I finally did it! I'm not entirely satisfied, but I've decided to accept it as is and try to do better with the Japan book.
I had to remove all of the pockets from the front of the bag; it was just too large. I had hoped to put the small one, upper right, back at the lower right and decided it wouldn't work.
I did a photo transfer on the now empty front section of the bag. I consulted several books and the internet and my friend SandyB, who is wonderfully creative, gave me some excellent advice. I printed this photo backwards, with China 2008 added to it, on an inkjet transparency.
After I brushed acrylic medium on the fabric I placed it ink side down and rubbed the front of the transparency. This kind of transfer is usually done with paper, rubbing removing the paper from a film created by covering the ink with the medium, and involving lots of careful brushing and waiting for the medium to dry. Using a transparency bypasses all of that but results leave something to desire.
I embroidered the letters and the red banner, which hardly showed up at all in the transfer. Then I added the beads, bone soaked in black coffee, at the bottom, and the pieces of silk fabric at the top. The back of the bag had a large pocket that I retained. I write all of the files for the book on a DVD and put it in the pocket, just in case I want to do it again.
Binding boards get cut to size (9×11.5) then a half inch gets cut off the binding side and glued a quarter inch from the larger board. This enables the cover to open properly. After the fabric was glued to the boards, keeping everything clamped together, I drilled five tiny holes within that quarter inch space, then sewed the entire thing together using linen carpet thread from Ireland. Directions for sewing can be found here.
This is really something. You have inspired me to push myself out of my comfort zone with the Alaska album that is now becoming a book. Thank you for posting this and directions.
This looks amazing!
I also have a nice how-to article on multiple image transfer techniques archived on my website if you want to do something similar for your Japan book:
Hugs to you,