A paintbrush on a colorful canvas with phone featuring the ebook "Made by Hand."

Recommended Reads, Book Clubs

25+ craft & DIY books to inspire your next project

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Jan 29, 2024

We asked readers on the Libby app about their favorite thing to do while listening to an audiobook. Again and again, they told us: Painting, knitting, coloring, sewing, crocheting, quilting, origami—you name it, they’re making it. There are so many crafty readers out there, and I like to consider myself among them. When I was a kid, I loved to draw and color, but as I got older, that hobby went by the wayside. Having my own daughter reignited the spark and now I gleefully stock our craft drawer (for her, of course) with watercolors, paintbrushes, markers, sculpting clay, dot markers, googly eyes, stickers, beads and shrink art and carve out time on the weekend to make a mess.

While crafting alone can help you unwind, think, read (hello, audiobooks!) or just fill in some free time, connecting with fellow crafters is a great way to socialize with like-minded creatives and possibly even pick up a few pointers. Many libraries offer crafting book clubs where readers can meet to discuss a book they’ve read while working on a project like Crafts and Cozies at the Cuyahoga County Public Library (OH) or listen to an audiobook as a group like at the Hawaii State Public Library’s Listen, Color, Craft and Relax Audiobook Club. Check with your library to see what’s offered in your area. If you have your own crafting buds, choose a project for everyone to start together, try out a new material, learn a new medium and just have fun.

Are you itching to start a new project or get some inspo for your next? Flip through these crafting books on the Libby app for ideas or new techniques to take your hobby to the next level.

General crafting

General craft books

The Year of Cozy: 125 Recipes, Crafts, and Other Homemade Adventures by Adrianna Adarme
You Are an Artist: Assignments to Spark Creation by Sarah Urist Green
Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People by Amy Sedaris
Artpreneur: The Step-by-Step Guide to Making a Sustainable Living From Your Creativity by Miriam Schulman
Hooked: How Crafting Saved My Life by Sutton Foster
Lena Corwin's Made by Hand by Lena Corwin


Drawing / Painting / Coloring

Drawing and painting books

Draw Every Little Thing: Learn to Draw More Than 100 Everyday Items, From Food to Fashion by Flora Waycott
How to Draw Adorable: Joyful Lessons for Making Cute Art by Carlianne Tipsey
Everyday Watercolor by Jenna Rainey
Painting Calm by Inga Buividavice
The Secret Lives of Color by Kassia St. Clair


Crochet / Sewing / Knitting / Embroidery / Quilting

Crochet, sewing and knitting books

The Tunisian Crochet Handbook by Toni Lipsey
Wear, Repair, Repurpose: A Maker's Guide to Mending and Upcycling Clothes by Lily Fulop
Patty Lyons' Knitting Bag of Tricks: Over 70 Sanity Saving Hacks for Better Knitting by Patty Lyons
Mystical Stitches: Embroidery for Personal Empowerment and Magical Embellishment by Christi Johnson
Urban Quilting: Quilt Patterns for the Modern-Day Home by Wendy Chow


Papercraft

Papercraft books

The Art of Paper Cutting by Henya Melichson
Tomoko Fuse's Origami Boxes: Beautiful Paper Gift Boxes from Japan's Leading Origami Master by Tomoko Fuse
The Organic Artist: Make Your Own Paint, Paper, Pigments, Prints, and More from Nature by Nick Neddo
Yellow Owl Workshop's Make It Yours: Patterns and Inspiration to Stamp, Stencil, and Customize Your Stuff by Christine Schmidt
Making Marbled Paper: Modern Marbleizing Techniques and Patterns by Heather RJ Fletcher


Pottery / Ceramics

Pottery and ceramics books

By My Hands: A Potter's Apprenticeship by Florian Gadsby
The Beginner's Guide to Hand Building: Functional and Sculptural Projects for the Home Potter by Sunshine Cobb
Artisan Air-Dry Clay: The Beginner's Guide to Easy, Inexpensive & Stylish No-Kiln Pottery by Radka Hostasova
The Potter's Bible: An Essential Illustrated Reference for Both Beginner and Advanced Potters by Marylin Scott
Making Pots: A Ceramicist's Guide by Stefan Andersson


*Title availability may vary by library and region.

Happy crafting and reading! 🎨🧵🧶🖼️📚

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About the Author

Annie Suhy has been working in the book industry since 2006. When she’s not working, practicing yoga or petting cats, she’s doing paint-by-numbers or buying more plants. An avid poetry fan, her favorite collection is "The Splinter Factory" by Jeffrey McDaniel.

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