Bookbinders in the Wild: Paulette’s story

Date: June 2020
Name: Paulette de Kuijper
Location: Tijnje, The Netherlands
Age: 60 
Occupation: Retired, creativity is my passion now – I ecoprint (on paper and all kinds of fabric), felt, spin, weave, and make books from my ecoprints.

What Bookbinding with Cass workshops have you taken? The Ecoprint & Bookbinding workshop with Cass and Elisabeth Viguie-Culshaw, this was the beginning! After that I worked through the Bookbinding & Botanicals tutorial, then the Layered Cross
Stitch Bookbinding tutorial
 and then the Coptic Bookbinding tutorial.

What drew you to bookbinding? I have always loved books, and have read a lot in my life! Making my own books with my self made papers is just a dream!

Can you share a bit about your experience of learning to make books? The workshop and the tutorials were very inspiring for me. The video’s were very clear and even if you have not done ever bookbinding before (like me), you can keep up very well. It’s all very well explained and fine music in the background too! I also learn better if I can see the process instead of reading everything. It’s also good to know that the video’s are always there for you when you need them. Because you just can’t remember everything.

What have you gone on to make since? After the first workshop I wanted to make more and I went on and on, learning a new method with another tutorial or book. I just could not stop, it’s so nice to make something beautiful with your own hands.

What creative projects are you working on at the moment? I am doing a 4 week project learning about blue natural indigo dye with Elisabeth Viguie-Culshaw (find out more about Elisabeth’s workshops here). I want to incorporate the indigo pieces into my books. There is so much to explore!

Do you sell your work? If so, how can people find out more and get in touch? Yes, I do, see my work on my website here and on my Facebook page

Why is being creative and making things with your hands important to you? Creativity has always been very important for me. I think you can say that I need it to be happy. To incorporate all the things you have learned and turn this into something unique is a very satisfying process.

Is there anything else you would like to share? Online workshops are a fantastic way of learning something new. You do not need to travel, and you can do them all over the world, so even in Scotland!

Thank you so much Paulette – it has been an absolute joy seeing your books take shape and I love the way you are using the book form to showcase and weave together a range of different techniques. As a nature-lover I particularly love your ecoprint books and encourage those of you who are reading this to take a look at Paulette’s bounty of beautiful books in the gallery below.

>The Print, Dye & Stitch Ecoprint & Bookbinding workshop Paulette mentions is available now on Teachable with instant access – for more information click here.