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VT Book Arts Guild “MailB.A.G.” November 2016

November 3, 2016

Next Meeting: Wednesday, November 9, 2016, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

We meet at the Unitarian Universalist Society Church located at 152 Pearl Street in Burlington, VT. We will be in the Sophia Fahs Community Room, a large room located in the basement. Click here for more information on directions/parking.


Program: Card Tricks and Book Blitz: Mini Workshops in Cool Techniques

Handmade pop-up cardJoin us for our always-popular annual November tradition: Member-led mini hands-on workshops in the form of a card or mini-book exchange that we call Book Blitz and Card Tricks. Get prepared now and join the fun!

Design a card or small/simple book structure that has a trick or two; maybe a pop-up, French doors or a window. Bring your completed card or mini-book, along with materials for six undecorated cards or mini-book structures to share. We will have an exchange and then engage in some decorating fun.

Please feel free to join in the fun even if you don’t have time to prepare cards or mini-books to bring. We do a similar program every November and there is always more than enough to go around. As in years past, expect to go home with some great new ideas, several new tricks up your sleeve, and a few new cards for the season.

  • Things to bring:
  • A decorated card/mini-book with a “trick” (optional)
  • 6 card structures of your card/mini-book “trick” to exchange (optional)
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • X-Acto knife
  • Cutting mat
  • Ruler
  • Bone folder
  • Awl or needle tool
  • Decorative punches
  • Stamps and ink pads
  • Pens, pencils, markers
  • Decorative papers
  • Fun stuff!

October Meeting Reflections

Handmade leather journalElissa Campbell once again delighted us with the opportunity to learn a new three-section sewing pattern while crafting a beautiful little journal with leather covers and a sturdy strap closure.

Using a sewing method from Keith Smith‘s book, 1-, 2- and 3-Section Sewings: Non-Adhesive Binding Volume II, Elissa led us through the process of creating templates, punching patterns and attaching signatures to produce a stylish little book with a decorative, sewn design on the spine. As icing on the cake, she taught us how to fashion one of the many elegant leather strap closures that grace her own finely crafted books.

An exciting note to anyone who missed this wonderful presentation, or would like to delve deeper into the world of leather mini-journals: Elissa will be teaching a Mini Leather Journal Workshop at the Focus on Book Arts conference in 2017!

Thanks to all who attended, and extra special thanks to Elissa for her patience, preparation, and presentation skills.

You can view images from the meeting on the B.A.G. blog.


B.A.G. News

Book Arts Guild of Vermont display Friday night at the Burlington Book Festival*** On September 17, 2016, the Book Arts Guild of Vermont proudly participated in the 2016 Burlington Book Festival at UVM’s Davis Center.

The annual event, which traditionally celebrates the book with readings, book signings, panels, and other activities, provided a wonderful venue for exhibiting works from our members and introducing the community to an expanded idea of what a book can be. Judging from the interest and excitement our exhibit generated, we certainly succeeded in our mission to increase awareness of book arts and our guild.

Many thanks to everyone who contributed work to display, to the volunteers who helped with set-up and took shifts at the exhibit, to Burlington Book Festival Founding Director Rick Kisonak for both inviting us and enthusiastically promoting our presence, and to B.A.G. member Nina Gaby for connecting us with the festival and encouraging us to participate!

You can view images from the festival on the B.A.G. blog.


Book Arts News

*** On November 10th, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is presenting the gallery talk Beyond Words with Valentine Talland, Senior Objects Conservator at the museum. The talk is being held in conjunction with the museum’s current exhibit Beyond Words: Italian Renaissance Books, open now through January 16, 2017.

The exhibition visits the studies of scholars, princely libraries, places of worship, and printing presses of Renaissance Italy to explore how the ancestor of the modern book was perfected around 1500, thanks to innovations of the previous century. These developments arose from the efforts of Italian humanists, scholars who found inspiration in ancient Rome to create a new book for a brighter future.

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is located at 25 Evans Way in Boston, MA.

Admission to the talk is limited to 15 registrants. Click here to register.

