The Weekend Crafter: Making Books And Journals: 20 Great Weekend Projects is a short (80 pages) book that features some unusual book designs and lots of photos showing readers exactly how to make each book.
Some people thrill when they discover a new, intricate binding technique for art books.
While I enjoy those, I’m far more enthusiastic about clever, simple designs that allow me to wildly embellish the books.
The latter is why I recommend this book: The projects are easy enough for beginners, and exciting enough for experts.
Here are just a few of the 20 projects featured in this book:
- Folded Book with Pockets
- Roll-Up Travel Journal
- Mailable Journal
- Jelly Bean Books
- Angel Photo Albums
- Ornament Books
- Coptic-Bound Sketch Journal
- Japanese-Bound Picture Frame Album
… and 12 more, plus many ideas based on these handmade books.
What I love about this book for beginners is this: The photos show how to create each book, step-by-step. These really are projects that you can complete in a few hours, or at least in a weekend.
This book is also great for experts because many of these books can be embellished into awe-inspiring projects. And, the simpler books can be given to friends, sold online inexpensively, or displayed around your home or office, to let others know about your more elaborate handmade books.
All in all, this is a book that may look average on the bookshelf, but — once you look at the projects that it features — you’ll be impressed.
Making Books and Journals is also simple enough to give as a gift for anyone — including a child old enough to use the tools — who’d like to learn to make handmade books. It also offers a wealth of ideas for Scouts or youth group projects.
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Over 40 projects fill this book with fabulous ideas for making one-of-a-kind handmade books, journals, and albums. It is one of the most exciting and inspiring books for anyone who is interested in making unique art books.
Whether you want to start with a simple folded book or scroll book or leap into a tunnel book, flag book, pocket book, or even a three-panel Jacob’s Ladder book, Unique Handmade Books will delight you.
This book includes projects that beginners can complete within an hour or two using paper, glue, scissors and any art supplies that you have on hand. However if you want to learn classic and ornate bookbinding techniques, they are included as well.
One of my favorite chapters is called “Transforming Everyday Life,” which includes inspiring illustrations of a mixed media books and related projects. This chapter includes instructions for spiral binding, a card file book, a found poetry journal, and an innovative use of a spell checker to create poetry.
If you’ve been intrigued by cloth books, the author includes three different fiber projects.
In separate chapters, Ms. Golden includes techniques for illustrating your new handmade book with a variety of media. She also presents fascinating ways to display your handmade books and even discusses ideas for collaborative projects for adults and for children.
If you can only buy one book about making handmade books, this would be an excellent choice. I highly recommend it .
I have referred to this book often for my own work and consider it a vital reference in my studio library.
PROS: Enough ideas to spark and sustain a career in handmade art books. Juicy photos show many ways to personalize these projects. I can’t possibly rave enough about this book.
CONS: Beginners may be overwhelmed by the number and variety of projects in this great book. Illustrations can be confusing if you tackle a complex design without prior experience in paper folding and book constructing techniques. Start with the simplest projects, and work your way up.
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