Handmade Book Made from my Original, Mixed Media Painting
 Last summer I visited Ashland, Oregon to see friends and attend the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (something I HIGHLY recommend).  My artistic, lovely friends took me on a gallery tour of Ashland (also a must do) where I discovered a coop gallery filled with wonderful work.  Among the works were handmade journals....I knew I had to figure out how to create my own.

I decided to use my recently completed, mixed media painting "Catching Wishes, Hopes and Dreams" as the cover so I scanned it and reproduced it using a laser printer.  I have discovered that my art studio inkjet printer's archival inks run when it gets wet but laser ink doesn't.

The cover of my little book
I cut out scrap pieces of mat board for the two covers and decided I wanted the spine of the book to be open so I could show some funky, fun papers inside.  I used some actual book fabric a friend gave me (not going to do that again - too stiff), some washi tape (also not using that again - had to repeatedly reglue it) and created a quick, digital piece including the dictionary page with the "Wish" definition for the back.   whew - follow all that?

Inside Papers and Binding the Book
The books I saw in Ashland had monoprinted pages wrapped around sections of the book papers.  I have a scrap pile of fun, two-sided papers I wrapped around folded groups of papers.  I had 10 papers folded in each section.  I also decided to use some of my crafty scissors to cut the printed papers for some extra joy.

Securing the book pages with waxed thread
I knew I wanted to bind my papers to the spine using some colorful embroidery thread I've got (most of this project was created with stuff I already had).  I read and boy is it true, you need to wax the thread with bees wax.  The wax coating makes the thread extra strong and the knots are tight.

I've learned that these little bundles of folded papers are called signatures.

My finished, little book
I have all sorts of beads, buttons and charms so I added a little something more with four strings of beads along the spine. I have no idea what I will capture on these pages but I'm looking forward to playing inside my new book and I can't wait to make another one with what I've discovered.


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