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An Austrian Journal made by me

I’ve been making some small notebooks and have learned to sew signatures to a cover to bind them together.  I really like this, but most of all I like making the pages that go inside.  Not the paper itself, but embellishing the paper.  Trying to have a theme of some sort.

My son-in-law Paul is always so supportive of my art attempts.  I decided for his birthday to make him a journal to take with him to a conference this summer in Vienna.  I slaved over this because I wanted it to be perfect.  I want him to be a bit amazed, a bit flattered, and a bit eager to write in it.  Some things were bought, some made, some stolen.  But I am so proud of it.  Somewhat like I felt about Winestains, the afghan I created from old swatches.   Here it is.  I will try to limit the photos to those that have something unique about them.  But I did photograph the whole thing—lovingly.  I hope you like it, too.

Paul is left handed so this notebook opens opposite from what we normally see.  Therefore the front cover is on the left side.  This is some purchased cardstock.  You can see the stitches for the three signatures in the journal.  I spaced them apart so he can add bulky things if he wants.Inside the cover I made a pocket and place the purple cardstock there so he would notice it.  The next page is a vellum piece with some pictures I stole from the net:  a map, an Austrian stamp and a vintage postcard from Austria.  The painted rock appears in the photos only to hold down the page.  (No, there is nothing I won’t Zentangle.)This shows one of my hand carved stamps made from an eraser.  The Austrian stamp features the actress Hedy LaMarr and the quote is one she said about American men.  You can click on the pictures for a closer view if you want to read the quotes.   Did you know that Hedy LaMarr holds a patent for a guidance system used to aim missles?  Go figure.

The woodgrain stamp I carved from a white eraser using some Speedball carving tools I bought online.  The left hand page features a picture of the National Art Museum and below, it’s name and the name of another museum of art.  When Steve and I went to Vienna, we went mainly to see the art of Schiele and Klimt.  Every single canvas was either in storage or on a tour of the US.  We wish Paul better luck.

This was printed from Printable Paper.net.  It is like the places where you can print free knitting graph paper only it has a huge selection of styles.  This is the landscape lined college rule paper.  Perfect for the center of a signature.  I used grey paper here.

I used a photo from a history magazine to get a picture of some 18th century handwriting.  Then I put it in Photoshop and made it more transparent so you can do your own writing over it.  There are several pages like that in the book.

Pockets are always insecure, so I included an envelop with a closure.  This particular one was used to ship some beads to me from China.  The leaf stamp was carved from a white eraser, and if you look closely, you can see the traces of some foam stamps carved with a ballpoint peeking through from the other side of the page.

I love using the brown wrapping paper.  The stamp at the top is another carved from foam with a ballpoint that I did.  The other pictures were borrowed from the net.  All of the quotes in the book are from Austrians and were hand lettered by me.  Most are in a sepia ink from Micron.

Freud had to be included as did my cathedral window stamp.  The painting is Steve’s favorite Schiele, a print of which hangs in our den and which is the one thing he went to Vienna to see.  She was in America.

The end page is another of the historical writing pages and I created another pocket inside the back of the journal.  The cover and it’s lining are sewn together by machine with a zigzag stitch and plain black thread.  The top is trimmed with Washi tape.  The corners are all rounded because I love rounded corners and because that is the only punch I own.

I hope you enjoyed this little tour.  Every thing I learned for this project is free online.  If you have questions, just ask.  Bookbinding  can be a great activity to do with kids and doesn’t have to cost a bunch.  Google folding books and have a go.

More later–


One Response

  1. That truly is a special gift.

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