Journal-making Workshop

Last weekend I attended a 2 day journal making workshop with the intention of learning how to combine a variety of papers into stitched books.  I’m hoping this will be something I can incorporate in my current OCA course using some of my prints

I prepared some dyed paper in advance with copper sulphate as the mordant.  A number of gum leaves and some tree bark were added to the dye pot.

An example of some of the pages:

Multi-1Multi-2Multi-3Multi-4The first technique we covered was creating signatures of different papers to be Coptic stitched between two 3mm covers.

Journal1aAbove: Front & back covers, paper and stubs arranged in order to be stitched.  I decided not to iron my dyed paper even though it was quite crinkly.  I like the effect but it made it very difficult to maintain a good pressure when stitching the spine.

Journal1cJournal1bI used different weights of plain paper, white, beige and brown, in between my dyed pages so I have plenty of places to write.  The white is water-colour paper so I’ll be able to draw or paint on that.  This first attempt is a bit wobbly and I learned that using very lightweight paper is not the way to go with this amount of stitching because it splits very easily where the holes are made.  However I love the crinkly organic appearance of the finished item.

We then moved to learning how to make a book by adding and stitching over tabs.


I used 200gsm water-colour paper for the leaves with the same board as the previous book for the outer.  The top paper edges were torn and the lower edges were aligned with the base of the cover, meaning it stands and keeps its shape very well..  A flyer sheet was incorporated into the front and back inside covers.  I feel this touch has really finished the item off nicely.  A good sturdy little book that can be carried around in my bag wherever I go.

Some journals from others in the class:
Clockwise from top left – Margaret Millar (2 photos), Jo le Cheminant, Peter Stamford (2 photos), Kay Murray. Class-journals



About Claire B

I am a passionate printmaker, paper maker and book artist. I'm a 'forever' student and frequently attend courses and workshops to extend and improve my creative skills.
This entry was posted in My Creative Pieces, Workshops & Classes and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Journal-making Workshop

  1. Jane Bodnaruk says:

    wonderful. what is the flyer sheet?

    • Claire B says:

      The flyer is made from the same paper I’ve used on the front cover over the 3mm board. It is from Peter Stamford and comes from Thailand originally. He has the best paper and at really excellent prices. I’ve stuck it to the inside of the cover as a full lining and then about 1cm across the first white sheet so it also acts as an additional stabilizer holding the book together.

  2. Rita says:

    Beautiful work Claire, you have made something you can treasure forever. There is something timeless about a book isn’t there.

  3. Pingback: Journal making with Adele Outteridge | Fibres of Being

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