Thursday, January 29, 2009

As promised.

Here are a few pictures of my newest coptic journal available in my etsy shop here:
I love how the coptic stitching looks like braiding. I wasn't sure about the color of the thread I used, but once it was finished I couldn't imagine it with any other color.

Making the journal was a blast too. First I made all of the sheets of paper, which took quite a while. There are 55 sheets total, which when folded in half makes 110 pages, 220 front and back. Then I trimmed them to size and as I made the sheets over a period of days, I also made the covers. I reclaimed some scrap chipboard and cardboard and aged and distressed a sheet of paper. Then once I covered the cardboard with the paper, I drew on the islands and such and added the edging and inside cover paper. The inside cover paper is a gold metallic tissue paper, which proved a problem once when the first layer I put on got a hole torn in it as I smoothed it down because the glue had made it too wet. Oh well. The second go-round worked out better. Altogether I am very happy with this journal and look forward to making more.
Also, a picture of my dog in the snow:

Paper tutorials

While browsing etsy I came across thelongread's top 100 free tutorials of 2008. Looking through them, I found two involving creative uses of paper, so I thougth I would pass them along and give a few nods toward these blogs.

Paper mache bowls are nothing new, in fact the art of paper mache has been around since the Chinese were making helmets out of it as far back as 202 B.C. However, Painted Fish Studio shows us an alternative to the dull text-riddled use of grey newsprint with a tutorial for paper mache bowls. Simple, easy, looks great with a handmade decorating scheme or to use as a place to throw your keys at night so you don't walk around the next morning, late for work, wondering if the dog/cat/baby ran off with them.

Just Like Martha shows us a creative way to use up old magazines. It's a bit past Christmas at the moment (and no help if you're non-Christian unless you have a secret ambission to make a paper forest display for your home), but still, when the holidays roll around again, I'll be sure to make at least one of these magazine Christmas trees.

In other news, I have finished my third coptic-stitched journal and intend to photograph them tonight and upload the pictures to my computer along with the shots of my dog playing in the banks of snow taller than her. I'll share the journal-making goodness and snow-puppy adorableness later tonight.

I promise, she's cute, even if you're not a dog person. She looks more like an Ewok from Star Wars.

Friday, January 23, 2009

My bad.

Excuse the extended absence if you would please. My hard drive crashed before the holidays, then during and after the holidays and when school started back up again, I actually forgot I had a blog. Oops.

At any rate, here's an update:

The new couching material I've been using has been excellent. The squares of old bed sheet work wonderfully! Almost every sheet of paper I make is high enough quality to be sold in my etsy shop. I'm very pleased.

Also, I've decided to introduce a new product into my etsy shop. I am using my handmade paper to bind journals. I have recently learned the coptic binding technique with the help of this site and have made two small journals already and am working on a third. I have not posted them to my shop yet though.

Also, the Etsy Papermakers Guild has been organizing a paper swap among 15 of its members, so in the beginning of next week I will be sending off 15 of my sheets and will recieve 14 sheets back from the other members (the 15th sheet will be my won sheet, which I've already seen, ha ha) sometime in the coming weeks. I am very excited to see the products from other members.

I will update you with photos of my journals and the paper swap as soon as they are available. In the mean time, check back for more paper making madness!