I’ve been doing a bit of small journal/book binding.
Susan Angebranndt, of Green Chair Press, posted a reminder that today, August 24th, is the feast day of St. Bartholomew, who is honored as a patron saint of bookbinders.
Truth be told, I think there are others who are better fitted for the title and task of patron saint of bookbinders, but St. Bartholomew seems to be the most widely accepted. And today IS August 24th, so I thought I’d give you a peek at what’s on my work table.
In this shot, you literally get to see what is ON my table – this is what it looks like when I’m working on multiple projects. Messy and crowded and exactly how I love it. But you also get to see what I’m calling my Goldenrod Journal. It’s goldenrod season, and it’s a much oft overlooked plant, so I’m doing a bit of writing about it.
Okay, now the truth is out. I’ve always got my eyes peeled and twigs often catch their attention. This little book isn’t blank – I already had the content done and then bound it. I’ll share peeks inside in another post.
This is one of my favorites. For years I used to make checkbook covers. And then at some point it occurred to me that instead of just putting in the pack of checks and a register, I could add pages in those sections instead. Voile – a book is born.
One of the books on my reading list for this summer is The Journal of Dora Damage by Belinda Starling. I haven’t gotten to it yet, but this quote is precisely the reason it made it to my must-read pile:
“My father used to tell me that before we are born, St. Bartholomew, patron saint of bookbinders, presents our soul with a choice of two books…One is bound in the softest golden calf and majestically gold-tooled; the other is bound in plain, undyed goatskin straight from the tan-pits.” The “nascent soul” who chooses the opulent volume, she continues, “will open it to find that the pages of the book are already inscribed with a story of an inescapable fate.” The latter’s pages “start off blank, and await inscription by the leading of a life of free will according to personal inspiration and divine grace.”
I hope you find some way to celebrate books today, although in my opinion that should be an everyday occurrence. And while I do read the occasional thing on an e-reader, I’ll always be firmly in love the heft, the depth, and the beauty of bound works.
What about you? Are you celebrating today? What’s in your reading pile? Do tell – you know I love to hear.
Hi Deborah – how clever … and I love your father’s story … so so true … I have been reading a number of books on different subjects … more anon once I start up blogging again .. cheers Hilary
I look forward to hearing about your reading Hilary (and to your return to blogging). The quote, though, just to be clear is from The Journal of Dora Damage.
I love love love that quote! and the checkbook idea is brilliant!!! I am such a reader I have recently decided to schedule my reading time – some times reading takes over everything – not always healthy. Right now I’m reading the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – with Wuthering Heights close by
I like the idea of scheduling reading time Vickie, and I should give it a try. But perhaps for the opposite reason -I’m way behind on my reading this year.
I took a course all about paper and bookmaking about a year ago, and I wish I’d spent more time with it. Yours look beautiful!
Perhaps you’ll find you way back to it another time Naomi.
OMGoodness Deborah…once again you have touched my heart and my very own soul. Books are my passion. Bound books, especially the old ones call my name, and I collect them in every room of my home. Of course, the ones with inscriptions in that lovely old style of script handwriting tell a story all their own.
I love what you love…and your handmade treasures are exquisite! I am treasuring the wonderful surprise package I received from you today. I can’t tell you how very much it means to me…but I will try in an email.
MAHALO AND MUCH ALOHA TO YOU!
Thanks for the kind words Vicki. I love what you create as well. Books are magic – you’ll never convince me otherwise. But then again, you know that. 🙂
These are darling! You have a true gift for creating things of beauty.
I don’t think you want to hear about my TBR pile. I am usually reading 4 books at the same time and have at least 5 in my TBR pile. Today I read Michael A. Singer’s new book “The Surrender Experiment”.
I’m with you Elda – I never have just one book going. I haven’t heard about The Surrender Experiment – you’ll have to give us a review.
ooooh, I am going to have look for that book “The Journal of Dora Damage” now! That quote is intriguing to say the least!
As for books I’m currently into or recently reading: “The Forgotten Garden” by Kate Morton was a lovely novel and reminded me of children’s books by British authors I read as a youngster. I’m REALLY enjoying “How To Fly a Horse” by Kevin Ashton as it’s about CREATIVITY and it is busting myths surrounding the idea that creativity is for a few select ‘special’ people (it isn’t!) and sharing the reality of creativity as a result of DILIGENT DISCIPLINED WORK (which it is!)…this book is resonating strongly with me =)
I’ve not heard of either of those books Monica, but for sure they’re going on list – thanks!
What beautiful books, Deborah. I love hand binding books and I love hand bound books. Have you visited Erika Swyler’s website? I just finished her debut novel, The Book of Speculation — I highly recommend it. She hand bound, in leather, all of the manuscripts she sent out to publishers. There’s photos on her site.
Oh wow Linda – thank you for the hedz up! I’ve add her book to my reading list, and it’s clear I’ll be spending considerable time enjoying her site.
Oh how I love handmade books- this is beautiful. I’ve tried my hand at creating these myself but I have found I don’t have the patience for details.
Thanks Sue. I’m always curious and amused at what we each find relaxing or not. I find bookbinding to be rather meditative.