Friday, November 13

How I make my Fiber Books

Here's the method I've devised to make the Take it Further Fiber Book and the two volumes of Take a Stitch Tuesday stitch sampler.
The Take it Further Fiber Book is my first fiber book ever and this is how I went about making the book.

Using running stitch I mark the 'pages' on the cloth. Each page has two halves or portions , one on the left and one on the right.
The size of the portion where the embroidery stitch is done is 3.2" x 5.75" with a 1/2" space between the two portions (the running stitch done with black thread) . Each page has a line of blanket stitch done around it. The blanket stitch is the means to joining the pages.
Once a sizeable number of 'pages' have been completed they are cut and seperated leaving a small seam allowance of about a quarter inch or so on all four sides beyond the blanket stitch.
For The Take it Further Fiber Book I ironed fusing onto the back of each page so they are quite stiff. I've decided to leave out the fusing in the Take a Stitch Tuesday books because the pages are about an inch or so smaller and since two layers of fabric make-up a page, the pages are fairly stiff.
The blanket stitch along the 1/2" portion between the left and right halves/portions of the page are not joined so that the page can fold.

Corners of pages must be matched and pinned and then the pages need to be joined, sewing and connecting blanket stitches on both pages.The left hand portion of the first page is left and you begin by joining the right hand portion of page 1 with the left hand portion of page 2. Once that's done you join the right hand portion of page 2 with the left hand portion of page 3 and so on.
In doing this you create little pockets. If you find your page is too floppy then you could slip pieces of card paper into the pockets if you want a stiffer page.
In the Take it Further Fiber Book I used black thread to join the pages and every five or six stitches I introduced a clear seed/sugar bead. In the Take a Stitch Tuesday books I'm joining the pages with a clear plastic thread which is as fine as a single strand of hair. Not sure what the name is but it can be used on a sewing machine.

For the cover itself I used a single piece of felt which simply wraps around the book. I edged the cover with blanket stitch and embroidered the front cover and the spine portion of the book.
The left hand portion of the first page is stitched onto the inside of the front cover (visible in picture above) and the right hand portion of the last page is stitched onto the inside of the back cover.
The 'pages' are joined to the cover only on the inside of the front cover and the inside of the back cover. They aren't stitched or connected to the cover on the spine section of the cover.

I hope I've been able to describe the method I employ to create my fiber books clearly for you to give it a try. If there's something confusing or unclear leave a comment and I'll try and sort things out for you.
I've stitched the pages of the first volume of Take a Stitch Tuesday together and I begin the embroidery for the cover this weekend, so next week Volume one will be ready to view.
Have a great weekend.

On a separate note - I've become an affilate of Amazon and Flipkart. You will see the banners on the side bar. Should you wish to shop online I would appreciate it if you could click on the Amazon or Flipkart banners/buttons and make your purchases.Amazon and Flipkart will pay me a small percentage of the value of your transaction without increasing the cost for you by even a cent. Thank you and happy shopping.

54 comments:

Bindhu Unny said...

Hi
I could not visit your blog after the TGDC madness, though at that time I had wanted to be regular reader of Million Little Stitches. Now when I started reading, I got confused. I guess to get a clear idea on fibre book and TAST I've to go to the older posts. And I'm going to do that.

Cheers
Bindhu

La Dolce Vita said...

just found your blog and I love this little book! fabulous!

ArtPropelled said...

Phew that is a lot of work! Your stitching is so even. I imagine the repetative stitching is like doing a meditation. Beautiful, beautiful work!

Hashi said...

Your work is stunning. Thank you for sharing with the world.

virtualquilter said...

Loved the book when I saw it on stitchin fingers, now I know how it is out together, and love your method. Thank you for showing us how to do it.
Judy B

EMBELLISHER said...

Hi Bindu, nice of you to come by and leave a comment. Must stay in touch TGDC seems like ages ago.Hope alls well with you.

La Dolce Vita thank you

Robyn you're right some of the repetitive sort of work is the time to meditate and contemplate.

hello Hashi,thank you for your comment , comments keep me motivated.

Chris said...

Hi Maya, I think this book is such a creative idea. I love the tutorial you put together.

Carlie said...

I just found your blog and I love your stitching book. It is fantastic and very inspiring.

Diana said...

Wonderfully rich and inspiring piece of work. I so enjoyed looking. Am itching to stitch!

Tracey said...

ohhhhhh my goodnes. You are amazing. I envy your patience with such sweet teeny incy wincy stitches. My patience for such things is currently minimal but is a work in progrss. Lovely blog. I will be popping in more often!

jude said...

i love the book idea....

