Textile artist Chloe Owens is inspired by all things vintage, and much of her work is made from 1960’s fabrics. She is also a lover of annuals that she used to read as a child, with their brightly coloured illustrations, and instructions mixed in with activities puzzles and games.
So instead of a run of the mill craft book, Chloe has ingeniously made an annual complete with games: follow the thread, strings and needles, lotto. Included are translations of rhyming slang, for example: Bangers- “bangers and mash” (sausages and mashed potato)=cash. As with the best of annuals it has many illustrators, so that each project is almost like a mini book in its own right. Each project starts with a witty heading or a pun, so a reclaimed chair is called ‘The best seat in the house’.
‘She’s a pin board wizard’ pin board is taken from the song of the same name from The Who’s ‘Tommy’ album. Many of the projects are written as if a friend or animal has made them and so they take the comic book form in both layout and story line. The result of all this is a very busy looking, book of fun.
I like the way Chloe writes, her instructions are clear and she encourages you to have a go! This is a hip book, full of diverse projects, and lovely photographs by the late Claire Richardson. Projects range from felt biscuits to soft toy animals, a very cute baby dress and some furniture projects and home accessories. Amongst team R&B’s favourite projects is “A must have for the modern man”, the deluxe felt beard, now with optional moustache. I am not sure if we will be sporting it just yet but when the chilly autumn winds blow you never know.