good reads : Hoop-La! blog tour + a giveaway

Hoop-La! by Kirsty Neale, 100 things to do with embroidery hoops | Emma Lamb

Hello my dears, I have another lovely creative book to share with you today, it's Hoop-La! by the wonderful Kirsty Neale, whom you may already know through her lovely blog Ginger & George? So yes, this book delivers exactly what it says on the cover - "100 things to do with embroidery hoops" - but not just any old 100 things, 100 super cute crafty things!


Take a peek at the promo video, for me it totally sums up the cuteness of this book...



As you can see Hoop-La! is choc full of great ideas, these just being the tip of the proverbial iceberg, and it covers a good range of crafty techniques. The bulk of which is fabric, embroidery and applique based as you might expect but it also includes things like crochet, cross stitch, stencilling, cyanotype fabric printing, 3d softie making and even tells you how to turn a hoop into to your very own mini printing screen!
The book is divided into four key sections - First up is a wee intro to hoop treatments which suggests a few fun ways to decorate your plain wooden hoops as well as tips on how best to fix different fabrics securely into your hoops. Next is 'The Projects' with it's wealth of cute ideas and designs. Some of my favourites include 'Dear Diorama', 'Joined at the Hip', 'Oh, Dear', 'Him and Her' and 'Man-broidery' (see below). After the projects is a wee section explaining a few embroidery, crochet and patchwork techniques that are used in the book. Lastly there is the templates sections which also does what is says and gives you all the applique, embroidery and cross stitch templates you'll need for the projects right there in black and white.
With the exception of a couple of projects (such as the 'Mix Tape Screenprints' which includes some visual explanation) this book isn't a step by step how to with lengthy descriptions and photo tutorials. Instead it gives concise and clear written instructions for each project, which is all you will need as many of the designs are very straightforward if you apply your common sense and crafty know how. This is in no way a bad thing about this lovely wee book as the value of it is the wealth of cute ideas and adorable inspiration you will be able to glean from it! If you've never created a piece of 'hoop art' before Hoop-La! will give you all the info you need to get started and then you can use it as an inspirational jumping off point to do your own thing and go completely hoopy!

Hoop-La! by Kirsty Neale, 100 things to do with embroidery hoops | Emma Lamb

Hoop-La! is available as both a paperback and ebook (you can find both in my Amazon shop). I have to honest and say that I much prefer the hard copy as ebooks, especially crafty ebooks leave me a little cold. They lack a certain something for me. When Kirsty first got in touch to tell me about Hoop-La! I remember talking to her about how much I love that so many great crafty bloggers are getting to publish their own books right now. With most of their work and connections with people being in the virtual world it is wonderful to have something more tangible like a book to be able to share with others, and who doesn't love that new book smell!? Also, I think having a tangible object such as a book is such a beautiful way to commemorate someones work, almost like a wee creative time capsule don't you think?

Hoop-La! by Kirsty Neale, blog tour giveaway at www.emmallamb.com | Emma Lamb

Now onto the really fun bit, the giveaway! Kirsty is generously giving away a whole bunch of hoops from Hoop-La!, how great is that!? I asked if I could giveaway another of my favourite projects from the book, the 'Dress up Doll'. I think this is such a cute design and has so much potential for any little ones in your life. You could work with your son or daughter to make the hoop and then let them explore their creativity by creating their own wee outfits. You know I'm so tempted by this idea myself but I'm not sure how into it Spanner would be ;) Haha! Anyhow, if you would love to win this hoop for you and your little one I want you to leave a wee comment on this post telling me what you prefer - ebooks or real books? Simple!

This giveaway is open to everyone around the world but you must leave a way for me to contact you directly (Facebook, email and your own blog are great ways to do this). I'll aim to pick a winner this time next week so you have plenty of time to ponder your thoughts on which is better - ebooks or real books!?

Oh, and for the full list of stops in this blog tour and to find out which other hoops from the book are available to win hop on over to Stitch Craft Create.

