Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Accordion Book Hinge Part II

Well ... here are the results:
I would say that those are too many glue warpings. Huh. Does anyone know: is there a better kind of glue to use? Would the warps flatten out if I left them under the books overnight (instead of for only 1/2 an hour?)

Now that pale green/contrasting fabric is really noticeable. I would want to use fabric that was the width of both pages and whose pattern or color really added to the statement of the book. For now I like better the matching blue:And here is the book all folded up:I think that I will fill the book and post about that later.

Was this helpful?

Accordion Book Hinges

Good Morning/Day/Night (wherever, whenever you are).

I am a member of the TrueNorthArts Yahoo Group and there was a question of how to make a really loooong accordion book without really loooong paper: how does one connect shorter papers without bulking up the book?

Here's the idea I had: use fabric as the hinge. Now, as I am not really sure what I am talking about, I thought I'd do it myself, photograph the steps and see what happens. Let's go.

Step One:
Cut your papers into the correct height for your book's pages. I am using Canson art paper here. A little shout out to the Canson People. Nice papers, thank you.
Step Two:
Fold the papers into the correct width for your book's pages. You might be noticing that not all of the papers are folded to the same width. I just wanted to see what would happen. Stay tuned.

Step Three:
Cut one piece of fabric for each hinge between two ends of the various accordion folds for your book. NOTE: Cut them a bit taller than the paper - we'll trim them exactly later. I used solid cotton broadcloth. Now I have cut one pale green fabric that doesn't match the paper for contrast? An artistic statement? And then I used one blue cloth that almost exactly matches the fabric to see how invisible I can make this hinge.

Step Four:

I neatened the long, vertical edges, cutting off the little fringies and unwoven threads. I did not cut the top or bottom as we will do that later.

Step Five:
I placed one fabric piece on a piece of clean paper (I cut up all of my recycled papers to make notebooks for myself and didn't have any big enough for this project.) I got out my Elmer's white glue (Hello Elmer's Products, Inc.) and squirted some (too much! - read below) on to get ready for ...
Step Six:

...where I painted the glue all over the fabric. Make sure that you get the glue evenly spread aaaall over the fabric. Pick up the gluey fabric and put it on a clean piece of paper (so that you don't get the extra brushed glue where you don't want it.)

Step Seven:

Place one end of one folded paper down, rubbing it into place.
Step Eight:

Then press the other down. Now, see how the papers are wrinkling a bit? Too much glue. I tried using less glue on the next hinge...

Step Nine:

So I tried less glue ... but it wasn't enough ... so I about doubled the amount shown here, ending up at slightly less than the pale fabric above.

Step Ten:

I put the next set of folded papers on, abutting them about as precisely as I could. But I was in a hurry and cut badly - see how they don't match at the top?With the pale fabric I cut off the extra fabric at the top and bottom with a pair of scissors, but here I used a metal straight edge and an X-Acto knife.I liked how very much easier and neater that was. Can you see in this photo that I just cut off the extra tall paper. (No one ever accused me of being a Type A personality.)

Step Eleven:

I covered each page, both sides, with some plastic wrappers that I had in my studio then laid books on top of the paper/cloth hinges. I will send off this post, go undo the stack - hoping that the wet-glue-warps might have flattened out, and post you the results. (A short advertisement here - I used my own books for the stack! Nannee, The Great Library ATC Swap and Chang E, The Lady of the Moon.)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Open Virtual Studio this Weekend

Hey! I am going to be a part of Quilting Arts' Online Open Studios Event! It takes place on this Saturday and Sunday. Do stop by my blog, here. I will be waiting for you and might even have a door prize for you.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Another Trash Walk Through My Studio

