Mar 8, 2010

Review of Conduit Press on Etsy and Upcycled Notebook Giveaway (CLOSED)

I can't tell you how much writing is a part of my life. It's how I earn a living, it's what I do in my spare time, and as if that weren't enough - I also keep journals that I write in on a regular basis. Writing and reading are as much a part of me as breathing and blinking - so finding Conduit Press on Etsy was a real treat for me. Talia, the owner, creates beautiful 'upcycled' journals, notebooks and other items that are unique and special.

I was lucky enough to be given the chance to review some special notebooks from Conduit Press, and to interview Talia. I hope you enjoy - and as you'll see at the end of this post, Talia has offered something very special for a lucky 2 Lil Muffins reader!

The Interview:

1. Tell us a little about yourself.

"Well, I'm a stay.work at home momma of a beautiful bouncing little 7 month old beauty named Griffin as well as a wacky teenager and a game-playing 8 year old. I spend my days reading Goodnight Moon and The Hungry Caterpillar and singing the ABC's in my best soprano (I'm an alto, so it's not a very good soprano). I spend my afternoons (baby nap times) tearing paper and cutting leather to make into beautiful handmade books that give me a catharsis I can't even explain.

I spend my evenings helping glue together shoebox book reports and editing freshman English term papers. I spend my nights cuddling with my Loving husband on the sofa whilst watching Lost (on a good day). I spend my life creating beautiful amazing useful too many words to describe people and things and I pretty much Love it."


2. Your shop contains quite a few 'upcycled' or recycled goods. What is your favorite creation to make?

"Really, every book is a joy to make. It really is. And every time I come up with a new design for a new book I fall in Love with that very one just a little bit more than the last. I've recently discovered that upcycling materials to make into books is so much more fulfilling than simply buying book board and paper from an art store because, well, you can really feel good about where it comes from, and where it's going. So, currently, my favorite creation to make is the leather journals I've been working on.

Leather is such a versatile material in so many ways and it's really beautiful. I'm using an upcycled leather from an upholstery shop in town so I know it's of extraordinary quality and had I not purchased this leather, it would have ended up in a dumpster. It feels really good to know that I was able to save something from adding to the pile of rubbish that we create daily without even thinking about it."



3. How long have you been creating paper goods, journals, etc?

"I've been making books in some form since I was a wee child honestly. My father bought me my first diary when I was about 7 and when I filled that up I stapled some pages together, tore a beautiful photography of a ballerina out of a magazine and called that a cover. Since then I've definitely grown with my skills though. ;)

I took an Artist's Books class my senior year of college (about 8 years ago now) and
I never looked back. There is where I learned how to make archival books using archival materials and learned how to really sew a book together they way you're 'supposed to'. Ever since I've been reading Keith Smith books like crazy and teaching myself all the new ways in which to bind and create books. One can never really have enough books I think, because we never stop thinking to fill them."

4. Do you have a favorite piece in the shop now?

"I do. It's leather, of course. It's a maroon leather journal with a large round chartreuse bead sewn on the wraparound cover. I Love the colors of this journal. I Love maroon and chartreuse together for some reason. I like their opposition on the color wheel, and their brightness. I also Love the size of this journal (about 4x6) and that it's landscape and not portrait. It could be used as a photo album or a journal or even a sketchbook. The pages inside are a nice medium tooth white paper that will take almost any medium and the leather covers are nice and durable to protect whatever is inside."



5. In your opinion, what's the coolest thing about Conduit Press?

"For me, the coolest thing about CP is that it gives me the freedom to create things and share them with people I might never meet in real life. I Love creating and the art of creating things and being able to share them with the world, is really amazing. Aside from that, I think the coolest thing is that I am able to use a lot of materials in my art that would otherwise be trash, and saving our world from more trash is well, cool. :)"

She's right - it's totally cool and really admirable as well...not to mention the truly unique works of art that come out of the process!

The Review:

Talia sent me three small, upcycled notebooks to review. Made from recycled vinyl, thin typing paper and featuring a hemp closure - these notebooks are very pretty. What I love most about them is that they're so natural looking - very clean lines but rustic in a way. I immediately fell in love with them! When I'm not writing non-fiction articles for my clients, I'm writing fiction - and throughout the day, an idea will suddenly come to me for one element of a story or another. Usually, I jot them down somewhere and come back to them later. Well, I've started using these mini-notebooks to jot down my ideas.


