Bodelia Books & Antiques

Turning beautiful but neglected antique books into treasured journals and sketchbooks since 2003.

Scroll down to learn more!

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Bodelia Books brings together my love of beautiful antique books with fine bookbinding craftsmanship.

Each hand-bound book keeps the integrity of the original cover and spine, while the inside is filled with neatly bound vintage or new paper for writing or drawing.

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Keeping the original spine in tact is an art I have developed over time and is challenging and time consuming to accomplish. The results are worth it: from the outside they appear as they originally were, but the inside is new waiting to be filled up by you!

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Each book is a little different- not just the covers!  The end papers are selected to compliment the covers, and the writing and drawing pages are made of a selection of different papers.  They might be cut or hand torn, vintage or new, colored or white, heavy duty or crisp, a combination of papers or all of one type.

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My favorite books to work with are from the late 1800s to the early 1900s.  Some of them have their original owners’ names and dates inked into the end pages before I gut them.  They were once treasured and read but lately languish on shelves and in boxes, unlikely to be read again.  Their covers are strong and strikingly beautiful.  I find them in antique malls around the country, and sometimes at yard sales and flea markets.  Above are a few I have already converted as well as some that are ready to gut.

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Above is one of my books happily being put to good use by a customer as a weaver’s idea book/journal.  All types of folks love them and use them as idea books, notebooks for work, journals, sketchbooks, school notebooks, dream journals….

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My love for that time period doesn’t end there.   I’ve been collecting old photos for years and have started painting new scenes on them.

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I’ll gaze at the photo for a while and imagine a dream or interest they may have had in life.  I’ll incorporate that idea or vision throughout the image while respecting their individuality.  Above, I felt like maybe he would have been interested in astronomy and physics so I painted some constellations around and over him, using paint and gold leaf.

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You can find my hand bound journals or painted antique photos at bodelia.etsy.com unless I am preparing for a show !

Please join me this fall and winter at the West Asheville Aritsts’ Walk and a pop-up show at Rosewater Gallery.

More details coming soon!

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