Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

ARGH! What a week it's been! This is the first time ever that I did not carve my pumpkins until today! It's been so crazy at work that I haven't had time to think about Halloween! I think this year's trick-or-treater count is the lowest ever! We had 14 kids come to the door. When we moved into this neighbourhood years ago, we had close to hundred kids. Each year, the numbers steadily dropped.

It was announced today that the Rolling Stones concert in Vancouver has been postponed to Nov 25th. Bah! Instead of 2 weeks of intense stress, it has now become a month of intense stress. The stage build started on Monday and it was going so well. It's just as much work to cancel a concert as it is to put one on. Good thing I have my fibre to keep me sane.

On the knitting front, I've finally finished the sleeves on the BPT and started on the hood. Not sure if I like it with the hood but I'll try it. If I don't like it, I can always re-knit the hood into a collar. Started some more socks for the work commute. Nothing special...just plain old socks.

I felt like sewing tonight so I made this...
(Yes, it does look like the bag SOMEONE bought at FibreFest. I've been regretting not buying one when you did, Amber.) It's about 11"x7"x5". I lined it with some leftover fabric I got at Maiwa and made a drawstring closure for the top. I think the next one will be a bit taller, with inside pockets and a loop to attach my keys. That would be the perfect knitting bag.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Odds & Ends

I love the Fall season! The weather this year has been exceptional. We had a few days of rain but it's been mostly sunny. A lot of the plants have started to die back but there's still a lot of colour tucked away here and there. It's like finding treasure. Our yard is slowly being covered with leaves from our trees and the neighbour's trees. It's a never-ending chore to rake and re-rake the leaves. Good thing we have a teenage kid. :D

This is my first attempt at sewing the head & end bands. Bookbinding is really an ugly process. You're looking at all the bits & pieces, covered with glue. Then suddenly, you put the cover on and transform the whole ugly mess into a book that actually looks like a book! In hindsight, I think I should have practice the headband sewing on something first. You can't see it but the bands are lopsided. The cover is handmade paper - not by me - and the paper inside is recycled paper.

I like this book. Instead of using binding tape, I used dyed abaca rope. The cover spine had been slit to pull the rope through and tied. The cover is handmade paper but I tried distressing it to give it a leather look. I diluted water and glue and painted it on. The back cover was done first and I used even strokes. The front was painted randomly and it seems to work much better. Again, like the whole headband fiasco, I should have practiced this first.

Now I have to go and finish the sleeve of my BPT. Yup, I'm still on the first sleeve.


Sunday, October 15, 2006

Where have I been?

I need more hours in a day! I've been seduced by bookbinding and have not had time to knit (much) or spin lately. I just finished another book today with handsewn head bands. I'm really proud of this book. :D

What am I going to do with all these books? I can't bring myself to write inside them...I have very messy writing.

BPT is going slow. I seem to have lost steam. I'm still halfway down the first sleeve. I promise tomorrow night will be devoted to finishing the sleeve and (hopefully) start the second sleeve.

Today was supposed to be Pumpkin Patch Day. That was cancelled due to rain. We'll save that for next weekend. Instead, I was treated to a trip to Aberdeen Centre and a long visit to Daiso. I love that place! I picked up lots of cool paper and abaca string.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Paper & Glue

Wow! The last three days have been just a whirlwind of paper and glue. Total sensory overload. I was at the three-day workshop for Bookbinding at Maiwa Handprints. Paper had been my first fibre love right from day one - I come from a long line of printers. I grew up running around printing presses. I love paper. I have memories of me sitting at my dad's desk playing with the bits of paper trimmings. I would glue the ends to make great elaborate sculptures or stack bits of paper together and make little tiny books. I would take the die-cast letters and dip them into small ink puddles to stamp my pages. I still have some of those teeny tiny books around somewhere.

Gaye Hansen is an excellent instructor. I've heard so many good things about her classes before and I'm glad I had the opportunity to take this workshop. The last time I actually made any books was close to twenty years ago. I had forgotten so much. The little blue book (our practice book) is covered with Japanese paper and fabric binding. The larger book is covered with fabric from Maiwa and put together, using all sorts of wonderful add-in pages.

It was good to do this workshop and refresh a few things and learn a whole lot more. One thing about these workshops is that you're not just learning from the instructor. The work that everyone was doing was amazing. So many ideas and so little time. I feel like a diver coming up to the surface too quickly. I really need to go into a little room and decompress. Unfortunately, I had to go straight back to work today. It was really really hard to concentrate...my mind was on paper.

Everytime I look at this book, I can't help but think - wow! it looks like a real book! It has headbands and everything! And there's another use for my kumihimo braids. :)