Rags to Riches is designed especially to share handmade books, journals and paper art. The objects on this blog are made totally of recycled materials or discared paper, and cardboard. Please feel free to comment on any of my postings. I would love to hear from you.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Three months of planning and a year of work has finally gone on display today. The opening for the 'Rags to Riches Handmade Books' Display was this afternoon. Over sixty guests attended. The cabinet which normally would be used to display library collections is now bursting at the seams with our handmade books. The variety of colours and materials brilliantly blends together. All different shapes and forms of books we have been making since the beginning of 2008 are now together in one place. I am so pleased with how it looks. Full, overlapping and crushed together as I pictured it in my mind beforehand.

Kumi Suzuki is showing off our handywork.

A red section of the display.

Dennis Kishere introduced the University Librarian Cathrine Harboe-Ree. Cathrine said that taking part in creating some of this work was a great deal of fun and most satisfying. She called us a gleaning group and said the name Rags to Riches is very well suited for the display.

Picture of us infront of the display cabinet, while Cathrine was busy inspecting her gift, the Librarian book - see previous posting on this blog.

All guests listening to Cathrine's speech.

Guests crowding to view the display.
Rags to Riches Handmade Books Display is showing at Matheson Library Music & Multimedia foyer Monash University Clayton Campus during library opening hours.


Saturday, March 28, 2009


The Display is next Tuesday March the 31st. I have finally finished a gift for the university librarian for when she comes and opens the Display for us. I made her a concertina style book with pockets. I filled posckets with interesing goodies. I hope she will like it.

Inside the pockets from left to right: bone folder, sewing kit, matches, measuring gauge and menify glass, hand painted button, secret lettle book, scissors and pencil.

I just added the new background on my blog for fun. Hope you like it?


Thursday, March 19, 2009


Okay, finally I have managed to uploaded these photos into a group of 2 x 2, wow, it's not easy!!!
Anyway, lets get on with the blog.
These are two of my handmade books. Both of these books were bind using Coptic stitch binding. I used book cloth for the cover for the one on the left. Putting window on the cover was quite challenging, but it gives a lot of potential to insert pictures, letters or other interesting motives in the window. The red and yellow book came from a tea box El Arosa Tea. I picked it up from a waste paper basket at the Coptic Church in Cairo when I visited there last year.

I made these books for presents. The redwork book was for Georgina's last birthday. I did her initial in redwork embroidery and Coptic stitch binding.
The book Ine's of My Soul was for the university librarian. The dust jacket came from a book of that title. She had since read the book. This book was also used Coptic stitch binding.


Sunday, March 15, 2009


A treasure to discovered this journal cover to use as covers for these little books. The signatures papers were recycled also. I am happy with how they turned out at the end.

Set of three little books with watermelon, pomegranate and orange covers.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Steve Langan saved this red dust jacket for a long time. When he knew that I use dust jacket for handmade books, he gave it to me. I then made it into a book and given it back to him. He just loved how it turned out and couldn't bring himself to write on it. I have borrowed it from him to enter it in an exhibition we are having on March 31.

Graham Harrison's book. Graham's book made from a cover of The Journal of History of Idea. Before we send journals to the binder we removed the covers and some of the covers are very beautiful like this one. This book was bound using Coptic stitch binding and recycled photo copy papers for signatures.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Concertina Book

This is a Concertina style book with pockets. I made it for DH Father's Day gift. It contains old coin, measuring tap, safety pin and a husband of a sewer must have a sewing kit. It is a cute little book for HIS desk

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Japanese Journal

This is my first book I ever made. The style is called Accordion binding. The cover paper was from Japanese book box. I cut it up to size and stitched and glue on the the signatures (inside pages). The buttons are hand painted from Japan.

This is the back cover of the book above.