Thank you to all the lovely and friendly people who came along to attend the first of the scheduled bookbinding workshops which I'll be continuing to host at the Wellers Hill Art Hub from now until (hopefully) well into 2016.
During the afternoon workshop (held on the 27th September), the class participants each handbound themselves a softcover leather notebook using the traditional Cross-structure binding technique.
Some ladies brought along their own 'feature' papers to include in their books - vintage storybook pages, patterned papers, colourful scrapbooking papers, even some delectable deckle-edged handmade papers. Mixing these with the various options of leather colours and thread colours, led to some really lovely results!
^ These two books demonstrate the two varieties of cross-structure bindings included in the class (one with exposed stitching, the other with an enclosing spine)
To every workshop I always take along a good selection of sample books I've made, not only to help illustrate what the end result will look like, but also to inspire and suggest further ways to be creative beyond the basic bookbinding style being shown.
I find one of the most exciting aspects of bookbinding is its vast potential for explore and create variations using an almost infinite assortment of materials, colours, sizes, shapes and styles. Once you grasp the basic techniques of binding together a book, the sky really is the limit!
For instance, one of the sample books I made up ready for the workshop, incorporated a myriad of patterned papers (sourced from an old Marrimekko catalogue!), gold foil, translucent pink pages, and even some pages made from fine linen fabric. The leather covers were a vivid cherry-red, hand embroidered with a simple motif drawn from one of the pages bound inside the book. And a candy-pink bookbinding thread was used to bind the whole thing together. It was such fun to create!
I also created an A5 sized version of the same cross-structure binding, to show how easy it is to scale up to a bigger size. This sample used plum-coloured leather for the covers, chocolate-brown thread, and cartridge drawing paper inside (with a handful of interesting 'feature' pages too) which makes a wonderful journal for writing or sketching. It might just become my own next journal!
For anyone interested in attending future workshops, please feel free to send me an email at:
and I'll add you to the mailout list for announcements about newly scheduled workshops.
For more info about the Wellers Hill Arts Hub, run by BVAC over at Tarragindi, you can visit their website here. And for more info about the Qld Bookbinders Guild (of which I am a member!), please visit their website here. I'll be hosting bookbinding workshops through both these organisations throughout 2016, so stay tuned, and if there's a particular style of bookbinding you're extra keen to learn please email me and we can discuss!
NEXT SCHEDULED WORKSHOPS:
> Coptic bookbinding, 1st November 2015, 1-5pm, Wellers Hill Arts Hub. $80/person
> Three miniature books (pamphlet, accordion, mini leatherbound book), 22nd November 2015, 1-5pm, Wellers Hill Arts Hub. $80/person
Let me know if you'd like to make a booking for either of these workshops coming up :)
I've just confirmed I'll be running TWO new bookbinding workshops here in Brisbane in November!
The first is a Coptic binding workshop on Sunday 1st November 2015 - all the details are in the flyer below:
And the second is on Sunday 22nd November 2015, and it's a workshop teaching THREE different miniature books, including a pamphlet-sewn notebook, a pocket concertina book, and a tiny 'chocolate' book. All the details for this workshop are in this flyer:
Both of these November workshops will be held at the Wellers Hill Arts Hub, a great creative space run by the Brisbane Visual Arts Community (BVAC) over at Tarragindi.
If you're interested in booking for either or both of the workshops, please email me at the address indicated in the flyers :) I'd love to have you in my class!
Good news! - Shelbyville will soon be teaching a range of bookbinding classes again. Would you be interested in coming along to a workshop?
My first-up bookbinding workshop is on Sunday, 27th September at the Wellers Hill Arts Hub, where I'll be teaching how to make a soft-cover leatherbound notebook handstitched from reclaimed leathers and an assortment of papers and dyed linen bookbinding thread (using the Cross-structure bookbinding technique).
It's only a couple of weeks away, so if you're keen, be quick with your RSVP!
Here's all the finer details about the upcoming class:
Date: Sunday 27th September, 2015
Length of class: Approx 3-4 hours
Location: Wellers Hill Arts Hub, a lovely venue operated by BVAC (Brisbane Visual Arts Comumunity), and located at 140 Weller Road, Tarragindi
Cost: $80 per person, includes all the bookbinding materials + templates + instructions to take home along with your very own handmade book ($10 of this amount goes to BVAC to cover the use of their workshop facilities).
RSVP: Book your place by email to Michelle (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone 0412 550 981. I'll reply via email with further details about what to bring, etc.
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I've several other classes planned for later in the year too: I will be teaching a Coptic binding workshop, a workshop on making Miniature books, and also another workshop on the Cross-structure leatherbound book style I usually teach.
