Growlygracepress's Blog

on the road to exquisite
February 11, 2019, 9:20 am
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When I think of the books I want to make I think about ‘exquisite’.

A dictionary definition states that ‘exquisite : marked by flawless craftsmanship or by beautiful, ingenious, delicate, or elaborate execution.

This is a good enough starting point and allows me to progress to the main event ‘how will I know that I have created an object that is ‘exquisite’ and then the devil is in the detail. I am not on the flawless craftsmanship bus.

I love watching the property porn programmes on the telly when the people want the house with the two bathrooms, four bedrooms, big garden, prime location and loads and loads of ‘charm’ and they have a totally unrealistic budget. They can have it all but they need to spend at least £50,000 more and settle for outside there prefered location. Maybe in an up and coming area.

I am not a delicate woman. I don’t have a delicate bone in my body. I am a bit roughty toughty, a bit nippy sweety and I am a bit confrontational. But I have my truths and principles and I’ll but up with a lot of shit before I go in to ‘truth mode’.

I am not a beautiful woman but I understand what ‘beauty’ it means when I handle the very best materials, pigments, gold leaf and tools.

So I am going to busk the craftsmanship, trust the suppliers, practice the gold tooling, continue investigating cutting dies, stick with account book binding and make it small. Keeping material costs down and make small exquisite books.

The work room as Identified Patient.
February 7, 2019, 10:49 am
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‘Identified patient, or “IP“, is a term used in a clinical setting to describe the person in a dysfunctional family who has been unconsciously selected to act out the family’s inner conflicts as a diversion. This person, often a child, is “the split-off carrier of a breakdown in the entire family system,” which may be a transgenerational disturbance or trauma.[1]

The term is also used in the context of organizational management, in circumstances where an individual becomes the carrier of a group problem’

So I pressed ‘publish’ and went in to the room and started to move out the piles of equipment and materials and it hit me ‘what if the ‘room’ is my ‘IP’

If I am being true to myself and my values surely I should raise my game as it were and remove all the obstacles that are preventing me from achieving my goals. Because I have ‘checked’ and my want to return to bookbinding is sincere and true. So all that I need to do is make it happen. No magical wand just clear out the space and get lose the ‘stuff’ that I have decided is holding me back.

Just do it.

the good enough work bench
February 7, 2019, 10:04 am
Filed under: Uncategorized


This is one of these posts were I am talking to myself and just posting to say Hello and update on my progress.

I am committed to returning to bookbinding and in producing books that people will want to buy. If you bind it, make it exquisite, make it relevant at a price point that people can ‘do’, in a market place that you have total control (not a craft shop) then surely success will follow. I need ‘sucess’ because that pays for materials. I am not keeping a score and I will make books that give me pleasure. If people want to buy them then that’s even better.

Under the cover of ‘not doing much bookbinding these days’ I trashed my work area and delayed putting it back together. I put in new floor coverings, I bought new storage and best of all I decided to repaint the room all to put off and delay the inevitable. The day would come when I have a functioning work area, all the materials in place, a plan to make ‘magical books’  that time when all around you is perfect and your faced with a bench and a to-do list.

So my work area is today half painted, filled with boxes and crates and cupboards that are dumping grounds for equipment.

So it’s declaration time.

I will clear the area full of boxes and crates.

I will identify all the equipment I want to keep and put the rest on eBay.

I will finish painting the room and make it better. (I have walls that are half deep blue and half white when I say white I mean a million tons of undercoat and primer that I had to ‘knock’ out the blue with never use ‘signature’ colour paints in a whole room the cost of under coating it will bankrupt you. Rooms are white and magnolia for a reason.

I am going to make a significant move in this direction today.