Emma, x

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76 comments

  1. It has to be real. Firstly, craft books old and new just look so beautiful on a shelf all lined up together, just putting them together makes me feel happy. Secondly, a book looks much better next to a cup of tea. And thirdly, while I find e anything containing text great for commuting, bedside locker (my wonderful kindle for example) but I really don't the idea of my lazy time leafing through a craft book or doing a project merging with screen time. I overdose enough as it is!

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  2. Real books every time! I love the weight, the smell and the feel of them. Plus, I am a notorious breaker of technology so if I had an e-reader I would inevitably destroy it accidentally within a few days... Books are much hardier :)

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  3. real books! never need to charge a battry to read :)

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  4. I always prefer real books. Especially when it comes to illustrated books, I love to have them on my lap, to leaf forwards and backwards, to look at the pictures and to discover that one detail that really inspires me :)

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  5. Definitely a real book when it comes to crafty things. I don't have an ipad, and running to the computer every time I want to look at the book is just not practical! Thanks for the fab giveaway!

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  6. I love real books and get so much more enjoyment out of just sitting and thumbing through books for ideas.

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  7. Real books are definitly better for crafty things, but I do like my kindle for reading novels!

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  8. I prefer real books, the touch, the feel, the smell of a real book, taking it in bed before going to sleep or at the beach with you, relaxing on an air trip with one. Future generations will probably change all that ...I also love the hoops and the little girl, it reminds me of dress up paper dolls we had as kids. ariadnesky@hotmail.com
    AriadnefromGreece!

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  9. I'm really old fashioned and believe you can't beat a real book, no matter how much technology moves on you can never beat the feel and look of a real book!

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  10. I ever ever ever prefer real books, that´s kind of my touching enthusiasm for beautiful things like craftbooks, novels, yarn, fabrics - maybe my parents never let me touch new and cosy things I liked so much when I was little?
    Dear Emma, thank you so much for this great giveaway. I liked the book preview a lot and now I will go on a little journey to the author´s blog. Surely it will be as inspiring as yours.

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  11. Real books, you can feel and smell them!

    @hammahnator

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  12. I love real books, you can simply watch through them, keep them next to you and they are also very pretty just standing there displaying an (immense) collection of crafty books :)

    x

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  13. Great book! Would love to win, you can find me on: http://dingendiefijnzijn.blogspot.be/
    (my blog)
    Greetings Els

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  14. This is gorgeous Emma!! I will definitely be putting it on my xmas list - as a REAL book! I haven't embraced e-books yet, for me I love to hold a book, smell a book, examine a book and use it as decoration on my ever expanding real bookcases!! You can find me on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kindredrosedesign and I will keep my fingers crossed! Thank you xxx

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  15. Although I have a nook which has a light so is handy when I can't sleep I prefer a real book.
    I love the smell and feel of a good book, the crisp pages and unbent spine when they are new and the wrinkles when they are older.

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  16. I love real books! They look beautiful on a shelf or table and are great to hold. It's not the same with ebooks. Thank you for the cute giveaway!! (scgiL2@aol.com)

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  17. Oh, definitely real. Crowded bookshelves look great in a room and it's so much easier to flick through a pile of real books for inspiration, and compare pictures (especially between craft books and recipe books). Plus, it's a much less expensive accident if you spill something on them!

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  18. Real books hands down. Such a sweet giveaway, thanks!

    heatheranne99 at gmail dot com

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  19. There is no competition.....real books are the only way for me. I tried a free trial on Zinio with a copy of Mollie Makes and hated it. Epic giveaway, popped this book into my amazon wishlist just yesterday!
    cayliehotpants at hotmail dot com

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  20. I love real books - you can't beat the feel of a book in your hands!
    This looks a fabulous book!

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  21. Looove the book, it's coming on my want-list :-) As for the real vs e-book discussion: I say both! Real books for craftbooks and magazines, ebooks for novels... I read on the train and in my break at work, so an ereader is much easier to carry around instead of a big book.

