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Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Crafts: An A-to-Z Guide with Detailed Instructions and Endless Inspiration

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,097 ratings  ·  107 reviews
For nearly 20 years, home crafters have turned to the pages of Martha Stewart Living for all kinds of crafts projects, each presented in the magazine’s inimitable style. Now, the best of those projects, including step-by-step instructions and full-color photographs, have been collected into a single encyclopedia.

Organized by topic from A to Z, Martha Stewart’s Encyclopedi
Hardcover, 416 pages
Published March 31st 2009 by Potter Craft
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Nov 03, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crafty, non-fiction
I have to admit that I am skeptical of Martha Stewart, specifically when it comes to crafts. I have always associated her brand with generic and over-commercialized products. I do admit to using some of her recipes and they turned out wonderfully so when I heard about her forthcoming craft encyclopedia I was curious and of course skeptical.

I picked up a copy at the public library and meticulously poured over it as soon as I got home. The first thing I will say is that I was turned off by the cov
Apr 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Oh! Tons of good ideas in this book!

1. Beaded flowers
2. Leaf printing
3. Teacup candles
4.(I love etched glass)
5. Fabric flowers - perfect for a book cover
6. Glittered Easter eggs
7. Glittered birds (normal decorative bird that you cover in glitter)
8.Acorns glued on top of a box (as a "lid")
9.Dementibulating a pinecone and making a flower with the pieces
10.Making a candlestick decoration with those pinecone pieces
11.Rubber stamping on fabric (makes a lovely book cover!)
12. Rubber stamping on shells
Jun 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I love this book! Any craft or art, you found it in this encyclopedia. Well-explained and meant for all levels, I have referred to this book numerous times. It is a book that also keeps in mind cost and helps you find ways to enjoy arts and crafts without breaking your budget.
Oct 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: crafters and artists
How much do I drool over the photographs in Martha's publications? A LOT. Her photographers make you want to hang a step-by-step process in a gallery. I'm going to have to return to this book in more detail, especially for all the reasons listed from my initial flip-through:

p. 57 - using plate hangers to hold frameless pages under glass. I am always looking for new and creative ways to avoid framing.

p. 68 - fabric sun prints. I had no idea there was such a thing as light-se
Aug 08, 2009 rated it really liked it
If you have read Martha Stewart's magazine, then a lot of these projects will look familiar. I don't get the magazine very regularly but always enjoy her crafts. So having many of those crafts from the magazines in one place is extremely convenient.

This book is a comprehensive book on crafting with a wide range of difficulty levels so even someone new to crafting would be able to find plenty of projects. I really enjoyed the appendix of tools for crafting. It has full color photos and then descr
Marie Z. Johansen
Feb 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: calligraphy
I have to admit to being a real admirer of almost all things Martha Stewart-ish. I am no champion house-keeper nor am I a crafting wizard but I do always enjoy the Martha Stewart Magazine and website. In this age of wonderful craft & sewing books -I think that any book that would dare to call istself a 'crafting encyclopedia' would have to be pretty darn sure of itself and this encyclopedia does not disappoint. As always with Martha Stewart products, the instructions are well written & b ...more
May 31, 2009 rated it liked it
One doesn't so much "read" this hefty volume as browse it for ideas. There are wonderful pictures and wonderful ideas for ways to spend time and means in creating really lovely items, but there is also the typically "Martha Stewart" touch of making everything seem like you have to do it only with her brand-name supplies for it to work as shown. In a similar vein, I have a couple of Martha Stewart cookbooks I enjoy perusing on occasion, but I've yet to make anything from them. There's that not so ...more
Aug 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2009, artsy-fartsy
the library wants me to give this back tomorrow. :(

i read through it again, marking a few projects that I want to come back to in the future.

