Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Double Wings!

Made another little book, approx 2 inches high. The cover is nice and fuzzy to the touch. The star at the corner is stitched down with a little bead in the center, you can spin it around. I didn't glue it down, more along the line of I forgot but since it's stitched in anyway I figured it didn't matter. Blanket stitch binding at the head and tail of the spine using invisible thread, this time I just stabbed through the cover instead of the usual slit in previous books.

Double wings cos I don't think one is enough for such a fat book, hehehe. Basically over the weekend I was playing making my books. I was experimenting, stayed out of the studio, sent my sister in and told her to surprise me and she came out with whatever happen to interest her. It was interesting, it got me out of the box. More books to come...

A Rose By Any Other Name

So far I like this painting of mine, it was sold and bought but the owner couldn't take it with them at that time and left it with a friend of theirs. I went over to that friend's place and they were saying they don't know what to do with it as they were moving house. I said I'll just keep it at my place then since it is my painting, just different owners. I rather hang on to it and know it'll be safe with me than to have the poor thing stuffed up somewhere in a store room.

So it currently hanging in my studio, I took down the black and white banana skin and spring charcoal morphed drawing I did from back in art school foundation, and hung up the rose. It' s about 4 feet by 3 feet, using acrylic paints. I like the bronze contract of the background to the rose, I'm trying to figure out how else to paint using metallic colours...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

My First Fair In 2006

Look look! Isn't my table display lovely! This was my very first fair. I aimed to make about 30 books because I only had a month to prepare for and I had zero books. And for some reason I wanted to take the opportunity to show the locals hand bound books.

I also put up hand made cards, little note books, and shell brooches that I was making that time for sale.

My books were either coptic stitched binding or stab binding because those were the only two binding methods I knew how to do back then. I just get creative with the covers.

Hmmm, looking back at them I think I'll remake some of them again. But last time I tried that I didn't have the same passion for it. I felt I have moved on. They were nice basics, learned them when in art school and they stuck. But I wanted to do more, when I started work and earning money I ordered the Keith Smith's books, all five volumes. It took me a while to get used to and understand the books, now I'm slowly getting around to using it.

Oh, and what happened to these books you ask, I don't have them any more. They either got sold or given away as presents for when I needed presents.

Also because of this fair I practically stopped making books. Response wasn't great. I had people coming up to the table and having a look, said they're nice and left. Only sold one book and a couple of the smaller items. I felt dishearten because nobody saw the amount of work and time that went into making them, they are hand made for a reason. Well, it was a good experience anyway. I felt good for having the guts to put myself out there and tested the waters. And knew for my work to be appreciated, it has to come from me.

I know the value of my work. And I am not afraid to say no to you if you think you can get away with it by getting it less than what the asking price.

Birthday Wings Par Deux

First posting I did on this book the picture wasn't so great, just had to do another one...

This isn't the first time I made books with wings. Done it previously, but the wings I used were smaller then and the binding used was different.

The binding for this book that I've been using quite a lotlately is a blanket stitch binding. I like it cos it's fast and easy and I don't have to poke so many holes per sections. Each sections are pierced individually by hand, so the more sections there are and using other method of binding that uses more holes the longer the whole production takes as well as binding. That's why I don't fancy doing coptic stitch binding so much!

Books should fly...

I think I'll do an all white one with a halo on top...

Friday, May 23, 2008

Sections Waiting...

From the top layer: 5kg worth of weight plate, 3 of them, I don't know where my 4th one went to.

Next layer down: 'Paper Transformed' and 'The Penland Book of Handmade Books'. I picked these up the last time I was in Singapore. The Penland book I've been eying for almost a year to the date I bought it. Two books I gladly add to my library. The books I'm using to sandwich odd sections.

Next two layers from bottom: White and ivory (says the packaging) sections. Folded length ways and short ways. So the next batch of books I'm making are going to have these as their sections unless otherwise.

Just waiting for the sections to lay all nice and flat now so it'll be easier to cut uniformly and when bound into the cover the book won't spring open.

In the mean time, I got a whole bunch of stuff to iron out as their covers. Need to colour match as well, see which material will be complemented with the sections.

I got blue to fold next.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Birthday Wings

I needed a birthday present and didn't know what to get. Made a book *grin* Used a silk scrap (non padded), wings, and paper off cuts. Put them all into a mixing bowl. Set the speed to medium until everything comes together. Asked birthday girl her choice of decoration. And ta-da! Happy Birthday Zana! She basically sat and watched me make the book just after start to finish...

