- ISBN-13: 9780399578335
- ISBN-10: 0399578331
- Publisher: Ten Speed Press
- Publish Date: February 2017
- Page Count: 224
- Dimensions: 10.1 x 7.3 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.94 pounds
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-11-07
- Reviewer: Staff
Bittner and Harampolis, owners of the Homestead Design Collective, a landscape design firm in the San Francisco Bay Area, expand the sense of possibility for practical use of typical plants while showing readers how to increase the bounty of the harvest. For example, lavender is often predictably consigned to the sachet or dried arrangements when, as noted in the book, it goes fabulously with chocolate mint for an invigorating tea. Salt-preserving herbs is another little-known and easily executed project that introduces year-long longevity for seasonal culinary delicacies. Whether for culinary purposes or home design, each project includes advice for optimal growing and cultivation of the relevant plants, followed by tips for proper harvesting. Arranged according to seasons, and accompanied by dramatic and intimate color photos, these creative and eclectic projects make a great resource for the earth-minded lover who relishes natures gifts but needs new ways of cultivating them and deriving their bountiful benefits. Color photos. (Feb.)
Lifestyles: Crafting a career
Looking to promote the artists and crafters whose creations she carried in her shop, writer and photographer Erin Austen Abbott began sharing “Studio Stories” on her Instagram feed. With How to Make It, she expands on that series, photographing 25 artisans and business owners across the country in natural light in their workspaces. Each profile features a short Q&A, a “Day in the Life” breakdown, a how-to for a related project—homemade wood butter, a block-printed scarf, a fringed greeting card, a hand-cut leather coin purse—and, in a clever addition, great Spotify fodder with a list of “Inspiring Songs from the Studio.” The projects are within reach for those of us who aren’t professional artists, and Abbott’s interviews are studded with sound advice from the trenches. It’s like the ultimate coffee date with your favorite creative mentor, times 25. “We have so much to learn from one another as we follow our creative paths,” Abbott writes. “Let’s all be in this together.”
A ROOM OF ONE'S OWN
It’s a dream of mine to build a tiny house in my backyard: a writing space for me, a place for occasional guests to crash. So I nearly gasped at She Sheds by Erika Kotite, which makes my vision seem awfully attainable. Here are real women’s one-room getaways, each with its own unique purpose. You’ll ooh and ahh over them all: a restored garden shed constructed with recycled materials, a contractor-built jewelry studio, a “new” shed built entirely from parts salvaged from other buildings and everything in between. Practical tips abound, from decisions about foundation and flooring to laying brick and painting. For each shed, the total build time and final cost are detailed, and many come in well under $10,000. You can also go the shed kit route, and Kotite provides advice on that as well. This is a fabulous resource and a dreamy look-book.
TOP PICK IN LIFESTYLES
Life seems a little—or a lot—more sensual and refined with things like edible flower-infused water, salt-preserved herbs, blooming butter and scented geranium sugar around. If you follow the lead of Harvest by Bay Area landscape designers Stefani Bittner and Alethea Harampolis, you can whip up these and other pleasures from plants grown in your own backyard. Organizing the selected plants by their growing season—either early, mid or late—the authors suggest a brilliant array of ways to alchemize their various parts. Roots, fruits, leaves and seeds become salads, scrubs, skin treatments and dyes. And if you can’t cultivate chinotto oranges or finger limes or pineapple guava? Never fear; there’s a handy substitution chart for each project, so you’re bound to find a plant that will provide what you need. New gardeners may feel a bit intimidated, but seasoned green thumbs will love these fresh ideas. And really, we can all pull off an aromatic rosemary smudge stick or dried herbs for sprinkling into dishes.