*** On November 11th from 10:00 p.m. – 12:00 p.m., the Special Collections Department of the Bailey/Howe Library at UVM will be hosting a show and tell session with Vamp & Tramp Booksellers. Vamp & Tramp, which is based in Birmingham, AL, represents over 400 makers of contemporary fine press and artists’ books.

Come by for this rare chance to look at and handle the best of today’s melding of art and books. NO GLOVES ALLOWED.

The event is free and open to the public. UVM Special Collections is located in Burlington VT. Click here to download a pdf of the directions.

Northampton Book and Book Arts Fair*** On December 2-3, the second annual Northampton Book and Book Arts Fair will take place at the Smith College Campus Center in Northampton, MA.

The event includes exhibits, sales, book signings, demonstrations, lectures and features the leading antiquarian booksellers from the region and book artists, letter press printers, book binders, paper makers, wood engravers, stone cutters, and book designers.

The keynote speaker is Ruth R. Rogers, curator of Special Collections in the Wellesley College Library where she develops the collection and lectures on the evolution of the book as material culture, visual communication, and artistic form. Her talk, Layers of Perception: The Unwritten Language of Artists’ Books, will focus on how we “read” artists’ books by deconstructing them to understand how they affect our perception.

For more information, please visit the event website.

Marbled paper by Chena River Marblers*** Chena River Marblers is holding an open studio on December 10 & 11 from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. There will be marbling and bookbinding demonstrations, along with an end-of-year overstock and seconds sale.

The studio is located at 70 Justice Drive in Amherst, MA. For more information, please call (413) 253-2835.


Book Arts Classes

*** On November 12th, the New City Galerie in Burlington is hosting an Upcycle Journal Workshop with Susan Smereka. Susan is currently working as an artist in residence at the gallery.

This workshop begins with disassembling an old hardcover book while learning the intricacies of how books are put together. Then you will rebuild the signatures with pages of the original book, pages from other books and blank journal pages. With waxed linen thread you will be guided through a step-by-step process of binding your new journal together.

No experience is necessary and all supplies will be provided. Beverages and a vegetarian lunch are included. Please register by November 8.

For more information or to register, please contact Susan.

*** On December 3-4, the North Bennet Street School is offering Enclosures for Preservation and Beyond with Bill Hanscom.

Boxes, wrappers, and slipcases are widely used to house and protect library and archival collections, but they also offer terrific opportunities for artistic exploration. Beyond the protective housing of original works such as books or print portfolios, enclosures can be altered and embellished to complement, enhance, and conspire with their contents. Over the course of this workshop students work to create a reference set of enclosures which neatly nest together.

Students are responsible for bringing the following tools: 12 x 18″ self-healing cutting mat, drafting triangle, and a pencil.

For more information or to register, please visit the NBSS website.

*** The Eliot School is offering Magic Books & Paper Toys with Annie Silverman on December 17, 2016.

Using innovative forms from Esther Smith of Purgatory Pie Press, make paper objects like: the Swiss Cross Flexagon, the Snake or Tumble book, the Rolling Ball book, Jacob’s Ladder Flexagon and more. Part book, part toy, these objects make great gifts, invitations or cards.

For more information about the class, please visit the Eliot School’s website or click here to download the complete catalog.


Burlington Book Festival Exhibit 2016

November 2, 2016

Book Arts Guild of Vermont display Friday night at the Burlington Book Festival

Book Arts Guild of Vermont display Friday night at the Burlington Book Festival

Book Arts Guild of Vermont display Friday night at the Burlington Book Festival

Book Arts Guild of Vermont display Friday night at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Dorsey Hogg on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Dorsey Hogg

Work by Jane Ploughman on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Jane Ploughman

Work by Nina Gaby on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Nina Gaby

Work by Nina Gaby on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Nina Gaby

Work by Marcia Vogler on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Marcia Vogler

Work by Marcia Vogler on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Marcia Vogler

Work by Elissa Campbell on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Elissa Campbell

