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Rezension: Alison Holt studied at Goldsmiths College, London, and experimented with many textile techniques before choosing machine embroidery as a medium. She started to explore her love of gardens and the countryside through embroidery and in these two books (Machine Embroidered Woodlands and Beginner's Guide to Machine Embroidered Flowers) shows us how to create beautiful flowers and woodland pictures using various combinations of two simple machine stitches. The great news for many readers is that we don't need an expensive machine. We can use any electric sewing machine to do machine embroidery. If it's a craft you'd love to try but couldn't afford, a glance through the first pages of Alison's books will fire you with enthusiasm. Techniques and instructions are broken down into clear, colour, step-by-step instructions, with many helpful photographs and a great range of inspirational pieces. The books cover everything including the materials required; how to compose a picture from photographs that have inspired us; painting backgrounds and all the basic stitch techniques we need to know.-Machine Knitting Monthly Following on from Alison's earlier books concentrating on flowers and landscapes, this fantastic addition looks at creating woodland landscapes. Using a basic sewing machine, you'll find information on threads and stitches to get started. There are three detailed, step-by-step projects and numerous other photographs to fire the imagination.-KarenPlatt.co.uk The exquisite detail in Alison's embroideries makes them look as realistic as a photograph and this latest title featuring woodland scenes is no exception. Using nothing more than straight and zigzag stitches on a sewing machine combined with a little silk painting - she demonstrates how to create some amazing masterpieces that are highly rich in colour and texture. Starting with the basics of materials and equipment, she clearly explains each step of the process from planning the design, achieving perspective and starting to stitch. There are useful sections on composition and working with photographs plus techniques for selecting colours and achieving light and shade. The stitch section is particularly helpful with examples of machine stitches to create the look of foliage, tree bark and wild flowers. Four projects follow, one for each season, showing step-by-step the techniques used by Alison to build up the design from initial photograph to finished embroidery. This super title is a must for anyone who enjoys free machine embroidery.-Sewing World As a painter with a little knowledge of machine embroidery I found this book quite inspirational. The diagrams of stitches and how to make them are clearly set out and easy to understand. It is obvious that the pictures are worked with a painter's eye for colour and composition which could be a little daunting for non painters. However, the explanation on how to use the excellent photographs may overcome this.-West Country Embroiderers When I saw the works of Alison Holt for the first time, I thought these are beautiful landscape photographs. But as I looked more closely, I could hardly believe it that these were actually embroidered pictures. The light and shade are fantastic, the natural colours and the perspective. In her embroideries not only the colors succeed in representing forms and structures, but she also tries to catch the moment where she meets the light. She is a painter on the sewing machine for me.-Patchwork Professional Alison Holt 'paints' beautiful pieces of art with her sewing machine. All of the embroideries are worked using free machine techniques (with the presser foot removed and feed teeth lowered), using straight stitch and zigzag stitch. Every stage is very clearly explained with step-by-step photographs; even if you're not a natural artist, the beautiful hand-painted silk backgrounds look very simple to achieve and the painterly stitching adds texture and produces a very three-dimensional look. The finished embroideries are simply stunning! There are full instructions for four projects based on the seasons, but with detailed instructions for creating realistic trees, foliage, flowers, woodland paths and much more, you'll be inspired to use the techniques to capture your own favourite woodland glade.-Stitch
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