paper crafts
15 @ 40 // day fourteen

15 @ 40 // day fourteen

One of my favourite parts of the glory days of blogging, was the various rabbit holes one could fall down just from a single linky party. I could find myself starting with bookmarking a post with a cute sketch to scrap lift, and in the comments there, find a scrapbooker who teamed up with an artist for a challenge. From the artist’s page I could find a weekly drawing prompt, which bumped me over into the printmaking side of the blogosphere; from printmaking it was just a short hop, skip & jump to bookbinding.

The archives tell me my first experiment was towards the end of October 2008, a handful of months after I started blogging. It’s interesting to me, how much blogging has fuelled my creative adventures over the years. Sometimes, especially over Blogotober, I will confess I find myself making so I have blog fodder. For the most part though, the creating is much more organic. It’s making something because it caught my eye, sometimes through a blog rabbit hole, sometimes through an insta scroll. Less so these days, but immersing myself in the blogging world was a sure-fire way to tickle the inspiration when my mojo felt flat.

Book making is something I’ve played with on and off. Coptic is a go-to when the bookbinding mojo hits, or I need to bind a book for a friend or a child. There have been other book binding experiments too, forming part of a larger project, and making cute books for the sake of making cute books.

One of the handful of commissioned books I’ve made over the years is one for Car, featuring my favourite Echino patchwork fabric. This fabric (out of print & only available from the US, though the pretty blue option is available in Australia & tempting me – and in my search I might have come across a new second-favourite) has popped up in multiple projects over the years. Needlework pouches, journal bags, tool rolls and diary covers, just to name a few. There was no way I could let this series wrap up without featuring it, and a book was the perfect project to use it on.

I wanted something more than my usual A5 journals though. This project is about exploring creativity and pushing myself, not simply recreating something I’ve already done. Inspiration came after I was convinced to join a new daily creativity habit – “Illustrate Your Week”. I started with a double page spread in an old dylusions journal that I am in the process of filling and finishing, and within a couple of days I was hooked. A journal for sketching each day in would be the perfect addition to my collection. The size itself was decided by the scraps of linen I had left in my stash. After so many years, I’m running down to the last of my precious yardage, and squeezing every last bit out of what I have left.

Bound with hot pink Perle, a bit of flair with decorative stitches in green floss, and finished with eyelets set in to create a selvedge closure, this adorable little mini book has shot to the top of the list of favourite books I’ve made. An ode to a decade and a half of rabbit holes and fabric hyper-fixation and “how hard could it be” moments of googles and exploring.

Today’s post is part of my “FIFTEEN AT FORTY” project, a fifteen day, fifteen project, celebration of creative exploration, to mark my fortieth year and my blog fifteenth. The journey so far has been amazing. The creation of the pieces I plan to share with you over the next fifteen days has been a revelation. I am brimming with inspiration and motivation for what is still to come.

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