How I Make My Books
I create the covers of my books by printing flowers and leaves on watercolour paper -- a process called ecoprinting. The unique combination of natural dyes and pigments makes each journal one of a kind.
Ecoprinting captures the natural dyes and pigments in plants on paper using heat and pressure. The resulting prints depend on the combination and composition of plant materials, the time of year, the type of paper and the mordants, or fixatives, I use.
I love the seasonal cycles of creating my books. I print and dye during the summer and fall using local leaves, flowers and berries. The cold, grey days of winter lend themselves to the meditative process of paper folding and binding.
My handcrafted books are made to be used. I seal the covers with a special Japanese starch to make them more durable and give them a pleasing leather-like texture. I use strong waxed Irish linen thread to hand sew the Coptic stitch binding, which allows the pages to lie flat when the book is opened, and I always use high-quality acid-free paper for the inside pages.
Choose a book that inspires your creativity and write, draw, paint, sketch, collage, doodle, journal and more in it!
Ecoprinting & Coptic Stitch
Ecoprinting was introduced by India Flint in Australia. I learned about the process at a Fibreworks Kingston workshop. Wendy Feldberg’s work and informative blog, Threadborne, inspired me. A workshop with Marta Mouka in June 2018 showed me how much I still have to learn.
Mixed media artist Holly Dean introduced me to Coptic binding. Ksenia Kopystynska, owner of Ars Libri, a book restoration studio on Brock Street in Kingston, Ontario, taught me the version I use for my handmade books.