Bead Embroidery in Hand-made Book ~ Wedding Gift!
Earlier posts (May 29 - June 9) this year covered hand-made books made by my students at Valley Ridge Art School. Today, I finally got around to taking pictures of the book that I made during those four days. This book will be a wedding present for a very dear young friend, who I met in Romania in 1988, when she was 11 years old. Tomorrow I'll mail it to Denmark (where she lives now). I'm hoping they'll want to use it as a guest book, an album for their wedding photos, or perhaps a journal for recording special moments in their life together.
For this particular book, I first painted all the papers with many layers of acrylic paint. On some of the papers, I used acrylic matte medium to apply ephemera such as postage stamps, torn maps, torn vintage sheet music, candy wrappers, etc. I used various painting techniques, such as stenciling, stamping, texturing and glazing. From these painted papers, I selected the ones I wanted to use for the covers of the book and to wrap around each of the six signatures (sections of blank paper) inside. Here are a few of them:
Next, I started sewing beads on a pretty piece of silk cloth. Like most of my work, it's improvisational, but I like that it looks a little like a tree. To me it suggests that this marriage will be grow, thrive and be well rooted in love. Here's a close-up of the bead embroidery:
Constructing the book came next - pasting papers on the cover boards, cutting the hole for and inserting the beadwork, glueing the binding, and finally sewing in the signatures. Here's another view of the finished book showing the spine:
This particular binding method allows the book to open flat and shows off the painted signature covers in the spine. Here's how it looks opened between the second and third signatures:
The technique for inserting bead embroidery into the cover of a purchased book is described in a book recently published by Interweave Press... Beading for the Soul includes project examples and instructions by a number of well-known bead artists, including the book making project/instructions by me. Deborah Cannarella did an excellent job of editing, researching and presenting the theme of the book in such chapters as Beading for Healing, Beading for Prayer, and Beading for Protection. I feel very honored to have been chosen as a contributing artist.