Covers and Content

Bookbinding, writings, general creativity

Archive for the month “August, 2012”

Things I bought today

I’ve heard of the crowds at big sales, but I’ve never really seen them. I tend to avoid those sort of things. But they have nothing on the crowds when a theater sells off their old stage clothes. What they don’t have in trampling of people, they have in general weirdness. Instead of just dresses and trousers and shirts (which they have too, of course) there’s angels’ wings for children, soldiers’ helmets and big fluffy things with too much fabric that you’re not quite sure if it’s a dress, a skirt or possibly some sort of hat. And all of the clothes have sewn-in tags with names of the characters that once wore them. The blue dress I found, for example, once belonged to Gudrun. The cute hat was on a hanger with clothes from the play Och sanden ropar. A couple of years ago, I bought a robe called Man with torn clothes.

I didn’t buy any of the angels’ wings, nor a helmet (they were all to small), but I found a blue dress, a nice and sturdy petticoat and a very cute hat, among other things.

 

 

 

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Tough Guide to Fantasyland

This is another book by Diana Wynne Jones, my favourite author. It’s a pocket book, rebound into hardcover using a method I hope I’ll never ever have to use again.

I cut off the spine, so that I had just a bunch of loose papers, then I pasted them together with strips of thin paper, two by two in the right order, to make signatures that I could stitch as usual. The original cover is attached to the first and last signature.

Once that boring part was over, I started on the cover. I’m… not good at plain covers. For this one, I decided to go with the fact that there was a map in the beginning of the book. I drew the map on a smaller piece of paper, folded it using the Turkish Map Fold that I’d learned just the week before, and embedded it in the front cover. Just for the fun of it, and because I don’t know how to stop once I’ve started, I embroidered a compass star thingy on the map cover, and the F in the beginning of the title.

Paste marbling

This is the second-best thing in the world. Or part of the best thing in the world, I haven’t decided. Anyways, the handmade papers I’ve shown you so far have all been marbled on a glue base. These are paste marbled, which is another thing entirely. It’s even easier, for one thing.

To start with, I made paste from wheat flour and water, thinner than I normally use. I mixed it with pigment powder, but any kind of paint works to mix in. I should also mention that before starting this, we had covered the whole room in plastic. Paste marbling gets messy.

I sprayed the paper with water and let it swell a while. If you don’t do this, it’s going to swell when you put the paste-paint-mix on, and get all wrinkly. I painted it with the colors I wanted. Then the fun part started.

Using all kind of tools, from a plastic thingy used when tiling walls, to pieces of string, my own nails, tape and a small toy car, I made patterns in the paint. There really are no limits to what you can do with this technique – just remember to spray the paper with water every now and then, or the paste will dry too early.

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