New book out!

Book Art Front Cover

Jumping jacks spread

This time last year I was surrounded by teetering piles of old books, snippets of cut paper and note pads filled with scribbles and ideas. The result is Book Art, my latest work, published by Cico.

As a designer I usually have an idea in my head of what the finished book should look like, and so I have always found it hard to hand over the finished design to someone else. But l needn’t worry, Cico’s books are always stylish, contemporary and well laid out and I’ve never been disappointed. This book, beautifully designed by No Days Off is different from my previous titles, hardback,with a wonderful bright red cloth binding. The photography is by the very talented Caroline Arber, who always takes inspiring pictures and is actually the photographer on my next book (out in February, more of that later!).

I had great fun making up the projects. Working from my studio at home, my son Harvey would come in from school and look at what I was working on, and I am sure he wondered some days if making a shrimp or a mouse out of paper was really work at all!

I have to say the first time I made something, I held the scalpel above the book, about to slice through some pages and it felt very wrong. But I have made my own set of rules. I never cut up a rare book, I seek out tatty and damaged books, the more torn and scribbled on, the better. You don’t even have to use books, some of my favourite projects were made from a John Lewis catalog. As I say in my Book Art introduction, I believe that constructing something unique from the pages opens up the book to create new ideas, new fascination, inviting new discussion, reviving old memories and making new ones.

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Welcome to my blog – Figure of eight!

This has been in planning for months and I am so pleased to be up and running.

Over the last two or three years I have read so many lovely things about my work and looked at pictures of projects made from my books from all over the world and I am really looking forward to connecting up with some of you.

Why Figure of eight? It really stems from an exhibition I had a couple of years ago based on the idea of what goes around comes around. The exhibition consisted of fabric and paper pieces all made using recycled, found and reclaimed materials. Although not all my work is based on up-cycling I do love being able to transform something that was destined for the recycling bin into an item that is useful, usable or purely an object of beauty. The name stuck and I like it! I have been working on ideas for my header. Thought I might have some hand printing then changed my mind at the last minute.

I want to share exciting new projects that I am working on, ideas and things that inspire me and a bit about our move from London to a new life down here on the beautiful Kent coast. Hope you will join me!

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