French Beaded Christmas Wreath by Lauren Harpster

New Book for my French Beaded Christmas Wreath!

I almost can’t believe this is really happening, but my “French Beaded Christmas Wreath” book is finally, actually published! It feels like I’ve been working on it for years, but I think that’s just because this whole year feels like multiple years already and it’s only August.

Alrighty, so the book is available as a paperback and Kindle ebook on Amazon (USA) <–this link is an affiliate link. I get a small extra percentage of the sales, with no extra cost to you, if you purchase after clicking on my link, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, Amazon Japan, Amazon Italy, Amazon Germany, Amazon France. I believe the Kindle book is available on more international Amazon sites. The paperback will be on Amazon Australia sometime soon. For some reason, Amazon’s self-publishing company (KDP) doesn’t distribute to Amazon Australia (except through third parties who massively jack up the price). So I have to go through another printer (IngramSpark) to get the book on Amazon Australia. They just take longer to review, proof, and list books. So it’s coming I promise! I wish I could make it go faster, but the current situation is slowing down their proof printing process.

I also have a PDF version here on my website for those who want to go that route. In a couple weeks I will have signed paperbacks available on my website for those who really want my signature. πŸ™‚ Those are already on order, and should be here around the end of the month.

This book is a little different than my previous books. My first two books are teaching books. They have a lot of techniques in them and teach you about the materials and tools and all that stuff. My Christmas Wreath book is a project book. I did make a very short technique reference in the back, but it’s more like a picture dictionary intended for people who already have some familiarity that just need a little reminder. But, all of the techniques I used in the book are taught right here on my website for free. I decided not to include those in this book because teaching techniques as thoroughly as I like to teach them increases the number of pages, and the number of pages increases the cost of the book. I don’t want you guys to have to pay for the same technique tutorials over and over and over, especially when I have free ones available. So from now on, most of my books will be done this way. The only exception will be those in my “Learn French Beading” series, which are/will be coursework and reference books meant for teaching.

The book was officially published yesterday. Today I woke up and found that it was ranked at #1 New Release and #3 Bestseller in the Beadwork category on Amazon! It did fall to #4 later on, but two of the books above me had nothing to do with beadwork (one was making clay figurines, and the other was diamond painting, which is just fancy stickers for adults). So, since those two aren’t even beadwork, I think mine is really #2 Bestseller in Beadwork. Haha! Thank you so much to everyone who has already ordered the book!

In addition to the flowers and branches in the wreath, I threw in bonus instructions for turning one of the poinsettias into a Christmas tree topper. πŸ™‚

I need to issue some public acknowledgements to a couple people who helped me with this publication. The first is to Suzanne Steffenson, who has been my editor through three books now, and who worked with me to design and produce “Beaded Berry Collection.” Without her assistance I don’t think my books would be quite as good as they are. She’s helped me to improve my writing, and this time around she taught me how to make a nice index. πŸ™‚ The second thank you goes out to Tracy Yu, who I asked to be a beta reader for my book. Her eagle eyes caught some whoppers that had been overlooked, and her feedback about the book was immensely helpful. You ladies are seriously amazing!

On to the Next!

I know some of y’all are going to email me asking about Spring Collection after this announcement. So, I’ll say that I’m knee-deep in that book… and another one… I’m doing my best, but I have no idea when it/they will be done. I was really hoping I’d have them done by the end of the year, but I don’t even know anymore. We are doing online virtual school with our kids for at least the first half of the school year. That did cause some delays earlier this year, so I’m imagining it will delay me some more again. But, it is what it is. I gotta take care of my babies and do what’s best for them. Both of my boys have asthma, and if they even get a cold they are sick for weeks and we struggle to control the asthma for a while after. So I’m not too keen on them getting this Covid-19 crap.

My First In-Person Class

I know what some of y’all are going to say… why are you doing in-person classes during a pandemic when we’re supposed to be social distancing? Well, my students were my kids. That’s why it’s okay. My two boys have been asking for me to teach them to make beaded flowers for a while, so I finally got out some size 8 seed beads and we learned how to use a bead spinner, and the Continuous Loop technique.

They did pretty well I think! They’ve never worked with wire before, so there was some frustration there. And using size 8 beads was a good decision as they were struggling to grab even those bigger beads. We had some issues learning about spacing loops properly, and how to twist tightly so you don’t have to twist down below loops too far. The day after they pulled out a copy of my Beginner Course book and read through it. My 10-year old memorized it, because that’s what he does. Then they sat and made several more flowers each. We will need to work with just continuous loops for a while until they get used to wire work, but my little heart is just so happy! Maybe they’ll continue with it, maybe they won’t. But I was glad for this opportunity to share something I love with them. (PS, my boys think I’m one of the most famous people in the world because of my flowers and books. No one tell them otherwise. They still think I’m cool.)

Happy beading everyone!

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