Biblio Bling

Biblio Bling Revealed

It is a joy to hear people talk about their favorite books. Having worked in a library, children’s bookstore, and owned my own bookstore, I’ve seen the way faces light up and grow animated when people talk about books they love. Bibliophiles develop deep, lifelong connections with literature, and we connect with others who share the same love of certain books that we do.

The idea of jewelry based on books has been percolating for a long time. Maybe the idea took root with this pin. book nerd pin I loved it the moment I spotted it in a tiny boutique. There was a bracelet that matched but it wore out ages ago. The seed was planted….book jewelry……I wonder if there is a word for that?

My project for the last few months has been to develop a line of jewelry based on some of my favorite books.  So without further ado, here is the first look at what I’m calling Biblio Bling – welcome to wearable Alice.  You can find the complete collection in my Etsy shop, The Merry Monk.

alice collage page 1alice collage page 3alice collage page 4

Stay tuned for more Biblio Bling.  In production is jewelry based on The Secret Garden and the works of Jane Austen.

Biblio Bling · Exploration

Biblio Bling in the Works

My Etsy shop at The Merry Monk is getting some new additions in the category of Biblio Bling.  Biblio Bling features handmade pieces of wearable art inspired by my favorite books and authors.

The Inspiration

I’ve been a book nerd all my life so wanting to create and wear something that reflects my love of books is a natural for me. My first job was working at a public school library for 25 cents an hour, and I hoarded that meager pay to buy books. Back before libraries caught on to the whole library sale idea, they would burn the books that were removed from circulation. I begged to take some home and swore an oath on a stack of dilapidated books that I would never return them accidentally to the library – a sin close to but not quite as bad as the Original.  My favorite copy of The Wind in the Willows comes from that haul. It’s not a valuable book bound as it is in sturdy library cloth and covered with old stickers, but it has the most glorious, thick paper. I don’t want to read any other; just sniffing the pages takes me back to my youth.

Alice in Wonderland is the first book Im using to inspire this line. My previous post, How Alice in Wonderland Saved my Life, provides some background for that choice.

To whet your whistle, here are a few illustrations that I love from Alice:


The Process

To begin, I brainstormed ideas based on images in the books. To organize all my ideas, I created a mood board so that I could have a visual reference to help me stay focused and to which I could  refer as I shopped for findings and other pieces to use in this collection. I created several mood boards with different colors schemes for different characters. Here is Color Scheme 3 from my Alice collection:

Alice Mood Board Scheme 3


Pattern Curator was the source for the color scheme and floral patterns above. If you don’t know about Pattern Curator, head  over to their website and sign up for their emails.  You’ll love their fabulous print and color inspiration.

The Parts

Because I want to incorporate words as well as images into my pieces, my biggest challenge has been to find a way to do that in the best shape and size. I settled on using metals blanks and dominoes to begin. Here are a few I’ve created so far:


Other components have come from B’Sue Boutiques including the  brass charms you see in the mood board above.

The glass pieces at the bottom of the mood board are supplied by my brother who makes the coolest glass components for jewelry making and other crafts.  Here a few of the non book-related pieces I’ve created with them.

And since I have a “thing” about paper, I know I’ll be using some of my handmade papers as well as text from Alice to create unique components.

Stay tuned for the final reveal of my complete line on April 14 when the Build A Line Challenge comes to a close and we reveal our completed line.

Have a suggestion for a book you’d like to see in Biblio Bling? Leave a comment below. I’m always looking for inspiration.  Just keep in mind that I cannot use any images from Disney, Dr. Who, or other copyrighted materials.

All photographs are the property of The Merry Monk Press and may not be re-used or copied without permission.