Gr 2-6-Large, clear, colorful pictures and an attractive format highlight these titles. There is some overlap of ideas in the books, but Beads is more complete in its step-by-step instructions. It offers good general tips for beginners. The quilled (rolled paper) butterfly pin and a blue-and-white marbled bead necklace are attractive and unusual. Gifts has more complex crafts and is geared for slightly older readers. It has a few drawbacks. The directions are not as complete, making it necessary to interpret the illustrations. When making bracelets, there is no mention of sizing the cardboard tubes to ensure that they will slip over the hand. In Beads, sizing necklaces is suggested. The directions for painting noodles, which is covered in the first title, are reduced here to "Be careful-painting noodles is messy." It is almost as though the books were written as a pair with Beads intended to be read first. However, the crafts in Gifts are newer and catchier, including making a personalized mouse pad. Other more traditional items include letter boxes, rainbow rings, mug mats, hot pads, string dispensers, and foil-decorated boxes. Budding, low-budget Martha Stewart crafters will appreciate the selection. Both books can be used with younger children as the illustrations can take the place of text directions.-Jennifer J. Gallant, formerly at Cleveland Public Library, OH Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.