Tuesday 27 May 2014

Sweet Thames is out to get me

I am still working on binding Sweet Thames. The bits I expected to be troublesome have not been but the easy bits have been my downfall. The top and bottom edges were very discoloured. Liverpool City Council saw fit to paint the top edge then stamp their name on it but I sanded that all off which left the top and bottom edges lovely and clean and flat while the fore-edge was very uneven and grubby. This morning, I clamped up the text block and very gently set about sanding the fore-edge down (which was curved inwards as it should be). I used a piece of dowel rod with fine sand paper wrapped round it and I was expecting trouble. Instead of which I have a nice clean even fore-edge. I then tipped on the endpapers, having had a bit of an exercise in mathematics to decide where to cut the endpaper. All okay.

While that was drying, I created a graphic in Photoshop using a scanned engraving from the book and a text saying I had rebound it in May 2014.  Printed off two and applied them to the book. Now this is not my habit but the City of Liverpool had put nasty purple stamps on the title page and the last page of text. The title page was particularly bad as the library had stamped CANCELLED across the first stamp in bold red letters. I printed out the labels, cut them to size and applied them. Fine. When I inspected the labels ten minutes later, the back page was okay but the red dye of CANCELLED had run and I have a pink stain on my label!!!!!! I am hoping as it dries a bit more, it will fade. I could paste another label on but that might come through too. I feel like giving up but have decided to go on. I may not submit the final book. In another 2 or 3 hours when everything is quite dry, I will finish off the spine.

I then investigated the silk fabric for the cover and found I had done more than I remembered. Since silk fabric frays, I had already backed it with fusible lining. I had also taken a piece of Perspex, masked off the size of fabric needed, selected and cut out the piece of fabric for final use. There is enough fabric for a second cover but it changes colour part way down. That does not matter for a practise piece, so it has been backed with bank paper and  is drying now. It will not be ready till tomorrow morning when I will print the title on to it using a Thermofax screen I had specially made.I will try stamping on some trees and ferns. If this all works, I will do the real fabric piece tomorrow. It will be usable on Thursday and I will finish the book then.

In between times (there is a lot of waiting around waiting for glue to dry in bookbinding), I have cut up all my silk samples, 35 of them, and put them onto Page 2 of the text.

I am sure I have other important things to do but my mind is totally concentrated on Sweet Thames and what the next thing to go wrong will be.

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About Me

I am weaver and - -. I dye my yarns with acid dyes, I paint my warps, put fabric collages and stencils on my weaving. I have three looms, a 12 inch wide, 12 shaft Meyer for demos and courses, a 30 inch Louet Kombo which is nominally portable but has a stand, two extra beams and a home-made device containing a fan reed. And last a 32 shaft Louet Megado which is computer controlled, has a sectional warp and a second warp beam and I am the proud owner of an AVL warping wheel which I love to bits and started by drilling holes in. I inserted a device for putting a cross in. I have just acquired an inkle loom and had a lesson from an expert so I can watch TV and weave at the same time. I am interested in weaving with silk mostly 60/2 although I do quite a bit with 90/2 silk. I also count myself as a bookbinder with a special interest in Coptic binding.