Thursday, October 15, 2015

Rustic Country Chic Guest Book or Photo Album

This book has been patiently sitting around my studio waiting for me to finish it,
which I finally did this week. Yay me.

It was a case of "am I finished with this or not?" It seemed like it needed
something else. The poor book was relegated to the shelf for 3 months
before I figured out what it was.

Beads! The magic touch.
I didn't want to overload the book with beads...just a subtle something extra,
so I put just three on every other thread.
I had a lot of fun stamping on the pages and making little pockets and envelopes.
This book would make a perfect guest book or photo album for a barn-style, forest theme, wild west, or vintage wedding. You could also use it as a journal for everyday or travel. It can be purchased here.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Art Journal Using Upholstery Fabric Swatches for the Covers

Years ago I found some upholstery swatch books in a thrift store. I've been hoarding them ever since, which not unusual for me. I have oodles of fabric, ribbon, paper, beads, sequins, stickers, magazine images...and so on. I even kept the extra wooden reeds from when I cut the length of my roman shades. I must have 150 sticks in my attic. What I am going to do with them all I don't know, but you never know when you might need a stick for a project!

fabric art journal
Anyhow, I thought I would finally put to use all the little scraps of upholstery fabric by making journal covers with them.

covers of fabric art journal
The design process takes me forever, partly as I have to organize all the little scraps by color first because I'm like that. Then I have to find the exact right combination of colors and patterns.

I sew all the scraps together and sew a lining on the other side, taking care to remember to include the elastic loop on the back for the button closure. It's a real nuisance if you forget this step as you have to rip out the stitches to slip the elastic in between the cover and liner and sew it back together. Not that I am speaking from experience. ;)

inside detail of fabric art journal
Then it is text block time. I added lots of different colored paper pages and little swatches of scrapbook paper into my pages. I discovered when working within this journal that the colored paper was a moot point as I gessoed all the pages and painted on them, so it really didn't matter what color the page was to begin with. Oh well.

side view of fabric art journal
I stitched the pages into the book using a sort of modified longstitch/pamphlet stitch and added a button from my grandmother's collection.

fabric art journal
 Ta-da! Finished product. I am about halfway done filling the pages of this book.
Here are some of the pages:
page showing artwork in fabric art journalpage showing artwork in fabric art journal
page showing artwork in fabric art journalpage showing artwork in fabric art journal

I am making some fabric journals to share and will post the link when they are ready in my Etsy shop.

Here is one ready to ship!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Rustic Wedding Guest Book: Peony Blossoms on Blue

I have been experimenting with hand painted covers a lot lately. This pretty little book has a hand painted border in charcoal gray to coordinate with the cover paper (designed by Amy Butler).

Rustic Wedding Guest Book on Etsy

Rustic Wedding Guest Book by Emerson Bindery
 I also painted and distressed the inside covers. The brown kraft paper pages are hand torn.
The lace bow is removable if you prefer the cover plain. This book can be purchased in my shop here.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Mini Guest Books for a Teenage Boy

Recently I was commissioned to make these mini books for use as guest books at a bar mitzvah.
The boy was into music so I found this music themed paper in my scrapbook paper stash.
I stamped and embossed the drum set on two of the books to coordinate with the covers.


 The inside pages are blank and can be filled with notes, signatures, and drawings.
Maybe even photo booth strips could fit inside, depending upon the size of the strips.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Hand Painted Photo Album: Starfish on Ocean Blue

I've been working on a different style of book lately to use as a photo album. I wanted something with a flexible spine but case bound and enclosed, unlike my other open spine books.

Beach Wedding Photo Album on Etsy
I've been experimenting with colors on my art journal pages. Some of them look cool enough to be book covers so I thought I'd give it a try and use one of my designs on this album.

The stitching looks a lot like longstitch but is really more like a pamphlet stitch because I don't have the running threads at the top and bottom of the spine.

 The starfish cut outs are textured and feel almost like real starfish!
The covers are textured to give an aged look. This would be a great album to store beach vacation photos in or could be a beach wedding photo album or guest book.

  I ran some of the pages through my computer and printed various designs on them.
 Other pages I hand stamped and made little tags, photo cards,
and envelopes to store treasures or photos in.

This book is a lot more time consuming than my other books but I'm very happy with the outcome!

I can make a book like this in just about any color at your request.
You can purchase this book here.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Giraffe journal for my friend

My good friend Christy and I like to make something special for each other on our birthdays. She made me a collage of paper butterflies in a shadow box one year and made chocolate turtles for me another time.

I've been working on hand painted journals lately and thought I'd make something special for her. Christy's favorite animal is a giraffe and since it has a long neck I needed a tall journal to fit it.

This journal was a lot of fun to make. I've found it's good to take a break from the norm and do something different to inspire fresh creativity. Maybe I'll add books like this to my product line in my shop!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Recent Commision: Navy Blue Floral Guest Book

Spring is here and I am thankful the pollen hasn't been as bad as it often is--wafts of yellow powder drifting over my porch, yuck! With spring also brings wedding season and things get really busy around here.

I have been working on a recent commission and here are some photos of this lovely, limited edition Italian letterpress floral pattern:

The landscape version of this book can be found in my shop here.