August 13, 2007
To ease the pain of Manic Mondays, I received from Isaac Childs, the founder and designer of Rustico, a beautifully hand written note and the Traveller’s Journal! The book arrived in shrink wrap to protect the leather. There are 5 signatures of hand torn deckle edge papers. The deckle edges alternate between signatures in a little dance to create a fluffy feeling when one ruffles through the pages, and the little bits of torn paper floats down like the clouds of a dream. A signature is a stack of paper folded in half. There are sixteen pages folded in-half to make a signature. There are 80 pages in 5 signatures making it a total of 160 pages per journal. The end paper is similar to the mulberry textured soft paper. The leather cover is of a dark luscious chocolate brown, affectionately called ‘Bomber Leather Jacket’. On the inside, the leather is left raw and exposed. On the spine one can see the threads (more like sinews) that bind, sew these signatures together. Because of the flexible but sturdy spine, writing on the (VERSO) left hand side of the book is pleasant. It can be laid flat, unlike the stiff bindings of thick books. There is not a drop of glue. This is a unique feature, as most books hide the way it is bound. It is like looking into the inner workings of a transparent clock. You can also request your name or logo to be laser engraved any where you want. The back of the journal has the Rustico brand and a proud ‘Made in USA’, ah that should be ‘Hand-Made’. The look and feel is rugged masculinity, something that would feel at home in Indiana Jones’s hands while he travels the globe to recover relics. It has a feel of something made by the hands of some fine craftsman. There seems to be a welcoming emptiness to be filled with clippings, pasting, of maps and the meaningful detritus of life. Unlike most books, the pages are not pressed, compressed and flatten, lifeless. Between the covers, the porous pages can breath. It is the sort of book that one might find in the hands of Ralph Fiennes as the English Patient; reading to Hana a quote from Herodotus, in the bombed-out Italian Villa.
I was inspired to find some quotes to write in the journal:
“All men’s gains are the fruit of venturing” – Herodotus
“Hoard moments that can be held in the hand and examined later, like found stones” – Alexandra Johnson, ‘Leaving a Trace’
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