Category : Studio

Worktable Wednesday

This morning was really interesting. Someone came by with a book that needed repair – a Webster’s Dictionary from 1952.

Webster's Dictionary

It’s GINORMOUS. It’s use-me-to-defeat-the-intruder-in-your-home size. Seriously. The thing is five inches thick:

Webster's Dictionary

The binding is really odd – I’ve never seen anything like it before. The whole book is post-bound.

Webster's Dictionary

The spine isn’t attached to the front and back covers – it gets sandwiched in between the text block and the covers when you close the screw posts.

Webster's Dictionary

My friend Elizabeth, who attended the North Bennet Street School, told me that she thinks that this isn’t how the book was originally bound. She pointed out how the spine-edge of the pages don’t all line up as they should – it’s as if the book were cut into sections and then rebound using screw posts.

Webster's Dictionary

I didn’t start working on the book repair today because I had to focus on a custom order that I received from Etsy. I’m customizing a large photo album with a different ribbon binding. This will be my first book to live in Spain! ¡Hurra!

Today was Glue Day:

The handmade orange oak leaf paper is my absolute favorite paper by Richard Langdell. Please don’t tell the other papers that I’m playing favorites.


Worktable Wednesday

Now that I’ve finished my last craft show of the season, I’ve entered appointment week – this is when I schedule any needed appointment that can wait. Lots of running around today.

I did squeeze in some time this evening to work on a custom book that was ordered when I was at Artrider CraftMorristown this past weekend (I’ll write about the show later this week). I was asked to turn my Hottie Photo Album into a journal.

Gluing the covers:

I love love love the paper on this book – it’s a reversible Unryu. The side of the paper that I use is red, while the other side is purple. The texture is so wonderful.

After pressing the covers and letting them dry, I’ll bind the pages and covers together.

Worktable Wednesday

Today was spent in Coptic binding mode. The first book I worked on was a MonoJournal – this is a new line of books that I debuted at Craft Vermont. I’ll talk about these journals in detail next week.

Today’s book was of the Lime variety:

This book is bound with four curved needles. While binding the book, I work with the needles hanging off the front edge of my worktable – it helps keep the thread from getting tangled.

The journals I worked on next were larger and had hand-painted cover papers by Claire Maziarczyk. Her papers are simply stunning. All of these journals are one-of-a-kind because I could only get one set of covers from each sheet of paper.

I realize that my stitching looks crooked in the following image, but it gets straighter as you continue working on it. This larger journal requires six needles for the binding.

I didn’t get a lot of work done today because I had an appointment in the early afternoon and a super-fun evening meeting of the Book Arts Guild of Vermont.

Tomorrow I pack up for this weekend’s show in Morristown, New Jersey – Holiday CraftMorristown. Hopefully I’ll get everything done in time!

Worktable Wednesday

My family is visiting this week for Thanksgiving and I wasn’t sure if I’d get into the studio today. My plan was to make Thanksgiving books with my niece and nephew, but somehow we ended up running errands all day. Meh.

I managed to sneak into the studio around 11:00 p.m. and completed eight accordion books I started earlier this week:

Hopefully I’ll be able to make books with my niece and nephew tomorrow. When I told my niece that we’d be making books, she said “I love making books!”

Peanut. ♥

Worktable Wednesday

I wish I could say that I worked on something fun in the studio today, but sadly, my worktable was neglected. If it makes any difference, I finished 26 books yesterday!

I spent the entire day packing up for my first big craft show of the holiday season – Craft Vermont (tomorrow is the first day).

If you’re planning on attending the show, you can find me in booth #7 in the Emerald Room (same as last year). You can save yourself some dough by downloading a coupon for $1.00 of admission.

Here’s the scoop on the show:

11/18/10: 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
11/19/10: 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
11/20/10: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
11/21/10: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Location: Sheraton Hotel & Conference Center, 870 Williston Road South Burlington, VT

I hope to see you there!

