Sunday, February 24, 2013

NEW Etched Metal Book, Lil' Thistle

So many projects that I've been itching to make have had to take a backseat to more pressing matters (magazine deadlines and such), so I was really happy to spend last evening simply creating again! I finished the binding on an artist book project that I started weeks ago, and it was so much fun to see it come together at last...
Like most of my art projects, my Lil' Thistle book has some history.
A few weeks ago, I used two rubber stamps from Fred Mullett's thistle line (to see all of his thistle stamps, click here) to make small etched copper covers for a little metal book. My plan was to make two covers and use them for a Coptic-bound book that I could teach in my workshops.
I actually left the covers in fresh etching mordant for a little too long, and the areas outside the stamped images were a bit degraded. You can't tell, though, because I simply went over those areas very carefully with some texturing and chasing tools I have (and LOVE), which tidied up the borders and added extra personality to the book.
So you see, mistakes can be a very good thing!
In the photo above, you can see which stamps I used to make my book. The first time I saw these rubber art stamps in Fred's catalog, I knew they'd be ideal for a little book. I say "little" because my book covers are about 2-1/2 inches square, which is pretty small. But, I think it's perfectly sized for a pocket book or travel sketchbook.
When you make your own sketchbooks, you can bind them with as many pages as you like, in your choice of paper. And you control so many other aspects of the design! It's ideal to make your own sketch/travel books, and it's not very difficult, especially if you have someone show you how to do the Coptic stitch.
I'm teaching three different Little Metal Books—sawn & pierced, etched, and stamped—as a workshop option during my Wild Wire Women retreats. It takes two full days to make one or two books, but you will learn many valuable techniques in the process, some of which are closely related to jewelry making. I hope to see some of you sign up for this option! I already have two students who have chosen Little Metal Books for their retreat experience in early May.
I've added lots of new dates to my retreat schedule for 2013, so take a look here and if you find a weekend that will fit your schedule, sign up soon! Now that it's spring, I'm beginning to get more signups.
Happy wrapping (and book binding),
Sharilyn

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