on June 16, 2003
On first glance at the table of contents, this book may seem to be for crafters of all levels, but I think it is best for those who already know how to stamp. Overall I think this book is useful, but it has a few drawbacks mixed in with some good advice and projects.
The first 17 pages of the Introduction could have been condensed into just a few. Also, I would have rather had pictures of the tools and techniques mentioned in this section, rather than just representations of finished products. I did think that the second half of the introduction was more informative. I especially liked the section on the elements of design.
In the Simple Stamping section Ritchie does not clearly list materials or take you through the stamping process at the time you most need it. I can understand not doing this later in the book for the more advanced projects, but I wish she would have included more pictures of intermediate stages at this point. You might ask yourself how hard can stamping be? However, to newbies such as myself who do not know much about inks and papers and such, more information would have been helpful. I do like the general tips she has scattered throughout the book.
The last section of projects is titled Frames and Backgrounds. This section contains the more advanced stamping projects. It is broken up into three smaller sections titled Embossing, Punch Art, and Special Effects. These projects all involve different layers of paper, ribbon, charms. By the way, all the projects in the book involve stamping on paper, but some of the techniques could be easily translated into projects using other materials.
In the appendix there is an Illustrated Glossary which is very nice and a list of sources. These sources should be fairly recent because the book was published in 2001.
I think people new to stamping may want to learn basic techniques from another book, but this book would be a good one to go back to after gaining some experience. This would make a nice addition to the collection of intermediate and advanced stampers because Ritchie has some really nice projects.