I wish I got a better camera, pictures came out blurry... Oh well... Make a wish!

Monday, May 19, 2008

New Materials!

I spent the afternoon going through a friend's, Lay Hien, stash of silk scraps. She's going to use it for patchwork. I'm looking for what I can use as book covers. Got several cool pieces, left her house with a bag full of scraps.

Then bought 2 reams of A4 in ivory and white, and 1 ream of A3 in light blue. Can't wait to make books out of these.

Hmmmm, silk book covers... padded or non padded?

I was talking to Pek Ching who does art classes at Rainforest Gallery here, and first time ever admitted I'm just not in the mood to draw or paint. All I want to do for now is to just make. Hence all these books. She invited me to come along their weekly outing drawing sessions, and I could always just drop by the gallery. Maybe that'll kick in the inspiration to start drawing and painting again...

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Grey & Tassel

The cover looks familar doesn't it. It's a lovely book this one. It is a coptic stich binding, meaning you can see the whole of the spine exposed and the only thing that's holding it together is the binding. Forgot to take pictures of that. Really solid binding this one. It used to bug the living daylights out of me in the beginning because it's so labour intensive. Not so bothered nowadays. I treat it like a zen meditation, you just zone out.

Also I had purple paper and a purple tassel that was just lying around. The cover I used is detailed enough already so kept the whole book simple. And the end paper for the inside, more purple. I like how I cut out one of the orchid and stuck it on the top left of the first page. Looks cool doesn't it.

Sorry about the picture quality, it was taken in a hurry. Only camera available then was the camera phone. The book is in Germany now.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Experimental Wrap

I love the bold design on this material that I just had to use it to see how it would work as a book cover. Fortunately I have sections ready that needs a cover. So... if you squint just right the pink and purple sections are picking up colours in the flowers on the material *grin* Also I was experimenting for a hard cover book with a wrap around as well as figuring out how to attach the ribbon ties to the cover. And where to attach the ribbon ties, cos for all I know you might like the covers to go from left to right or right to left. Hence it's on the spine.

So, this is just an experiment, I think I'll do another one this time with plain white sections, it might make more of an impact. I might go for yellow too... I'll just make several... Also need to modify the cover... The long stitch binding works well, so that can stay. Right then. Next project.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Pink & Purple Custom Album

More pink and purple, I'm trying to finish off the material...

This is a custom order, a mini album. It has a surface of 8 inches by 5 inches, so it can comfortably fit a 4 inches by 6 inches photo (that's a 4R right?) per page and extra space to write on. The album can hold 24 of those photos, against black with pink sheet protectors between the pages so the photos wouldn't stick.

The order for this was simple, girly, flowers, butterflies, ribbons. Leave the rest up to me....

The end paper I used here is down to the last bits now. Possibly enough for a mini book. It's a lovely paper. I can't wait to use it up!

I said my books are going to travel around the world, this one is going to be shipped off to Australia!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Orange Tones

Well, they look like orange tones... You can read about the white with gold splash here and orange flowers with bells here.

The big guy, is one furry tactile stab bound journal, A4 in size. The stabbing part is how it looks like as I wrestle with the needle to poke through the thickness of the book pulling the red ribbon through to bind the whole thing together. Which is why I have a handy mini pliers as part of my book making arsenal, several actually with various noses.

Anyway, the inside pages are in three coloured sections, green, red and yellow. You can see it when looking at the spine of the book. The end paper of the inside of the cover is a ribbed pale yolk yellow.

It needs a home to go to...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Black White Mini Book

This... why did I make this... Oh yeah, now I remember why I made this. For you guys, if you like to stick things down in books and find that at the end of the day the book had expanded and you can't close it properly, isn't it terrible? It's like the book got fat and can't button up the waist band! Hehehe...

This book, is perfect. You can stick stuff in and by the end of the day, it'll still look slim and sleek. And even if you do over stuff it there are ribbons to tie it down. All safe and secure. It's about 6 inches by 4 inches and it can slip easily into your bag! The cover is a thick cream cotton with a black satin spine and ribbons. The binding is book binders thread in a criss cross pattern.

A unique book to have. Any takers?

