Worktable Wednesday

Last week, I talked about an upcoming Star Book workshop I’m teaching at Artists’ Mediums in Williston, VT. They asked for a sample book to display in the store so that folks could get a sense of the structure’s possibilities.

I finished the book this morning and have proudly earned my X-Acto blister battle scar.

Messy studio worktable

Elissa: 1 – Worktable: 0

I tried to keep the book design simple so that it wouldn’t scare away potential students. At the same time, I tried to create something that had meaning to me so that I would enjoy the process.

For whatever reason, I became obsessed with the idea of doing stitching on the cover. I’d never sewn on bookcloth before and I have no idea why it became so important to me today. I decided to let myself be the boss of me.

As the book was based on my trip to Olympic National Park, it seemed appropriate that I use the park’s name on the cover. The color of the stitching is almost an exact match for the bookcloth. Unfortunately, the picture I took doesn’t quite capture the subtlety.

Star book cover - embroidered with the word "Olympic"

There are six spreads in the book – each one depicts something I saw during my trip to the park. I loved this trip and the park has become my most favorite place ever. EVER.

Handmade star book page spread - smooth beach rocks

I could walk on a beach and stare at rocks all day long

Handmade star book page spread - forest ferns

The ferns looked like stained glass

Handmade star book page spread - alpine meadow flowers

There are some seriously determined flowers on those mountains

Handmade star book page spread - tide pools

If I could somehow replicate the beauty of tide pools in my backyard, I’d be out there with a shovel and a hose in a heartbeat

Handmade star book page spread - large beach rocks

I wish I knew what made those bizarro holes in the rocks

Handmade star book page spread - alpine flowers

Such stunning color

Just writing this post is making me wistful for the northwest.

I considered adding text to each spread’s background using pencil – almost like notes from a field journal. Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough time. The result seems a bit sparse to me. Maybe when I get the book back, I’ll take it apart and add the text.

4 Responses to “Worktable Wednesday”

By velma - 11 August 2011 Reply

working with what you love, what you respond to so strongly, can be amazing. there’s a richness here that i really like.

By Elissa - 12 August 2011 Reply

Velma –

Thanks for the feedback.

I’m still at a point where I only see what I didn’t get to do. I’m hoping that my mood about it will improve now that I have some distance from the project.


By Sarah S - 12 August 2011 Reply

this book is just stunning!!

By Elissa - 12 August 2011 Reply

Sarah –

Thanks so much! What do you like about it?


So what do you think? I'd love to know!

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