Concrete, once reserved for purely utilitarian purposes, has gained popularity as a design element for home and garden. Since the materials are readily available in most areas, and the required skills can be learned without formal training, concrete has also become a popular medium for DIY projects. Those included here start small, with candle holders, and gradually move up in both size and detail. The largest are still relatively small—table-top vases and bowls—though the concepts could easily be translated to larger applications. Most of the work required for these projects is in the preparation of the mold, which here can take the form of plastic storage tubs, discarded bottles and other household recyclables, and modeling foam, as well as store-bought molds made of silicone and other materials. Many of those that use modeling foam are designed to work with one of the templates on the last half-dozen pages of the book. While a few projects use pigment or glaze, most show off the concrete’s natural finish. — Anne Heidemann
Library Journal 2018
Concrete brings to mind construction, not decoration, but Dawidowski, author of a number of craft books, and crafter Moras, delve into this different medium with projects for vases, containers, ornaments, and more. After an introduction to concrete and safety considerations, projects are grouped by purpose or style in rather inconsistent fashion. They include a list of materials and step-by-step instructions with a picture of the process. Templates are included. Unfortunately, some of these projects are a mixed bag—some rough, some unique. Alternative works include Camilla Arvidsson and Malin Nilsson’s Concrete Garden Projects and Hester van Overbeek’s Making Concrete Pots, Bowls, and Platters. VERDICT An optional title for those interested in concrete crafts.