I had to gather samples of beads, buttons, cords, braids and tassels for my Level 3 City and Guilds – I wasn’t looking forward to it, not being a big fan of the Dorset Button, or braid, but then I decided to gather the samples in book form and being able to reconnect with my love of book art, which has had to be on the back burner for a while, made the task fun.
I had some Gelli-plate printed fabric samples from a Level 2 study day and put them to use in making the covers.
The book is built onto pelmet weight Vilene layered with black Felt. I wanted 10 display pages and two fly leaves, and cut lengths, (both Vilene and felt needed a join – masking taped the Vilene, over-sewed the Felt) which I could concertina into pages. I added the beady-buttony content before I stitched pairs of pages back to back, simply machine zig-zagging in metallic thread.
My initial idea of binding was to use a heat tool to make holes for eyelets, and then simply use large book rings to hold everything together. In the end, I liked the Gelli-plate prints so much, I used them for fly-leaf covers, front and back covers, and added a spine instead of the rings.
Every page has a sample of cord, beads, buttons, braid and a tassel at the end of the cord which hangs beneath the book. I enjoyed making some buttons using layers of Felt or Vilene and bonding ribbons or threads to them. The great thing about both Vilene and Acrylic felt is that you can simply melt the holes into the buttons using a heat tool. The brightly colour square buttons on the left, use Colinette Giotto and are toughened up with a coating of Modpodge. In the sample above, the fairly commonplace rolled fabric beads are livened up by dipping one end into UTEE and heating it to form a shiny glaze.