Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Mini Quilt Recycled Watercolor Journal

My fifth and final project for Recycled Journal Week began with this mini quilt I picked up at a show some years back:

It's made of wool, and really too small to be anything other than decorative, so I thought it would make a great cover for a little pocket watercolor journal. I went into my painting drawer and found a pad with a few sheets of unused 140 lb. watercolor paper leftover from a painting class I took, and then grabbed some old wrapping paper from the recycle bin:

First I cut my wrapping paper to size as end papers, and then tore the watercolor papers from the pad and trimmed off the preforations:

I then folded everything into signatures:

I didn't want to use the sewing machine for binding the signatures as that would show on the outside of the quilt. I dithered around for about an hour at this point because I didn't have a lot of other options -- and even though about going out to buy some sort of binder clip piece to use -- and then while I was straightening up the sewing room I found some leftover ribbon and decided to use that as the binding.

To do that I first punched two holes in the signatures:

I took two long pieces of the scrap ribbon, threaded them through a tapestry needle, and drew them through the signature holes on both ends:

I then used the needle to work both ends of the ribbons through the mini quilt in the center:

Once I knotted the ribbons and tied them together everything was bound nicely:

I also left enough slack in the ribbon while I was knotting it to allow the pages to stay flat:

The finishing touch was a piece of stiff, heavy cardboard to tuck in the pages, which will support them as I work in the journal:

This project taught me that I can come up with a solution to a problem (just not instantly) and that sticking to my objective is worth a little dithering. Total project time: 4 hours.

This has been a fun week for me. As you may remember I started out with this collection of unused stuff:

Without spending a dime on new materials I turned the stuff (plus an extra calendar) into these six handmade journals:

You can do this too, you know. Look around your home, see what unused junk and paper you have sitting around, and apply some imagination to transform it into your own unique recycled journal.

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