Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Handmade Home

It finally came!

Shop Indie Bookstores

I bought this book for myself with birthday money--in May--and I've been waiting ever since for its publication. It arrived in the mail yesterday, just when I was desperately needing a little rejuvenation. I spent 45 minutes sitting in a coffee shop last night, reading and sipping from my latest addiction: ginger-lemon iced tea. (Ahhh.) Today, I've already finished reading every word. (In fact, that's my only quibble with the book; I want more!)

I love Soulemama's blog. I've read every one of her posts and eagerly anticipate reading a new one each day. So of course I was thrilled that she's published another book. And I love it for the same reason I love her blog: it describes lovely projects, but behind them lies an ideal--not just a project idea. The life that is revealed through her writing is mindful, beautiful, joyful, and, yes, soulful, and so inspiring to me.

There is much to love in this book. I love that her projects are not just about making a thing, but are about making a life, a home, a refuge, a tradition. I love that it's about re-using materials--and she clearly really means it, as all the photos show repurposed materials (unlike in some books I've seen). Even the matte pages suggest her environmental sensitivity. I love that things don't look too perfect--they look do-able and real and heartfelt.

Many of these ideas I already do--thrift shopping almost exclusively, cloth diapering, making my own pads, using children's art in creative ways. But she has given me more ideas, and inspired me to try some new things. I will definitely be making a rag rug, and a potholder, and a kids-art-decoupaged tray, and an "art and hooks rack," a healing basket... And I hope, in the process, to help make a home and a family life as beautiful as the vision Amanda shares with us here and on her blog.


A. said...

I completely agree. Having a little inspiration to live better and more fully can never be a bad thing, and I am inspired daily but what Amanda has to offer. The little changes and efforts we make to be more mindful add up and hopefully present a better way of living for our children. That's my goal anyway. Thanks for sharing your review, I look forward to getting my own copy of Handmade Home!!!

llyee08 said...

I love the quilt you made for craft hope. I hope to make one in my life time. Your library books are cool too.
Luisa :)

Lise said...


I have finally tweaked something in the blogger settings that FINALLY lets me reply on my own blog. Hooray! It's been bothering me that I haven't been able to reply to your comments! Thanks so much for reading, and writing. Can't wait to meet you in person one of these days!