Grateful To Not Be Listened To

This is another post about gifts that generous and (way too) nice people have taken the time and effort to give me. I have no idea why they bother to do so since as previously mentioned I’m just a distant curmudgeon who doesn’t really merit it. Still they gleefully ignore that completely and send things through my force field of grumps.

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Well, some things are an open book. Notice the red ribbon.

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away I took some bindery courses and actually bound a few books by hand (I’ve still got some). I know that this takes more art than science to wind up with results that are attractive as well as useful. Mona is a person that that can craft journals and other bound items of great beauty. She sent me the one below which I’m indebted to her for. The amazing thing is she just started doing this not very long ago. It’s a sideline to her other hobbies like knitting and fountain pen mania but I’m certainly happy she took it up.

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A lovely Mona brand journal

My work hasn’t taken me far afield in quite some time but my friend Caloy’s livelihood takes him places I’ve both dreamt about and only vaguely familiar with. Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, is the latter. At a conference there recently he picked up a locally crafted embroidered pouch for me. It’s the perfect size to hold the stack of postcards I keep and the postage for them. It’s also strikingly attractive.

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Perfect for postcards.

I never know how to receive a token of friendship in person so I usually fidgit and make some inane quip about how someone else would be more worthy of the item. Use your imagination and insert that image here.

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When taking these pictures I saw this. Reinforces my hatred of geese.

  1. September 3, 2009, 7:00 am

    Awesome journal – Mona’s bookbinding classes have definitely paid off.

  2. Caloy
    September 3, 2009, 8:56 am

    I’m fortunate to also own a Mona journal (I won it in the raffle during the FPN-P anniversary meet). The handmade journal is exquisite; the workmanship is impeccable. It has a black and white graphic paisley design with a shimmering maroon spine.

  3. Kim
    September 3, 2009, 4:08 pm

    I love the choice of the cover, the black seemingly textured… is it fabric?

  4. TAO
    September 3, 2009, 4:42 pm

    Okami: To say the least!
    Caloy: Mona’s books keep getting better. The ones she made for the FPN-P raffle were fabulous.
    Kim: I wish I were as organized as Mona. She documented what she made the book out of and I quote her below:
    Book block 5.5″ x 8.5″ x 0.75″ 80 gsm paper
    Hardcover (black handmade abaca paper with metallic flecks, metallic blue wrapping paper)
    Cream endpapers
    Maroon ribbon marker

  5. Caloy
    September 3, 2009, 6:34 pm

    Yes.. There’s an info page (last page).. mines says:

    BOOK #7
    Lock-stitched, hardcover
    Quarterbound by hand
    4.5″ x 3″ book
    192pp, 70 GSM paper

    Black paisley wrap
    Copper red spine

  6. Mona
    September 7, 2009, 4:47 am

    Ooh! My goodness, TAO’s photography makes my modest effort look much better than it really is. Glad you and Caloy like the books. Thank you.

    Kim, the black “starry night” journal cover paper is handmade in Batangas, about 3 hours south away from Manila. Abaca fiber is commonly made into rope and packaging materials. The paper certainly feels like a fragile cloth. I bought it at a local bookstore that also sells art materials.

    Julie, when I took the course all I wanted was to be able to make a book that would stay flat when opened. I think people who like to draw and doodle should be able to draw across to the other page (like my 4yo niece who wants one for herself).

  7. TAO
    September 7, 2009, 7:17 pm

    Mona: Nope, it looks that good in person too. 😛