Book: Yarn, Thread, String: Making, Manufacturing and Creating
by Janine Vangool
published by Uppercase Publishing, Inc., Alberta, Canada
Janine Vangool publishes Uppercase Magazine and an increasingly long list of books that have specific art, craft, and design themes. Vangool’s books in her ‘Encyclopedia of Inspiration’ series are collections of profiles + portfolios showing recent work on a given theme. These types of surveys of a creative space are a huge effort to solicit, judge, layout, edit, and proofread! This gorgeous, hefty volume provides nearly 500 pages of full-color, beautifully printed, elegantly designed profiles of artists, designers, manufacturers, and suppliers working with fibers and fiber-like materials.
Vangool and her team included an impressive range of profiles, from flax farmers to wool processors, knitters to fine art portrait embroiders and macrame artists; from people who make natural dyes to those who machine knit; from people shredding used plastic bags to responsibly reuse them for a more durable purpose, to people shredding paper to turn into delicate, nearly lacy fabrics.
I appreciate the effort that went into this compilation and survey, and especially the impressive resulting range of work. Many of us only have a chance to see fiber arts if we happen to be in a region where they are being shown, or have a chance to watch fabrics being made at a textile museum. (I went to an experimental public elementary school, which means I’ve carded and spun wool, but that is a rare experience in a city!) This is a great way to showcase excellent work to a broader audience than most of these creators could otherwise reach, and to give more people a chance to see some great materials and works.
Vangool not only does a great job with the book, but also creates an embedded video for each of her publications on the Uppercase website, so you can view a video of the entire publication before you buy. That takes confidence! You can click on this Vimeo link, or on the book title just below the cover above ,to preview this book.
Summary: this is a high quality publication of some fantastic fiber art manufacturers, suppliers, designers, and fine artists. I recommend it highly if you enjoy well-designed books, textile arts, skeins of freshly dyed yarn (artfully arranged), or understanding how threads and fabrics are made.