Today I really cracked on with the album and managed to complete all the pages with their embellishments, and began the process of constructing the binding.
Strong Tower Pages
Today I began with the Strong Tower pages. I wanted to pick out the “pointing” between the stencilled bricks.
I rubbed the Vintage Photo distress ink pad on the craft sheet and spritzed it with water, and picked this up with a fine brush and used the ink as a watercolour. You can see the completed page on the right, contrasted with the original on the left.
The next step was to ink the pages, and for this I used several distress inks: Wild Honey, Spiced Marmalade, Scattered Straw, Rusty Hinge and Fossilised Amber. I rubbed the pads on the craft sheet, spritzed with water, and smooshed the pages in the ink.
I spattered the pages with water and blotted it off, to give a slightly mottled effect, and then, because I didn’t think there was enough texture on the right-hand page, I added a very small quantity of Golden Sands Infusions on both pages, and spritzed them with water to activate the crystals.
It was now time to start work on the photos. I tore the edges to reduce the size and make them more interesting, making sure that if possible the torn under surface of the paper was on the top as this makes for a more interesting texture.
I worked some Fossilised Amber distress ink well into the edges, to help them blend into the inked background of the page.
I glued them down onto the right-hand page using Scotch Quick Dry Adhesive, aligning them as much as I could – the photos were not taken in the same place but I think I’ve got a pretty good join.
I distressed the page edges using Vintage Photo distress ink.
Taking some of the small leaf trails that I cut with Sheba, my Cougar cutting machine, I inked them with Mustard Seed distress stain and left them to dry.
Once they were dry, I stuck them down onto the pages using Crafter’s Companion Stick and Spray glue, then for good measure I stippled on some soft matte gel medium and left them to dry.
The pages were a bit curled and needed flattening under some heavy books, so I left them and turned to some of the other pages, adding text and embellishments. I am so thrilled to find so nany great quotations on the Internet!
How Great Thou Art Pages
This is one of the black-and-white page spreads, with the picture on the right being a black and white manipulated photo with a frame cut with Sheba.
For the text on the page, I chose some lines from a much-loved hymn.
I added some text to these pages and after that, they were complete.
Here is the frontispiece and the map. I added the text to the mottled greenish-black paper I created with Infusions. The text was written wit my white marker pen.
Back to the Strong Tower Pages
Now that they were suitably flattened, I could add the text and embellishments. I wrote the text with a sepia pen. The leaves and flowers were stuck down with a generous amount of Pinflair glue to prevent them from getting squashed, and I added some spots of Orange Peel stickles (glitter glue) to the centre of each flower.
Here is the page spread complete with inking and embellishments.
Frontispiece and Map
After sticking the parchment paper to the base using ultra-sticky double sided tape, I traced the outline of the map, and then added little drawings of the Ordnance Survey symbols for a mixed wood, and added some text..
Here is the map page with the frontispiece.
This finally completes the individual pages.
I can now move on to look at the binding. Zsuzsa has just bound her Life Book art pages and has posted on her blog about the hidden hinge method of binding, which I thought would be excellent for this.
The site where she got her instructions stated that the hinge between the pages isn’t entirely invisible, and she recommends using card which matches as closely as possible the colours of each element of the card.
I have a box containing a large quantity of narrow offcuts (which you can see on the left of the next photo) which I thought would work well, but they needed some work. I added colour to the coloured strips and smoothed it out as much as possible with a fan brush. In each photo, you can see the original card alongside the inked one, for comparison. Here is the green one.
I like the streaked and mottled effect of the strips. Throughout, I have used different shades of distress stains, and in the case I chose Forest Moss, on a bright green background..
Moving on to the next one, this was achieved by adding Iced Spruce distress stain to a grey background.
For the purple one I chose a pinkish red card and stained it with Faded Jeans to achieve a nice purple colour.
For the blue one I used Evergreen Bough and Faded Jeans to achieve the results I wanted, on a background of pale blue.
I managed to achieve quite a similar result to the background of the page with this one, using Vintage Photo and Mustard Seed distress ink.
The one to accompany the hand-made paper sheet with the golden tracing, consisted of the beige card I have used for all the brown-coloured strips. It needed to be a pinkish-brown and I chose Frayed Burlap and Tattered Rose.
Finally, a yellow one to go with the Strong Tower page. I used Frayed Burlap and Mustard seed, and set everything aside to dry.
All the hidden hinge pieces were cut exactly the same size – 4 inches (the height of each page) by 1 1/2 inches, which should be adequate.
I am glad that I decided to use scrap card for this instead of breaking into my best 12 x 12 papers, because I had to colour them by hand, and this has led to a lovely random, linear texture on the card, and if any of the binding shows, it will be more subtle and interesting than a plain card which might not have been the exact colour anyway.
Here are the completed pages, with their matching hidden hinge pieces.
If I get time tomorrow I shall start to attach the hinges to the pages. I am very excited about this project now that the end is in sight, and I am wondering what on earth I’m going to do for the cover!
I am hoping to upload my end-of-year review blog posts tomorrow if I get time. I usually do them on New Year’s Eve but I’ve been busy in the studio today, and we were out this evening.