NEXT SCHEDULED WORKSHOPS:
> Coptic bookbinding, 1st November 2015, 1-5pm, Wellers Hill Arts Hub. $80/person
> Three miniature books (inc pamphlet, accordion/pocket, and mini leatherbound books), 22nd November 2015, 1-5pm, Wellers Hill Arts Hub. $80/person
Let me know if you'd like to make a booking for either of these workshops coming up :)
It's now been several weeks since the crazy weekend that was the latest Brisbane Finders Keepers market event (Winter 2015), and I think I've had sufficient time to relax and reflect (author's note: admittedly, I started writing this post quite a while ago, and the weeks have turned into months. Time it keeps a-flying!).
How did it all go? What were the best bits of the event? Did I discover/purchase any beautiful new things? Did I find a few moments to breathe..? Well now, let's see...
^ Friday night bump-in/setup went swiftly and smoothly. This shot was taken from where my table was located in the very corner of the first room, right by the doors out to the balcony. I really liked this spot for Shelbyville, and the corner position offered a touch more workable table space, always a useful thing!
Dan took this pic - I was feeling just a bit tired and hungry :/
I had the table pretty much laid out in less than an hour and a half - the upshot being that hubby and I could then head over to The Valley to enjoy a dinner out without the kidlets (who happened to be staying at Nanny & Poppy's for the weekend). That sure was a nice way to ease into the FK weekend! ;)
A bit more of a vertical display for Shelbyville this time around. I was trialling out a new mini pigeonhole shelf as a backdrop and container for all the tiny eclectic items, and it created a nice high spot for displaying handbound books and sets of clay houses.
In hindsight I found that my table/display was too 'browsing-intensive' for the hustle-bustle of a busy FK market, and under different circumstances I would easily halve the amount of items stocked on my table and make better use of negative space. But the reality was that my goal for this market was to sell through a number of older products (often only small amounts) which led to a very full display, which wasn't ideal I now know.
So anyway, back at the Old Museum first-thing Saturday morning, here I am ready and geared up for a big day. And boy, Finders Keepers did not disappoint. The crowds were immediate, and the crowds were insane, and they barely slowed down. At one point over lunchtime on Saturday, things got so crowded that the place practically jammed to a stand-still (apparently hindered by the presence of too many prams on the veranda, so the word from security was) and only the opening up of the emergency back passageways between the rooms helped circumvent the jamming. Needless to say, there was definitely a sense of crowd angst on Saturday, which wasn't great.
I also noted it was a distinctly younger crowd on Saturday. And lots of mothers with new babies (but perhaps I just especially noticed those because I was missing my littlies?).
Thankfully Sunday turned out to be much more relaxed. The crowds were consistent throughout most of the day, but everything just seemed to flow so much easier, and the energy was good. I had a really enjoyable day on Sunday! it was definitely an older audience too - I had many great chats with old folk delighting in the nostalgia of many of the vintage goods on the Shelbyville table ;) I really like those chats. And I sold lots of things, I like that too ;)
Sunday morning, ready for Day 2
As I mentioned, it was fairly constantly busy, but I was lucky to have a couple of helpful little helpers come and go during the weekend (many thanks to my sis-in-law Terri for bringing along my 11yo niece Charlotte, who I think would love a future in craft market-ing!).
In the brief bits of time I had to go look around the market, of course I came across plenty of beautiful things. My favourites?...
Ceramics, ceramics, ceramics, and more ceramics...clearly the most on-trend item right now, and there were many lush examples to be found.
In the pics above (clockwise from top left) Arc & Family presented these lovely looking concrete pots; Susan Simonini had a gorgeous array of rustic stoneware vessels; an array of deliciously-coloured scoops from Kim Wallace Ceramics; and perky watercolour-inspired vessels from Marloe Morgan Ceramics.
^ I especially liked the tiny earthy ceramic dishes and vases from Woodfolk. Totally my colour palette!
^ And these were my two little purchases - dishes for our culinary salts (the little carved spoon was already in my collection) - a stoneware dish internally glazed with black, from Susan Simonini, and a cast-cement dish in white/grey from Shimona Designs (although I can't seem to find any reference to their cement pieces online, only their resin homewares/jewellery, so I hope I got that right. Hmmm).
Two of my favourite market friends, Emily from Kuberstore and Michelle from Crayon Chick, were at the market and ever-impressive with their distinctive objet d'art - one specialising in natural forms cast/carved from plaster, the other in fabulous creations of fabric cord, including these stunning necklace pieces.
