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A Beautiful Mess Happy Handmade Home: Painting, Crafting, and Decorating a Cheerful, More Inspiring Space Paperback – August 26, 2014
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Top Customer Reviews
A lot of the projects are of that special breed you only find in DIY books. I am not going to nail coffee filters to pallet strips and call it a headboard. Or decorate my china with a Sharpie, or duct tape aztec patterns on my fridge. When I spend the effort making something, I want it to be... well, nice. I was thinking messy along the lines of those tags on Anthropologie stuff that tell you that your silk pillows may have natural variation because they were woven by hermits on some tiny island in Micronesia. Not 'preschoolers decorated my living room' messy.
The writing style is encouraging, but I wouldn't call this book beginner-friendly. For example, the Quotable Wall Art project includes directions like 'purchase or cut pieces of thin wood' and 'stain the wood'. It doesn't tell you what tools you'd need or how to go about staining wood if you've never done it before. The Painted Dresser project says to clean and lightly sand the surfaces, prime and paint. That's it: no in-progress photos or tips on making the project successful beyond 'don't stress yourself out about the perfect color.' The Cross Stitch Stool doesn't actually give you a cross stitch pattern, it just says to make your own design.Read more ›
Several of the more advanced tutorials require the reader to research methods and techniques because the "authors" have not given you that information in the book. I found many of the DIY projects to appear juvenile and are clearly not durable or long-lasting home decor ideas. Personally, I believe there is a difference between having a lovely home with personal, handmade touches and "crafting" a home to look like it is full of tacky craft bazaar cast-offs. Regrettably, this book leans toward the latter. I am not sure what has qualified Elsie and Emma to be authorities on home decor, but their style is very frenetic and clamorous. There is no cohesiveness to their style, and it is overwhelming to imagine a home filled with these ideas and projects.
It's clear that Elsie and Emma have prioritized filling their book with "staged-casual" and gratuitous photography over actually trying to put energy into a thorough, unique book. It's actually a shame that so much money and effort was put into the creation of this book, when it is no more inspiring or interesting than browsing Pinterest, or the Beautiful Mess blog, for free.
My advice - leave your home decor ideas to the real experts and save your cash.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The DIY projects mainly consists of fabric paint, electrical tape, and creating up your own stamps for everything. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Lisa Rabey
A Happy Handmade Home by Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman is a cheerful, vibrant book for the casual home DIY'er. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Jesica
Love this book. So many wonderful pictures and crafts. Enjoyed each one. Highly recommended.Published 6 months ago by Mem
I love these girls and their colorful life. It gives you a few common sense diy projects nothing special.Published 7 months ago by maria veloz
These ladies are geniuses! Can't wait for their cookbook to come out! :)Published 8 months ago by nicole oreto
Lovely ideas! Look forward to actually doing some things that are inspired from this book.Published 8 months ago by Beverly Davis
A lot of cute ideas for projects both big and small. Not sure the photos are realistically representative of a crafter with children (who can afford furniture from Anthro when you... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Keri A. Otte