Friday, July 28, 2006

Thursday, July 27, 2006

PenSlip on eBay

Well I Decided thqat in an attempt to promote my PenSlips, and since I want to buy new things for my new studio that I ld put some up on eBay:
you can find them here:




Home for Studio

Soon we will find out if the studio will have a new home. The sellers have accepted our offer and Sunday we have the house inspection. Hopefully everything will turn out decently and we’ll be able to go from there.

Tentatively we’ll be closing on August 18th and we’ll be able to move in shortly thereafter. We have a lot of work head of us but it’s all good. So this is also good, it means that instead of being on hiatus for September and October that I’ll be on hiatus for much less time- half of August and part of September.

So my fingers and toes are crossed and I’m hopeful that the inspection comes out good.

I’m going to have a decent amount of ace to work, so I won’t feel cramped. I’ll have plenty of storage.

I’m so excited I can’t even describe it!

Monday, July 24, 2006

I’ve been reading Moleskinerie for what seems like ages now. It’s usually got a great bunch of links and content directed towards my second favorite notebook of choice, the moleskine. It provides me with enough fodder for reading that I enjoy it with out needing to be obsessive, though I do admit that it IS on my daily link list. The creator of that site Armand Frasco is an interesting guy with a vision focused on notebooks and the obsessive love that many of us have for them, a man after my own heart and mind. I, like, many others donated towards the cause of keeping the Moleskinerie open. I hope I have the chance to donate towards the next funding drive Armand has for the site.

Armand has a new site and I can’t wait to show my support for this site. Though it’s brand new, I think it will be even more obsessively watched and drooled over than moleskinerie. Why? It focus is not only on the moleskine but all notebooks, art journals and sketchbooks. I think it will soon become a web destination for all things notebook related. I’m also proud to say that I’m featured in one of the first articles on this soon to be stellar site.

So head over to Notebookism and take a look and leave a note.


I've made 10 PenSlips and they are listed on my account here:

ComfortableShoes@ Etsy!

They are $9.99+shipping. I pride myself on fast shipping and great customer service. If anyone is looking for one in a different size let know. I'm also working on these in fabric, so look for themin a variety of colors, textures etc if the fabric works out.

These PenSlips turned out well, I think.

Take a look.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Finished Big Green 2

Well, I took the order for this ages ao and finally I was able to buckle down a DO IT!

Spec are as follows:
400 pagges of Fox River Ninja Confetti, 25% cotton and 24lb; super thick and perfect for juicy fountian pens. (GOD I LOVE THIS PAPER!!!)

Butter soft olive green sheep hide backed with a matching olive colored paper with chunks of mango leaf spotting it's surface.

I created a sewing pattern for the spine that is related to the previous book that this client ordered. I used similar spacing but broke up some of the stitches into a set, creating a more dense weave across the spine. I think this is nice.

I used an Irish linen thread that is naturaland unbleached. I handwaxed this with just enough wax for stitching.

Enough words, lets get to what everyone is really waiting for the book pR0n!

Friday, July 21, 2006

Pics and captions

I find that often the people who purchase a fine journal are unique. the gentleman who had me make this 400 page ctom tome is a Pastor who rides a Harley and this book was to be his companion as he traveled the US with a group of like minded Pastors. It's a sueded black sheep hide,lined with a thick textured paper in deep tans and reds and even a little green. It's pages are Strathmore 25% cotton 24lb paper. It's built tough to with stand the rigors of riding a Harley.

These little journals are pocke sized and I was asked to create a renaisance theme. They becam gifts for a couple who travel to renassance fairs and dress in costume. Hopefully they fit in with the surroundings.

This 400 pge beast is covered in supple olive green sheep hide. It's soft and smooth. THe inside is filled with heavy Strathmore paper. The clients favorite color is green and she asked me for a paper inside to match the leather. Luckily I am nearly as obessed with paper as I am with notebooks and buy intersting sheets aI find them. In Ellsworth, Maine is a small art store called "the Craft Barn" I stopped everytime I make the 6.5 hour drive to visit my parents. They have a tremendous selction of papers that rivals many places here around Boston. Their prices are also fair. It was here I found a rainbow of colors of "mango" paper. It's paper with big chunks of Mango leaf visible throguh the whole sheet. The color matched the olive green leather perfectly.

The Start

My addiction to notebooks and subsequently bookbinding has been with me my whole life. It started with small stacks of paper stapled together, childish scrawls filling the innards. In high school it progressed to expensive spiral bound notebooks, which I filled with algebraic notations and terrible poetry; their pulpy covers covered in doodles and art. Sketchbooks filled with pencil sketches and ink drawing, covers made stiffer with stapled layers of card stock. Journal after journal decorated with collages yet filled with painful teen angst.

