At Mr X Stitch we love to review textile art and embroidery books for you. There are so many great books to discover, packed with needlework inspiration and textile techniques, so we dive into each book to find out what’s good, what’s bad and let you know why you should pick it up.
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Here’s what we think of Weaving: The Art Of Sustainable Textile Creation by Maria Sigma
This book has been published by Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
In this step-by-step guide, Maria Sigma shows beginners and those with some experience in textiles and weaving how to create sustainable practical pieces, using a zero waste policy. There are six projects to work through, with practical results, designed to become household items.
Environmental impact is considered throughout, as well as carbon footprint. With this publication, you will learn to give thought not only to making items for your home, but also how you can also contribute to a more sustainable craft movement.
About The Author
Who is Maria Sigma? She is both a designer in Textiles and weaving, having won awards for her work. She goes a step further, having worked to create a ‘zero waste’ policy. She has studied how to conserve textiles and also earned herself a degree in textile design. She is currently based in London, teaching her area of specialism.
After completing her studies in Textile Conservation in Greece she went on to complete a degree in Textile Design at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London.
Maria hand-weaves her fabrics on a wooden floor loom in a process that has hardly changed for centuries. Her dedication to a zero-waste philosophy and her sustainable work ethic can be seen throughout the design and making process. She eschews dyes as they require large amounts of water and her careful weaving and cutting technique minimises yarn waste.
Maria’s commitment to sustainable living has led her to start workshops teaching others how to weave from waste fabrics. As an extension to the workshops, she has written two books with weaving projects, one for adults titled Weaving: The Art of Sustainable Textile Making, and one for kids titled Weave it!.
Who Is The Book Aimed At?
Those with an interest in weaving and also those who love to do crafts which are friendly towards the world we live in – craft with a deeper message and thought. The concept of sustainability is prevalent throughout – on her website she uses the word ‘honest’ – in other words her work attracts those who wish to simplify their lives and produce woven textile items which are part of a lifestyle not just a craft art item.
Here we go, the old contents list which is a part of every book we review. Note that there are six main projects, which could be created using your own materials and colour choices…..
What inspired Sigma to follow this earth friendly craft path? She reveals in the introduction that from an early age she enjoyed making. Her background and family heritage had an influence on her – her Greek heritage and family ties created links into weaving and lace. What are our family backgrounds? Do we have any arty aunts?!
We liked how this book didn’t just go straight into project design. It explains for the beginner and anyone interested what the subject matter involves. The above image showcases the question which many may ask – What is weaving? Surely this is a large subject, hard to answer in a short book – yet Sigma manages!
Incorporating the basics with the projects means that even those who are very new to this craft can have a go.
Its good to find a book which seems achievable. As said above within the text, yes the projects are designed to ‘push’ our skills, yet they start easy and guide us on as they get harder.
Photography is a key part of this book – it has to be as this publication is all about the steps required to make the projects. It has to be clear and understandable as sadly, we all cannot have a ‘Maria’ in our studios teaching us.
We appreciated how small the changes were in these illustrations, they do not jump from one to another with gaps as some books have showcased in the past, leaving us wondering where to go next. This is a sign of a good teacher, one who leads us through the steps and is experienced enough to convey this through an image led paper based workshop.
What Makes The Book Special?
The projects are ones we will actually use, as they are practical.
We love the staging and style which runs through the book. Take this cushion for one example. Its not pretentious, its just beautiful in a no nonsense way.
Anything Wrong With The Book?
This will appeal to those with an interest in conservation
My approach to design is based on the idea of creating beautiful textiles through ‘zero waste’ design and craftsmanship. High-quality and sustainable natural fibres are key to the philosophy of my work, in which the aspiration for textile longevity through simplicity and sensibility is essential. Weaving is my way of putting the everyday chaos in order and make something honest and beautiful out of it.
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Weaving: The Art Of Sustainable Textile Creation by Maria Sigma is published by Schiffer Publishing