Last month the Altered Book Club that I participate in completed its most recent round robin of altered books, and the assignment for this past month was to create a cover for our own books. In the round robin each person picks a theme for their book and then the book goes to a different member each month for them to do a spread, so that at the end of the round robin everyone has a book of their own theme filled with art pages created by everyone else in the group.
The theme for this most recent book of mine was "Metamorphosis". I created the cover by first glueing down a decorative napkin, and then sections of mulberry paper. There is a little segment of a peacock feather tucked into the mulberry paper that my daughter came downstairs with when she was cleaning up her room, right when I was working on the cover.
I also finally did a cover for my previous book, which is called "Ramble Through My Garden". This is simply a cut up paper bag, which has been repeatedly scrunched, which softens and breaks down the paper fibers making it more like cloth. I made a paper flower from some of the pages from the book, and stamped the title on a metal garden marker. I inked up some of the wrinkles in the paper, and added some dragonflies cut from some printed tissue paper.
Several years ago, when studying world geography and the cultures of Oceania, the girls and I cut strips of kraft paper, which we scrunched and softened into cloth like strips, which could then be sewn or woven together and used like fabric. This mimics the making and use of tapa cloth made from tree fibers by traditional cultures in the Pacific. This book cover uses the same technique.