Welcome to my Book Arts site. Please feel free check out the information pages and tutorials. Also, if you find any of the information useful, please drop me a note (jackie at tjbookarts dot com) and let me know.


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January 9, 2014

In a holding pattern…

Filed under: Morning Musings — jackie @ 11:36 am

Thank you for visiting TJBookarts.

I hope you enjoy poking around the site and that you find something useful here.

I am currently not posting or updating the site but have plans to in the future. I do monitor the site and would appreciate any feedback or notices about issues with the site or broken links.

If you have questions about bookbinding or the book arts you can visit The Book Arts Forum

You can find information about the Chameleon Notebooks on my new site.

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February 11, 2010

Time flies…

Filed under: Giveaway — jackie @ 6:40 pm

Good evening dear readers…

I am surprised at how fast the days fly by. Alot has happened here in the southland since I last posted. We got more snow in our area than we have in about 20 years. Normally we get an inch or two or none. A week ago we got nine inches then a week later we got four and yesterday we got about a half an inch. Crazy stuff this weather. I understand you folks to the south of us will be getting some of this white stuff too.

I wanted to show you the gift I made for the winner of my blog giveaway Margaret over in the United Kingdom. It is a letter writing folder. I wanted to make one as a prototype. Below is a photo of the folder closed.

This is the folder open.

It took me a while to figure out how I wanted to set it up. I was able to recycle one of those zippered bags that new sheet sets come in by cutting it up and using the zipper and part of the plastic for the stamp pocket.

I hope everyone stays warm and dry this crazy winter season.

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January 7, 2010

Baby steps…

Filed under: Morning Musings — jackie @ 11:36 am

Good morning readers.

It’s unusually cold here in the southland. We’ve had near freezing weather for over a week and they are predicting snow for this evening into tomorrow morning. Thank goodness I do not have to go out anywhere first thing. It gets crazy on the roads around here with only the slightest hint of snow or ice.

This morning I ran out to the mailbox and deposited some necessary mail as well as a few post cards to be picked up. The postcards are the start of my odyssey into writing this year. Baby steps…it felt good.

I didn’t get to do any baking prior to Christmas this year so for the past week or so I’ve been a baking fiend. Wheat bread, rye bread, gingerbread cookies, granola, pizza. I do giveaway half of everything I bake so I don’t have eat it all myself. :)

Sorry about the lack of book content lately. I promise to have some soon. I’ve been working on a few projects that I hope to finish this weekend so I’ll have photos to post.

I hope everyone has a great day.

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January 6, 2010

And the winner is…

Filed under: Giveaway — jackie @ 8:17 pm


My lovely assistant pulled her name out of the collander for the giveaway. Margaret will be the recipient of a special project that I am working on that will hopefully inspire her to write more in the coming year.
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The new year…settling in…

Filed under: Giveaway, Morning Musings, Ten A Week — jackie @ 10:22 am

Good morning readers…

Now that I’m out of school my mind is swirling with thoughts and ideas about possible future projects. My biggest problem is settling in, choosing a project and starting. Also, my studio is a wreck and desperately needs cleaning and reorganizing but I don’t want to wait until it’s in order to start a new project.

So, how do you settle in and start a project?

One thing I want to do is start selling more books this year and am trying to decide whether or not I want to put them on Etsy or start a store here on the site. I would love to hear your opinions.

I’m also thinking about reviving my “Ten a week” project. Some of you may remember it started out as a ten a day project and quickly went to ten a week and then died out. Apparently I was suffering from a bad case of lack of motivation. “They” say that it takes 21 days to build a new habit. I believe it. So…for the next 21 days or 3 weeks I’ll be making ten or more things each week. I’ll report on my progress each Sunday morning. Wish me luck.

Just a reminder…entry into the new years giveaway ends this evening. Don’t miss out on a chance to get a cool writing inspired prize.

I hope everyone has a great day!

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January 3, 2010

New years giveaway and writing desks…

Filed under: Writing, blather — jackie @ 3:54 pm

Hello dear readers…

The other day we discussed places to write. Today I’d like to talk about desks.

I have several desks. One is an old drop front desk that I bought at an antique market about 15 or so years back. It was in fairly good shape but I had my Dad fixed it up for me by adding new cubbies and drawers inside as well as fixing a few other little items on it that were broken or missing.

My Dad also made me a small version of a Shaker Lap Desk. I wanted something that could hold my stationary, stamps and pens.

I also have a standup desk that my Dad made (are you sensing a trend here?) from an old post office desk. It’s where I keep my computer and other assorted paper messes and where I an typing this from right now. It’s hard to see in the photo but those are little cubbies along the backboard and there’s an ink bottle holder on the right side. The desk didn’t originnally have the shelf on the bottom it was added to hold my CPU and a printer.

Note…my desk unfortunately looks like a paper shredder yaked on it these days. It’s time to do a little excavating.

I’m extending the New Years drawing out until this Weds. evening (the 6th) so leave me a comment telling me where and when you like to write for a chance to win a writing themed prize.

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January 1, 2010

Where do you like to write?

Filed under: Correspondence, Giveaway, Inspiration, Morning Musings — jackie @ 8:57 am

Happy New Year dear readers!

I hope everyone had a fun and safe celebration. Mine was spent relaxing with family.

I don’t know about you but I’m not too fond of standing in line at the post office just to purchase stamps. I prefer to buy my postage for shipping packages online or at one of the kiosks within the post office. Also, there’s no guarantee that they will have any of the decorative stamps that I want.