Bethany said...

This is just such an amazing and inspiring piece of work. Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

Varenikje said...

I love your embroidered book! I do have a question, however. This is so confusing to describe: In the first picture, the pages are not sewn together, but there is a blanket stitch around the page (actually 2 pages). In the photo, the top right hand blanket stitch is pink, the lower left hand is light blue and the lower right is light green. It looks like the top left page is going to be orange. And both sides of the page (actually, two pages) have blanket stitch both in picture 1 and 2. Photo 3 shows several of the pages attached to each other, and each of the pages has blanket stitch around it, but I can't figure out how the pages were attached to each other. Thanks for your help!

Kathy P

EMBELLISHER said...

Kathy the consecutive pages ( see picture 5) have been whip stitched together with a clear transparent thread. So if we start at the top you'll see a page with mustard blanket stitch joined to a pink one, the other half of the pink page is attached to one half of a purple page and the other half is attached to a page with green blanket stitch page .....goes on. I hope this clarifies things for you.

EMBELLISHER said...

Thank you Chris.

Carlie thank you,blogs are so inspiring and motivating I find.

Diana what are you stitching?

Thank you Jude, your work inspires me no end. I look forward to your posts on Spirit Cloth everyday.

Bethany thank you.

Silver Sisters said...

Thank you so much for posting the instructions. It is an ingenious way to make a book. And a beautiful book, by the way.
I have visions of embroidered children's books now!
gisele

Joey's Dream Garden said...

Hi!
I love your embroidered book, and to see how you put it all together is wonderful and so useful! I would love to make something like this but I don't think I have the patience. Your little book is a truly lovely work of art.
best wishes
Joey

Crayons said...

Embellisher
This is indeed a delightful entry. Even though I'm not a stitcher, I did wonder about the structure of your books. It seems like precision is the operative word. What a fabulous addition to this universe. Thank you for taking the time to explain it.

Judy Martin said...

Thank you very much for the complete tutorial that you gave out so freely for how to make this book. Cloth books are wonderful because they are so intimate and allow the 'viewer' to hold and touch the cloth and the stitches and proceed through work slowly - never as slowly as it took to create, but slower than just looking at a quilt or painting. I shall share this idea with my art quilting class this Tuesday. Thanks again!

5 Foot Runt said...

Very cool book! I just love it!

EMBELLISHER said...

Gisele I hope you get to turn your visions of childrens books into reality.

Thank you Joey,Caroline and the 5 Foot Runt.

Judy I couldn't agree with you more about the tactile properties of a fiber book, it stimulates the viewer in a totally different manner from a traditional book.

Mithun Jayaram said...

hats off to you!
incredible work!

Megan Laidlaw said...

Um. I really hope you still read this. LOL

I plan on taking this idea and making it into ABC books for my kids. I'm trying to figure out a few things before I start though.

1) The running stitch between the pages, is just to denote the pages, and that area doesn't actually connect to anything when finally put together, does it? Does it just kind of fold into itself later on, or do the centers keep popping out? Basically, should I plan on just stitching them to the spine?

2) What fabric did you use for the pages to make it not too flimsy? I was thinking of using a high quality muslin for my kids, but I'm just curious as to what fabrics other people use.

Sorry if I'm annoying. I'm a self-taught sewer, and am still in the process of figuring out what I can and do with fabric and thread. lol

madeleine said...

I love books of any kind, especially the tactile onces,
thank you EMBELLISHER for doing this so clear, I can make paper books, guess it is on the same principal.
Hope you don't mind, I will make a book like yours and write it out for my students, as an alternative or suppliment to their class project
Happy holidays
Madeleine

Gumbo Lily said...

The books are a work of art in themselves and a practical work book as well.

Varenikje said...

Okay, I have looked at this post a number of times and I am still not understanding how the fronts of the pages are attached to the backs of the pages. It looks like there are 2 colors of blanket stitch running along the outer edges of all of the pages. How do you do that? Or are they somehow sewn together? I understand that you leave the book binding edge open. But the other edges of the pages, I don't get. Sorry!

Kimberly Simpson said...

Amazing idea and workmanship!

Angelica Mountains said...

Very beautiful. www.stitchesstories.wordpress.com

Anonymous said...

Love this blog!! Do you have a newsletter? Lissag123@verizon.net. Please sign me up if you do!

Lynda pinfold said...

