Book Report: Needlepoint on Plastic Canvas by Elisabeth Brenner De Nitto (1978)

All right, so I read this book; I even bought it, although I couldn’t tell you if I bought it at a garage sale or very cheaply at a used bookstore. I bought it, though, because I’ve done needlepoint on plastic mesh before and will do so again before they stop me. Besides, once purchased, it was on my to-read shelves and represented an easy browse to removal. So I flipped through it enough to satisfy my interia criteria for having read a book, and now I’m reporting on it.

The book includes a number of projects one can do with needlepoint taking advantage of the new plastic mesh canvas which apparently came on the marketplace at about that time; the book lists several suppliers and brand names. Now, I walk into Walmart and just buy whatever cheap sheets my Walton cousins stock. But back in the day, undoubtedly this was the hot new technology, like .NET for crafters. The introduction chapter talks about the transition from fabric canvas, and I laughed out loud when I realized that I took for granted a two-step stitch–once down through the canvas and once up–to which fabric crafters, who were used to folding the canvas for a single-step stitch, would have to adjust.

Undoubtedly, Lileks could do a number on the patterns in this book, but I won’t; I will, however, comment that my mother was a Creative Circle representative, and she used to hold Tupperware-style parties to sell patterns, yarns, kits, and whatnot to housewives. This was almost thirty years ago, in the early 1980s, and I remember a certain number of craftesque gifts exchanged and some crafty things around the house and the houses of people whom I visited. Is it just me, or is the number of home-crafted things in decline? I don’t know many of my generation/peerage who sew or do crafts. Acourse, we’re all geeks who spin yarns called computer programs and the assorted effluvia of the IT industry, so perhaps my perspective is skewed.

So what did this book gain me? I have a listing of other stitches I can use on plastic canvases. I don’t think I’ll use the patterns within it, nor did they particularly fire my imagination for projects. I did, however, finish book #31 for the year, and I still have the collection of Dick Tracy cartoons in reserve for if I fall behind my desired pace.