It wasn’t until college that I discovered decadent leather covers, smelling of fine upholstery and filled with thick cotton paper, deckled edges and the promise of adventure. Here in my second year I discovered the promise o bookbinding. T tease that with some study I too could bind myself an wonderfully artistic creation of leather and fine paper. I met 4 prominent binders from the North East and learned of more than simple stab and accordion bindings.

It was also here where my binding met a 4-year hiatus in learning and exploration. Bookbinding wasn’t seen as an art, and in a typical art school fashion I wanted to be ART and not craft. I chide myself daily for not sticking to my interests and following my heart and wonder where I would be today had I tried new techniques then. It is also here my first several attempts at binding failed in a miserable fashion.

It wasn’t until much later that I would purchase books on binding so that I could gather together my favorite papers to create the sketchbook of my dreams. I started by teaching myself basic bindings- simple pamphlet stitches and figure 8 stitches. Progressing to the Coptic stitch and lingering with it for years, learning many stitches and patterns. I then explored the long stitch and linking stitches and this I currently where I’m exploring today.

As often as I use my notebooks to journal and as a basis r my own art they are still a fundamental section of my exploration. Needle, linen thread and fine leather all bring to me a sense of excitement mingled with a passion for experimentation. Art is a means of exploration of senses and mind.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Studio Time!

I have finished the hedgehog and pen slip order! The studio is too DAMN hot to work in right now, so I’ll be stitching in the bedroom- it’s the only room in the house with AC and with temps where they are now I need to chill in AC.

WE officially put an offer in on the house and are currently waiting to see if it’s accepted. I’m very excited and nervous about all this and can’t wait to get out of the rental trap. I’ll find out tomorrow. With all this, it means that for the months of September and October I probably won’t be working on books much. Sigh. I’ll be getting settled into a new place! Which means that this winter I’ll be going full force on books, I’ll need to so I can afford the mortgage!

I’ll be working on the next order starting tomorrow. For now here are some shots of the hedgies and the pen holders.

That brings me to another note- I’ve been calling them “PenSlips” and my brother called them “PenPockets.” Now I‘m torn as to what I should call them, I want opinions! Leave a message and let me know what you think I should call them.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Is anybody out there

Beth Lee, if you are still reading this, the books I sent your way bounced back to me, seems the address was wrong? I must have typed it into the USPS website wrong. What’s weird I that it took MONTHS to get back here- it got here probably 2 weeks ago, I sent that package out probably 6 months ago.. I’ll resend if you email me your address again!

back on the sauce... I'm mean bookbinding wagon!

I’m back. My ankle, now 2 months after the sprain, is much better. Because my DayJob as a florist requires me to be on my feet for 8-hour stints it’s taken much longer to heal than any other sprain I’ve ever had. It’s still stiff and sore on occasion and if I feel like my foot/ankle is getting exhausted I put on a brace.

Now as for books, I’m taking orders on a limited basis. I’ve got 2 right now and I know that’s all I can do for a while. I’m being realistic. I know that between my DayJob being a time drain and the healing of my body that I need to take it slow. I’m sure that slowly my ankle will be a-o-k again and I will be able to push myself to the outer limit of bookbinding.

In very VERY exciting news, the studio is getting a permanent home! My significant other and I are purchasing a house! It’s not a huge house; it’s enough space for us, the dog and perhaps a room to rent to a friend. (A surprisingly common practice here in the North East. Housing prices are so high that many of our friends now rent a room to another friend just to afford the house!) It’s got a nice backyard and most importantly both a garage and a basement. The basement is solid and clean, meaning I can use it as a studio in the cold months. The garage is large enough for a car and a large lawn mower, which means that I could take it over as my studio as need be. Needless to say I’m happy to be buying a house with room for me to work. When we worked out our budgets I was worried that we might go for a condo or something terribly small that would require me to put all my supplies into rolling storage and work in a dining room. It’s also in a very ne and cute little city in the north of Massachusetts called Beverly. There’s an art school in town and lots of very cute things, and fun stuff to do. I like the town a lot, it’s perfect for the two of us.

So in all this madness we’ll be moving soon. Hopefully we’ll be moving in September and have that be our last month here in the apartment. It’s not far away but long enough that the nerves of moving are making me too jittery.

This was to be a post about my being back on the bookbinding wagon, not about moving!

So I have 2 orders and they are taking me less time than I expected. I have an order for 10 lined hedgehogs with penslips. I’m done with the hedgehogs and I just have to make the slips. They are really quite time consuming but very practical.

I’ll also start putting things up on ebay and etsy as time permits. I’ll post links when I do.

I owe everyone who ordered a book an email and I’ll be working on those shortly. I’ll apologize for dropping off the face of the planet and everyone who ordered books at I was unable to complete will get an email.