don’t bleed on the paper! and other detours in the studio

All the craziness of the summer has begun to settle a little (still packing two kids off to college and working all day most days at the print shop). I have been able to finally get back into the studio, but  am finding it hard to get down to work. I wonder how many of you experience this – longing to get to your studio, making everyone nuts because you aren’t creating and then suddenly you get there and – nada.

This is not to say I have no ideas, I am just finding it hard to focus on things I should be doing, like tonight for example. I went up to the studio diligently, intending to finish a guest book I am working on for a wedding which I would have finished yesterday except for an incident involving a temperamental cat assistant and a very sharp scalpel – shooing her off the expensive, beautiful paper I accidentally impaled myself on the scalpel in my hand. My first thought was that I had better not bleed on the paper! The cut was deep but clean – and I guess by the start of classes this fall I will have a great battle scar and an excellent “runs with scissors” story for my students. (Do as I say, not as I do!!!) But it did bleed for quite a while and by the time it stopped I opted for bed not more work.

pretty excited about the future of these envelopes too

Tonight I toyed with using the lingering discomfort as an excuse not to even attempt any work in the studio, I had to drag myself upstairs with great reluctance, but some repetitive cutting – these (100) envelopes for another project – settled me down and I thought I would get that guest book done. Can you tell there’s a BUT coming?

Here’s what happened next… instead of cutting the paper for the book – I started fiddling around with the little strips of envelope on the bench.

Did you ever make one of those candy wrapper bracelets or baskets? I remembered seeing a binding in one of Alisa Golden’s book that was based on a similar idea, the folded loop locks together the pages and serves as a binding. Since I had all these strips cut already I decided just to give it a try. 100 folded envelope strips later I had created a cute little circular binding but it wasn’t very tight.

I wondered if I put a card into the little pocket created by the folded envelope strip I could create enough tension to keep everything nice and tight. Well there’s only one way to find out – so I cut a whole ton of catalog cards down to the right size and put them into the pocket pages! By the end I was cutting cards as fast as I could racing to see how this crazy little thing would turn out. I LOVE it!

I LOVE it!!

I am so in love with circular books right now and this has so much potential for development. Really it needs more pages to get the “binding” even and tight, but even so I am pleased with it! I am sure I can’t possibly be the first person to have done this, but I can already see that it would make a fun class.





Lastly before I close I just want to give a great big thank you to Seth over at The Altered Page for everything he does to promote a sense of camaraderie and connection, including his long running series “The Pulse”. Currently he is featuring still life photographs and this Sunday he will be including my still life – so if you want to know what I took a picture of – head over to his blog and find out – I’ll see you there! (I took that picture so long ago I don’t even remember what it looked like!!!)

7 thoughts on “don’t bleed on the paper! and other detours in the studio

  1. Love the gum wrapper idea. I think that is the only reason I chewed gum when I was young. I know what you mean about studio time. I keep walking into the spare…some day studio…room. I look at the boxes left to unpack, maybe tackle 1 or 2, and close the door. I sooo want to get a desk up so I can draw – or something -. But when it’s all cleaned out and ready to go (which I can’t see happening) will I actually DO something. Or just look at it and move things around.

    • well you will HAVE to start doing something any day now – even grad students have assignments!! LOL. I bet once you get back at it you will be amazed and re-energized

  2. Welp…as I always like to say…The Muse comes to the moving brush. And once again…you’ve proven that saying right. My photo will be on Seth’s blog this week too! How cool is that?!? (And I don’t remember either).

      • Yes it is! Thanks for visiting my blog. I couldn’t email back so came here with my reply…
        Thank you so much. I’ve struggled with this because I’ve never gotten the hang of quilting either. I’ll be happy when this piece is done and will focus only on my happy memories of it!!! Hopefully, she’ll love it…and it will be a part of her whole long life. I love that thought!

  3. Yes, I’m very familiar with the “now that I have time, I can’t get going” syndrome; so aggravating! If there’s a rule about bleeding on the paper, I’m afraid I’m in big trouble. I remember making those chains, but we made them out of gum wrappers, which are not used any more. I love what you’ve done with the envelopes and cards; what a great idea! Isn’t it funny how the strangest things give us ideas, and what great things one can accomplish when avoiding work?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s