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  22. Real books!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is nothing like snuggling in bed with a hot chocolate and a book to read, be it a novel, craft book or a cookery book. Thanks for a fun giveaway too.
    ks(dot)eyles(at)yahoo(dot)co(dot)uk

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  23. Great review, Emma...now very tempted for a peek at the real thing...I love the invention of ebooks~so fab for holidays and more room for shoes! But you can't beat curling up with a real book in one hand, hot cocoa in the other...there's something about the quiet 'in the moment'~ness of picking up real paper and taking the time out to lose yourself in another world for a bit xx www.lapinblu.com

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  24. Real books! I love to feel the paper. And what a beautiful give away!
    jannus82@hotmail.com

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  25. Physical Books. Iove to flip through the pages. Even though ebooks are great on my ipad. So Real Books!
    cherie06110@gmail.com

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  26. Although almost of my time I read in my computer, I really prefer physical books and when they are sooooo cute like the one that you are offering, even more.

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  27. I always prefer real books because I have never found an electronic reader that allows you to search so quickly through pages and find what you need. Also there is nothing so nice as a lovely row of books on a shelf that you can browse through!

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  28. What a gem of a crafty book... so creative and what an adorable little video!! I would love to win this book definitely in real book form... Yummy!

    Beata from rose hip (http://rosehip.typepad.com/)

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  29. I love it!! I prefer real books :-) :-). Nothing beats the feel and smell :-) thank you for the chance!
    melissacorivink[at]hotmail[dot]com

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  30. Definitely real books!
    http://kittens-with-mittens.blogspot.com/

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  31. Oh yes definitely Real books, I love the feel, the smell, the sound of turning pages, and the way a real book can draw you in with each new page, especially one with this much cuteness!! Thank you for the chance.

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  32. Real books! There is nothing better than having a real book in your hands. A book with beautiful illustrations is even better, especially when it's about creating all kind of wonderful things!

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  33. Real books, especially when it's a craft book. Creativity people like objects they can feel, turn a page, etc. Plus, the pictures and colors are always brighter.
    creativitylizette (at) yahoo (dot) com

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  34. So cute! I do love real books because it's nicer for leisurely browsing crafts & pictures, but ebooks are great too since they don't take up any space.

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  35. I like real books because I am a tactile type person.

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  36. That looks like a fabulous book - heading off to add it to my amazon wish list now! For crafty books, it's definitely real books for me - I like to hold them and pour over the photos and have them with me to refer to. Ebooks have their place - but prefer them for fiction :)

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  37. I like real books for craft books. I love to sit and flip through the pages of all the pretty projects. I bought one ebook and it just wasn't the same. I like to look at all my books on the bookself and know all the insperation is sitting there waiting for me. I can sit and pour over all my books over and over again.

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  38. I love "real" books! This book looks great! thank you!

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  39. Love your post - I've had my eye on that book for a while and now I'm convinced I need it for my collection. I personally love both real and ebooks but for craft books real books all the way (my Librarian fiance would never allow eBooks to take over the place of real books in our house!). I find eBooks really useful for reading whilst on holiday or commuting. M

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  40. i super prefer ebooks, especially since so many craft books are now available!

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  41. Real books... : )
    ickundzins (at) yahoo (dot) com

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  42. I prefer real books. Real magazines too!

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  43. While I am coming round to the ease of ebooks for fiction for moving, travelling, and living in small spaces, real books like this win hands down for their beauty. I could see this living out on a coffee table...

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  44. I love that deer! And a cloth paper doll! Swoon. I MUCH prefer paper books. I like to feel the book in my hand - and make comments and notations as I read (something that I know some paper book people frown on). Thanks for the chance to win that very cute dolly. You can reach me at kmwbeads at comcast dot net WHEN I win.

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  45. Such a pretty film, and love the music to. In answer of your question; Real Books!!! I love the smell, to be able to just hold them in my hand and feel the paper. I love to look at the pictures and grab it any time I like. Gives me so much more inspiration. You could get in contact with me on www.colorncream.blogspot.com. Thank you!

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  46. Paper books hands down!! Something about actually having it in my hands...besides reading in the tub with an electronic devise makes me nervous. :)

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  47. Must be a REAL book....I love the feel of the paper in my hands. I ADORE this hoop--so so cute!