I was also chuffed to see my friends Smith and Others making their market debut with some utterly beautiful handcrafted timber furniture pieces - well done Jo and Matty! And I found much to be delighted about by Pili Pala Pieces - particularly their cloud-shaped frames (and aren't clouds another very trendy motif right now?!).
I wish I'd had a bit more time to peruse the more kid-friendly goodies, like these handmade softies from Julie's Little People, and these super-cool 'merit badges' from Winnifred's Daughter. I would most definitely have bought both these things given half a chance ;) Maybe now I could make my own version..?
Speaking of making, I'm going to finish here with a pic of what was my most favourite item to make for this Finders Keepers market - these sets of tiny clay houses featuring fragments of fabrics from Umbrella Prints. I just love them, and I was happy to see most of these find new homes with lovely customers (including Alarna, my treasured friend who bought a set for her brand new home, yay!). I'm definitely planning to make more of these, and have just ordered a whole new batch of Umbrella Prints trimmings to inspire the next range of little houses :)
Well, that about wraps up my quiet reflections about the Brisbane Finders Keepers market just gone. You can see the whole directory of stockists over here on the FK website, if you've been so inspired. There sure were plenty more wonderful things to see that I didn't touch on here in my very (necessarily) brief overview.
And finally, yes, I did happen to get a few small chances to breathe during the incredibly busy event, and even a few small chances to connect with some truly amazing people. That is indeed the best part of being involved in a FK market! :)
Hey everybody!...this weekend is Brisbane's winter Finders Keepers market, once again at the beautiful Old Museum venue near the Ekka showgrounds (all the details can be found on their website here).
What's extra exciting for me over here at Shelbyville is that this will be my first return to the FK market scene after a VERY long hiatus! My now 4-year-old son was but a tiny 9-month-old bub sitting on a playmat behind my table the last time Shelbyville held a stall (at the 2011 spring FK market)...gosh!
I'll admit it feels a little odd, and just a tad anxiety-producing, to be manoeuvring myself back into market mode. I've had to reacquaint myself with all those once very familiar tasks - planning the table layout, styling the display, packaging my products, pricing, signage, marketing...Not to mention all the making, making, making that precedes all these things!
These last couple of weeks I've been revisiting all my old product favourites - the vintage typewriter-key cufflinks/pendants/badges, old typewriter-ribbon tins, Scrabble pieces, sticker packs, 1" badges, little handmade books, vintage button brooches, and the myriad of other cute and sweet things in Shelbyville's back catalogue of products.
But also, I'm happy to say, I've been busy creating some new stuff for the table. My new work includes sets of handmade clay houses; miniature shadow-box magnets; embroidered hearts on wooden panels; and best of all, a whole series of frameable 'collage art' created from vintage paper dolls and old books/papers. Here's a sneaky peek:
But the countdown is on, so I best be getting back to my preparations - sooo much still left to do!
If you're in Brisbane this weekend, come along to Finders Keepers for a truly wonderful day-out (markets, music, food, good times!), and be sure to drop by the Shelbyville stall to say hi ;)
How quickly we are moving through the letters of the Alphabet Swap!... Letter Q could have been quite a challenge, but for five of the six 'crafty mums' participating in the Swap, seems that 'quilting' was the correct and obvious answer ;) Ha!
Here was my own take on the 'quilting' concept - a 3-dimensional cardboard Q that was (literally) 'quilted' with 'queens', a lovely coloured grid of those classic and quintessentially British postage stamps of Queen Elizabeth's profile:
Originally, the gridded layout of queens derived from another papercraft project I've been working on for a while, one where I am using a set of vintage tabbed filing cards as the collective canvases for alphabet-inspired illustrations/collages.
In this case, the letter Q featured the queenly postage stamps sewn (quilting-style) onto the tabbed card:
The creation and assembly of the Alphabet Swap letter Q required a few interesting steps.
Firstly I cut a sheet of thin cardboard into an identical Q shape, and again the same for a layer of thin foam sheet which I stacked on top of the card Q.
Then I took an enlarged colour photocopy of the 'quilted queens' artwork; cut it out so that it was slightly larger than the Q shape; overlayed it on top of the foam/card (using double-sided-sticky JAC paper for both adhesion and to give the photocopied paper extra strength); then clipped the curves and stuck the overhanging bits around to the back of the card.
The quilted effect was dimensionally enhanced by using brass studs at each intersection of the postage stamp grid - by pushing the studs through the layers and securing them behind the thin-card base, the foam layer helped create the 'quilting'.
Then the Q was completed by adhering this layered/quilted top-face onto the already painted base of the cardboard letter. Voila!
