Inspiration Kantha

Creative Stitchery and Quilting with Asia’s Ancient Technique
Anna Hergert’s Inspiration Kantha: Creative Stitcehry and Quilting with Asia’s Ancient Technique arrived right at the moment I’m exploring to challenge myself with a new textile hobby. As mentioned in the previous review I knit and crochet, but my practice is limited to blankets and scarves. Practical items, but they can get somewhat tedious no matter how many different patterns I use. Because we get many submissions about kantha, I’ve been pondering whether it’s time I try my hand at stitching. Lo and behold, Schiffer Publishing sent me Hergert’s book and it has been love at first sight. 
 
Hegbert opens with Historic Kantha and discusses both embroidery and quilting (technically is  a form of embroidery), adding that with quilting there are two layers of fabric as opposed to one. She deftly transition to the meaning of Kantha and provides a good historical overview of where Kantha and its variation originated. The latter part of the chapter consists of the variations of kantha and the different types. 
 
For beginners like me, there’s a crucial chapter: Supplies. Obvioulsy, you need more than needle, thread and some cloth. She breaks these down by the types of cloth, thread, marking tools, needles, sharp embroidery scissors. 
 
Once you have the tools, it’s off to the races with the running stitch. In this chapter, she breaks down the method and notes,”The most alluring characteristic of kantha is that every area of the cloth is worked in successive rose using small running stitches ultimately achieving a ripple a wavy effect. Is important to keep the spaces between the stitches longer than the stitches themselves. This will result in a pleasing, highly textural outcome.” For a novice, like me this is an important lesson. 
 
Hegbert also provides step-by-step visuals for outlining kantha motifs, and the following chapters are projects you can try for yourself. Once you’ve mastered these stitches, she provides projects that are more sophisticated that allow you to create textured work by using assorted fabrics.
 
Also included is a chapter on kantha as meditation, a gallery of stunning work and sample drawn motifs to get you going. At the very end there’s suggested reading and a glossary of terms. 
 
Inspiration Kantha: Creative Stitcehry and Quilting with Asia’s Ancient Technique is the perfect introduction for anyone looking for a new creative outlet. I can’t wait to get started. 
 
Inspiration Kantha: Creative Stitcehry and Quilting with Asia’s Ancient Technique is available on Amazon.com.
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