Wow how fantastic is that! definitely a project I want to do :-) <3

Lynda pinfold said...

Wow what a fantastic idea! definitely a project I want to try :-) <3

Anonymous said...

I think this is amazing! Your fiber books are wonderful!

Bonny Lowe said...

Is there a way to adapt this pattern so I can use many old embroidered pieces that my grandmothers made? I have dresser scarves, pillowcases, doilies, etc.

maya matthew said...

Hello Bonny, I've been giving your comment some thought and I've formulated an alternate method but I'll have to create a tutorial.
One thing you'll have to do is cut or re size some of the dresser scarves, pillowcases etc so that the 'pages' of your fiber book are more or less of the same size.
let me work on the tutorial, I hope to have it up soon.Pop in from time to time and I'll make a note to get in touch with you when I post the tutorial.
Thanks for visiting.

Nena Magalhaes said...

Olá!
Que idéia maravilhosa,parabéns.
Bjo,Nena

Lisa Greenbow said...

I do watercolor journals. I think this is a fantastic take on journaling. I have dabbled in embroidery. This book is and inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing.

Elaine said...

This is great. Please can you tell me what fabric you have used to stitch onto. Thanks (Also look forward to seeing Bonny's tutorial as would like to use some of my son's baby grows).

Laricruz said...

Hello Maya! I´m not sure I understood how you cut the pages and sew them together. Can you explain that to me? It´s a beautiful book!
Congrats!

Anonymous said...

Picture #2. Reverse Butthole Bar. Awesome.

WOOLA OOPS said...

Very pretty ! I love it ! :)

maggiegracecreates said...

I came here from a facebook link and LOVE this tutorial - not I have a much better idea of how to make my pages --- I've wanted to do a small tactile sampler book for a long time, but was so unsure of HOW. thank you. I have pinned this to my journals tab --hope that's ok with you

Pedaço de mim said...

Hi!
I've found your blog because a friend posted in Facebook. Awesome that embroidery book. Thanks so much for sharing.
Cheers from Brasil,

Chetan Haria said...

i really liked ur fibre book but could u kindly post the tutorial i too do embroidery work i hv done on bedsheet, tablecover, dresses, etc but i feel like learning more n more about embroidery thank u kindly let me know when u post tutorial for fibre book

Anonymous said...

In image 5 opposite the bullion stitches what is the stitch please? I've tried to work it out-not sure if it's a type of Cretan stitch or a type of herringbone. From the image it is a little hard to decipher.
Love it all thank you for sharing
Anne in New Zealand

maya matthew said...

Hi Anne,
You're right it's a variation of the Cretan stitch. it's the Half Cretan.
Thank you for visiting.

Pearl DeCew said...

Thanks for sharing. When I was a young girl, (I'm 60 now), I embroidered swirls and swirls on a piece of fabric and used it to cover a footstool I had. So many people made fun of me. How I loved embroidering. Kinda of dropped the creativity part but continued to stay with the stitches as formerly taught.I cannot wait to get crazy. Your work inspires me.

Ирина Щербакова said...

Потрясающе!!!
Спасибо за идею! Это мало того что красиво, но и очень удобно!

June Gregory said...

I love these books. My team and I have been doing something on a much smaller scale with our Young Embroiderers in Muxton near Telford in Shropshire, for the last couple of years. it is a great way to teach the children how to change the appearance of the stitch from the basic start. Once the work is complete for each of them we will assemble them by stitching pages together we have used medium weight calico and we are planning to do a fringed edge with decorative stitches about 1/4" away from the fringing.

Thank you so much for showing us this wonderful piece of inspiration. I will show them your work at our next session in November.

Very best wishes
June Gregory

Baye said...

Love me some serious inspiration! This is ART that makes me wish I had much more time to create.

Baye said...

I don't see a link to follow you by email which would be great. Am I missing it?

Cloudy Stitches said...

This is so inspiring! I found you on pinterest
Thankyou

Dianne Ayers said...

What a wonderful design, thanks so much for sharing...just found you on Pinterest...I will be looking out for you now!

Jodi said...

I am new to crazy quilting and embroidery and I just found your site with book. I have a few questions, did you make the pages using muslin? and did you use some interfacing on the back of each page?

When you joined the pages together how did you do this? I am assuming you folded over the seam allowance but then what did you do to join via the blanket stitch?

Thank you and I am in awe of your work.

Jodi

Deidre Eyles said...

Your wee books are adorable!! So much time and attention to detail! They are really lovely!

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