Recently, I decided to try ordering some stamps online. It was actually a pretty nice experience. I could choose from a large selection of designs, purchase with a credit card, pay a very minimal shipping charge and they showed up in my mailbox two days later. I love to mix and match stamps on my letters so I’ll buy a variety of different stamps in varying amounts. I almost always add too much postage to my letters but it’s ok because I am personalizing my correspondence. Alexandra Stoddard taught me to do this in her book Gift of a Letter .

Years ago when I wrote letters on a regular basis I would write early in the morning before I went to work. I would sit at my kitchen table with a cup of coffee and my stationary and pens and write letters to friends near and far.

Where do you write? When do you write?

I mentioned the other day that I was going to have a little giveaway for the new year.  Post a comment here and tell me where and when you like to write.  I’ll put your name in a hat for a special little prize and I’ll pick one this coming Sunday evening.

I hope everyone has a great day.

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December 29, 2009

Write…the preparation phase part two…

Filed under: Inspiration, Morning Musings, stationary — jackie @ 12:09 pm

Good morning readers…

So…I’ve picked my pens, still need to decide on my basic ink color (possibly dark blue) now it’s time to decide on the type of paper I want to use. Paper can be as simple as a lined pad from the stationery section of the grocery store or as fancy as specially monogramed paper from a fine stationery store.

Paper is definately a personal choice. Me? For general correspondence I love Crane’s paper. I’ve been using it for many years. It’s 100% cotton, has a nice smooth finish, comes in many colors and styles and fountain pens write like a dream on it. It’s not too horribly expensive. I think I’ve paid between about $8.00 for a set of 25 plain notecards and I think a box of paper without envelopes is between $12 and $18.

For a more cost effective stationery, I like to buy various 8.5″x11″ papers from our local business paper supplier. They have a lovely paper called Via natural that has a nice smooth writing surface. It’s fun to setup and print my own letterhead on them using the Inkjet printer. I also make my own cards out of art papers or card stock sheets cut in half and folded.  I glue pretty photos to the front or sometimes draw, paint or collage on then.

For friends or family, and even strangers, it’s sometimes fun to send decorated mail. I recently purchased a book called Good Mail Day: A Primer for Making Eye-Popping Postal Art. It’s definately a fun book to look at and a good source of ideas for your own decorated letters and envelopes.

For those of you that write letters. What type of papers do you like to use?

I’m thinking about having a little New Years’ giveaway here on the blog. It will be writing related. Please check back during the week for more details.

I hope everyone has a great day.

• • •

December 28, 2009

Write…the preparation phase…

Filed under: Morning Musings, stationary, stuff to buy — jackie @ 9:32 am

Good morning readers.

I spent a little time yesterday reading about writing and writers. Afterward I dug around in my stationery box looking to see what I had left in there and concluded that a trip to the stationary store and the post office for stamps was in order. I also pulled out the pen box and dusted off an old favorite fountain pen, checked my ink supply and also decided that I needed some new colors of ink so I put ink on my stationary store list too.

My list so far…stamps…check…paper…check…ink….check…new fountain pen…double check! My best friend Holly is purchasing me a new pen for a combo graduation/Christmas present and I am really stoked about it. I’ve had my eye on a Namiki Falcon for some time now but could never justify getting another pen. Let’s just say that I have “several” in my clollection.

If you’re interested in getting a fine writing instrument then there is no better choice than a good fountain pen. Here’s some good information about care and selection of fountain pens from the DIY Planner site.

Once I get my supplies I’ll need something to put them in for easy access and storage. Alexandra Stoddard writes in her book Gift of A Letter that you should always carry a pen, a few note cards, envelopes and stamps with you so that you can write while you are waiting in the Dr’s office, on the bus, in a cab or anywhere else that you may be waiting or have a little down time. 

I’m thinking about making a leather wallet to hold my supplies in. There are some interesting examples of leather stationery wallets online.  Most of them are zippered folios. I’m thinking more along the lines of something folded. Perhaps based off of my Chameleons. Once I figure out the design I’ll share it with you in case anyone would like to make one of their own.

I hope everyone has a wonderful day.

• • •

December 27, 2009

Fast approaching New Year…

Filed under: Holidays, Morning Musings, blather — jackie @ 11:07 am

Good morning readers.

I have finally recovered from the pre holiday madness that ensues at this time every year and am looking towards the start of 2010. Like last year, I have decided to set an “intention” for the year instead of the traditional resolutions. Unlike resolutions, intentions don’t make you feel guilty if you break them within the first week after the new year. Intentions are always good and if nothing else you always know how to find the way to hell ( * ).

For your reading pleasure, I did a Google search on “New Year’s intentions”. I came up with this article, this blog and one more.

This year my intention is “write”. Although I love the immediacy of email, blogs and Facebook, (I’m not a Twitterer yet) there is something so enjoyable and satisfying about sending and recieving a handwritten note or letter. Not so long ago I used to send handwritten mail all the time. I have tons of decorative postage stamps left over from this time. I will no doubt have to add a few extra stamps with them on the envelopes as the cost of postage has gone up considerably. For inspiration and to get me started I will be pulling out my copy of Alexandra Stoddards book Gift of a Letter: Giving the Gift of Ourselves– Add Richness and Grace to Your Life Through the Art of Letter-writing this afternoon and will read it over for the hundreth or so time with a hot cup of tea and a sweet kitty in my lap.

So…what’s your intention?

Obligatory book content… While searching for information on the technique of using wire mesh and polymer clay to create book covers I came across this old blog belonging to artist Eva Buchala that has some wonderful examples of polymer clay journal covers. You can find more great book examples as well as a link to her new blog on her website.

I hope everyone has a wonderful and relaxing Sunday afternoon.

(* re.: that old saying “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”.)

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