Sunday, 27 July 2008

It's still too early

On Saturday night when I was coming home after 10.30 PM and saw the sunset I thought: "But it's still too early, the night is not supposed to be here yet!"

I've had enough of this hot weather, but I wish the summer could go on and on.

Saturday, 26 July 2008


More than enough hands were raised to make me happy to take photos. Today had been terribly hot, just like yesterday but hotter, but thanks to my private teaching I almost finished some new books. More about them some other day. This is just a short introduction post about the mysteries of making a full leather binding. I won't be writing a tutorial, but I'll take photos whenever I remember.

My work in progress is a full leather binding in grayish blue shades on leather. The book is called "Musta kivi valkoisen päällä" (=a black rock on top of the white one), it's a selection of César Vallejo's poetry and prose. I've taken apart a copy of trade edition book and fixed the spines of signatures with japanese paper. If you wish to find out what all this means this is a good site to check out.

Leather is expensive. Good leather is even more expensive. So it really is a good idea to plan ahead as far as possible. I don't usually make sketches this accurate, but since this book is going to be more colorful (eh, many grays and blues) I made a colorful sketch, which will probably still change along the way.

Here's the sketch of how things could look once finished, different leathers to be used for on-lays, the book (with guards still untrimmed) and some papers I thought would be my end papers. Of course it was less than five minutes after taking this photo that I decided differently. I'm not completely sure how to put the title to the spine. I'm sure it'll be tiny letters cut from black leather, but how to position the text and what kind of font I should use are still beyond my thinking process. After taking this photo I've pared my leather hinges and cut my end papers down to almost right size. Now they need to be put together and the book block is ready for sewing.

I hope you all are enjoying the weekend, despite the weather, be it too sunny or too rainy!

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Cutting corners

Now that I've criminally cut up some of the old books I bought a while ago I have something to show you too.

Cutting Corners available in my Etsy shop.

Covered with natural linen and decorated with an image of scissors (from a 50's school book). 48 pages of smooth and thick white paper, sewn with waxed natural linen thread. 4.3"x5.2"x0.7" (10,8x13,3x1,8cm)

I just started working on a full leather binding (thanks to Tulibri!). Raise your hands if you want me to take pics of the work in progress! I'll forget to do that just for myself if no-one else wants to see them.

Friday, 18 July 2008


Sigh. It's been a long week. And week by week I feel more and more busy. (Only 61 days to go! I need my vacation. What happens after the trip is still a big question mark, but let's not go there today.) Thank goodness a big part of this week's business was bookbinding!

Seven case bound A6 size notebooks. The last photo makes me wish that I had made one more.

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

The big news of summer dresses

So I finished my summer dress. And why on Earth would I need yet another summer dress, especially when I'm not much of a summer dress person? Hmm. Because after spending the summer here at home, I'm going abroad. At last! We've been married almost two years and now we're finally going to our honey moon trip. (Someone called us lovebirds last weekend. Not a bad thing to be called after six years together.) The last two weeks of September will be spent on Gozo island, Malta. We have an apartment in a villa in the small fishing village of Xlendi and plans to be idle. We're just going to walk a lot and swim a little (more if you're the lucky one who knows how to swim and dive). I even bought a swimsuit! If you know me at all in real life, you know that it's big news.

We've spent hours and hours on Google Earth viewing the island, and yet I know it'll be so different seeing it with my own two eyes! It's so strange that we ended up booking our perfect honeymoon trip after all. While still engaged we thought we would go stay at an apartment on Crete, but it turned out to be a lot more complicated than we thought. Then we planned on a city vacation in Naples or Marseilles, but I got worried that Naples wasn't going to get their trash out from the streets in time (their dump pits are full, so no trash has been picked up since December if I remember right) and Marseilles just didn't feel right. After many failed attempts of booking a hotel on Gozo we found the perfect apartment, and for half the price of a hotel room! Me happy. Really happy.

And busy. I'm working on many books which sadly won't be available on Etsy, but if you're around here in Scandinavia, you can find them in Hyvinkää, Finland.

Karen is always a sweetheart. She sent me tons of postcards she collected from the New Designers on her trip to London. I haven't had the time to go through all the websites yet, but the one's I've seen are stunning!

Just look at the cards! These three artists are probably my favorites.

James Ison

Emma Cowell

Delyth Walsh

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Oh the randomness

I'll reveal my big secret once I've finished something. In the meantime you can see how I finally took photos of my small dotted notebooks, bound a friend's diary (below) and tried to be all summer-y despite the weather being really cold (well, today's Hot!).

Case bound, covered with natural linen. A5 size.

My first banana cake was a success, especially with fresh raspberries I bought from the market today. My dear friend Milla surprised me with a mug, and I like it a lot (Kulkue design by Maija Louekari). I'm not a mug person as I don't drink tea or coffee, but I'm definitely a Kulkue person.

Oh! Since my 100th post our tomatoes have grown a lot. It's going to take a while until they're of edible size, but this is a start, isn't it?

Random things in a random post, but what more can you expect? This week my co-workers have made random comments about my appearance. First I was told my smile was as charming as Isaac's (you know the bartender from The Love Boat), then I sniffed my nose just like Little My (from the Moomins). Eh.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Half-secretly very happy

I haven't been binding books, at least not too much, because of lots and lots of planning and e-mailing, shopping and squealing out of joy. You'll have to wait a little longer to hear the whole story, it deserves a blog post of its own at a better time!

The moody weather, which is partly responsible for the lack of product photos, surprised us last night, just minutes before the sunset. I was on my way to bed when I noticed the strange lighting outside. After looking more closely we saw a full and bright rainbow,

and another rainbow! It's not as bright as the first one, but you could see it all the way.

Thursday, 3 July 2008

I feel like a criminal when cutting up books

Of course I didn't come back home from a book fair empty-handed! That would be impossible. Although I made my best finds from the market square (1€/book), not the fair area. Old school books mostly. I've already cut out some of my favorite images and put them on my inspiration board. It's never been this pretty!

Brooch by Karen, vase by Hemtex. Images: Russian revolutionaries in a boat, British mother with her babies, instructions on how to bind an arterial wound in arm, "do not sit like this". You can guess what my posture is like.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Medieval Fair in Turku

I took my parents to see the medieval fair last weekend. I probably wouldn't have gone there all by myself as it seems like it's all the same every year. Lots of nice things to see, but like most theme based things this wasn't that interesting after seeing it many times before. I've been meaning to go and sell my books there but every year I remember it too late and miss the jury date. I think it could be so much fun to be there as a seller. But maybe we're just not meant to be.

Dyeing yarn with natural ingredients. (Those plastic buckets probably aren't medieval...)

We walked through the are before the official opening hours, that's why there's so little people in my photos. Later it would've been way too crowded for me, especially after being at the book fair the day before!

I love how these candied apples look. I'm allergic to apples, maybe that's why they're always so tempting, candied or not.

Otava Bookbinding Competition

I'm back with my poor photos. The book fair was so hot and crowded that I didn't take photos other than these from the bookbinding exhibition. The presentation could've been so much better, but you can get some sort of overview from my photos anyway. The book fair is held at a school and therefore the exhibition took place in a small classroom.

Otava Bookbinding Competition - paperiaarre.comOtava Bookbinding Competition - paperiaarre.comOtava Bookbinding Competition - paperiaarre.comThis book won the first place.

Otava Bookbinding Competition - paperiaarre.comMy book.

Otava Bookbinding Competition - paperiaarre.com3rd place.

Otava Bookbinding Competition -
4th and 5th place. My personal favorite was the book on the left. Really beautiful and well made.
More photos from the medieval fair once I get back home from work!