Explore your creativity this summer

Published 1:37 pm Monday, July 13, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Jen Pace Dickenson

Shelf Life


As I’ve found myself with more time at home this year, I’ve been exploring new art forms, such as watercolor lettering and embroidery. What have you been doing to express yourself in 2020? We have several free kits available for pickup at our libraries this summer: teen Kawaii journaling, bullet journaling for adults, and take and make craft bags. The take and make craft bags change each week and are geared towards different ages… Next week, adults can pick up a kit to make a wood block gnome! In addition to our kits, here are some books to get your creative juices flowing.


Zen Doodling Mandalas by Carolyn Scrace
Since ancient times, the mandala has been a symbol of the universe, a cosmic diagram that represents infinity and our own inner being. Here, zen doodling queen Carolyn Scrace offers instructions for creating captivatingly beautiful mandalas with nothing but a scrap of paper and something to write with.


200 Embroidered Flowers by Kristen Gula
Learn how to stitch all your favourite flowers, leaves and foliage, with this collection of tutorials for 200 embroidered flowers and foliage. Discover how to stitch beautiful blooms including roses, daisies, daffodils, pansies, and buttercups as well as more exotic blooms. Modern hand embroidery expert, Kristen Gula, shows you how to create all the floral motifs from a stitch library of less than 10 embroidery stitches.


Vogue Knitting: The Ultimate Knitting Book

The ultimate knitting reference, from the world’s most recognized knitting magazine, gets a thorough update! It features revised and fresh material throughout, 65 additional pages, and more than 1,600 photos and hand-drawn step-by-step illustrations. It’s full of treasures, from an expanded library of cast-ons, increases, decreases, and bind-offs, to in-depth sections on favorite techniques such as brioche and entrelac; and design and construction chapters that encompass dozens of options.


Everyday Watercolor by Jenna Rainey
This beautifully illustrated and inspiring guided watercolor-a-day book is perfect for beginning watercolor artists, artists who want to improve their watercolor skills, and visual creatives. From strokes to shapes, this book covers the basics and helps painters gain confidence in themselves along with inspiration to develop their own style over the course of 30 days.


Pure Soapmaking by Anne-Marie Faiola
The pure luxury of soaps made with coconut butter, almond oil, aloe vera, oatmeal, and green tea is one of life’s little pleasures. And with the help of this book, it’s easy to make luscious, all-natural soaps right in your own kitchen. This collection of 32 recipes ranges from simple castile bars to intricate swirls, embeds, and marbled and layered looks.


Jen Pace Dickenson is the youth services librarian for Polk County Public Libraries. For information about the library’s resources, programs, and other services, visit polklibrary.org or call 828-894-8721.