Wednesday, March 9, 2011

An Artful Journey 2011: Gessoed and Painted Book

Gessoed and painted book, Front
Is “gessoed” a word? My spell check does not approve. Oh well. Sorry I’ve kept you waiting on my next book form! It’s been a very busy week around these parts! I think this is my favorite book of all. The construction is done with a simple pamphlet stitch (I did three signatures), but it’s the magic that takes place before the sewing that makes it so special.

I started with a sheet of Stonehenge paper and covered it completely, front and back, with a thick gesso. We used this. There were several things we could do with this as we were gessoing the paper. We could use stencils to get some textured designs (more on that in my next book form), use stamps or mastic spreaders to stamp into the gesso, or we could simply swipe the gesso over the paper using an old credit card or used gift card. For this one, I went the third route and left it a bit messy in spots to give it a little bit more texture. I gessoed one side of the paper and then completely let that dry before I did the other. I actually used a full 22” x 30” sheet of Stonehenge in this process, but you can trim down your paper to your desired size before you gesso, which is what I’ll be doing when I create these at home.

Gessoed and painted book, Back
Once the gesso was dry, I trimmed my big sheet down to the size of book cover I wanted, taking into account that I wanted a pocket on the inside. I can’t tell you exact measurements because I didn’t really do exact measurements; I just went with what looked right! I started on what would be the outside of the cover and first painted a solid, watered-down deep turquoise as the first layer. Once that dried, pretty quickly actually, I used a foam rubber stamp dipped in copper metallic paint for the all over design. Once that side dried, I turned it over and painted what would be the inside of the cover, again in that turquoise, but a little deeper color this time. Then once the inside dried, I folded up the bottom to create the pocket. The pocket is secured with this really awesome, super thin, super sticky double-sided 4m tape Albie shared, which I must find!

Gessoed and painted book, Top
From there, it’s on to the stitching. I tore my pages from Stonehenge, allowing for a bit of fanning out in each signature, and sewed each signature into the spine, simply folded, using a pamphlet stitch for each one. Of course, there is more measuring involved than I’ve shared here, particularly in placing the sewing holes on the cover/spine, but I can’t quite wrap my brain around how to explain that right now! Come to my studio and I’ll show you! :-)

Gessoed and painted book, Inside Cover showing pocket
You really have to see and feel this book in person to get the full effect. The gesso over the paper makes it feel like leather, much like molding paste does to a soft muslin fabric liked I used in the book I created in DJ’s class last year. And again, the eyelash yarn woven through is just for a little extra Kelly bling; it’s not actually incorporated into the actual sewing of the book. I LOVE this book! I’ve ordered the gesso and paper and plan to get started creating a lot more of these!  I'd told DH we simply have to expand my studio. :-)  I need more space!  Scroll down to see the other books I've already shared.  Three more books to go!


Kristin Dudish said...

Such a wonderfully fabulous book - thanks for sharing your process!

(I really think blogger should get it's act together and add gessoed to it's vocab - I've had it flag that word during spell check too! :) )

lori vliegen said...

welcome home, kelly!! thanks so much for sharing so much of your trip with us! i've had a ball looking through your past posts and drooling over your fabulous go girl!! and your paste papers are absolutely scrumptious.....LOVE them!! maybe we could bribe albie into coming to the purple cottage one of these days.....xoxo

Emma said...

The purists wouldn't like it but gessoed is a great word ;) I think i need me a big pot of gesso - it's amazing how much you can get thru!Another lovely book.

Martha Lever said...

This is a fabulous book! I have loved seeing all of your papers and must say I have been drooling!! Can't wait to see more!

Anonymous said...

Every one of them is stunning! You're such the book queen!!!

Any boots yet? My man just bought a pair so now it's your turn :)

Have a fabulous weekend, dahling!!

julie king said...

that is a beautiful journal, kelly!! i loved reading about the process too!