Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Embroidered Bookcloth: A Bibliophile's Craft

Since I took my first bookbinding class, I've been fascinated by the idea of making my own bookcloth. I took up embroidering last year, and something I've been wanting to do is to make a series of embroidered books all centered around a single theme.

I adore fairy tales, folk tales, tall tales, myths, and all their incarnations and reincarnations. They're the inspiration for many of my ideas, and they're the inspiration for this latest one.

The first fairy tale I'm doing is "East of the Sun, West of the Moon." It would be too long to provide a synopsis here, but if you've never read it, I highly recommend taking ten minutes of your time and doing so.

I'm embroidering several pieces of cloth with images from the story. The first image is a compass rose, and I'm working on that one now. After that, some of my ideas are a golden apple, an aspen leaf, a candle dripping drops of tallow, the face of a white bear, and the face of a man combined with that of a bear.

Here's the progress on the compass rose so far:

And a close-up:

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