The Brass Tome Journal

First, some background…

About a year and 3 months ago a few friends of mine and I went to Seattle to visit some other friends of ours. One of our friends, Tracy, makes these really awesome handmade metal cover journals. While we were there we all asked him if he could teach us to make them. He of course said yes because hes an awesome guy, and we all got to go home with an awesome metal cover journal. This one was mine.

The Brass Tome Journal Cover

The cover of the Brass Tome Journal

The elements on the cover I got at a few different places. The rusted spigot knob and cabinet handle came from an antique store in Port Gamble.  The shift lock key came from a vendor at the, appropriately named, vendor night of Artfest. The latches that form the closures were purchased at Archie McPhee in Seattle.

I had originally planned on filling the negative space on the cover with lots of other do-dads and what-not, but found that I really liked the open unadorned brass. It gives it a nice space to just be; as opposed to being overcrowded with lots of cool, but ultimately overwrought stuff. I especially like how the brass has aged as its been handled.

The spine of the Brass Tome Journal

The spine of the Brass Tome Journal

The spine of the book is fairly simple as far as books go. The binding I used is the one Tracy taught me to do. It works great on journals with leather spines. It has the added benefit of looking really cool and being really easy to do. The buttons on the spine came from an antique stone in Port Townsend. I don’t entirely know why i put the buttons on the spine, but I’m glad that I did. I suppose that I thought that it would look cool, and it does. I was a little worried that they would end up getting pulled off in my travels and getting stuffed into and pulled out of my backpack. So far they have held up really well.

The back of the Brass Tome Journal

The back of the Brass Tome Journal

The back of the Brass Tome Journal is again really simple, almost to the point of being utilitarian. The only little element of style that I put in was the grey thread that I used for the running stitch on the interior stitch.  The attatchments for the closures have a little bit of superfluous stitching to give it a certain look. Other than that though I really liked the look of the full leather back on the, well, back.

And that is my breakdown presentation of the Brass Tome Journal.

Now its a year and three months later and alot of things are different. Since I made that journal I fell in love and moved out to Seattle from Albany, NY. The wonderful young woman that I fell in love with is Trista Moore, daughter of my friend Tracy.

I’ve been cranking out lots of new journals lately and I can’t wait to share them with you. More to follow soon here on Gearskull


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  1. #1 by Tracy on July 21, 2010 - 7:08 pm

    Hey Dave, Great Blog. Can’t wait to see more of what you post. I love the energy with which you are busting journals out. It is really fun to see you cranking out such amazing books!

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