Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Terribly Cold Tuesday

It is really cold outside and I am once again so thankful that I don't have to go out unless I want to. I slept in today and when I awoke and raised the blind in the bathroom, I could see that the creek was frozen all the way across. It is positively (or negatively) arctic out there.

I am planning to stay inside today. If I had a fireplace, there would be a roaring fire and a plush reading chair nearby and that is where I would take up residence for the duration of this cold snap. I made a large pot of pea soup yesterday and I plan to have some for lunch. I just wish I had a bit of sliced ham to make a sandwich to go with it.

Since I don't have a fireplace and I am in the middle of things I will instead stay inside and play. I have begun work on my next book. I've separated the covers from the text block and have chosen a selection of drawings from the text to use as endpapers. I've also made my signatures and put them under a weight to compress them. I just love the color and the title:

I'm leaning toward using the two darkest drawings as the endpapers.

I have been mentally painting some watercolor flowers and planning to get out a piece of watercolor paper and go for it. But right now all my work space is covered with bookbinding materials, so I drew a simple vase of flowers instead. I have been meaning to use a fountain pen to draw with, but have been hesitant because I am finding them to be a little messy. I think it is me and not the pen, however. At any rate, last evening I attempted a small drawing of a vase of flowers using my Lamy Safari pen. For whatever it is worth, here it is:
It is a little messy, but I rather like it. Maybe when I use pen I should try stippling for the darker parts.

I also took a picture of the cutting board the hubster made as a custom order for a Christmas present. It is made of cypress, cherry and black walnut and measures 16" x 22". I think it is absolutely beautiful. I love the light and dark woods together and am sure the recipient will be very pleased with it.

It is not the best picture, but I think you get the idea.

I haven't been feeling well the last few days and think maybe it is from too much coffee. My stomach is on edge. I am going to try cutting back to one mug in the morning and one in the afternoon instead of two or more each. I am hoping I will get through today without that raw feeling.

Meanwhile, I need to get on the treadmill today and then do some work on my latest book. I was wanting to try two needle coptic stitch, but I think I would want to use curved needles and I only have 3 of them. I would need at least four of them, and for a book this size, I should probably use 6 of them. So for now, I am thinking of finishing this book with one needle coptic stitch.

I have all my holiday shopping done now and need to set aside some time for wrapping. We are celebrating our Christmas a week from today so I'd better get busy.

I hope to have something more to share with you tomorrow.



  1. Vicki, It looks like we're in for a long cold spell and that means plenty of inside time to work on our projects. Firt of all, I LOVE your little flower sketch. The lines are very expressive and lively. And the cutting board your husband made is SO beautiful. Whoever gets it is a very lucky person. Keep warm!

  2. Love the book cover too! I just love old books, especially when they have the graphics like this one on it.
    The fountain pens are messy!
    Like your new blog look!

  3. those drawings are a great choice for endpapers, this is going to be a wonderful the special cutting board, too. So far I have orderded some books on booking binding that are wrong so now am waiting for the right Keith Smith one to and learn... right up to your last breath, is true for me...winna

  4. That book cover is wonderful...I so love the graphics on old book covers. Cutting board is very nice. What does he charge for custom work? And could the corners be rounded on the board?

    Your pen/ink drawing is great...did you get the converter for the pen so you can use waterproof ink? If your ink isn't waterproof it will smear/run if you should attempt to watercolor it. For shadows you could try crosshatching. What width is the nib of the pen? Fine works best for crosshatching.

    We're in the mid-60's, about 10 degrees above normal. I live where the winters are relatively mild...a sweatshirt jacket or sometimes heavier jacket is all we need. No boots, no mittens/gloves/mufflers/hats are necessary. We usually get a week or so of very cold weather in Feb...can get down in the teens. That's when I stay indoors next to a log burning fireplace.

  5. Nice sketch Vicki - really lively and fresh. and what a great cover for your new journal :-)

  6. Had a lovely time visiting your blog,the book is going to be wonderful,loved your sketch!

  7. I think it's a great sketch! It seems quick and gestural, both good qualities! I rarely use ink because I usually make a mess of the shading.

    Your husband is talented! I love those cutting boards, even made one back in a college wood shop class, though I have no idea where it ended up!

  8. I LOVE the fountain pen sketch. Very good work.

  9. Great sketch and that is one beautiful book. Hope you're feeling better.