Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Goldilocks Bookmark Project

About a week ago, I found the blog Artsyville by Aimee. She has great "doodles" that she sells on Etsy, and her posts have a lot to do with incorporating her art and creativity into her everyday life as a mom. Obviously a topic of interest to me! I found on her blog a series of what she calls "Creative Explosions" or "crafty experiments." Her cut-and-paste bookmarks immediately caught my eye.

Collage is my first love. I'm a sucker for sitting around cutting pictures and words out of magazines and other paper sources. I love rearranging images and phrases to create something new. I also, like anyone who gets involved in collage for long, have a ridiculous amount of scraps, papers, and ephemera piling up in the areas where I work. For a long time I would hoard images, fearful to use them once and never be able to use them again. I would photocopy everything, even though I was never happy with the results. Now, I've learned to let things go, because there is always plenty more to take their place!

Because of my love of collage and my stash of materials, I decided to make the collaged bookmarks that Aimee demonstrates on her site.

I used a basic white piece of 8-1/2"x11" cardstock, and just glued down all kinds of papers:

Once I cut the bookmarks out, this is what I ended up with:

I liked the look of them, but I was still terribly disappointed at first. Because of the direction I had cut the paper, the bookmarks were only about four inches long--way too small, I thought--and I had forgotten to collage the back to make them reversible! Then I decided that for anyone who sticks a business card or sticky note in her book to hold her place, these bookmarks would be more than adequate. I got over myself.

Then I set out to make another set, larger and two-sided. I didn't cut the paper in half this time, just cut it into five 8-1/2" bookmarks. Here is what I came up with:
(one side of each bookmark)
(the other side of each bookmark)

Again, I was a little disappointed. These bookmarks were way too long, and it made them bend around areas that had thicker scraps of paper.

Perhaps you understand now why I have called this post "The Goldilocks Bookmark Project." One set was too short, one set was too long. Would I manage to come up with one that was "just right"?

I set out a third time to create my bookmarks, actually making them the way Aimee had done it in the first place if I had been paying attention! This time, I used a lot more "ephemera"--tickets, clip art from art magazines made to look like vintage papers, actual vintage papers, scraps of envelopes, text from a French book, that sort of thing. I oriented my collage vertically rather than horizontally, and cut across the center, so that when I cut the individual bookmarks, they came out 5-1/2" long. Here is my final "just right" effort:
(one side of each bookmark)

(the other side of each bookmark)

And then for my grand finale, I took some "arty photos" of my work, as I've been learning from so many of the blogs I've been enjoying lately:

I had so much fun making all three sizes of bookmarks, and sorting through all kinds of bins and folders of papers and other materials. It's a great "fallback" kind of project--something to do "in between times" and, frankly, while I'm watching TV or the girls are playing. Many thanks to Aimee from Artsyville for prompting me to give these bookmarks a try!


Anne said...

The "just right" ones are exactly that. So much of interest to look at -- more than I can say for some of the books they're meant to mark!

aimee said...

hi andria! oh WOW -- these turned out SO cool! i love the materials that you chose, and i also love how you described the activity as a "fallback" kind of project -- that's exactly how i think of it, too, and sometimes i think those can be the most creative kinds of activities because i'm not thinking so hard about how to make things perfect or arranging things in just the right way. this kind of collage just kind of happens in a wonderfully random way. so glad you gave it a try and thanks a load for the mention!

Janet said...

LOVE your bookmarks! Even the short ones and the long ones. I use anything and everything to mark my spot in a book so I doubt that the size would be a problem for me.