Nuts & Bolts by Marthe Le Van

How To Make Steampunk Jewelry is beautifully laid out and full of great jewelry designs. Oddly enough, though, I did not find one steampunk type style item in there at all. This is a book of straight forward industrial works, each with intriguing modern and edgy looks. But where steampunk would have gears and springs, copper and brass, here we have steel and more steel – nuts and bolts, rivets and washers. Great for dieselpunk, to be sure. But nothing that I could reference back to Victorian era industrial/steampunk. Because of the dissonance between title and subject matter, it felt more like a marketer was trying to capitalize on the steampunk sensation by taking an otherwise good book and trying to turn it into something else.


Which isn’t to say that what is in this book isn’t excellent – I absolutely loved quite a few of the designs; they’d make great goth accents. There are many different types of designs using all kinds of interesting materials. From necklaces to pins, there’s a lot to love. Techniques, tools, tips, shopping lists, and more are described in detail and with quite a few photographs.

Each of the designs read like a recipe: We have a large dual color title, brown font introduction, tools and parts listed on the left side of the page, and then step by step assembly instruction in numbered paragraph form. Photographs of the items are large so you can see detail – but also nicely presented for aesthetic quality. It makes what could be difficult production very easy.  I wish more cookbooks had recipes laid out this cleanly!

There are a lot of ‘gears’ clip arts strewn across pages to make this seem stumpunky. But the fonts, presentation, colors, and designs are all modern industrial or dieselpunk. As a steampunk book, this would rate 1 star. As a Jewelry design book, this is a strong 4 stars.  You’re going to be inspired by what’s in here and how many you could make with minimum tools. The designs range from very easy to more intricate hand work requiring specialized tools. The cover does a great job of showing the type of designs you will find within.

Reviewed from an ecopy provided by the publisher.

This entry was posted in ARC, Book Reviews, crafts, non fiction. Bookmark the permalink.

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