Contemporary Cube Bead Designs is Virginia Jensen's second book on creating with cube beads. Because she had so many ideas while writing her first book, she had enough material for this new book.
The layout is organized by the stitch type, which includes ladder, herringbone, step stitch (which Jensen developed and explains the process by which she developed it). The last section is an "other" stitch chapter, which includes stitches that sometimes work and why they sometimes work, including peyote, brick, and square stitch.
As a person who does not do beadweaving, I made sure to look at the photos, the diagrams, and the instructions to see if a beginner could be successful creating any of these designs. The answer is yes. The diagrams are easy to read, photos large and clear. I think I could do most of the ladder stitch designs for sure.
What about the aesthetics of the designs? Awesome. While I think beadweavers are a pretty incredible, talented, and PATIENT lot who make amazing things. The type of designs I would actually be willing to wear is pretty narrow. Jensen has created several designs I would wear in a heartbeat. My absolute favorites are the cuffs using Tila beads in various checkerboard type patterns. I also love the use of the cube beads in the herringbone, and her use of texture throughout.
An important aspect of the book is her explanation of differences in cube bead manufacturers, the idiosyncrasies of the beads, the size, the shape, etc.
Even as a non-beadweaver kind of person, I really enjoyed this book and am glad Kalmbach Publishing gave me the opportunity to review it. I considered keeping it for myself, but my library overflows. That means one of you lucky people gets to win it!
How to enter:
1) leave a comment telling us why you would like this book for your library. Make sure you leave an email address to contact you
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I will draw a random name the evening of Friday July 13th.