I'm still trying to decide how to describe this book. It strives to be a classic textbook in a great many areas and succeeds quite well. I feel as though I'm in a textile school and using a professional text when studying this book. By submerging yourself in the information you will become very well informed and, through practice, skilled in several areas of needlework. Included here is information on every aspect of basic stitchery and then some. You are introduced through picture and charts to materials, frames, hoops, notions and various floss', pearl cottons, blending filament, silks, wools and threads in great detail. Then specific stitches, not just cross stitch, but many others that may be used individually or with cross stitch are introduced.(The photography and charting is excellent, showing some of the best detail work I've yet seen.) And you go on to exercises that develop skill in that particular technique or material or both with the use of a motif. There is information on creating patterns, working with computer design, reproducing designs from pictures, using mirrors to graph corners, reverse designs, central themes and borders. There is even a section on blocking. Much more is included in this book than I could record here. This is really a compendium. As was stated by another reviewer, this is not a book of motifs or independent projects and it doesn't pretend to be one. It is the sort of refrence book that will be looked at often.