I think it will be super-cool to have these little books full of inspirational thoughts and ideas, long after the ideas have transformed into stories and poems! What a neat little memento, right? The books are wonderful quality and I just love how they're so unique. I think these kinds of books would make a PERFECT gift for someone in your family who is a writer, or someone who enjoys writing their thoughts on a daily basis.

The Giveaway:

Talia was generous enough to offer 2 of these beautiful mini notebooks as a prize for one lucky 2 Lil Muffins reader! Here is the description:

A due of pocket-size blank journals: each measure approximately 4" x 6" and hold 40 sheets (80 sides) of a thin typing paper. Each book is hand sewn with hemp thread using the pamphlet stitch and can lie flat when open. Each also has an excess of hemp thread to use as a tie closure. Covers are upcycled vinyl remnants with various colors. Great for use as a simple list book to keep in your purse or a place to keep thoughts."


  • How to Enter: Visit Conduit Press on Etsy and browse through her unique and beautiful items. Let me know which one is your favorite in a comment!

Extra Entries:

  • Follow this blog publicly or let me know if you already are. (1 extra entry)
  • Purchase an item from Conduit Press and let me know which item you've purchased. (10 extra entries)
  • Put my button in your sidebar and leave the link, or let me know if you already have it. (3 extra entries)
  • Subscribe to 2 Lil Muffins via email and confirm. (2 extra entries)
Good luck to all!! This contest will end on March 16, 2010 at 8PM EST and the winner will be chosen by Random.org. Remember to leave a comment for each entry so they all count when the winner is chosen. Also - leave your email address if it's not public in your profile.

Note: I was sent an item free of charge in order to make a review about this shop and its products. I was not monetarily compensated in any way, and the opinions expressed in this post are 100% mine and honest.

59 comments:

  1. I really like the Beetle and Ribbon Journal.
    jmeelle AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I follow 2 Lil Muffins. . .
    jmeelle AT gmail DOT com

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  3. I heart'ed Conduit Press on Etsy. My username is JamieElle. jmeelle AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love the vintage map of France!!!

    demureprincess7(at)gmail.com

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  5. I am a follower of your blog.

    demureprincess7(at)gmail.com

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  6. I have "hearted" Conduit Press (demureprincess).

    demureprincess7(at)gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. Love the bare tree linocut cards - beautiful!
    rach62803@yahoo.com

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  8. google follower
    rach62803@yahoo.com

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  13. +1 I subscribe to 2 Little Muffins via email;}
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  14. +2 I subscribe to 2 Little Muffins via email;}
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  15. The Maroon Leather with Green Orb - Unlined Journal is quite nice.

    dorcontest at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  16. I follow on google friend.....dor

    dorcontest at gmail dot com

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  17. I subscribe by email......1

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  18. I subscribe by email......2

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  19. My favorite: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=42252590
    ladyvdzine[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  20. following as ladyvdzine.
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  21. subscribed 1
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  22. subscribed 2
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  23. Very nice! I also like the Green as Grass - soft cover journal. Thanks!
    crafts[at]oursideofthemountain[dot]com

    ReplyDelete
  24. I love the mini photo albums with die cut centers!!!

    Very cute!!!

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  25. I am already a follower

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

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  26. I am a twitter follower

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  30. I am an email subscriber 1

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  31. I am an email subscriber 2

    sarahcoulsey03 at gmail dot com

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  32. How nice to get to know Talia better! Thanks for sharing - both of you.

    As for what I love from her shop, it's hard to choose. Yet, for the sake of play I'll go with her Green Leather Journal with Snap Button Closure.

    ReplyDelete
  33. And I'm following ya 2lilmuffins! Merry blogging!

    ReplyDelete
  34. I like the Re-Purposed Green Coil Bound Notebook!
    thanks
    amym_brown@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  35. I'm following your blog
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  39. I like the Green Leather Journal with leather tie closure !!

    ReplyDelete
  40. I Subscribe to 2 Lil Muffins via email #1

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  42. I have your button in my blog #1: http://misfitmomma.blogspot.com/

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  47. Yep I think I LOVE the seed pocket..I just planted a Herb garden today that would be perfect for left over seeds

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