Hi, another Thursday, another Trash Walk.
You asked for photos of the whole pieces, so here you are: Prayers I and Prayers II: These art quilts were both done on cotton cloth; mostly reverse applique, then embellished with either sterling silver or 14K goldfill beads, then glass beads and various bits of reconfigured trash. They are each about 43" x 9" (1.25 x .25m). This week's detail pics come from Prayers I.
Here in the first close-up is a silver colored, plastic wrapper from a printer ink, cut to shape and fit to shape the triangle that I had made, and then sewn on with silver thread.
These lovely stars were cut from black vegetable tray foam with a little polymer clay cookie cutter. It actually only impressed the foam. I had to go back and finish cutting with a craft knife.Next is a row of CD drops.A chip cut from the top of an oatmeal box.Another little glass vial with a teatag saying in it.
A feather shape cut from that silver plastic, this time slightly etched with a dull pencil for texture, and sewn again with silver thread.

A curious couple of lines: the top one has tiny squares of blue packaging held on with one size 11 seed bead each. The bottom one has silver beads bracketing a piece of packaging wire that I wound around a pencil then fanned into shape.More packaging black plastic with silver beads to hold it on.And lastly an applique web with the silver nibs from some pens.

I loved making these. Maybe I will make some more someday.

I have more to show you so stop by next Thursday, O.K.?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A chat with Jane Davies, a trash walk through my studio ...

I just got a lovely email from Jane Davies, author of Collage Journeys. She and I have been chatting a bit about using recycled items in one's work. I told her that I would tell her a bit of what I have done, but I thought that you all might enjoy the conversation too. The photos that I will be telling you about all come from a work entitled Prayers II which I did in 2006.
This view has one of my favorite uses for "reconfigured trash". There are three letter beads caught in what I keep calling bubble packaging - plastic packaging that is blown out to generally conform to the shape of the item inside. There is usually a flat outer rim which is perfect for sewing, or gluing, onto one's art surface. This bubble was around a short camera battery and I must not have liked the color of the torn off cardboard because here I cut a rectangle a little smaller than the outer shape, clipped the corners and turned the fabric under making a reverse applique hole for the bubble to fit into. I sewed it all down with size 11 seed beads.Next there were some polymer clay fish cut from a pancake of bits and pieces left over from another project. That center blue diamond is very carefully stitched foil that once graced a rather nice chocolate. :)

Sorry about the fuzzy focus on this one: between some more reverse applique I sewed little tiny bottles of the chopped up purple plastic of a raisin tub top. What if one could buy little bottles of LOVE from the apothecary? I wondered... These bottles came from stampington.com

Here is more of that purple top cut to fit the applique and blend nicely with some more beads. Above the triangles are more leftover clay buttons. Very marvellous how a bit of faux gold leafing classes them up.

I hope that you can see these well enough. They are water bottle tops over the little world maps that are printed on those fake credit cards they used to send us in the mail.

More chocolate wrappers cut to echo the shapes that I had sewn. Those are little blue birds settling in made of shrink plastic. DID YOU KNOW that #6 plastic (a very brittle plastic often used for bakery and deli foods at our local grocery store) is shrink plastic?? Depending on what you buy at the grocery store, this could be good news.More shrink plastic ... I drew the hearts and borders in gold marker and it kind of bubbled up as I heated/shrank it. Interesting.Here I put in two dollar coins with a shisha stitch and a cancelled USA stamp. The purple cardboard had been another piece of junk mail.And lastly an image from an old Tibetan incense box. In China two fish mean "abundance". Is it the same in Tibet

In Prayers II I put 24K goldfill beads next to plastic beads and real coins next to trash, but cut and framed by cloth, and thread, and bead, it all starts to make sense. Just like prayers.

Did you enjoy this little walk through my studio? Leave me a comment, I'd love to hear what you are doing with your reconfigured trash.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Chang E, The Lady of the Moon is published!

Text Color


I am so pleased to let you know about my latest picture book:
Chang E: the Lady of the Moon
The book is available at:

As a fortuitous treat, the printer is making a special offer good through September 30th.
Go to: http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=542011
Click “Buy” and enter the code ‘LULUBOOK’ at checkout and receive 10% off your purchase!
Void where prohibited.