pg. 111 polymer clay. I love polymer clay and want to practice playing with it more.
pg. 75 calligraphy (a step by step chart)
pg. 123 glass etching (looks addictive)
pg 150 glittering gift tags and cards
pg. 213 origami shades for twinkle lights! CUTE!
pg. 219 making envelopes
pg. 222 painting on glass, ceramics, china
pg. 298 rubberstamping (LOVED the picture
Aug 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: hobbies
How could Martha not get 5 stars? I'm pretty sure this is the only Encyclopedia I have ever read, and probably the only one I would find so inspirational. This lady (and her large team) does it all- who ever heard of Quilling? I made the mistake of finishing it right before bed and had a hard time sleeping because of all my crafty ideas I was worried I'd forget about if I didn't write them down immediately. Anyway, this book will most definitely be added to my permanent craft collection and I'm ...more
Jun 28, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I wanted this book for a long time before I finally realized I could check it out of the library. After going through it I did come away with several interesting projects I wanted to do and a helpful CD at the back with templates. I can't say that the directions were particularly detailed or helpful -- more than anything it was a book of good photographs of craft projects. Does this sound familiar? -- that's right, Pinterest almost makes this book obsolete. I'm glad I checked it out and didn't b ...more
Some great ideas, great illustrations, great to own as a reference. For future reference, I would like to do some stuff with/for the kids: bottle cap frames, pom poms, quilling, silk screening, sand candles, decoupage furniture, sun prints (not necessarily all of those!). I also think I would like one of those linen table runners with botanical print, glass etching (it's been awhile), matting and framing, and maybe gilding (although isn't metallic paint cheaper?). I wish she wasn't so dowdy, bec ...more
Just - The romance reader
Feb 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crafting, at-library
Wow! Awesome visuals and lots of great crafting ideas. As usual with Martha Stewart, the crafts are all clean and more simplistic in style. The instructions are straight-forward and easy to understand with photos to go along with all the steps.

The only thing that kept me from giving the book 5 stars, and this is purely a personal preference, is that the book contains soooo many different crafts instead of focusing on just one craft type that I went into overload. The book made me want to try ou
Brooke Pfannkuche-Swain
Apr 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a great reference for all different ranges of experience levels with tons of projects and ideas. Easy to understand instructions, clearly listed materials, and great pictures to walk you through the tutorials. In the back there are several patterns and templets.
I checked this book out at the library looking for something to do with the kids over Spring Break and was so impressed that I immediately ordered it on So many things I can't wait to try in there!
Apr 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
I didn't read this book word for word as it would have taken DAYS! Instead I looked at each and every picture and read the instructions for the crafts I am planning on doing sometime soon.

This is a great resource. I like that there are patterns in the back of the book. There are also great resource and supply lists in the back.

I think this is a book I will come back to over and over as a reference for most things crafty.
Elizabeth Webber
Oct 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Quite literally a crafting bible. I have checked this book out from the library so many times to try new things that I am finally going to just buy it. Seriously, it has everything. I am the kind of person who wants to dabble in lots of different crafts, especially around the holidays. This is a great and easy to follow book that gives me ideas of what to try next and gives detailed instructions to help me be successful in my new adventures. I definitely recommend it.
Sep 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have come to the conclusion that all Martha Stewart books are absolutely incredible (especially the ones that have been published in the last 10 years). Her book "Crafts for Kids" that was released last year is absolutely spectacular, and this one is as well. I guess if you have an awesome team of people working for you, anything less that amazing is not acceptable. ALWAYS a good bet to go with Martha. I am happy my local library carries this! I highly recommend this for any crafty person!
May 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: knitting-craft
While most of the projects (if not all) have already been featured in Martha Stewart Living, it's really fabulous to have them compiled in one handy volume. The visual "dictionary" at the back is helpful -- there are great tips included throughout including sources for harder-to-find items.

I love to hate you, Martha. You make it all look so easy! This book, with the gorgeous photography and (mostly) clear instructions is inspiring.
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
This is a good book to have if you want to know the basics about a plethora of crafts. There are very few ideas and if you want to do anything other than the very basics, you need to look elsewhere. Since those are the two functions of a craft book for me--finding ideas or learning more in depth about how to do something--this book wasn't very useful to me and I gave it away.
Apr 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I did not read the text of this book, but I read all the titles, the subtitles and the pictures….and I don’t think I’ll ever read all of it at once. To me, it’s a reference I’ll use when making art project.

