- Hardcover: 144 pages
- Publisher: Lark Books (September 1, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1600590969
- ISBN-13: 978-1600590962
- Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 9.4 x 0.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #769,188 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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French-Inspired Jewelry: Creating with Vintage Beads, Buttons & Baubles Hardcover – September 1, 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
I tend not to follow instructions, using books as inspiration and stepping stones to final projects. But if you prefer great detailed how-tos, I think you will be pleased here, without being overwhelmed. The materials lists are exhaustive, and the design tips with each project are quite useful and readable.
And the photos - ooohh la la, what a treat. Each project gets at least three different visuals, and if you drool over vintage bits and pieces, you will certainly need a napkin as you peruse this feast.
In the into, Meng defines "vintage", but I am still not sure just what makes these tidbits "French", except that the author runs a shop called "French General". But this book is not a hard sell for the shop, or even for things a la France. Instead, think turn-of-the-century vintage, or maybe a bit Victorian, if you want to understand the flavor of this book.
And if you like scrapbooking or other forms of memory-making, you will be inspired by the page layouts. Very creative, beautiful, and sublime. I love using buttons in my jewelry gifts, and the subtitle really sold me on this book: "Creating with vintage beads, buttons, & baubles". The word "Celery Sticks" could have been included, and I still would have snapped this one up.
Trust me on this one, or trust the other reviewers!! You will be googling and eBaying all over the world to collect items to use in your own creations.
Superb. If you liked "Beautiful Button Jewelry" or "Charmed", or even if you never heard of those titles, you will find this a tasty and economical treat.
French vintage jewelry is more colorful than American and British style which was influenced by the somber colors of Victorian and Edwardian England. The book start with the usual discussion of tools, supplies and techniques but the layout and photos makes this a treat. Even the wire wrapping tuturial has vintage type artwork.
The book is divided into chapters based on themes such as sea (La Mer),
which uses soft blues and corals, marketplace (La Marche) which uses fruit beads, garden (Le Jardin)using vintage flower beads, the churchyard, (La cimetiere) using buttons and subdued colors.
Many of the projects use antique-type chain and buttons, stampings and perforated disks. The many side-bars thoughout the book give hints on using vintage type findings and materials, making substitutions and design hints. The back of the book gives sources for finding vintage-type beads and findings.
All in all, French Inspired jewelry is a good read and user friendly book at the same time.
The photos are almost 3-D and the arrangements are extravagant and luxurious. All are appropriate to French rural life in the old days, and are split up into sections, such as The Sea, The Circus, Vines, and so on. The projects are not terribly difficult. Actually I found the author's website in her book. You can go there and replicate certain ones if you choose. I make my own jewelry, but I certainly respect good design and Kaari Meng really knows her way around vintage beads and lovely bracelets and necklaces!
It is a total pleasure to own and read this book. I recommend it thoroughly to any sybarite who loves beauty of any sort, and in particular to anyone who loves to make jewelry!
If you are NOT familar with jewelry assembly processes though its not a "beginner" book. But there are a lot of those out there already. This is definitely one to spark ideas because its mostly vintage pieces which are limited so the buyer of the book has to be prepared to be creative to try a couple techinques. Of course you can buy some of the parts at French General over the interet.
There is a good intro with basics covered. Info on findings, tools & vintage items. As for the projects, there are over 70 included. This book is jam packed. I'd make just about every project listed. I usually buy books & use them as jumping off points. I love books where I intend on making a majority of the projects.
The photography is stunning with lots of vintage items for inspiration. Instructions are clear & well written. She adds additional design tips with many of her projects.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love the book!! It's in wonderful condition and I cannot wait to start creating!Published 4 months ago by Cindy Warren
Not what expected. Will take this book to Half Price. Perhaps someone will appreciate it.Published 4 months ago by Paula L. Duke
It makes a wonderful table book for others to see. But I bought it for me, I am just now starting to make jewelry, there is some much info for what I want to make.Published 6 months ago by Rayna L Haught
This is the book that started it all for me. The pictures are pretty, you want to just lift the lovelies right off each page. Read morePublished 12 months ago by SinCityMel
I love this book. Not only is it pleasing to the eye at every turn of the page, one can visit the shop. Fresh General in Los Angeles anytime. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Meggie
You have to buy a ton of very hard to find jewelry bits to replicate even the simplest of the projects in this book. Read morePublished on January 23, 2014 by Janice Bryant
I am a beader and collect vintage buttons so this truly was inspiring for me. It gave me some new ideas for my jewelry.Published on December 10, 2013 by maureen salvoni
I love Kaari Meng's books. I have several of her books & enjoy them. She is so creative. Many beautiful pictures to admire & great ideas for vintage items.Published on April 29, 2013 by Bett Warren