Craftivity: 40 projects for the DIY lifestyle


If, like me, you are the type of person who hoards bits and bobs, with grandiose plans about turning them into something fabulous – or maybe you’ve just moved to Byron Bay and have time on your hands – then Craftivity is definitely for you!

Craftivity is described as a guide to creating ‘fresh, fabulous, fun craft from yarn, fabric, paper and wood’. Some DIY projects, like the simple felted flower brooches or the bold black mobile for babies, are contemporary and beautiful. Others, like the recycled t-shirt underwear, are just plain creepy. And I shudder to think what you would do with the knit lampshade and the pom-pom floor rug. On the other hand, ‘blankie’, a whimsical and nostalgic piece which the author made when ‘her best friend got knocked up’ is sure to bring a smile to your face. Sure, it might be a little too California for our Australian readers, but there is always the felted cashmere koala blanket to make them feel more at home. Nostalgia is definitely a recurring theme here – like the charming felt cushions made from favourite ‘sweaters’ and beloved scraps of frayed woollens – sure to be a winner.

I particularly enjoyed the step-by-step instructions, illustrated by what appears to be the hands of Gloria Gaynor sporting pink nail varnish complete with twinkling disco stars. For a left-hander who learnt to knit by repeating the mantra, ‘stab the man, strangle the man, throw him over the cliff’, this renewed enthusiasm for craft makes it appear less macabre than I remember.

Along with lashings of irony and good humour, the book does have a few good ideas. More importantly, it’s a great way to fire up your imagination and a useful springboard for creative ideas. Now where did I put that box of purple chicken feathers’

Craftivity is published by Collins