Work by Nancy Stone on display at the Burlington Book Festival

Work by Nancy Stone

Jill Abilock, Nina Gaby, and Dorsey Hogg at the Book Arts Guild of Vermont display at the Burlington Book Festival

Jill Abilock, Nina Gaby, and Dorsey Hogg

Mini Leather Journals with Elissa Campbell

October 21, 2016

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting sign

Materials kits for leather bookbinding workshop at Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Book Arts Guild of Vermont members punching holes in leather

Book Arts Guild of Vermont members punching holes in leather

Book Arts Guild of Vermont members punching holes in leather

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Book Arts Guild of Vermont member sewing a journal

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Book Arts Guild of Vermont member sewing a journal

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Book Arts Guild of Vermont member sewing a journal

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Book Arts Guild of Vermont member sewing a journal

Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

Leather journal completed at Book Arts Guild of Vermont meeting

VT Book Arts Guild “MailB.A.G.” October 2016

October 6, 2016

Next Meeting: Wednesday, October 12, 2016, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

We meet at the Unitarian Universalist Society Church located at 152 Pearl Street in Burlington, VT. We will be in the Sophia Fahs Community Room, a large room located in the basement. Click here for more information on directions/parking.


Program: Mini Leather Journals with Elissa Campbell

handmade leather journalIn this hands-on presentation, Elissa will teach you Keith Smith‘s Broken Herringbone binding, using soft leather for the cover. This three signature binding creates a lovely decorative pattern on the spine. The book also has an integrated closure that coordinates with the sewing.

Leather, paper and thread will be provided. Please bring the following with you to the workshop:

  • Bone folder
  • Awl
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Bookbinding or tapestry needle

Optional (for punching small holes in leather):


September Meeting Reflections

Prudence Doherty, University of Vermont Public Services LibrarianOur annual visit to the Special Collections Department of the Bailey/Howe Library proved to be particularly fascinating this September. Prudence Doherty, Public Services Librarian, chose handmade paper and papermaking as her theme for the evening.

She presented books about paper and books made with handmade paper, and created a lively discussion about both. For a roomful of paper lovers, it was magic.

Thanks to everyone who participated in oohing and ahing, and special thanks to Prudence for a wonderful experience.

You can view images from the meeting on the B.A.G. blog.


B.A.G. News

B.A.G. Book Swap logo*** The Book Arts Guild of Vermont is proud to introduce our first ever book swap!

In a nutshell, participants will be randomly assigned a person for whom they will anonymously create a book – it’s a bit like Secret Santa, but more like Confidential Codex.

The focus of each swap will vary. We want to encourage our members to step outside their comfort zones, have fun, and experiment with new materials, structures, etc. For the first swap, you’ll have to create a blank book that incorporates recycled materials.

If the swap generates enough interest and folks enjoy it, then we’d love to continue the project on an ongoing basis.

Here are the details:

  • Sign up deadline: 10/15/16
  • Assignment of names: 10/20/16
  • Book swap (and deadline for book completion): 12/14/16 (December B.A.G. meeting)

If you’d like to participate or have questions, please contact Elissa by October 15th. Don’t worry if you can’t make it to the December meeting – you can always mail your book.

We can’t wait to see the final books!

*** B.A.G. member Nancy Stone wrote the following about her recent experience working with the Visiting Nurse Association’s Respite House:

The Joy of Donating Artwork
Last autumn I took a workshop on Your Art Legacy, a thought-provoking discussion about planning for dispersal of our artwork upon our death. That was a good wake-up call for someone in her 70’s! I realized that as my husband and I worked at ‘down-sizing’, I would have to figure out what to do with my remaining art sooner than later.

After letting our kids select paintings, I thought about the Visiting Nurse Association’s Respite House that was moving from my town of Williston to a larger place being built in Colchester. It was delightful to find that they wanted more than a couple of donated pieces; they accepted 11 works and asked if I could do a large one for the entrance!

