Studio Location: Windsor, Colorado
I live and work in Windsor, Colorado, a small town about halfway between Denver and the Wyoming border. It's the kind of place where the main street is actually called "Main Street" and the appearance of a double rainbow once made the front page of the local paper.
History and Inspiration:
I've always considered myself a writer, first and foremost. My Etsy shop grew out of my desire to capture the magic of stories in a way that went beyond words. I'm fascinated by the tales contained within objects, especially old ones--all the hands that must have held a worn map, the moment when someone opened the cover of a book to write her name on the flyleaf, the hours a child spent scrawling figures in the margins of a math primer.
It's rare for me to step into a used bookstore or library book sale knowing exactly what I'm looking for. Instead, I find myself reaching for the volumes with the most worn bindings and yellowing pages. The more a piece has been loved and used, the more special the object I make from it will be.
Tools of the Trade:
Working with paper doesn't require a lot of special tools. Mostly, I use things you'd find in any office. I always keep my trusty cork-backed, metal ruler handy, along with a good pair of scissors, and a bone folder, which is useful beyond simply making sharp creases. I use it to help bond glued surfaces, to rub bubbles out of decoupaged papers, and to age painted surfaces.
Music or Silence:
Ira Flatow is my homeboy. I listen to a lot of NPR while I work and I actually get excited when I wake up on Friday morning and realize it's SciFri day. When I'm not being a news junkie, I turn to audiobooks. I'd pretty much always rather have my nose in a book, so "reading" while getting work done is a huge win.
Rewards of Handmade:
Because my items are made from previously-used materials, I get a lot of satisfaction out of knowing I'm adding to the objects' long history. I'm able to give new life to books that would have likely ended up pulped or tossed in a landfill. I love when my products inspire customers to share memories of their favorites books and authors or remember the stories that captivated them as children. I love it even more when they inspire new storytellers to create their own tales.