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Golden Drops

I'm not sure how practical writing in this one, I just like it, hehe... Each one of those drops were stitched down using fishing wire, or was it invisible thread... I can't remember which now... But yeah, imagine owning this, wouldn't it be fantastic :-p I'm amazed with what I've been keeping in the studio. Slowly I'm going through them and using them up. I also love the paper. First time I used it was three years ago. Don't have a lot left now of this particular colour. Yes! Soon it will be all used up!

The end paper of the cover got two types, the white flowers is a Japanese wrapping paper, and the other is this nice veiny paper, subtle tactile quality which I quite like. I find that touch is very important, I like my books to be able to 'speak' to you as you hold them.

This book is about A5 in size with simple binding at the head and tail of the book (top and bottom to the non book speakers) and yes it's for sale if anybody is interested in purchasing.

You don't want to come shopping with me for paper. I take ages deciding on which one to get cos I have to feel every single one of them. When I was in London studying, there's a place called Paperchase, the top floor housed all these gorgeous paper from the thin transparent to the thick and robust from various countries, various tactile qualities, oh it was heaven for me. Now that it has been almost ten years I better use up all them paper...

Pink & Purple

These are some of the books I have on me right now... Don't know how long they'll be with me until someone comes along and decide they want to own one. Just let me know and I'll hold on to it for you.

The large white butterfly embossed book is A5 in size, with pink and purple pages, and girly ribbons to tie the book close. Part of the Princess series I started up, only I had to stop cos I ran out on some of the components, mainly the ribbons... And there's a little A6 size one as well if you're going for matching set *grin* san tie. This was the book that inspired me to start up the series. It was an experiment to see how well the white embossed paper I picked up in Singapore form a Japanese shop would work as a cover. Very well apparently, and matched it up with the pink embossed paper which came from India, so I was told.

I pick up paper everywhere I travel :-D

The stripy purple book was part of a set of four books. They either have pink, purple or both coloured pages. Each one has about 200 pages it's a nice robust little book, same size to a novel. You could see where the other three went here and here.

The thin silver purple book, you can read about it here.

More books to come...

Sunday, May 4, 2008

What Do You Do With Leftover Sections...

Normally when making a book, I'd get the sections ready and measure the total width to get the measurements required for the spine for the cover. Some how by the time the cover was made and sewing in the sections, I'm always left with an extra section cos the spine was already filled up, and if I add on anymore the cover wouldn't close properly so inadvertently I will have a spare section.

Tis' a shame to discard them, and so I turned them into single section hard covers books! A bit of embellishments here and there...

It's all about orange! I actually have an outfit I wear for work in the same material. . Was able to use up almost all the bells I had from a long time ago to charm up the spine, wouldn't it look so cool sitting on your book shelf. The end sheet, the gold parts are embossed. I used a maroon book binding thread as well as some synthetic red with gold thread purely for the decorative aspects of it. I love how all the colours and elements works together here.

For this one, I had a little scrap of the purple silver material from previous book project. It was large enough not to throw away, yet small enough that I couldn't use it on anything until! And it was perfect for this particular piece. The end paper I used for the inside of the cover, it was wrapping paper from a present from a past relationship which I kept all these while, and who would've thought it would turn into this. I was able to use it as end sheets for several books already. And the silver beads on the spine, was a repurposed thing, adds interest. Good fun I had with these, sort of like an exercise. And all I'm trying to do is use up all the supplies that I have in the studio...

Caterpillar... Or Centipede?

Several posts ago... goodness knows when... I was talking about trying out a caterpillar binding. Took me two nights to complete the stitching. The more I look at it the more it looks like a centipede to me. Heh...

T'was an easy binding to do. It looks complicated at first but the diagrams in the book was quite easy to follow, more or less. It's not very secure, the sections are quite loose which I don't like, I think I'll use it more for a decorative binding then anything else. Just need to remember to slacken the tension when hitting the spine part or else risk the covers not being able to close properly.

I like how organic this book looks... The Thai green handmade paper with the skeleton leaves really hit the spot and the green end sheets with the gold leaves print came from India. I just love paper...

These Books Went To Hong Kong

My sister went to Hong Kong last week for training and with her were these books and they went to the following recipients...
"So Pretty!!"

Thanks for the gift Denise, they're really nice :-)
(Denise also owns this book!)

"Did she really make this?"
Jovita and Sian

Yay! My books are traveling! Next stop, Europe or was it the States... I forgot exact region...


Contact me at rzyunos@gmail.com