There is no right or wrong answer, but here I will attempt to highlight the differences between the kits and give my recommendations.
There are 4 main considerations:
Purpose: The first thing to think about is what sort of fabric book do you want to make?
Do you want to make a memory book with photographs or a textile art journal with fabric artwork on the pages?
If it’s a photo album or scrapbook you want – the Stitchbook Starter Kit is great. It comes with the photo paper you need to create the photos already included as well as the lettering stampers that are used to create text inside the book. (With the Sketchbook you’ll need to buy these things seperately).
Time vs Freedom: If you are pressed for time, the Sketchbook is ideal. It is pre-made so all of your time can be spent decorating the pages rather than constructing the book. This makes it quicker to complete.
The downside is that you can’t customise the page backgrounds as much as in the Stitchbook Starter Kit. If you would prefer to spend more time creating patchwork or detailed backgrounds for your pages the Starter Kit would be a better fit.
Equipment: Do you have access to a sewing machine? If the answer is no, then the Sketchbook is the one for you!
The Starter Kit requires a sewing machine to construct the pages (although you can hand-sew the rest of it). The Sketchbook is designed so that it can be decorated with or without a machine, making it perfect if you are new to sewing or have your machine tucked away in the loft!
Landscape vs Portrait: The page orientation is an aesthetic decision – Which would suit your books content? The Starter Kit has portrait pages and the Sketchbook landscape ones.
How do you choose? Well, look at any photographs you are planning to use – are they mostly portrait or mostly landscape? If you are planning an art journal, what is your theme/ topic. Look at some reference pictures, what size are most of the images?
I would recommend that you go for the Stitchbook Starter Kit for photo albums and scrapbooks, because it already includes the photo paper, and the portrait orientation will suit most photographs.
If you are creating an art journal I would recommend the Sketchbook because you can spend all of your time concentrating on making the artwork rather than construction of the book.
But really either way works! You can buy photo paper and lettering kits seperately to make the Sketchbook work as a photo album, or add artwork to the Starter Kit Stitchbook (and keep the photo paper for another project). The great thing about these kits is they are completely customisable. You can use them for whatever project you like!
What do you think?