Friday, October 23, 2015

Italian Needlework Books easily available outside Italy

One of the most frequent requests I get is: "where can I buy these books in English?" Now, I've come to understand that this does not necessarily mean that readers are asking that the texts be in English, though most of the time that is what they are asking, but they also want to buy them from websites in English because they are not comfortable with the uncertainty of online translators.

I do not get any compensation for mentioning books here, even the ones I translated (just to get that out of the way). I try to tell you about the things that I know are available and how I know how to get them. In the past I haven't recommended resellers as a rule because these books are already marked up as the resellers have had to cover their own costs in receiving the books from Italy. When possible, I have mentioned direct sources so you get the lowest cost which might mean a bit more work to make the purchase.

Please know that when I write a book review, I always say what languages the text is in. If I write "text in Italian" that means that an English language version does. not. exist. I'm sorry that I cannot translate the books for you. I would love it if all of them were in English text too!

In the past few years the Lace and Embroidery line of books from Nuova S1 in Bologna has been able to secure distribution in a few places outside Italy: Amazon's various websites and affiliates, Barbara Fay in Germany, Book Depository in the U.K., Lacis in the US. and Ryunan Bros in Japan. (Please note that Nuova S1 publishes other types of books so not everything that shows up in a search of their name will be a book about embroidery.)

Books for you in Canada sells a selection of Italian needlework books, though I did not see any Nuova S1 books, there were others which I've reviewed here.

I found searching Book Depository's website that there were a number of titles available and at reduced cost, plus they ship free worldwide. I did various searches including by publisher, by author's name, by technique. Use my Italian Needlework Library page as a reference for many titles and authors but remember that I don't have everything and some stuff will be out of print.

There are some clues to find the information you want. At Book Depository I couldn't get any of Nuova S1's books to come up under a general search of the publisher's name but searching an author's name gave me results:

Now, here the languages are listed as "multiple languages" but in the title it says: "inglese" which means "English".

Amazon brings up all of Nuova S1's books by doing a search of their name which is handy, it gives you everything together without having to search individual author's names but it also brings up non-needlework books too. A search with the word "ricamo" (Italian for embroidery) brought up all kinds Italian books, not only the Nuova S1 ones, so be imaginative in your search terminology.

One final word about resellers: while Amazon and Book Depository are well known and honourable, it is helpful to ask if the book is actually in stock before approving payment when dealing with other, smaller online resellers. Many wait for an order to come in before searching out the book themselves and your wait time can be frustrating. Remember that when not buying direct from the source, you are essentially hiring someone to find the book for you.

I hope this helps you with your holiday shopping!

1 comment:

  1. I scan my foreign language needlework books using a paid version of ABBYY FineReader 12 (there is a free version, but the OCR is better in the paid version). I scan the copy straight to Microsoft Word, then I use Google Translate to translate it to English. Sort of labor intensive, and Google Translate doesn't always recognize specific needlework terms ("thread" may translate to "wire" in some languages, for instance), but better than being totally clueless about the meaning of the book's text!