Washi Tape Journals with Ladder Back Coptic Stitch

They’re back! In 2015 I had the privilege of having my handmade journals included in Charlotte River’s book Little Book of Book Making: Timeless Techniques and Fresh Ideas for Beautiful Handmade Books. Doubly cool was that one of my journals was featured prominently on the cover of the Spanish-language edition called Cómo hacer tus propios…read more

Unlined Journals with Marbled Covers and French Link Stitch Binding

If you look back on my Indigo and Gold Branches French Link Stitch Journal post (that’s the journal pictured below in the middle) you’ll notice the beautiful blue, green, gold and black marbled paper that I used on the inside end pages. I can’t pretend to have some kind of top-secret source for that gorgeous…read more

Shimmering Hand Painted Fish Journal

Many years ago, one of my favorite types of books to make were hand-painted ones, but with the discovery of Japanese Chiyogami paper, I got away from that for a while, but now that I have the amazing Glowforge laser cutter, I’m back at the hand-painting game! This fish journal is a great example of…read more

Teflon Folders vs Bone Folders – which one is better for bookbinding?

I’m pleased to announce I have a limited number of teflon folders available for sale in my online shop at RuthBleakley.etsy.com. Read on for more information about what makes these bookbinding tools so wonderful and different from regular bone folders. What is a Teflon folder, anyway? Well, a traditional bone folder is a thin stick…read more

Shibori Tie Dye Class with Jane Callender at Aya Fiber Studio

To celebrate my 33rd birthday on March 22nd, I made a special week-long trip to Aya Fiber Studio in Stuart, Florida to learn stitched Shibori tie dye from world-renowned fiber artist and author, Jane “Cali” Callender. Her book “Stitched Shibori”  is not only gorgeous to look at; it also provides lots of practical instruction about…read more

Honeybee Journals Make a Great Gift for Beekeepers

You can buy this bee journal in my online shop 166 pages, unlined, lays flat when opened I created this journal in honor of one of our most important pollinators – bees! Did you know more than $15 billion a year in U.S. crops are pollinated by bees, including apples, berries, cantaloupes, cucumbers, alfalfa, and…read more

Book Cloth Workshop in Asheville and Cape Cod Shibori Journals

Are you like me? Do you have a stash of beautiful fabric that you buy “just because” or say “I’ll make something out of this someday!” – me too…and I don’t even sew! Haha. When I saw the class, “Making Book Cloth”, being offered last fall at Asheville Bookworks I was intrigued…and I thought, “FINALLY…read more

French Link Journals with Blue Indigo and Gold Branches

I’ve loved the French Link Stitch ever since I first learned about it in a college bookbinding course. It’s very old, and traditionally it’s used on the INSIDE of a hardcover book, the interlocking stitches were thought to make the text block sturdier than simple straight stitches across the signatures. With exposed bindings like the…read more

Honeybee and Daisy French Link Stitch Journals

My love affair with my Glowforge laser cutter continues with these beautiful hand painted nature journals featuring the very pretty and intricate French Link Stitch Binding. The first step for these journals was engraving the covers using a super-hot laser beam to actually burn the black lines of the design into the acid-free bookboard. (You…read more

What is that weird looking monkey? It’s a Koboldmaki!

What in the world is that? Some kind of weird monkey with a human face? I had no idea either, in fact I saved this image as “Weird Monkey.tif” on my computer until some top-notch google sleuthery turned up that this thing is called a Koboldmaki! That’s right! It’s real! Not only that, this little…read more

Bookbinding Tutorial Single Curved Needle Chain Stitch Binding

It’s tutorial Tuesday! I am sharing great bookbinding tutorials I’ve found around the web on Tuesdays – today’s tutorial is about a very popular but tricky style called chain stitch (also known as coptic stitch). This step by step tutorial by Shelly at Cat-Sidh has tons of photos and detailed directions though – click on the…read more

Rocky Mountain Travel Journal

I made this book specially for a friend who went traveling around the national parks out in the West and wanted to document her trip. I wanted a woodsy feel so I went with raw book board – I also did a little hand-drawn woodgrain pattern on the inside with black and gold pen. The…read more

Bookbinding Tutorial Long-stitch Binding

It’s tutorial Tuesday! I am sharing great bookbinding tutorials I’ve found around the web on Tuesdays – today’s tutorial is about long stitch binding and was created by Sarah at the blog Are you Flowin’ – it shows you how you can use all different types of paper that you have been hoarding to make a…read more

Holiday Craft Shows for 2012

Hi all! Here’s a list of my Holiday Craft Shows for Ruth Bleakley’s Handmade Journals and Stationery (plus my alter ego Concertina Press!) MBL Holiday Bazaar Thursday, November 29, 2012 10-4 Swope Building – Upstairs 5 North Street, Woods Hole, MA free admission Come to the charming village of Woods Hole, Thursday, November 29 from 10 –…read more

Part 6 of A Collaborative Artist’s Book With My Friend Chelsea Clarke

This post is the last of a six-part series detailing the assembly of a collaborative book between myself and my friend Chelsea, a talented illustrator as well as print and fiber artist (start at Part 1 here)! What a wonderful project – It got me doing things I don’t normally do (like making paper lichens) and Chelsea got…read more

Sneak Peek – Tiny Handmade Book Christmas Tree Ornaments

*UPDATE – I made about 40 and sold out! You might have to wait until next Christmas season to get them, or you can check my etsy shop* – I’ve been working on these adorable little book Christmas tree ornaments for the craft fairs I have coming up this week – we’ll see how they…read more

Part 5 of A Collaborative Artist’s Book With My Friend Chelsea Clarke

This post is the fifth of a six-part series detailing the assembly of a collaborative book between myself and my friend Chelsea, a talented illustrator as well as print and fiber artist (start at Part 1 here)! If you want to make sure you catch all the steps, you can subscribe via email, or RSS feed. (or just…read more

Part 4 of A Collaborative Artist’s Book With My Friend Chelsea Clarke

This post is the fourth of a six-part series detailing the assembly of a collaborative book between myself and my friend Chelsea, a talented illustrator as well as print and fiber artist (start at Part 1 here)! If you want to make sure you catch all the steps, you can subscribe via email, or RSS feed. (or just…read more

Part 3 of A Collaborative Artist’s Book With My Friend Chelsea Clarke

This post is the third of a six-part series detailing the assembly of a collaborative book between myself and my friend Chelsea, a talented illustrator as well as print and fiber artist (start at Part 1 here)! If you want to make sure you catch all the steps, you can subscribe via email, or RSS feed. (or just…read more