Sunday, July 27, 2014

Launch of MagicalMonoprinting ETSY shop

I've finally taken the plunge and started up a shop on ETSY.  For those of you who are blissfully ignorant of the wonder of ETSY, its an e-commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items and art/craft supplies.  In other words, totally deadly on a rainy afternoon when you are innocently trawling the internet and come across ETSY, an absolute sinful treasure trove of all things handmade, like the best and biggest handmade market you've ever been to.......

So next time you're 'surfing' the web, drop and in say hello to my shop MagicalMonoprinting (love it by clicking on 'favourite').  Here's the link if you need a bit of help getting there.......

But before you click the link and dive into a few hours of ETSY love....I wanted to tell you that I've become addicted to making cards.  Not the scrapbooking, all bling and wow factor type of card.  My cards are simple, colour savvy and show off my monoprints.  I make cards now in several styles, using a few different printing methods. 

I source my card and envelope blanks from the internet, usually starting on EBAY to find the best deal. I also get my plastic bags from there as well.   I love to layer my cards, using a piece of bazzill card to frame the print.  Bazzill card is just wonderful!  Colours in every shade and not just the primaries or fluros, but absolutely gorgeous shades, for about $1 for a 30cm x 30cm sheet.  I source my card from scrapbooking shops or online.

I think what I enjoy about card making is the meditative process of construction and the outcome of a beautiful card to brighten someone's day.  They're a cheaper option for someone who can't afford one of my original prints or journals. 

I've only recently started using quality colour photocopies of my monoprints for my cards, after finally working out that using an original monoprint on each card wasn't very economical as each monoprint is a one-off!

Below are a few examples of the cards I'm making at the moment.

The Bazzill card frames the prints beautifully!

These ones are original prints using my Ezi-carve stamps.

I like these ones because the cards 'frame' the print.

Prints from my Sedge Series.

Now off you go to ETSY (here's the link again  I bet you'll find it hard not to find something you like there!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Secret Belgian Binding

Recently I made a 'End of Financial Year' resolution to reorganise my studio and storage space.  I suddenly became overwhelmed by how much 'stuff' I had acquired and decided I should focus on using what I already have rather than buy more.

So I'm abstaining from op shops for a while (sigh) and am determined to reuse and reorganise my stash.

My first project was to repurpose some small concertina books.  I made these using gelli-plate prints some time ago and never did anything with them. 

I also decided to challenge myself and try something new.  I searched through my books (in my book 'stash', another example of using what I already had) and found Alisa Golden's 'Making Handmade Books'.  Its one of my favourite books, having a wide variety of techniques with easy to follow instructions.

Step 1 - I deconstructed the concerntina books to create two covers.  The inner section will be included as a page within the signatures.  I then made a hard spine from a scrap of board and a gelli plate print.  The photo below is the outside view of the covers and its new spine.

Step 2 - I then sewed the spine and covers together.  A rather tricky stitch, working with the boards flat and leaving a gap between the spine and the covers.  The photo below is the view from the inside of the book.

Step 3 - To complete the book, I sewed the signatures to the spine, looping the thread around the stitches created in the previous step.  A curved needle made this so much easier to do.

What I like about the finished book is the decorative stitching on the outside.  And its surprisingly stable, given that the pages are only sewn on using a looping action.


It was very fiddly to stitch so I don't think I'll be doing a lot of books using this binding, but it was enjoyable to try something a bit different.   And to chip away a little bit of the stash....