It’s allergy season here in Toronto, and who knows where else! Time to ditch the tissues and get some reusable, eco-friendly, handmade Hay Fever Hankies!! For a bit of wit, I’ve printed each hand sewn hanky with an image of a plant that causes allergies. You can choose from: Ragweed, Timothy/Hay or Crowsfoot!
Today’s post is a mix of ‘Use Your Journal’ and spring cleaning, specifically; getting your books, journals and sketchbooks organized and accounted for! In a fun way, I promise!
My secret weapon to accomplish this, if you haven’t already guessed, is with Ex Libris bookplates.
Ex Libris bookplates are labels that go in the front cover of your books (journals, sketchbooks, novels, biographies, etc). Ex Libris is latin and roughly translates to ‘from the library of’. Therefore, when you write your name in the space provided on each bookplate, you are creating your own library! What’s more organized than a library!?
My Ex Libris bookplates are my own designs that I carve into lino blocks. Then I hand print each one onto self-adhesive paper, making it easy and convenient for you to label your beloved books. I’ve printed two different designs, each in a few different colours, you can read about my process here.
I’ve even got gold bookplates! They’re actually quite beautiful and classy, and make a great gift when tucked in the front of a special book for a friend. To recap, here are 3 steps to incorporate Ex Libris bookplates into your journalling, sketching and book-collecting lives, making it even more fun to use your journal!
1. Choose a selection of journals/sketchbooks/books to be labelled.
2. Write your name in the space provided on the bookplate. Some people also like to write the date they start the book.
2a. If you’re giving a special journal/book as a gift and want to put an ex libris bookplate in the front cover, you can write the recipient’s name and the date. You can also write the occasion for the gift, as a memento for life milestones or achievements.
3. Once you’ve written the info in the space provided on the bookplate, peel off the backing and adhere to the inside front cover of the book/journal/sketchbook. Repeat for all your most fancy and special books!
In case you didn’t know, I’m currently having a blog giveaway! So I thought it would be kind of fun to do a little feature on the goodies that will go to the lucky winner.
Postcard Pad, a set of 7 original, hand decorated postcards to tear out and mail, pictured above. Each postcard in this set is different, so don’t be afraid to send them all to the same person/your Valentine! They make a great companion when travelling or on trips to your local cafe.
Hand printed Ex Libris Bookplates, a set of 4 in Coral, pictured above. These are linocuts, my own design, which I cut and hand printed on self-adhesive paper. Simply write your name on the lines provided, and maybe put in a date or who gave you the book if it was a gift. Then peel off the backing and put the label on the inside cover of your book. Never lose a book again!
Mini Faux Leather Button Book in deep burgundy, pictured above. This is a cute, chunky little book with a button closure. There are 122 pages (244, front and back) and it measures 3″ x 4 1/2″ x 3/4″. Inside, find a mix of pages; blank, lined, and colours, with a surprise map thrown in for fun!
And of course, all these goodies come in a cute book bag hand sewn by yours truly.
To enter the contest just go here for instructions and details. Contest runs until January 31, 2015.
As a Thank You for all the love you’ve shown me over the last several months, I’ve decided to give back and return the favour! I’m holding my first ever Sprouts Press blog giveaway!!
To participate all you have to do is:
1. Follow Sprouts Press blog here on WordPress.
2. Leave a comment below about why you love to journal/sketch/doodle/brainstorm; what is it that draws you to pen and paper?
Contest runs January 24 – 31, 2015. One winner will be drawn randomly from comments below (you must also follow Sprouts Press blog here on wordpress) and announced on February 1, 2015!
-Postcard Pad, a set of 7 original, hand decorated postcards to tear out and mail.
-Hand printed Ex Libris Bookplates, a set of 4 in Coral. Label your books!
-Mini Faux Leather Button Book in deep burgundy.
-Hand sewn floral and corduroy book bag, to carry all your loot!
Anyone who knows me, knows that I love writing letters, sending letters and receiving letters, the snail mail kind. Valentines day around the corner and since I know several people in long distance relationships, I figured that now is a good time to showcase some of the items I make that are designed to be letter-mail friendly. These are items that are perfect to pop in a cute lovey-dovey card, maybe with a fancy bag of tea tucked in too!
From the top left going clockwise:
–Ex Libris bookplates, handprinted in gold.
–Quick Notes notebook, with handpainted two-tone red covers.
–Ex Libris bookplates, handprinted in coral.
–Quick Notes notebook, with handpainted covers in pink and gold.
Of course there are a few larger options; Bookbinding Kit in red & grey, red & cream, perfect for the crafty valentine.
Lastly, this is my last Starburst Journal in red Florentine. This was the first design I bound using my starburst stitching along the spine. It’s a special book that makes a very special gift either as a journal, sketchbook or a fancy album, for a special someone.
Quick Notes Notebooks: Handpainted black & gold, handbound with black linen thread.
A medley of golden delights (top left, clockwise): Fancy Coptic Journal in Gold Florentine with matching vintage golden button, handprinted Ex Libris bookplates in gold: Set of 5, handpainted Quick Notes Notebooks in Gold, Small Fancy Coptic Journal with matching gold vintage button.
If you’re hooked on gold, head to my Etsy shop to see what else there is!
Sometimes I indulge myself and combine mediums. Such is the case with this series of blue painted and relief-printed Longstitch journals. I’ve done this before with other painted journals, but recently came across these photos and felt the urge to share.
Details are everything, matching beaded closures is a thing of beauty (to me anyways).
As many bookbinders and other makers of handmade items know, creating in multiples is key. These books are no exception. But make no mistake; each is unique in placement of the cover patterns and images. Designing these books, the covers and crafting these pieces is the sort of project that keeps me happy!