Make Your Own Archives

Make Your Own


binding.jpgHello, before I sign off for the long Christmas weekend (have fun everyone!), I'd like to introduce a new semi-regular feature: Make Your Own. In it I'll give you information, instructions, ideas, and links for all kinds of book and magazine making. So, let's get started. It may be too late for you to make a book as a Christmas present but maybe if you're spending the week at your parents' house, you'll have some time/be bored enough to give a new project a try.

Here's a thorough and easy to understand article on how to perfect bind a book by hand. Brian Sawyer, a writer and editor for Make and Craft magazines, writes very clearly and includes some photos to help make the project easier.

And, of course, you are welcome to make and send us books. We'd love it.

paper.jpgI have a friend who used to sit around in a storefront on Stanton Street all day and make her own paper. She often stained it with tea to make these nice muted colors. I woke up thinking I'd like to try to make some paper just to see what it's like. I found an easy to follow flickr set of instructions with photos. Follow this woman B. Zedan's instructions and you'll be all set. She also has other tutorials on her flickr site, including how to make a monotype print. Also related, from those crafty kids at Make: Zine, here's how elephant dung paper is made. Siick.

screen.pngMr. Mcginnis and I have some poster ideas we've been kicking around for a while. Last week we got some silk screening stuff at a friend's sidewalk sale and took it as a sign that we should get moving on this project. I've been searching around for some helpful how-tos and found these:

This most thorough Silkscreen How-To in all the world from Fecal Face is good for doing multiple colors in the old school way. Lots of clear photos and description.

Craftgrrl's LiveJournal has a good tutorial for some quick and easy 1-color screen printing. This is a great way to get started.

Artist Shannon Gerard (her website is cute!) gives a thorough and amusing tutorial on Jim Munroe's Blog No Media Kings. With the help of the Virgin Mary and Spiderman, she shows us how to screen posters and t-shirts.

Make:Zine's Bre Pettis and's screenprinting expert Matt Stinchcomb's How to Screenprint T-shirts Weekend Projects podcast gives some helpful advice as well. And it's nice to be able to see them in action.

I am totally addicted to Instructables, a seemingly endless and always updated site of user-uploaded documentation for how to make just about anything imaginable (and then some!). For us print fetishists, there's plenty of entries for making books or using books to make other stuff. I just found one that shows how to make this cool little origami mini book. User ericsnapple's instructions yield a 12-page book without using any cuts or tape or staples. I bet you could vary the size with some fooling around. A lot of work for a large print run but I'd be into making a wee edition of something out of this.


Donovan Beeson posted a very clear and easy tutorial for making a book of envelopes for the Instructables and Etsy Sew Useful contest. Beeson is a maker of books and stationery, lover of vintage papers and admitted postal pervert—he loves everything to do with the mail. While I understand the idea of this, I'm too afraid of the Post Office to properly share his fetish. I do, however, share his appreciation for both the glory of office supplies and those paint chips from hardware stores. The envelope book he makes is beautiful and also a good organizing tool. I may have to make one to keep all my receipts straight. See also Beeson's Etsy store.


journal61.JPGA nice fellow named Hamish MacDonald writes a long, full of info post on the pros and cons of the various methods of publishing a book for No Media Kings website. There is also a ton more useful info in the comments area.

Curiously Crafty has a straightforward how to for making a simple hardcover journal.

A tutorial on bookmaking from Instructables. As usual, lots of helpful hints from the comment gallery.

alma.jpgEver since Mr. Mcginnis and I went to the Booklyn Salon, I've been all inspired to make more handmade stuff. I want to make a couple of rubber stamps for a new project. Instead of using a custom rubber stamp company, I looked around on the internet for some instructions for making my own. Scrapjazz, a scrapbook web forum, has good detailed instructions here. Alma Stoller has a really good rubber stamp carving tutorial over here. She also makes stuff and you can buy her stuff at her ETSY store.

When I was a kid, my friends and I spent a lot of time making these paper fortune tellers. I even have a few good ones from back then in a drawer somewhere. When I'm sitting around, whether at home on the couch or in a meeting or class, I'm always fighting the urge to fidget. I need to be doing something at all times. Sometimes I still make these fortune tellers, or paper footballs, or the thing where you fold a dollar bill into a ring. While browsing around the Instructables website I found instructions for this cool tiny diamond-paged book. It looks complicated and has a ton of folds but the instructions are clear. The fun part is deciding how and what to draw on the little diamond-shaped pages. This book would be a great vehicle for a secret message. If you're still a student, surprise your neighbor by passing them this complicated note.

I was mindlessly flipping channels when I came across this awesome screen printing device on the Home Shopping Network. Although it's marketing seems squarely aimed at soccer moms, I'm very intrigued. Although it kind of looks like a scanner, all it is is a compact screen printing station. What seems to be great about it is that it makes the whole process much less messy as well as minimizing the margin for error. Everything is held into place, the emulsion is in handy fruit roll-up form rather than a liquid - and it has it's own screen dryer. This is really great for someone who doesn't have a lot of space or is intimidated by all the pieces and bottles in the screen printing process. I kind of want this!

for now, this is the only link I can find where to buy it - for $229.00!


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