There are two types of people in life: the winners and the rest of us. I never win anything. Like, ever. Village fete raffles? Forget it. Company sweepstake? Don’t waste my time. My maternal grandmother only had to look at a raffle ticket in order to win a jar of boiled sweets. But now it’s my turn to shine. After months of entering blog giveaways, I finally won something!
The Fabric Loft recently ran a giveaway for Mandy Shaw’s latest book, Stitch With Love. I really like Mandy Shaw’s writing and have completed several projects from Quilt Yourself Gorgeous. So I was genuinely thrilled when The Fabric Loft told me I’d won this giveaway. What to make first, what to make first…
The shelf bunting?
Or the sewing tidy?
Decisions, decisions! Thank you so much, Fabric Loft, for giving me this delicious dilemma.
I thought this would be an opportune moment to step back and analysis my book buying of late. This is my growing stack of sewing and knitting reference books:
I say ‘reference’ books, as though these purchases are for pure research reasons. I think we all know that’s not the only reason I buy them. It’s the projects, the pictures, the satisfaction of holding something in my hands or resting a book on my knees and feeling inspired.
All of this sits in stark contrast to my fiction reading, which has been transformed by the Kindle I received in February. Remember when I made a cover for it, inspiring the Ugly Amnesty series? At the time, I promised to report back on my experiences with a Kindle. They’ve been life changing. I hope that’s not too grand a statement, but something in the world of publishing has most definitely shifted. I now resent having to buy a physical copy of a novel if it’s not available on Kindle. I find myself reading books I would never before have been seen reading on a tube. Yes, my change of habits has shamed me into admitting to literary snobbery. I used to care what people thought when they looked at the cover of my book. Not any more, because there isn’t a cover any more. At the other end of the spectrum, I can download classics for free. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, anyone? And I no longer have to worry that a brick of a novel is going to hurt my shoulder if I carry it around in my bag for the next four months. I don’t have to count pages any more. Revolutionary? You betcha.
These are massive changes. But here’s where it becomes really interesting. I still feel the need to invest in a physical book that I can love, stroke and put on a bookshelf. It won’t be a novel any more, because I want the convenience of reading fiction on a Kindle. So like a dressmaker who finds herself buying many more accessories because she can no longer find pleasure in buying dresses, I’m now diverting my book buying joy into sewing and knitting illustrated hardback books. The type of book I would once have hesitated over because of the cost. The type of book that won’t really work as an ebook because we need nice, big pictures to show us what to do. The type of book that demands the ritualistic sound of glue cracking as a spine is opened because any type of craft or reading about craft is a ritual.
The Kindle could be the best thing that’s ever happened to craft publishers. Interesting, no?