Saturday, October 22, 2011

The Dahlia Garden

After I left the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers on Thursday I took a left and stopped by to take some pictures of the The Dahlia Garden before biking home. When I was there last month the dahlias were taller than I am. They've since been cut back and some are dying but they're still gorgeous and the flowers that are in bloom are unbelievably vibrant and colorful. A selection of photos from my visit are below.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers

Today was my day off and I decided to bike up to the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers-- it's one of my favorite places in The City. In art school I used to get scolded in critiques for taking pictures of flowers but I just can't help myself. Below is a sample of what came out of today's photo excursion.

My camera lens fogged up as soon as I entered but this image was pleasantly surprising.

Today was quite foggy so they had turned on many of the artificial lights 

The Special Exhibit

The current special exhibit, which comes down on Halloween, is called Wicked Plants and is based on Amy Stewart's book about poisonous plants with the same name. This is my favorite special exhibit so far (I've been to see it 3 times).

Water hyacinths (there were also turtles living in this fountain!)

While not really poisonous, carnivorous plants are my favorite

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Nice Ceiling

Sometimes on Sundays my husband and I head down the street to get homemade veggie burgers at the Sea Breeze Cafe. The restaurant isn't fancy but it has good food and a great ceiling!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Book, A Book!

My first multi-section hard cover book, finished!

I have been in love with books since before I could read (Harold and the Purple Crayon, anyone?), and I'm always making simple books and zines but I had never made a 'real' book. You know, one with multiple sections and a hard, cloth wrapped cover and spine? So, a few weeks ago I enrolled in a Beginning Bookbinding workshop at the San Francisco Center for the Book

book pages and end sheets, waiting to be made

Over the course of 8 weeks,lead by our fearless instructor, Juliayn Coleman, my classmates and I will make 4 hard cover, multi-section books, learning different covering, binding and sewing techniques for each book. 

book pieces, waiting to be glued together

Our first book was a bit of a challenge, especially since I'm super clumsy and messy therefore have a fear of glue (and a fear of getting it all over everything). I quickly found out I had nothing to worry about and was well on my way to making my first book.  

first finished book

After 2 and half nights, I had completed my first ever, legit, hard cover book with a cloth spine and corners, patterned Japanese paper covers and a built-in ribbon bookmark. It's not perfect but I love it anyway.

pieces for book number 2

book number two sewing close-up

On the third night, we began our second book. It was going to be another multi-section book but this time we sewed over tapes. Tapes are actually pieces of fabric in a lovely grey; I thought it was a shame you never get to see the tapes when the book is finished but, alas, that is how it's done.

Cover for book 2

The second books was full cloth with a slightly rounded spine. Juliayn had brought in a selection of lovely book cloth for us to choose from but I found this awesome raincoat-esque cloth in a bin at SFCB and used it instead.

sprinkled edges

Since only person can use the guillotine paper cutter at a time, we had a little down time so Juliayn showed us a simple way to decorate our edges using liquid ink, a comb and a toothbrush. To continue with the rain/raincoat theme of my book, I chose a blue ink and tried to make my edges look rain splattered. 

finished raincoat book

While I was happy to make my first book, I have to admit, I'm really extra excited with this second book! I think the raincoat theme helped.

raincoat book open