I know one thing you really shouldn’t do is start a blog post with, ‘it’s been a while since I blogged’ but really…it’s been a while!! Truth is I’m juggling with getting ready for the Summer art fairs, being with the family and as the weather is now perfect – gardening like a mad woman. The warm weather makes me, a) want to rush outside with my sketchbook and draw everything in sight, b) keep on top of the weeding and c), yes there’s a c, just keep the back door open to let the warm sunshine in as I cut a few more books to put on my stand. What a whirl!
Over the past couple of weeks I’ve done all of the above and more so I think I’m in a happy place right now. I think my stand at KUKI will look pretty good, not bursting at the seams but who wants that any how? I want it to look cohesive, bright and smart. I keep forgetting that the next one is only a week later so I need to keep creating books and cards whenever I can.
One of the things I’ve been working on recently was a bunch of scrapbooks. Honestly, when I rediscovered them I was prepared to pull them to pieces and start all over again. Actually I should rewind a bit here. I made these books a few years ago for one of the last art fairs I attended before ‘Rona’ and as they were the last few which hadn’t sold they sat on the shelf doing nothing. Fast forward a couple of years and the way I make these type of books has changed so they were bugging the heck out of me. I mentioned this to a friend who told me basically I was totally over thinking the whole thing (which I tend to do) and suggested a small but fairly obvious change which made all the difference. So much so that I added a couple more scrapbooks to the pile and now love them. I don’t know why I didn’t see it before.
I think it’s easy to over think things and as I had been looking at these books so often and for so long I had become far too critical and would spot small niggling things which no one else would even notice. That’s why it’s good to step away occasionally, take some time out then come back with a fresh eye or better still get a good friend to give you some advice. They’ll see things you can’t!
It’s now the last week until KUKI and I’m getting down my to-do list so it’s all good. This week will be table mock-up, labels and packaging. At this point I’m not stressed but then maybe I should be? Oh now I’m stressed about not being stressed!! Just kidding, it’s all good.
I’ll post a picture of my table mock-up when I’ve done it and I’ll compare it with the actual table later on just for a laugh!
It’s been a loooooong time since I did a Coptic stitch binding. I’d almost forgotten how to do it but I guess it’s like riding a bike, once you get on and get going it comes naturally. This is what I spent most of last week doing – no not riding a bike, coptic stitch binding. I’m very proud of myself for keeping the stitching so neat. I think the secret to that success is using a waxed thread. I used to use plain embroidery thread which looked pretty but was such a pain as it kept getting tangled. It goes to show it’s worth using the right tools.
I’ve used sketchbook paper once again for the pages and pretty paper to cover. They’re A6 in size so nice to carry around whether that’s on holiday or in the garden.
I think this image of the signatures inside the covers looks like an ice-cream sandwich. It made me smile.
The coptic bindings make them look so pretty as well as being very tactile to hold. While I was in the groove I made a few more.
They’re all listed in my shop now and I’ll be making a few to go to KUKI later on this Spring.
We’re well into 2021 by now and here in the studio I’m trying to focus on anything which takes attention away from the on going pandemic blues.
My morning forest walks with Cooper are helping immensely and give me time to reflect and imagine new projects and ideas.
These New Year cards are in the shop at the moment in packs of 3 and are the perfect way to stay in touch with people who you can’t see right now. You can find them here by following this link.
Last summer I made this cute little art journal from a pile of geli prints but since then it’s been on my shelf and admired but not added to. I’ve decided to put that right this year and add a quick collage or piece of artwork once a week. Being so small it’s the perfect place to create something quick and with the backgrounds already painted, less intimidating and satisfies a need for me to create art in some way. I recommend it to anyone, get out your stash, make a mini journal and keep a few scraps in a box for collage, add a sticker and it’s done!
It seems in notebook and planner terms it really does, especially when travelling with art and craft supplies, when you need to justify every inch!
I’ll admit it takes me a long time to warm up to something and I’m quite sceptical about most things in the craft industry, putting them down to fads and phases. Micro and tiny sized travelers notebooks are nothing new but have been something I’ve wanted to explore for a while now and a recent flood of pictures on social media recently of cute mini tn’s had me longing to make one of my own!
Yesterday the weather was so awful, gardening was off the menu, so I was forced to spend the day in the basement studio making scrapbooks for my up coming KUKI stand. The materials were all out on the table and a little pile of discarded leather pieces sat looking at me so I decided to cut a micro sized piece just to see how it looked. Of course one thing led to another and I had to make inserts too otherwise how else would I be able to test it out? An hour later I had my micro and four inserts made from scrap papers and sketch paper.
I have a book of sketch paper, one made from mop up and scrap papers, one in watercolour paper and a fourth, the blue backgrounds all from a large piece of pre ink sprayed paper. So plenty of choice of backgrounds depending on my mood and where I am and this little chunky will travel with me when I’m away this Summer.
Using scrap papers and my ready made background papers makes it already feel familiar to me so I won’t have any trouble filling it.
Here you can clearly see the progression in sizes, from my Carpe Diem by Simple Stories at the bottom which is my every day planner, Prima Jet Setter for journaling in, Prima Misty Rose for my hand bag planner and now the micro for on the go journaling. Simple Stories and Prima are found at Paperpenandplan on Etsy as well as the planner accessories.