For Challenge Number Eight, we were tasked with creating something "unexpected." Either something hidden or something made from an unknown or surprising material. If you have been following along with my Iron Craft Challenges, you know that I have been trying to use my surplus materials. I used this challenge to completely annihilate a stock of material that I have had over five years. I never really knew what I was going to do with it but it was so cool to me at the time that I bought bunches of it. I also used this challenge to commemorate the one year anniversary of our showing running at the theater. I decided to make bouquets of flowers for the women in our show. And they were all made out of duct tape. Yep. DUCT TAPE.
I searched online for duct tape projects and was directed to a YouTube video and I then adapted the techniques for these flowers. Each flower is dedicated to one of the women in the show. The colors are chosen based on their costumes. If I didn't have the correct color, I wrote lines or lyrics from the show on the petals.
Underside of the flower
The flowers were well received and appreciated by all. I went through 20 rolls of "designer" duct tape and I am please to say that I am completely duct taped out.
For this Challenge, I decided to refurbish a journal that was falling apart. Last week, I showed the week long process. For today, I wanted to show the final results. The theme was dots so I decided to use decorative paper from India for the front and back covers. For the interior end sheets I used some hand marbled paper with a stone pattern.
Today is the final step of the casing in and finishing the book. Unfortunately, this is also the part of the process where most things can go wrong. I have learned from previous experience not to rush this part, to eat a good breakfast (or at least take a break before attempting), and most importantly--use the restroom because you can't step away once you start.
The first step is to glue the text block into the case. To accomplish this, you glue the book cloth hinge to the corresponding cover. The difficulty is that once you close the case, you really can't adjust anything because the glue starts to cover materials. So you really only have one chance to get it right. Another problem is that glue can get all over the finished materials if you aren't really, really careful when gluing. To protect the text block, I placed a sheet of wax paper between the text block and the book cloth hinge. For added protection, I placed a piece of waste paper under the hinge to be glued.
This is what a glued hinge looks like.
Protection all over the place
Breathe, pray and flip the cover. Normally, I would have trimmed the hinge and mitered the corners to match the mitered decorative paper. Since this is a highly used book, I kept the extra width for the hinge. Since the decorative paper is dark, the seam won't show as much as if a lighter weight or lighted colored paper was used. When the book is pressed, the wax paper will be replaced with a sheet of mylar. The reason you do this is to prevent the moisture of the glued in end sheet from transferring to the text block and warping the text block pages. Time to flip and repeat on the opposite cover.
One side glued in
Once the text block has been glued into the case, the next step is to glue the matching end sheets. This isn't as stressful but mistakes can still be made. The biggest problem here is that the paper can stretch when wet so correct measuring is very important. Also, some papers stretch more than others. I always take a sample piece of the paper that I am using and glue it to a scrap piece of board. This allows me to see how the paper curls and how much it stretches. This is a little more forgiving of a process but glue can still get into places that it doesn't belong. Also, the response time of moving things lessens as the glued dries. You maybe get one or two attempts at getting everything straight before you have to either re-paste the paper or start with a new piece of paper. One of the lessons that I have learned to is to have plenty of extra decorative paper in case you need to start over.
End Sheet pasted in
Once both end sheets are glued in, you put the mylar in place, wrap the entire book in wax paper and place it under weight to press for the night. While this might look comical, the spine is purposely placed outside of the boards so that the spine isn't crushed under weight.
Pressing and Good Night
That will be it for now. I will show the final result on Tuesday, April 12 which is the Iron Craft reveal date.