Saturday, December 24, 2011

tattered beginnings

cutter cloth. there's nothing quite like it. soft. delicate. weathered and worn. so much history whispers from the depth of stitches and the woven threads. stories humble and grand...sad and joyous! nothing else churns the creative ocean quite like cutter cloth. some are folded neatly on shelves where they whisper quietly night and day. others are sliced into pieces and woven into other cloths to create new, yet tattered beginnings, both grand and diminutive in scale.

a thought, whispered quietly into my patient ear, has begun to manifest. the idea: to cut stars, hearts, moons and other shapes from cutter cloth scraps and incorporate them into larger cloths as dimensional applique.  now, to find the time to allow these larger cloths to coalesce...

as you can see, the snows have all but melted away now as warmer weather creeps silently in to steal any lingering dreams of a white holiday tomorrow... at least the lights are still prettily lighting up the dark night!

and what to do with so many of these old book blocks that are beginning to pile up? in my bookbinding journeys (which have not appeared much in this particular blog...yet), i tend to deconstruct and re-use old books, much as i do old cloth. book boards are stripped, recovered, collaged, or otherwise redesigned and given new life. individual pages are frequently harvested and re-purposed...

into new manifestations such as paper wreaths...

...paper flowers, amongst other things...

and you can only tie up and display so many book blocks before your home begins to look like an old, misdirected book shop...

so, what to do with so many book blocks? right now, i am simply quietly waiting and listening for them to begin to whisper... but i have faith that their stories will soon emerge.



  1. Old fabric and old books, both so inspirational!

  2. yes...two of my favorite things in the world!

  3. Your home looks so beautiful Joe....I havent heard of cutter blocks before, but I do love the look of them. Where did you come by these, they look so old and pre-loved.
    Your book blocks all tied together have a great appeal. I hope we get to see some of your book binding.

    Merry Christmas to you today over there in son is living in the USA at the moment, so my thoughts are very much with him and my American friends.

    Wishing you the joy and love you so deserve.

    Jacky xox

  4. cutter cloths (a.k.a. cutter quilts) are vintage cloths that have been deemed to have outlived their usefulness and become "too tattered and worn" to be functional any longer. they are usually tossed out or given to charity shops. i've purchased them for years and re-purposed them into other arts and crafts. . .or folded and draped them for decor in the house. sometimes they've been reworked into 3d critters, used as background cloth in new creations, and now cut into applique pieces, amongst a host of other creations. . . cutter cloth is one of my favorite vintage cloths to work with!

  5. Excellent Posting Good Job. By Regards web to print And printing workflow

  6. Merry Christmas Joe....I love your paper creations. A wonderful way to use the inside of those old books!

    AND!!! Love your idea.....'to cut stars, hearts, moons and other shapes from cutter cloth scraps and incorporate them into larger cloths as dimensional applique'...Fabulous!!!This sounds like a 'must do' for 2012.