My favorites?
Botanical Pressing
Botanical Printing
Paper Cutting and Punching
Paper Flowers and Birds

Just looking at the projects, makes me happy!
Jun 15, 2009 rated it liked it
If I could only own one craft how-to book, this would be a top contender. That woman covers everything (as usual) and has nice pictures to demonstrate just how talented we can all be if we would only try. I'm not sure I would have room for such a large book, but it was fun to read through it and I'll be using it in the future as a reference. I love my library!
May 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: shoplifters
Okay, the shell-covered trash can on the cover is truly hideous. But the rest of the book is magnificent. There is an entire chapter on paper birds and flowers. You may think you have better things to do with your time than press flowers and practice your calligraphy. But you are wrong. If you need me, I'll be at home, sharpening my pinking shears.
Mar 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book was a new book in our library and I snatched it up before it got onto the shelves. I now Martha is a nut but her ideas are amazing....salt and pepper holder and soap dishes out of shells?...oh yes. I made alot of copies but may have to purchase this. Everything is in this from tissue paper crafts, pom pom balls, beads, marbelizing paper to wire crafts.
Nov 17, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: borrowed
I checked this out from the library with an eye towards purchasing it as a gift for friends with children. I was sorely disappointed to find though that these are not cute and do-able crafts for children. These are highly sophisticated and intimidating crafts engineered to challenge only the most bored of housewives.

Good Luck to any who manages to do one of these horrors.
Apr 26, 2009 rated it liked it
I would have given it more stars if it had info on some crafts I thought could have been included, like needle-felting, or maybe even some embroidery or sewing-type craft. I'm still loving this book, though, and was pleased to see screen-printing in it, which is something I've been wanting to do ages and might give it a try if I can manage to re-borrow this from my library again! :)
Oct 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, crafts
It's a very "Martha" book--which may be good or bad, depending on your view of her, I suppose. Unlike her Encyclopedia of Sewing and Fabric Crafts, this one didn't have anything in it that I'd actually do, so it was more of a skim-through to see what was there than an actual sit-down-and-read-each-page kind of thing.
Sep 05, 2010 rated it it was ok
I want to like you, Martha. Really I do. But in the age of craft blogs, pinterest, and any other craft how-to at my finger tips, this book seemed outdated. It also felt dull next to the more creative and edgier crafts I see displayed all over pinterest. My Great-Grandmother would have loved this book- for me, not so much!
Feb 22, 2010 rated it liked it
I'm not usually a fan of Martha Stweart's stuff, it's just not that appealing to me, but this is a good general reference on a whole lot of different types of crafts, some really well knowns ones, and some lesser-known crafts. I found the chapter on decoupage particularly helpful, and that is what I am most likely to use it for in the future.
Aug 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
I checked this out of the library on a whim, to take a look at it, If this wasn't Martha (who I really can't stand, and whose aesthetic bothers me a good deal) it might well go on my buy list. As it is, it will come back out of the library again, for excellent sections on Beadwork, Wirework, Botanical Prints, and others...
Apr 26, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fic
Just reading this book exhausted me- who has time to do all this stuff?! Plus, I'm a smidge offended she didn't include Lip Balm in the book. It's the single best thing Martha ever taught me how to make!!
Mar 26, 2009 marked it as to-read
Shelves: nonfiction
I am not a big Martha fan in the way of food, but some of the craft ideas in here are fantastic. The page I opened to was a picture of a craft I did for a friend's son's wedding...I made a paper cherry blossom tree.
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Martha Stewart is an American business magnate, author, editor and homemaking advocate. She is also a former stockbroker and fashion model. Over the last two decades Stewart has held a prominent position in the American publishing industry; as the author of several books, hundreds of articles on the domestic arts, editor of a national homekeeping magazine, host for two popular daytime television p ...more