Chang E is the story of the Chinese Moon Goddess and how she came to live on the moon. Each year at the Autumn Full Moon Festival people in China, Viet Nam and all over the world gather with their families to celebrate the harvest, our children, and being together. When you read the story you will find out why this night is so special to Chang E and her husband, Hou Yi. This year her festival falls on October 3rd in Asia and on October 2nd here in North America.

Chang E is a picture book that I drew for my Asian born children back in 2001 when they were very young. Our adoption group has read this story to the children every year at the end of our own Autumn Full Moon celebration. We too look up at the moon, and imagine.

I have always wanted to share this story. This past year I polished up all of my original drawings and prepared the book for international publication. It is done; the book is ready.

I invite you to curl up with your children on this special night, enjoy the gorgeous colors of this picture book, and whisper your wishes to Chang E.
The book is available at: http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=542011

Please pass this on to anyone else who might enjoy this retelling of the wonderful
Chang E, The Lady of the Moon
and her brave husband, Hou Yi, now, just in time for the Autumn Full Moon Festival.

Oh! And if you love this illustration you can find it on a mug and some other items in my store at http://www.cafepress.com/sunneshop

Yay! O Blessings are everywhere! This is all wonderful.

Happy Day to you too.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Oh. Wow. I have just found a, a, an amazing web-land: http://www.artellaland.com/affiliates/jrox.php?id=1442

I have dial-up. This is gonna take a while. Their site is soooo chuck-a-block full of beautiful downloads, and intriguing classes, and the most lovely attitude about art - about saying "Yes."

So I really reccommend that you go take a look around. Actually, a lot of little - and even huge - downloads are free.

And you can get a membership as an art journalist, a business artist, an image junkie (my words, not theirs) and more and more, and MORE!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Happy Days!!

I tell you: I have some major star allignment going on!

First, I was made the Featured Member Artist on the Maine Crafts Association web page for September. Go take a look: http://mainecrafts.org/2009/08/31/robinsunne-rockport/ Hooray!

Next, I was notified that my work was chosen for inclusion in the upcoming book by Quarry Books entitled 1000 Artisan Textiles. Yay, O Yay! The book is being released next May. I can hardly wait - the book will be a feast of inspiration. Wow. There is more info on the book here, at their website: http://1000artisantextiles.com.

Stay tuned for some happy news about Chang E, The Lady of the Moon, my new picture book. Oh, and if you want to see what Chang E and her husband Hou Yi look like go here to see them: http://www.cafepress.com/sunneshop

May you all be fabulous, and lucky, and have excellent work to do just like me.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Chang E is delayed

Ooooh! Noooo!

I have received my second proof of Chang E. There is a mistake. We are not entirely clear why the revisions that we sent did not complete properly. One of the pages is incorrect. Phooey! It is some combination of a human misunderstanding of a computer program that was problematic and then, we thought, corrected. Oh. >sigh<

It probably doesn't matter. It is just an error to fix. An opportunity to breathe deeply. Find God (Whomever.) Practice my stitches as I enter into the work for my next book. (Yes, the next one is another art/craft How-To book, this one blissfully about stitching, one of my very favorite activities here on Planet Earth.)

I have been sooo on edge, so excited. I really love this Chang E story - I love the way we (the families-by-adoption group) have been telling it to our little crowd of children for years. How sweetly the littles have grown up to be big kids and now have joined in to read the book aloud to the new little kids in our group.

I want you to see it. The colors are so pretty. The heroine so strong, the hero so brave. Qualities I am honored to bring as a gift in this story. And clearly patience and a willingness to see to the details are also gifts from this story. I can do this. Not much more than another week to see this third proof through its process.

Breath. I will sew, wash dishes, what is it - chop wood, carry water. Different chores but the same process: look for blessings in the 'what-is'.

I can do this.