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December 18, 2010

This is my first handmade book–finished, almost. All those empty pages are somewhat intimidating. It was a  good learning experience. What works and what doesn’t work.  The closely woven, plain weave cotton fabric was easier to use for the cover than I thought it might be. I first stabilized it with a double-sided fusible interfacing. Then fused the cotton lining to a cardboard- like interfacing. This made a firm but flexible cover.

I miss calculated the width of the lining and had to add a strip of lichen dyed, shibori silk to each side. This then left me with ugly corners which I covered with cotton triangles. All that needed securing with hand stitching through all the layers.

The pages/signatures are mulberry paper that I had on hand. Too light, so I cut the outside pages from old marine charts.

Now all I need to do is go sailing. Oh no, been there and done that!

The book is a bit wonky–not perfect by any standard. I’m really happy with the woven finish on the stitches on the spine. I used nylon upholstery thread for all the stitching.

And a beautiful old mother-of-pearl button for a closure.

Think I’m hooked.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. arlene permalink
    December 19, 2010 9:21 pm

    I can’t wait to see it in person.


  2. December 19, 2010 1:18 pm

    I was worried about the nylon–what should I use? Don’t know what it will become but maybe little notes and treasures.


    • December 20, 2010 1:54 pm

      traditional binding thread is linen (or hemp which was also called linen in “the old days”). cotton is also often used. avoid harsher synthetics. you’ll want numbers…i try to match the thread to my signature size, and i’m sure your weaving experience will serve you well here. waxed linen that is used for basketry is lovely for binding, but the wax may be a synthetic mix. i wax my own unwaxed linen with beeswax.


      • December 20, 2010 4:56 pm

        thanks, Velma. I like the linen and beeswax idea, have beautiful warp linen so will find some beeswax.


  3. December 18, 2010 6:22 pm

    hurrah!!! fiber and paper merge in a book. very fine first book, the spine is lovely. nylon may be a bit hard on your signatures, you’ll have to see how it wears. the contrast of the woven plaid and the endsheets is nice, and the little patches are nifty. what will you use this one for?!!


  4. December 18, 2010 3:32 pm

    Looks gorgeous!


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