That completed work, titled Sanctuary, is a 2′ X 6′ diptych of a woodland path with the destination brighter and more detailed than the soft dappled sunlight in the foreground. I felt very honored that an older piece titled Serenity is hanging in the Meditation Room and will hopefully soothe staff, patients and families. Since many of my paintings have a spiritual quality, they fit well into a place where people come to live until they die.

I came to realize that the holiday song Little Drummer Boy holds a good message…though artists may not be able to make significant donations of gold, myrrh or frankincense to a good cause, we can offer our gift of creativity.

*** Jill Abilock reports that Shelburne Pond Studios has an artist’s studio for rent. The size is 27′ x 13′ and it has good lighting. Rent is $275.00 per month with all utilities included. Shelburne Pond Studios is a community of 12 supportive artists located in a converted dairy barn in a quiet rural setting across from Shelburne Pond, in Shelburne, VT.

Please contact Kathy Stockman for more information.


Book Arts News

Peace Paper Project logo*** On October 11th at 5:30 p.m., UVM’s Special Collections Department of the Bailey/Howe Library presents Breaking the Deckle: Using the Paper Arts for Social Justice, a lecture with Drew Matott, Director of the Peace Paper Project.

Matott is a master papermaker with an expertise using traditional papermaking as a form of trauma therapy, social engagement, and community activism. In this presentation, he will discuss how he became involved with the paper arts and describe the genesis of the community papermaking programs he has co-founded, including Green Door Studio, Combat Paper Project, Peace Paper Project, Papermaking as Art Therapy, and Panty Pulping.

The presentation is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact the Special Collections Department at uvmsc@uvm.edu or (802) 656-2138.

*** On October 12 & 13 from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., Peace Paper Project’s Artists-in-Residence at Champlain College will offer hands-on Panty Pulping workshops in the Rozendaal courtyard. Students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to contribute a piece of clothing and make paper out of clothing.

An opening reception will be held on October 13th at 5:00 p.m. in the Champlain College Gallery Lounge. The workshops are pesented in collaboration with the Champlain College Women’s and Gender Center.

For more information, please contact Chris Thompson.

*** The North Bennet Street School is hosting a free public lecture on October 25th with Luigi Castiglioni entitled Binding a Livre de Peintre. The lecture will take place from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Castiglioni will share the process of binding an important “livre de peintre” in the French tradition. Using images from his recent project creating a binding for a copy of Jaime Sabartès’s Dans l’Atelier de Picasso, with 6 original lithographies of Pablo Picasso and 30 reproductions, the presentation will cover the full process from the design stage through the final finishing techniques. It is only by knowing every aspect of the work that one can fully take pleasure in a binding from the great French tradition.

For more information or to register, please visit the NBSS website. The NBSS is located in Boston, MA.

*** From October 29 – December 4, 2016 the Pucker Gallery in Boston will present Of Light and Shadow: New Work by Andrea Dezsö.

Andrea Dezsö is a visual artist who works across a broad range of media including drawing, painting, artist’s books, embroidery, cut paper, animation, sculpture, site-specific installation and public art. She has been creating one-of-a-kind tunnel books since 2004.

The opening reception will be on October 29th from 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. The Pucker Gallery is located at 240 Newbury Street on the 3rd floor.

For more information, please contact the Pucker Gallery.

Woven and Interlocking Structures book cover*** Claire Van Vliet and Elizabeth Steiner announce that their book Woven and Interlocking Book Structures is now available free at the Internet Archive. Published in 2002 and no longer in print, this book is a self-teaching manual with directions for making basic models of 16 book structures designed for Janus, Steiner, and Gefn Press publications.

Claire suggests printing the pages of the digital version 2-sided and binding them in a 3-ring binder to function as a bench top manual. Here are the directions:

  1. Click here to access the files.
  2. Under Download Options (lower right), choose PDF and download the file.
  3. Save this file to your computer.
  4. Open the file in Acrobat.
  5. Open the Print menu and print all 152 pages 2-sided on 8.5″ x 11” paper.

*** Beyond Words, a collaborative exhibition taking place at three different venues, highlights Medieval and Renaissance illumination manuscripts in Boston collections. The exhibits may be seen at the Boston College’s McMullen Museum, Harvard University’s Houghton Library, and Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum.

