Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Book Formerly Known As ROD Square

Before I even begin with this blogpost I just want to give a shout out to all the new people who came to my blog because of the glimpse on Dispatch from LA (see my previous post). Welcome to Caatje's Artsy Stuff and thank you for sending me your love and/or becoming a member. You all made me very happy. I felt like a regular superstar for a few days, haha! I hope you will enjoy coming back here from time to time. I'd love to see you!

Also thanks to all those who already came to visit me, because without you I never would have had the nerve to even approach Mary Ann. You all make this blogging experience a wonderful one through your continuous support. I love you, my blogsy people!

Now...let's get back to regular business, shall we, on to the artsy stuff!

If you have a very good memory you may remember that last year I spent some time trying to put together a square shaped journal in the Remains of the Day Style (if you don't know what that is just click on the label on the sidebar). I had it all figured out. I was going to decorate this entire journal and then put it together and use it just to add some writing. Well...that just didn't work out.
I started a few spreads and I even liked them, but it just didn't feel right to sort of complete the visual aspect of an entire journal before I started writing in it. The process wasn't what I had envisioned somehow. And when something doesn't feel right, well...it just gets puts aside and postponed, and that's exactly what happened with ROD Square. Yup, that's what I was going to call this gorgeous book I had planned: ROD Square.

So over the past months the paper pages I had made for this book just sort of lay about in either my studio or my sewing room staring at me with reproach and I just didn't know what to do with them.

Now it so happens that one of my goals for this new artistic year was to do some new things with fabric and fiber and such and what better way to start than with a journal cover? And that's when things just came together. I was going to use the base pages that I had intended for ROD Square to make a brand new journal with a special cover. I took out the pages I had already prepared (those will probably never be used for anything) and I got out some gorgeous fabrics, some ribbon and some beads. And today I'm showing you what happened next:


It's the Book Formerly Known As ROD Square! That's really what I'm calling it. Hey, if Prince can do it, so can I! The cover is made from taffeta and damask fabrics which are both just gorgeous. Between the fabrics is a layer of batting to give it a bit more oomph. 


The spine of the book has a ribbon attached to it and the book closes with the same kind of ribbon as well. I appliqued circles of damask on the covers and went around the circles with another stitched circle to make the batting sit more tightly. I wanted to do this with a quilting foot, but I couldn't get the damn thing to work right, so I just did it with a regular foot. Oh well.  I guess this free motion stitching will be another learning experience for the future.


To add some more luxury to the whole thing I surrounded the circles with beads. It was my first time beading to fabric ever! A huge learning experience as well and a test in patience. It's far from perfect, but I do like the final effect of the beads. And I have new found respect for all you beaders out there.

So here's the book standing up from both sides: 



And here are some glimpses of the pages. The book has 120 pages (counting both sides) and consists fully of  strips of double sided scrapbook paper that were machine stitched into signatures and then hand sewn into the cover. Aren't those patterns just gorgeous? It's all K&C paper, for those of you who care about that kind of stuff. 





This last photo is to show you the inside cover, which is just damask. I didn't think it needed any more adding to it. The papers are dramatic enough. 


And there you have it. That's how ROD Square was saved from eternal shame and became a rather chic book if I do say so myself. It will probably be a while before I use it, but it is definitely destined to become one of my future journals and I'm sure it will then be filled to the brim with good stuff after all.  A happy ending for all concerned. ;-)

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy day!

30 comments:

  1. It is gorgeous and the beading adds such an elegant touch. I've spent hours beading; something I experimented with years ago when my creative pursuits lead me to art dolls. Yes, patience indeed. Every so often I get a tug that allows me to pick up my beading needles and sort through my vast supply of beads. I only do this in small doses now, when the desire out weighs everything else I might want to be doing. Beautiful journal and pages. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I must say that once I got the hang of it I found the beading oddly relaxing. I do think I would be better at it if my hands were more dainty and my fingers slimmer. I had a rough time picking up those blasted tiny beads from their container. ;-) I do think though I will be doing it again, in small doses, nothing too elaborate. Glad you like the book.

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  2. Gorgeous book! So sophisticated! Enjoy using it and show us what you add to the pages.

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    1. Thanks Shirley! I will definitely show the filled pages when I get around to using the book, this may be a while away though, I have too many other books in the works right now.

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  3. its a lovely book, the cover is so dramatic and rich looking :)

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    1. Thank you Jen, glad you like it.

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  4. Oh-beauty! Just makes you want to start stitching and gluing and having adventures to put in the book formerly known as Square ROD...Lori W at Art Camp for Women

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    1. I'm sure it will be filled to the brim by the time I'm done with it, but like I said that will be some time in the future yet. I do look forward to working in it though. I will share it on my blog when the time comes.

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  5. Oh, this is just magnificent. I'm wondering, are the pages made double printed or did you sew/glue together two printed halves of some pages? I hope it's clear what I'm asking. Linda E.

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    1. Pages are double sided. I love double sided scrapbookpaper for making books. It's so luxurious and gorgeous.

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  6. You've turned Rod Squared a GORGEOUS book and knowing you...I'm sure it'll be even more so once you get it filled.

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  7. This is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!! :]
    I Love the cover, GORGEOUS STITCHING!
    All those "yummy" papers & pages... very inspiring post.

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  8. Very beautiful! I love using the nicer, two sided scrapbook papers. It makes for a very substantial and luxurious book! ROD Square is certainly inspiring, and I like how you used the circles, kinda juxtaposed to the squareness!
    Hugs to you, Chris

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    1. I didn't even think about that (the circles versus the squares), but I love drawing and cutting circles and I love working in square books. Maybe those things are related? ;-)

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  9. great book. love all those papers and the tafeta for the cover is beautiful. the beads really set off the circles. tfs

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    1. I love the taffeta too. I have it in two fabulous colours and got it for next to nothing at a fabric market. There's something really luxurious about these fabrics and the damask too.

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  10. Elegant little creation. I admire your resolve. I cannot wait to put something in a new journal so I have going at once.

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    1. I have a ton of books still in use, but I only keep one 'real' journal going at a time. The rest I just call sketchbooks or art books. This book is destined to become a 'real' journal (whatever that means, to me the line is clear, but it's hard to explain).

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  11. Beautiful - the cover is just a stunning colour and looks very tactile. How satisfying to have tried out some new skills and to have such an inspiring result.

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    1. Well the result is satisfying indeed, but the making gave me several headaches, haha. I'm glad it's finished in such a nice way though.

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  12. Love it, the pages are gorgeous, what a great way to use up all of those papers.

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    1. Thank you Ro! I'm absolutely addicted to beautiful papers and this sort of thing justifies me buying them. ;-)

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  13. What a beautiful journal! I love all of the papers and the cover is gorgeous!

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  14. It is an amazing book! The paper combos are so nice together~

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    1. Thank you Sherry, I'm just addicted to pretty papers.

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