Plant Lady Embroidery: 300 Botanical Embroidery Motifs & Designs to Stitch
by Applemints

I picked up Plant Lady Embroidery with a view to trying something new, and perhaps relaxing, whilst in lockdown during the Covid-19 outbreak. As an embroidery novice I was lured into this world of pretty threads by the delightful and colourful plant and flower motifs (perhaps an unconscious reaction to not being able to be outside so much), photographs of which fill the first third or so of the book. The array of beautiful photos of completed designs are followed by some suggestions of where to use them (for example to embellish clothing, or to create brooches), before the crucial section for me – how to do the actual embroidery. For the most part this was extremely clear, though for one or two basic instructions I had to resort to YouTube to find alternative explanations where the static photos had left me a little puzzled.

That said, the templates at the back of the book, in conjunction with the matching photos were easy to follow and I then spent a happy 2 hours lost in embroidering my first flowers. I quickly learned that it will take some practice to get regular stitches, neat and delicate as in the photos, but what mattered more was that I didn’t notice the time passing, and I found myself in that elusive zone – in the flow – and right now, that’s something to treasure.

This book will bring a dose of charm into your life at a time when we all might welcome that. It works well for an absolute beginner (though there are also some designs featuring more complex scenes which I imagine would appeal to experienced embroiderers), and might be something for a teen looking to embellish clothes (the book design is fresh and smart, without a whiff of old worldiness) as well as anyone looking to find a bit of peace and relaxation. Just maybe people will be getting lots of embroidered gifts from me for Christmas this year…

[Reviewed by Zoe for FOLIO]

Book Review