Last summer a friend and I went on an embroidery course run by the Royal School of Needlework in Hampton Court on the outskirts of London. It was an excellent day where I learned some stitches i didn’t know already and how to start and finish and generally embroider the Royal School of Needlework way! Don’t get me wrong…I will never be as good as the graduates of the School who often go on to work on royal wedding dresses and other such things but it was certainly interesting to get an insight into how they worked.
On the day I started a piece of embroidery that I got to take away to finish…and earlier this year I finished it…ok I know it should not have taken quite that long but i have a lot of things going on at the same time.
Here is the finished product…
Now I have to figure out the best way to mount and display it in my house 🙂
next project based on these new skills is to design my own piece of embroidery. I am thinking
embroidered versions of patterns like this…this will take some thinking about..
New skills was what this weekend was all about. I went on a course to learn how to make hand sewn books. It was at the Weald and Downland Museum (http://www.wealddown.co.uk) in Sussex and was run by a very knowledgeable woman called Gaynor from the Blue door Bindery (http://www.blue-door-bindery.co.uk).
we learned how to fold paper into sections and how to make sure it is folded in the right direction…right direction i hear you repeat quizzically…well..yes…I didn’t know this before i wend on the course but paper has a grain based on the direction of the fibres within it. It is important when making books to have these running from head to foot (top to bottom), although i am unclear as to what happens if you don’t. and might make on the other way round to find out but that is besides the point!
we learned how to make these folded sections into a text block and to sew them (along with the end papers) both to each other and to long strips of material called slips which help to hold the whole thing together and move backward and forward within the cover to allow the book to open out. Here are some pictures of the text block (or pages ;-)) and end papers all sewn together and the slips in place
once all this was done we put the covers on , they were glued to the end pieces but no glue was on the spine at all, this allows it to open out completely flat. It was quite a tricky process as we had to slit the cover to weave the slips through…i believe this is decorative and not structural.
The finished product:
This is the book as we took it away from the course, I think i may need to add some extra finishing touches, the top and bottom edges of the leather need finishing i think and i am slightly unsure of the visible slips so these might get covered.
All in all I am pleased, I have learned new skills and am looking forward to adapting them and using them in my own way…I feel a lot more book coming on 😀
I am on a roll with this blogging business, I decided to share some of my other projects with you…
As well as image transfer I am attempting to put my love of doodling to good use and have been turning some of them into cards.
I have also been experimenting with some different surfaces to doodle on, which brings me to the title…book pages.
I am sure (as I have) many of you have seen book pages turned into just about everything you can possibly think of, and I am sure it presents some of you with the same questions i had…first and foremost…what about all those poor books!
Well…for my experimentation I must inform you that the book i chose for this was on its last legs, it had lost some pages and was well beyond repair. It was a mas produced reprint of a classic. I still had difficulty making the first mark…but that being said, I really like the way it looks, I also am attempting to believe that i am giving the book a new chance of life, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that if i was not doing this with it, it would be thrown in a bin! so here are the results…
Now if only i could convince some of the people in the world that they want to buy them…