many books, is exhibited in the clear, well organized, inspiring and user-friendly way that she teaches all of her classes in person. The photos and illustrations are beautifully done, clear and precise. She uses a series of gorgeous projects that highlight different techniques that she teaches you along the way so you really feel like you are learning as you produce a beautiful piece. I especially love all of the tips and tricks for working with the different beads and fibers as well as the ideas and techniques for finishing each project. These are skills that then allow the reader to adapt or create a new version of the project as they progress in their skill level. She has also included invaluable trouble-shooting tips to help the new or even advanced student either avoid or correct their mistakes! If you have been "bitten by the Kumihimo bug" as I truly have, then this is THE book to own - whether you are new and have never done Kumihimo or are more advanced and have been doing it for years. Every reader will get a wealth of information and inspiration from this book!
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