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BookSmithStudio.com | Nikki Smith Book & Visual Artist

Handmade books and various art explorations

Posts Tagged ‘handmade book’

Papercloth Squid Book

September 28th, 2012 by Nikki Smith

Today I wanted to share with you one of my all-time favorite handbooks.  It has the most organic, touch-me vibe!

This book was featured in the 2012 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors PAGES, shown above.  (If you haven’t seen this magazine, you should definitely check it out!  I also have a fun tutorial article published in the same issue on how to make an accordion book with envelope pages.)


I love everything about this book!  The interior pages have Turkish map-folds so that they explode open.  Each page spread was decorated with organic forms made of custom printed tissue paper.  (See the upcoming November/December 2012 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors for my tutorial on printing your own custom tissue paper from your artwork.  It’s super easy!)


The book has wrap-around covers in four directions – you can see how it opens up below:

And below is the cover with the beaded closure.  Check out that amazing texture!


The cover incorporates custom printed tissue paper as well.  Here, I’ve used tissue paper to create a large sheet of papercloth (also called fabricpaper) from which the cover was cut:

Watch this blog for a tutorial on creating your own papercloth in early November!

Dos-a-dos His/Hers/Ours Goals Journal

September 18th, 2010 by Nikki Smith

Finishing this His/Hers/Ours Goals journal has been one of my artistic goals this summer! =)

Dos-a-dos Goals JournalThis is a completely handmade dos-a-dos journal, using acid-free paper, bound with a variation on the Centipede binding style over raised supports.  It lays flat for easy journaling.

Dos-a-dos Goals Journal: Side viewA dos-a-dos book (from the French meaning “back-to-back”) is a binding style where two (or more) books are joined back-to-back with the fore edge of one book next to the spine of the other, sharing a common back cover.

Dos-a-dos Goals Journal: Detail of bindingA detail view of the binding, showing the spine of the two outer journals, with the fore edge of the midde journal in between.

Dos-a-dos Goals Journal: Binding Close-up

I’ve entered this dos-a-dos journal along with two other handmade books (my Alphabet Caterpillar Book and my Mini Music Booklace) into the Cloth Paper Scissors Artisan Search 2011.  As I was on a roll, I couldn’t resist upgrading it from a 2-in-1 his/hers journal to a 3-in-1 “his/hers and ours” journal.   Comments welcome!  The finalists will be announced September 27th…  Wish me luck!

New mini-book: Book of the North

September 13th, 2010 by Nikki Smith

Book of the North - Cover

This mini four-in-one book measures 1″ deep by 3 1/4″ round when closed.  It was created from fabric, ribbon, ink-jet printed photos, and a snippet of a map treated with ice resin for the cover title.  Inside, four mini-books interlace to showcase old family photos and life on a farm in rural Minnesota.

Book of the North: Open

Each of the four mini-books follow a theme (winter and childhood play; old family portraits; outdoor activities and recreation; and farming life) and are hand-sewn to the ribbon closure.  The covers include fabric-wrapped tin and tiny magnets are stitched into the ribbon ends to secure the book.

Book of the North: side view

I really enjoyed making this mini-book, even if I missed a deadline with it!  It was nice to get back in the studio again now that my toddler has started “school” (day-care).  Feeling inspired, I’ve also started working on a few more books which will be posted shortly.  Stay tuned!

P.S.  That lovely painting glimpsed in the background of the first photo above is part of a beautiful oil painting of my childhood farm by fellow artist and friend, Wanda Hibbs.

Music Charm Mini-Book, 3/4″ square

March 2nd, 2010 by Nikki Smith

This charming little mini-book is 3/4″ square.  It has covers recycled from a discarded bracelet, sheet music pages (love it!) and is coptic bound with a clasp for attaching to a necklace or bag.

Charm Music Book - Sheet Music Pages

Charm Music Book - Covers

The striking black, white and red makes it perfect for a night on the town.  It is a beautiful one-of-a-kind accessory for a book or music lover!  (That’s me!)

2010 OWOH Blog Giveaway Winners!

February 15th, 2010 by Nikki Smith

Congratulations to the three (yes, I said three) winners of my 2010 One World One Heart giveaway!  (Winners were chosen by random number.)

First place goes to Sharon from Texas who had this to say:

“The photos are so unique! Wow! Amazing. It would be hard to choose. And the idea of a book. My mind is running in circles now.

Oh Nikki!  I’m so excited!  I’m going to do a happy dance when I finish emailing you!  I love the wee planets photos and would have picked one of them if I had not peeked at the mini book.  I’ll have to pick that wonderful mini book!  It is amazing!  Thank you, than you, thank you! Wow!  I still can’t believe that book!  I can’t wait to see it in person.  Thank you Nikki.  You have made my day!”

You can visit Sharon’s blog here: http://happeningsonchaosranch.blogspot.com

Mini Book for OWOH Giveaway

Mini Book Charm

This mini-book is 3/4″ square and filled with lovely red mulberry paper; covers are parts from a bracelet and it has a coptic stitch binding. Ready to be attached to a necklace or bag and filled with love notes, thoughts or photos of your sweeties!

And because I loved your happy dance, I’m including a print of your favorite Wee Planet, “Tongariro Volcanoes” too.   This is based upon a panorama photograph of the Tongariro Volcanoes by my friends Ralph and Susan Bussard and converted to a wee-planet by yours truly:

Wee Planet: Tongariro Volcanoes


Second prize goes to Kerry of Minnesota who says:

“AACKKK! I’m a winner! Oh wowza! Now I have to CHOOSE? Yikes. Hard choice. I think first I’d chose the book if the first prize winner does not come forward. And then it came down to the Old Tree and Bridge…. hmm…. eeny meeny miney moe… I think I will pick Planet Bridge!  Yay! I’m so excited! I love your blog. I have been contemplating blogging myself…”

I hope you do start blogging, Kerry!  It’s a great way to document your “journey”, whether that represents your life, your art, your family or your other passions.  Let me know if you do and I’ll be your first follower!

Here is the Planet Bridge that Kerry chose:

Planet Bridge

Bonus Round:

I decided to add a bonus-round drawing just among all of the folks who commented on another post and/or became a follower of my blog.  My way to say “thank-you” for your thoughtfulness, you’ve made my day!

And the Bonus Round winner is Mary-Beth of Canada who says:

“Nikki, your wee planets are amazing, I’d love to be a proud owner!! LOL And I’m a sucker for mini books too! Great giveaway!!!

Nikki, thank you so much for this!!! I am so thrilled to own one of your wee planets! It’s so funny cuz when I revisited your blog last night, I had a feeling I had won one of these!!!! Eerie!!! LOL I would love to have That Old Tree, I think it’s absolutely lovely!”

Wee Planet: That Old Tree

Mary-Beth also commented on my “Book of Home” post and kindly said:

“Nikki, I wanted to say what a wonderful little book this was and I love all the images you used in it, especially the tree! Fabulous!!

Thank-you, Mary-Beth!  You can visit Mary-Beth’s blog here:  http://myjourneyintoart.com

And a big THANK-YOU to everyone who visited my blog during OWOH.  I hope to see you back soon!

Photography Credits for above planets:
Planet Tongariro Volcanoes – photo by Ralph & Susan Bussard; planet by Nikki Smith
Planet That Old Tree – photo by Steffe; planet by Nikki Smith
Planet Bridge – photo by Andrew Prokos; planet by Nikki Smith
P.S.  Do you have a great 360 degree panorama photo that you’d like to see turned into a planet?  Just let me know!