Written by Lisa Kan
Okay, let me start out by saying that Lisa Kan is one of my all time favorite beadmakers and designers. Her website and blog offer endless inspiration and eye candy! Her book follows suit.
As a designer I judge a book by two criteria. First, does it inspire me to think of my own jewelry designs in a new way? Secondly, does it offer enough new techniques to help me further my knowledge and spur me on to add some new tricks to my design repertoire. Lisa's book offers both.
You may be new to the world of beading, nary a thread and bead to hand or you might know every beading stitch under the sun. I believe Bead Romantique has something for every level. The designs range from basic stringing and wire wrapping to complicated right-angle weave.
If you are new to beading, don't fear. There are earring projects to start out with that will help you with the basics. You can build up your skills as you work through the projects in this book. I love that many of the beading projects are small components that repeat and build together to create larger and more complex designs. The mix of chain and brass filigree add depth to the construction of some of the simpler beaded pieces, which is oh so clever!
I'd also recommend this book to someone who is an advanced beader. I could see this adding some creative sparks to those who have seen it all in the world of seed beads. I see quite a few projects that call for size 15 seed beads. (Those are the tiny ones smaller than regular seed beads!) In the beginning of the book Lisa says she wanted to create projects for the intermediate to advanced beaders who are looking for new inspiration.
There are a few projects in the book that feature art beads. I could see art beads incorporated into many of the designs as the focal point. Another bonus is the historic inspiration behind the jewelry, from the Renaissance period to Art Deco, along with a generous sprinkling of Victorian and Art Nouveau styles, Lisa covers 400 years of art history with style and grace!