Worktable Wednesday

Just like last week, I spent the morning preparing for my class at the Orchard Valley Waldorf School. I’ll be writing a post tomorrow about my students’ progress on their books.

My time in the studio was pretty mellow today. I focused on preparing pages for binding. While I was working, I thought to myself, “There’s something about a smooth, uncut piece of paper that’s bliss.” It’s so true.

I started out working with my go-to journal paper, Speckletone. I’ve been using this paper for a long time and I really love it.

Then I got to work with some new paper. You are now getting sneak peek at the papers that will be used in my new line of journals debuting at next week’s Craft Vermont show.

I love the lime paper so much – the color is really vibrant. And it’s so smoooooooth. I just want to roll around on it.

By the time I finished cutting and folding, I had pages prepared for 17 journals. I believe that I can say I’ve put in a good day’s work when the final count involves a prime number.

Worktable Wednesday

I recently came to the realization that I haven’t been very good about talking about my work (mummy aside). As a result, I decided to add a new feature to my blog – Worktable Wednesday.

The idea is simple – I’ll take pictures of whatever is on my table on Wednesdays at different times of day. I’m hoping that this will get me into the habit of sharing my work on a regular basis. You may have heard of Wordless Wednesday, which a lot of artists do on their blogs, but I’m not quite the wordless type.

I’m sure this doesn’t come as a surprise.

Half of today was occupied by my class at the Orchard Valley Waldorf School. By mid-afternoon, I was able to get into the studio. I covered 13 sets of boards for small accordion books.

[Insert frenzied trip to the post office here.]

I’m looking forward to sharing more of my work with you!

…and my other new baby – a book press

Not only did I get a library card catalog from Maureen Cummins, I also got a new book press. Well, it’s not really new, but it’s new to me. It’s the same size as the one I already have.

I have decided to name it Pressley. My other press is named Preston. They’re married (it was arranged).

I have to get it sandblasted and repainted, just like my other one. I wish I could be brave and super-cool and paint them fun colors, but I’m not sure I can go through with it. A voice in my head keeps saying, “Book presses are black, you silly girl. Blah blah blah.”

In an attempt to inspire bravery, I did a search on Flickr for colorful book presses. I created an image gallery of my findings – This ain’t your plain black book press.

I’m leaning towards orange and/or lime green. We’ll see where that goes.

My new press has a lovely swirl detail on the side. That’s how I decided it was a girl.

Closeup of book press

I’m just now realizing that my book press has curly hair, just like me. Definitely my baby.

Open Studio Weekend update

VT Open Studio Weekend signsOpen Studio Weekend (OSW) is just a few days away. I have so much to do.

Oh boy.

At least my studio is in good shape. I’ve been working on cleaning up the piles of papers that inevitable inhabit every flat surface in my studio. I set a timer for 30 minutes and all I do is file papers or throw them in the recycling. This approach seems to be working well for me.

I still have quite a few things on my OSW to-do list:

  1. Finish cleaning my studio
  2. Finish updating signs to direct visitors to my studio
  3. Choose item for visitor raffle – oh yeah, there’s a prize!
  4. Purchase snacks for visitors (this is a serious decision)
  5. Make scrap bags
  6. Select bookbinding supplies to make available for purchase
  7. Select seconds and discontinued items for discount
  8. Print local map for studio visitors
  9. Set up shelves in studio
  10. Set up work on shelves

In the image above, you can see one of the signs that will populate the state of Vermont this weekend. When I last participated in OSW, I was #242. This year I’m #220.

I have this fantastical belief that your number on the map is somehow related to how the sales of your work rates on the Billboard charts. Sometime this weekend, Casey Kasem will appear at my door and say, “Elissa Campbell – last year you were number #242 but this year, the people have spoken and you’ve moved up the charts – you are now #220. Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.”

Now if I can just finish up my Long Distance Dedication before Saturday…

[adds to the bottom of the to-do list]

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