I’ve been busy, but not with cooking!

March 21, 2012

With what, you say? Surely I still have to eat, and I certainly wouldn’t just start getting takeout every night, so where is the food? Well, I’ve still been cooking, but  I’ve been spending pretty much all my free time making handmade blank books for the Buffalo Small Press Book Fair! And crocheting, but that’s for another post (or ten).

Stack of books waiting to be bound

Stack of books waiting to be bound

This will be my very first art show, so I’m super excited but a bit nervous that I’ll have not enough/too much of one thing, or that I won’t have any sales, or that my display will be sucky, etc etc. But! I’m mostly excited and trying not to let perfectionism get in the way. This supposed to be fun, right? :)

Loop paper hardcover coptics

Small hardcover coptic bindings made with Loop paper

It all started last year when I realized that A) I was finished with school, and B) I had started a new job that had more regular hours (no more 9 AM – 8 PM on an alternating schedule). I could finally pursue the creative interests I had put in hibernation for so long! Hand-bound books have fascinated me for the past few years, and I had purchased the first three Keith Smith books on sewn bindings a while ago. However, I’ve always felt uncomfortable just diving in all by myself, so I signed up for the late summer session of Intro to Bookbinding at the Genesee Center for the Arts and Education, taught by Emily Sterling of Singletree Press (she will also have a table at the Buffalo show). The class helped me gain the confidence I needed to start pursuing more complex bindings, and I went on to take the advanced bookbinding class (and will take it again this spring as Emily will be covering some different structures).

Long stitch with chain

Softcover with tab; long stitch with chain binding

I think I’ve got a pretty good variety of different bindings at different prices – I’ve got a lot of small (4 x 5.5″) hardcover coptic-bound books, and a few each of the softcover long stitch and large (6 x 8″) hardcover coptics. I also have some mini skinny softcover notebooks that I think would be good for making lists, and then a bunch of small softcovers made from this super-cool vintage-y robot paper that I found at the art store!

Robot books

Robot mini-notebooks!

Skinny notebooks

Skinny notebooks

In preparation for later on after the show, I’ve finally opened up my Etsy store, also called Rats In Teacups. Once the show is over I’ll list everything else I have left and start working on some more ideas. I have the feeling this won’t be my last art show!

If you’re in the Buffalo area, please stop by! The Buffalo Small Press Book Fair is on Saturday, March 24th, 2012 at the Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum at 453 Porter Ave in Buffalo NY. It runs from 12 – 6 PM and is open to the public – no cost for admission. Hope to see you there!

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