New in the Shop: Trinket Box featuring Liberty London Fabric

I have a new box in the shop and it started out as most of my "for fun" projects do. I sat down with all of my favorite things and started playing. In this case, that button and those charms found their way to each other and I paired them with Liberty London's Fairford pattern for a happy little match.

Here's what happened next! Click on the photo to see a larger version in a new window.

Paper Weaving

 Toward the end of last year I commissioned Rhonda, a bookbinder and paper marbler, to hand marble a slew of paper for one of my custom projects. I needed the paper to make endsheets for a series of guest books. Her work was beautiful and I couldn't have been happier with the result.

 In order to turn the marbled paper into endsheets, I mounted it onto a thicker paper that is sure to be durable for the repeated opening and constant use the books will receive. Each set of endsheets was made oversized and then trimmed to match height and width of the pages of the book block.

Above are the neatly trimmed marbled endsheets in action! I just loved the look of all of the trimmed strips neatly lining my recycling bin, and I couldn't toss them. I also couldn't just let them sit in a drawer for too long without playing with them!

Soon, my paper fiddling turned into paper weaving!

And more paper weaving.

And more! Once I stopped with the marbled paper trimmings, I had a knack for it and didn't feel much like stopping. I picked up some Japanese paper scraps and got cooking!

I plan to mount these little checkered pieces on tissue and then see what happens from there! I'm leaning toward incorporating them into the tops of boxes. Whatever I do, I'm sure the result will be posted here eventually.

So Long, Seattle

View of Mount Rainier from the sky
I just returned from a great week in Seattle. My parents are moving to Portland, so I was there to help get the ol' homestead ready to sell. (Can I say ol' if they only lived there nine years? I think so!) I imagined that the week would just be full of cleaning, sorting and packing things up, which would be great q.t. with my parents, but we ended up doing so much more. We saw so many people and shared lots of great meals!

View of Downtown Seattle from Alki Beach
There was sunshine, rain, and coffee, so it was definitely summertime in Seattle! I got to see cousins, aunts, an uncle, favorite family friends, and my bookbinding instructor just happened to be in town! I even got to meet some new friends, this was my mom's last year of teaching Kindergarten, and I got to see some folks who helped make her time at the school especially special! (Brother John, I'm thinking of you!) It was great to be in the Northwest, and the trip ended too soon, but any melancholy brought on by saying goodbye was wiped away when I met my husband at the airport and came home to a happy kitty in a clean house, a bouquet of flowers, and fun things planned for the rest of the weekend in my new favorite city!

Metal Type

Whenever you see an image or title embossed on one of my projects, I've either used a custom made magnesium die, or lead or brass type from my collection. The photo above is a close up of my type drawers. I've stamped a sampling from each drawer onto labels, so I know what's inside.

Many of the tools and pieces of equipment that I use weren't necessarily invented for the craft of bookbinding. Much has been re-purposed from other trades, and more often than not, my tools have already had a long history before they land in my hands. This is definitely true for all of my type.

In Dillard, GA at Good K-9 Antiques, I found a plastic grocery bag full of lead type, and then in Mount Dora, FL at Renningers, I found a beautiful wooden box full of little paperboard boxes that organized something very neatly once upon a time, and would be perfect to organize that newly acquired type. Put them together, and what have you got? Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo!

This box of type, one of my favorites, was originally intended for a Kingsley stamping machine but it works like a dream in my Kwikprint from the 1930s. I found this set in an antique shop in Astoria, OR when Josh and I ventured there with my parents on a pilgrimage to the land of The Goonies.

This is the side of my box of type drawers, with evidence of the luggage shop it came from. I found my Kwikprint via Craigslist and had it shipped from Wisconson along with the box of type and some stamping foils.

At least once a week I click around online to see what might be out there. Just last week, Josh and I found a honey-hole of bookbinding and screen printing supplies, and lately I've been asking antiques dealers if they have the type that goes in all of those empty type cases that are lying about. I think I got a bite yesterday - wish me luck!

Hatch Show Print

I had been hearing about Hatch Show Print for a long-long time, because it's an awesome shop and it's been around for a long-long time! Back in April, Josh and I drove through Nashville on our way to Kansas City, and we made sure to stop by and pick out a couple posters.

Just great, huh?

Something about all of those shelves on the left wall seemed magical. Maybe because of the striking resemblance to the wand shop in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter?

The colors in this "TYPE" monoprint called to me. I was tempted to blow our new carpet budget on it but managed to refrain.
 I highly recommend stopping by to take in all of the posters on their walls! If you won't be in the area any time soon, here's a link for their website where they have some work for sale, or you can even order a custom poster.

Emily & Kevin's Wedding Album

Congrats to Emily & Kevin, this is their day! I had the pleasure of meeting a great friend of theirs last year, and he got in touch with me about making something special for their wedding gift.

 They are having a Victorian themed wedding and had custom silhouettes made to match their motif.

We decided on this swirling damask patterned paper for the endsheets which added a nice elegant touch.

Pretty soon all of these pages will be full of photos from their happy day! Best Wishes!

Racing Rivals, Illustrated by Josh Holtsclaw

Image courtesy of Amazon and my talented husband
My husband illustrated a children's book and it's on shelves today! Hooray! We called ahead just to be sure, and we're headed to Barnes and Noble tonight to pick up a few copies. I'm excited to take one apart and fancy it up into a hardcover version.

I'm writing from a new city! We moved to Kansas City, MO about a month ago and have been settling in quite nicely. The bindery is almost in tip-top shape and I have a few projects under my belt in the new space. I've had my camera out and have been snapping away, so I'll have plenty of photos to share in the weeks to come.

Pickle Dish Progress

I'm working on a pickle dish quilt for Sarah's baby Emmalyn. It's my first time trying paper piecing and I love it!

I'm following the pattern from Kaffe Fassett's Quilt Romance book, but we picked out a different color scheme that will match Emma's nursery. Almost all of these pieces are finished now, so I'll have Sarah and baby come over soon to help me arrange all of the pieces!

Paper Souvenirs from India

My friend Caroline recently returned from a trip to India where she spent time traveling with two of her friends from college. I couldn't wait to hear her stories when she got back, so I eagerly went over to her place as soon as I could. I felt like a little kid at story time as I sat cross-legged on her couch listening to her adventures!

They did so many amazing things. They had daily cups of chai and dined on delicious food everyday, rode elephants, explored the jungle by foot, rented a house boat, went to antique markets, saw amazing sights, visited paper stores, and came back home with lovely henna hands.

And look! She brought treasures to share! The Hindi-English newspaper bag held all of these lovely goodies.

Hand printed and quilled cards, envelopes, a wooden stamp, and a folding paper star. Absolutely my kind of treasure!

Thanks so much for sharing your tales and souvenirs, Caroline!