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  48. I would rather have a hard copy definitely. The dress up hoop is so cute.
    smjohns63 at yahoo dot com

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  49. That's a tough one, I love the feel of a real book, but if there are patterns in it, I would like an E-book so I can just print the patterns instead of having to somehow copy them.

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  50. Real books are definitely nicer!

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  51. Real books are definitly better for crafty things,

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  52. Real books are better - surfing them in their own hands :)

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  53. Real books every time.
    @MorningPostie

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  54. They both have their advantages, I love the feel of real books, love having a bookshelf full of books, but at the same time, nothing beats the convenience of having ebooks.

    @robyn_llc

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  55. Real books, every time. I've been a bookworm since I was a child. I used to use my library cards as well as my Mum and Dads and would blitz through books at a rate of knots! When I was older I loved nothing more than to be given a few pounds and to be let loose in charity shops, summer fairs or car boot sales to buy more books. I still get excited browsing in bookshops and I love discussing books with the shop owners.

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  56. Why do we have to choose? I have had this debate with a number of my friends and they are all a little shocked that I see a place in the world for ebooks. I own so many books (actual books) they are in every room, stored in boxes, on shelves, and I love them, the feel, the smell of the old ones, the notes by previous owners in margins. But I also on a kindle. I use it to take many books away with me when I don't have space in my bag. I use it on bus, tube and just when my bag is full of other bigger, heavier things. I love that I have more than one book on it, so if I need something lighter to read when I'm tired, or something funny when I am sad, or deep when I want to be challenged. It being on my ereader doesn't mean I haven't 'shopped' for it, or that I can't discuss it with friends, it's just a different form of book. If they make more people read books then I think they are great...

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  57. i prefer real books, ebooks are great for travelling but for everyday life cant beat having a book in hand.

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  58. I'm definately one for real books and have been known to print pages from ebooks so I can have something tangible in my hands! Especially crafty books. And I like to write in books. Little comments about how a pattern worked for me for example. Yep. Give me a paper book anyday over an ebook :)

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    1. Congratulations Els! You are our winner, yay! I have emailed you just now :)
      Emma, x

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  59. I love real books but ebooks are great for travelling!!

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  60. Real books for reference books like this, ebooks for novels for on the train.

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  61. I buy e books the ones I love I buy the real thing

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  62. real books are far better for craft and design, I like to look at pictures and illustrations in print, but ebooks are fab for simply reading text!

    Claire (@speakycl)

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  63. I love ebooks now - as I travel so much and have my collection on my laptop. Sometimes though, and particularly with crafty ones, I prefer physical. @hannahprosser

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  64. I love physical books - you can flick through for inspiration and they look so great on the book shelf in my craft room! hmrgardiner@gmail.com xx

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  65. She is so cute,perfect for my daughter.lovely giveaway,thank you for the chance to win it.I am old fashioned girl,love smell of the pages,holding them in my lap,enjoying covers and lovely photos,so yes,real book for me,please =o).

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  66. I love love love real books!

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  67. I love real books! The smell, the feel the Total package!

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  68. Oh real books for sure! So much easier to 'flick' through to find something that catches your eye and that smell - love that new book smell!!!!

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  69. Definitely real books. Although I love my kindle, nothing beats just flicking through pages of pretty projects or seeing what happens to your favourite character on the other side of a page...

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  70. Real books, definitely. Nothing beats the feel of a crisp book newly opened or the musty smell of an old book after sitting on a shelf for years. I also love discovering notes scribbled In the margins of a second hand book, something you never get with a Kindle. And a paper book never runs out of battery.

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  71. Real books! Definitely! I like to touch them, to smell them, to feel them,...

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  72. The answer lies in the many shelves that sit in our house laden with books old and new ...memories and good reads,ideas and recipes for food as well as life ...a real book it will always be

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  73. ***GIVEAWAY CLOSED***

    A wee bit later than planned but the giveaway is now closed and the winner will be announced soon.

    Thank you so much to everyone for sharing your opinions it has been very interesting and occasionally surprising to know your thoughts :)

    Emma, x

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