Monday, September 18, 2017

a gift of summer in fall

i have continued making paper with hemp and linen and earth pigments. 
managing drying at home can be tedious
using blotters and weights helps, but oh for a dry box!
these are hemp (the indigo) and hemp plus linen (the pale with threads) 
and i like their strength and presence.
making small sheets 
(about 5 x 8 inches) 
gives me a chance to really enjoy these slow draining pulps
without pulling out my hair in waiting frustration.
which is what i do when i move to larger sheets.
sunday i made 12 x 14 size, 
not large, 

meanwhile i decided i would buy 
a heavier jenkins turkish drop spindle
for kami-ito making.
it's a pretty thing.
and the next photo is a bit humbling, but...
you need to see and understand the mistakes which are signposts of learning 
or re-learning.
because i have to practice skills i haven't used for years.
(this reminds me of driving standard again after years of automatic.)
but when you scrutinize less
you can see some interesting things here:
all recycled book except the thread.
book cloth was gifted.
pages were failed silkscreen prints
foraged from the trash can at school.
board recycled from another use.
and it was a way to stretch myself:
lots of sewing
four needles
estimating thread lengths
gluing the bookcloth
guling the endsheets
double or not the attachments to boards
pagination: how to keep the green, blue, yellow, and white interesting
so you want to turn the pages.
i like setting up challenges for myself.
and learning that i have to keep that sewing pattern
right so the book is not an embarrassment.
yesterday i was stunned by this
and this
we are having such warm weather
that we can have windows wide open at night
and it's sunny and so different to have this wonderful time.


  1. delicous paper, love coptic binding but always have to have my notes out for getting the back cover on even after making 17 for the edition of our cat ABC (it's a fiddly trick)& gosh that last photo is a beauty!

  2. your coptic stitching looks a bit like mine - and I think it is wonderful! love the spine view of the recycled book - what greater gift can you give this troubled world?? the little Jenkins spindle is bea-u-tiful. inspiration in the ecotone. hugs!

  3. Can almost feel that paper. So beautiful.
    And did you use the Turkish spindle to spin the yarn for the coptic binding? What a thoroughly satisfying thing to do. What weight is it -- the spindle that is.
    The idea makes me want to get out my little hank of linen and spin for the binding of my next sketchbook.

    Your work.....

  4. mo, i've made lots, but maybe if i made 17 in a row i would remember it forever! and the colors yesterday morning were amazing!
    jean, i hope this can be a little instructive. the Jenkins id nifty, much heftier than the first one.
    sarah, the stitching thread is from another Jenkins, the basketry folks! it's waxed linen, hefty for this fat book. the spindle is .91 ounce. i ope it will be good for kami-ito, but have only tried it out on the sample (wool/silk, i think) they included. i ordered it from the yarn underground.

  5. Is that an Autumn Fern? Really striking. Love the binding photo, your book is gorgeous. (ps. I refuse to drive automatics, I feel out of control.)

  6. hazel, the fern is our local ostrich fern (i think) but i will try to make sure and let you know. it grows in front of my old farmhouse, and in the woods around here. i had to start driving automatics because i could NOT find used subaru outbacks here that weren't. if i could have ordered one...

  7. oh i have these ferns, i transplanted them from the woods, never knew their name but they are so colorful now.
    Bindings intimidate me, that' probably why there are so many loose pages.

  8. sewn bindings are a cinch, jude. but i hear you. i'm all loose leaves lately.


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