Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Be still, my heart

A friend and I stopped by a thrift store the other day as I was looking for some old books to add to my paper stash. Did I say OLD books?

I did indeed. This particular chain of thrift stores has previously recycled lots of old books using the covers, so there haven’t been too many of them available. I chose this book for the gothic letters,

and when I took a closer look back at home, I saw this inscription from 1874

and that the book was published in Copenhagen in 1789. My heart did a little jump; will I really cut this book apart???

Can you even imagine a contemporary book that will still be sold a 100 years from now?

And then I remembered – I do NOT need a new collection of anything, even if it’s only one book, so yes, this Danish book with the pretty gothic letters will have a new life in someone's mixed media art.

I also picked up a copy of Who What Where from 1965 (they didn't have my year).

It’s rather interesting to see what was considered memorable in the annual review part: disastrous weather (nothing new there, huh)

dead American presidents

and, of course, Miss World

And then we have a reprinted comedy from 1724,

also with those beautiful gothic letters

and a dictionary.

This is our second native language “New Norwegian”. Dictionary pages have such great texture with all those words in tiny writing, some bold, some italic, some phonetic.

I can still feel the want to spare that first fabulous book though; be still, my heart.


  1. I love books and I would be inclined to save the really, really old ones for my two little grandsons (their mother also loves books.) We here in North America have nothing that is that old. I hope you have a change of heart.

  2. Wow! What a find....xox

  3. Please keep the really old one! The others may not be so unique and could be "upcycled" in mixed media art.

  4. Such treasure! I wouldn't have the heart to break up that first one.

  5. Jeg ville nok ha spart den gamle boken. Den er jo et klenodie i seg selv. De andre gjör nok nytten på nytt..... :-)

  6. I always wonder if an old book is the last of it's kind. I love books as art objects in their own rite. The paper, the typography (I was a typesetter for a few years), the stains, all speak to me. Whether a fire or scrapbooking, it's still destruction. (I love ya, Nina, but I've got to be frank about this.) Couldn't you just make some copies of this book, and leave it whole?

  7. What amazing finds - especially the first book. I can never find anything like that in charity shops here. I would want to use it but whether I could actually bring myself to do so is another matter x

  8. Wow, those finds are spectacular! As a graphic and typographic designer I have a thin for letters and text. I would never be able to cut apart a book like that!