Amarettogirl Craft Book Review- The Naughty Secretary Club: The Working Girls Guide to Handmade Jewelry by Jennifer Perkins
Since I'm big on reinventing the function of small plastic toys into jewelry (such as my Mai Sweet Shop Altered Rement line) I was beaming with intrigue when I saw the new book by Jennifer Perkins (yes the DIY network's Craft Lab host herself!) has a new book with her trademark kitschy style, entitled The Naughty Secretary Club: The Working Girls Guide to Handmade Jewelry.
One day, in a hurried rush I browsed through the book in the bookstore, but I was too tired from a hard days work (teaching is not easy) and I didn't immediately purchase it. Then my fave Threadbanger podcasts had a Naughty Secretary Resin Bracelet demo on their weekly show with Jennifer Perkins and her book. The demo was so informative and thorough that the second I got on Spring Break I went back and bought the book. Boy am I glad I did, since a big chunk of my vacation was all about crafting with Jennifer!
- Paperback: 144 pages
- Publisher: North Light Books (August 11, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1600611168
- ISBN-13: 978-1600611162
So here are some of the many strengths and little weaknesses of the book:
Excellent for beginners and inspiring enough for experienced folk (like me). Jennifer's overall mission is to get creatives and non, to see outside the normal confines of jewelry making and in this -recycle and reuse way- to see potential in anything, and I mean anything.
So on the negative side, if fun colorful, larger than life kitsch, garden gnomes, telephone cords, swizzle sticks, plastic toys, eyeglass necklaces, pencil earrings and watch headbands are too over the top for your traditionalist-little-beady-jewelry-makin'-mind than this book is not for you.
Ms. Perkins applies a secretary (9-5 gal) theme throughout the book with funny little side-notes, hot-tips and blurbs on the working girls history, holidays and lore. She includes what I think are hysterical, informative tidbits on the art of true, multi-tasking ability, ie., six other uses for coffee filters and a list of eight other uses for pantyhoses!
So in honor of the first day of Spring I tried my hand at an over-the top plastic, fantastic bracelet inspired by Ms. Perkin's Secretary's Bouquet Bracelet on pg. 120. I was super lucky to find a cha-cha bracelet blank (yes thats what its called) at A.C. Moore (Michael's didn't have any). However the cha-cha bracelet blank that I found had only one loop running across it, as opposed to the two loops on the blank that Jennifer uses in the book. I'm sure if I would have found the correct blank my Spring Chic bracelet would have come out a lot meatier. Instead I opted for the longer hula-skirt style.
Another great aspect of the book is that is categorizes every project in chapters of difficulty. This bracelet is a three star difficulty (highest level in book). In addition, she explains that this bracelet is great for the collector and Lord knows thats what I am truly master of.
So if you're interested in adorning your body with original, funky, re-cycled, joyful and often whimsical jewelry BUY this book!!