Summer is here, which means sunny days that are perfect for diving into new craft books. I’m excited to offer a selection of new books to help you stay inspired this summer, whether you’re working on creative projects or administrative tasks.
Planning to make time for creativity this summer? You’re in luck! This season saw a wonderful new crop of craft titles that are sure to inspire, including Punch Needle by Arounna Khounnoraj, Baskets by Tabara N’Diaye, Hand Dyed: A Modern Guide to Dyeing by Anna Joyce, Beyond the Block by Jodi Butler, and Crochet Every Way Stitch Dictionary by Dora Ohrenstein, and The Gift of Calligraphy by Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls.
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A Big Important Art Book (Now with Women) – Danielle Krysa
The author of Creative Block and Your Inner Critic is a Big Jerk is back with a witty new art book, featuring profiles of contemporary artists who haven’t always received as much recognition as their male peers. The artists profiled are mainly living artists, several of whom are still in the early stages of their careers. Artists are often paired together with a more recognized artist who works in a similar or complementary style, weaving a thread of connection across time and space. Krysa offers creative prompts in every chapter, a great starting place for aspiring artists who want to hone their craft or develop a more recognizable style.
As discussed in our 2019 trend forecasting guide, the retail sector is going through major changes. As old-school retailers like Sears falter, up-and-coming brands are innovating with highly-detailed retail spaces and creating memorable experiences for their customers. This guide to contemporary retail spaces features examples of creative retail displays and systems, accompanied by profiles of successful business owners. There’s also an illustrated, step-by-step guide to securing a retail space for your company. Even if you have no interest in opening a retail store, this book offers insights into how customers respond to displays, product pricing, and signage, which could come in handy when planning for events, pop-ups, and trade shows.
Company of One: Why Staying Small Is the Next Big Thing for Business – by Paul Jarvis
Building a craft business can come with growing pains, but hiring an enormous team doesn’t necessarily have to be part of the equation. Much like The Magic of Tiny Business, this book explores whether companies can stay small and still achieve impressive results. Jarvis shares examples from companies driven forward by “Results-Only Work Environments” which offer enormous flexibility, like four day work-weeks, and remote offices. While not every example is from a truly small company, Jarvis does share some of the logistics for how to manage growth as a single-person company. He always returns to the same question: what if we define our goals (and stick to them), instead of always pushing for more.
Every Tool’s a Hammer: Life Is What You Make It – Adam Savage
Known for his work on the hit show Mythbusters, Adam Savage’s curiosity and ingenuity has been highlighted for 17 seasons on the Discovery Channel. This book takes a deep dive into the nature of creativity, and Savage’s observations about how following your own creative thread can have a transformative effect on your life.Savage is evangelizing for makers everywhere, and the umbrella of maker covers a lot of ground in his book. This book isn’t so much an autobiography, although there are some personal stories inside. It’s more of a philosophical exploration of the mind of the maker, and the passion, devotion, and sometimes obsession that can propel creative work forward.
Are you reading anything inspiring right now? Share your favorite craft books below, and @craftindustryalliance on Instagram to show us what you’re reading!
Erin Dollar the Craft Industry Alliance Community Manager and Outreach Coordinator. Erin is the textile designer and artist behind the home décor company, Cotton & Flax. She licenses her surface designs for fabric, home décor, stationery, and other clients. She’s also a teacher, writer, and enthusiastic advocate for small creative business owners. She lives in San Diego, California.