As previously mentioned, quilting was the popular choice for the Letter Q, although each of us seemed to add a unique spin such as 'quadrants', 'quirky', or 'quaint'.
Maryanne's red & white Q quilt was stitched with diagonals to create triangular quadrants; Susan's mauve quilt comprised a quarter-circle motif; Jodi created a cutely quaint Q quilt; Shannon took a rather different tack with her question-mark Q; and my Q fused queens with quilting.
Shannon's question-mark Q quotes a few of the commonest questions our darling children seem to constantly ask us:
Sarah's quirky Q quilt was a late addition to the Swap:
Jodi did a lovely job of her traditional-style quilt, even finished with turned edges!:
Susan also opted for traditional quilting, with intricate piecing on both sides:
And I do believe this was Maryanne's first-ever attempt at quilting (with a little assistance from Susan), but we love the bold result, and were quite chuffed to have received this one in the Swap!
Just a quick post here, a small follow-up to the Letter P project, as I make my way through blogging about all the letters created during the Alphabet Swap.
I've just been revisiting one of Shelbyville's favourite Pinterest boards - Felt Fabric & Thread - and have gathered together a handful of the most super-inspiring sewing machine projects that I've recently pinned. These are the potential 'next nine' that I'd like to try my hand at, following on from the machine-sewn Letter P project (see following post):
1. linen skirts (Japanese sewing pattern books are the best!) 2. alphabet softies 3. toys for the boys (made from upcycled fabrics)
4. cushion making (all shapes, sizes and characters) 5. soft sculpture (taking inspiration from textile artist Mister Finch) 6. fabric books
7. patches/merit badges 8. ad hoc patchwork, preferably in miniature 9. fabric-based illustration
Oh Pinterest, how much I love you and all your insane amounts of inspiration!
Letter P this month provided me some more practice on my sewing machine, prompting me to perfect my process of pillow-making, using some pieces of patchwork-style fabric + a pair of pencils.
^ Pages from my sketchbook that show I was previously playing with ideas of polymer clay / paper / patterns / patchwork / pillow / pockets / pencils...
And in the end I opted to produce a patchwork pillow. These pics showing the process from paper-pattern-making to production, plus pocket.
^ Close-up pic of the pocket for pink and purple pencils.
...and all puffed out with its proliferation of pretty patterns.
Sidenote #1: I really wish I knew what the brand/name of this fabric was, but I bought a 'fat quarter' of it from the Sydney Stitches & Craft Show many years ago, and haven't the faintest knowledge about it. (But hey, did you know that 'kaeru' is Japanese for frog?! I tried to google it ;) ha!...)
Sidenote #2: What I particularly liked about making the patchwork pillow was that it re-ignited my appreciation for my old Janome sewing machine, and that since doing this P project I've proceeded to embark enthusiastically on a challenge to overcome my fear of the machine and generally increase my confidence in sewing. Now, almost two years later, I am making a new item of clothing (on my Janome) every single month, and have sewn many different skirts, shorts, shirts, and dress-up accessories since. It's funny to look back in retrospect and realise that this was actually the springing off point! :)
As I slowly work my way through, looking back in retrospect on each of these letters in the Alphabet Swap project, I'm reminded of the myriad of related ideas + projects + inspirations that spun out of the process of making each letter. I recall the research and the subsequently collected 'pins', and after an evening of re-visiting my Pinterest boards, I had a thought that I could gather together a small selection of super-inspiring ideas that I've since dubbed "Nine for next time".
So here are a few lead-on projects that I'd like to try my hand at, following on from making the origami-laden Letter O:
1. gemstone-folding template 2. paper gemstones in metallic tones 3. a mobile of suspended paper gemstones (I'm thinking of a spiral-hung mobile for The White Room)
4. folded tetrahedron (?) paper packets (great for gift-wrapping with a difference) 5. paper rosettes (good chance to use that book I bought, 'Rosette Art' 6. crinkle fans, just for fun
7. found-paper envelopes, always great to have these on hand for letterwriting 8. paper boats (or at least some groovy looking sails for tiny walnut-shell boats) 9. origami dresses - the one I'm most inspired to try next. I'm really excited about this one - I have just the project in mind!
Ahhh Pinterest, an absolute gold-mine of inspiration! How grateful I am for you in my life ;)
And if you'd like to follow the links of these project ideas (or scroll through many more), these Next Nine can be found on my Pinterest board Papercraftiness.
This album shows some of the artworks I've done over the years, and covers a range of mediums including coloured pencil, charcoal, pastel, oils, watercolour, polymer clay, photography, architectural renderings, and a whole mix of others. 'Mix' is a good word...