Outstanding manuscripts and printed books dating from the ninth to seventeenth centuries have been selected from eighteen Boston-area repositories. The three exhibits combined are offering the largest display of Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts ever shown in the United States.

Please visit the individual venue websites for details on the days and hours they’re open.


Book Arts Classes

Handmade leather journals*** B.A.G. member Elissa Campbell is teaching Leather Pocket Journals at Studio Place Arts in Barre, VT on October 13 & 20, 2016 from 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

You’ll learn how to create 5 bindings that use only leather, paper, and thread – no glue needed! For each binding, you will sew 3 sections of folded papers into covers cut from one piece of leather. These bindings are very flexible and allow the books to open completely flat, making them perfect for use as sketchbooks or journals.

Each sewing technique creates a different decorative sewing pattern on the spine and we will try out different closure methods. No previous experience required – this is a great class for a beginner.

To register, contact SPA via phone (802) 479-7069 or email.

*** The Eliot School is offering the series Wild Journals with Susan Porter in October and November. Sessions will be held on Thursdays from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Transform plain, store-bought, hardbound sketchbooks into gorgeously rich, densely colored, printed, cut and folded journals. These dramatic works of art can incorporate text, collage, found objects, windows, flaps and surface design.

The skills you learn can also be used in any form of handmade book. Expect to get messy. Bring an apron or work shirt to protect your clothing.

You can sign up for individual sessions or the whole series.

  • Getting Started – Color & Paint: October 6, 2016
  • Cut-outs, Pop-ups & Extensions: Thursday October 13, 2016
  • Stamps, Stencils & Simple Printmaking: October 20, 2016
  • Layers, Pockets, Windows & Tags: October 27, 2016
  • Collaged Covers & Pages: November 3, 2016
  • Story, Text & Narrative: November 10, 2016

For more information about the class, please visit the Eliot School’s website or click here to download the complete catalog.


Visit to UVM Special Collections

September 27, 2016

Prudence Doherty, University of Vermont Public Services Librarian

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

Prudence Doherty, University of Vermont Public Services Librarian

Prudence Doherty, University of Vermont Public Services Librarian

Prudence Doherty, University of Vermont Public Services Librarian

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

Artists Books at UVM Special Collections

Artists Books at UVM Special Collections

"The Activated Page: Handmade Paper and the Artist's Book" by Jae Jennifer Rossman

“The Activated Page: Handmade Paper and the Artist’s Book” by Jae Jennifer Rossman

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

"The Core of James Farmer" by Detine Bowers of the Arcadian Press

“The Core of James Farmer” by Detine Bowers of the Arcadian Press

"The Core of James Farmer" by Detine Bowers of the Arcadian Press

“The Core of James Farmer” by Detine Bowers of the Arcadian Press

"Holt Mill Papers" by Peter and Donna Thomas

“Holt Mill Papers” by Peter and Donna Thomas

"Linen Series" by Combat Paper Press

“Linen Series” by Combat Paper Press

"Linen Series" by Combat Paper Press

“Linen Series” by Combat Paper Press

"U̶n̶mentionables: A Panty Pulping Portfolio"

“U̶n̶mentionables: A Panty Pulping Portfolio”

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

"Tamashi" by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

“Tamashi” by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

"Tamashi" by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

“Tamashi” by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

"Tamashi" by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

“Tamashi” by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

"Tamashi" by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

“Tamashi” by Amanda Degener and Alison Knowles

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

"Papers of River Muds" by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

“Papers of River Muds” by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

"Papers of River Muds" by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

“Papers of River Muds” by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

"Papers of River Muds" by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

“Papers of River Muds” by Richard Log of The Lapis Press

"Paper from Plants" by Peter and Donna Thomas

“Paper from Plants” by Peter and Donna Thomas

"Paper from Plants" by Peter and Donna Thomas

“Paper from Plants” by Peter and Donna Thomas

BAG meeting at UVM Special Collections

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