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Wow!  What an amazing day! Saturdays are always my favourite days of this event – because by Saturday I’ve had the opportunity to meet just about everyone in the class and the group is really starting to “gel”. This group was larger than either of the last two of Donna’s events that I’ve been to – there are 24 of us in all – so it’s taken a little more time, but what a great group of ladies.  By the end of yesterday pretty much everyone had finished with the painting of the pages, so today it was time to start the stitching .  While a lot of people came with sewing machines, Donna does have 8 machines available for her classes which is fantastic – because that meant that just about everyone in the room had a machine.

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Here I am, hard at work stitching the binding to each page.

 

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Here is the binding process “in progress”

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I decide to keep the stitching on my pages simple so that I would actually have enough time to finish my book. A number of my “classmates” were using decorative stitching on their pages – doing free form circles, leaves, flowers etc – I was more focused on finishing.  Usually when I take classes I very rarely finish my projects because I get too caught up in the details….making it “just so”.  I already had a lot of color in my pages and in my muslin binding plus I’m planning on embellishing the pages as I fill my book – and I’ll be sharing that with you in the weeks to come as I find time to work in the book.

At this point in the book making process I had finished sewing both of my “signatures” and I had finished sewing my wrap.

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Although the actual book-binding was supposed to happen tomorrow – I’m super happy to report that I finished mine completely – and there were two of us that got through it all.  Which is funny because Donna said to me “you’re not usually one of the first ones to finish” ….and it’s true, as I mentioned, I usually don’t finish.

So here are some detail shots.  This is what it looks like all done.  I deviated from the plan by creating a canvas one-piece cover.  I did this by tearing two canvas pieces that were the same size and big enough to go around my wrap and signatures.  I then painted the one canvas with the “sky” and “grass” to go with my altered and painted image on the watercolor paper.  On the image panel itself, you can see that I added a stamped sentiment, stitched on some trim to help “ground” my image, and then stitched around the outer edges.  The second piece of canvas I first stitched ribbon to – I decided that for my book I wanted to create a ribbon closure – I just happen to be partial to having a closure on my journals. I then stiched strips of fabric and trim to it- similar to my signature wrap.  I then put the canvas cover and inner cover together right sides out, and stitched them together.

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Here’s a side view of the “spine” – DJ taught us a neat and easy bookbinding technique incorporating buttons to keep the waxed thread in place.

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Here’s the back – as you can see I decided to stamp an inspirational quote on it – one of Donna’s stamps.

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Here’s what the cover looks like if you full open it up (from the outside)

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Here are a few shots of the inside.  This first one is a bit of a side view.

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In this one you can see the inner lining of the cover as well as the outside of the “wrap”

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Here you can see the inside of the wrap and the first page.

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I had just enough time after I finished my book to walk around the room and look at some of the other projects in progress and then…….our limo arrived to take us to dinner!

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Pretty awesome isn’t it?  That’s just an example of one of the amazing ways that Donna and Bill go out of their way to make these events so fun and memorable.  The restaurant is within easy walking distance of the studio, but they rent a limo to make it more of an experience – so we drive around a little to extend the ride.

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So for the first two nights, dinner was done by Donna’s mom – the last night we go out to a little restaurant that is quaint, and has good food.  We sat outside under a tent that was decorated with sparkling lights once dusk hit.  Here’s the front of the restaurant:

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And here we all are sitting outside under the canopy.  I don’t know if you can see it but there was live band playing.  I pretty much spent the entire evening laughing – such a great group!

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So that’s the end of the day. It’s now 11:10 pm and I’m sitting in my hotel room bed as I’m blogging, and I’m quite frankly looking forward to going to bed.  It’s another early start tomorrow, and  a long day.  We’re at the studio until about 2 pm, and then off to the airport.  I fly out tomorrow at 6:30 pm and arrive at the Toronto International airport around 8:30 pm.  Then it’s about an hour drive home.

I don’t know if I’ll have time to blog tomorrow night but I’ll be back to share some photos of my last day on Monday, if I can’t tomorrow.