Designing a Page:

Material Constraints


Participants were free to use any fabrics and any surface design processes they wished, constrained only by size specifications and caveats based on risks to longevity--against fabrics containing high acid content (like burlap) or susceptible to moths or other vermin, against including excessively heavy, sharp or fragile objects that might cut or break easily, against ballpoint ink, and against glues generally, for their long-term unreliability and potential to damage fabric over time: the image of what had become of Ohio Historical Society’s giant American flag glued to a wood substrate less than 50 years before in an effort to stabilize and preserve it was ever in our minds. And finally, early affiliation of the project with the Calligraphy Guild of Columbus made necessary advising participants that calligraphy was not required.

Perhaps more important than the physical guidelines, however, were the absence of an entry fee and the total freedom given participants to have their pages say whatever they wanted,

with no restraints on content.

Project brochures were available to the public at all branches of the Columbus Metropolitan Libraries, as well as a variety of cooperating bookstores, paint/home decor outlets, photo and craft shops, senior and recreation centers, and so forth.  For specifics, please visit our Sponsors page.

Close to a hundred workshops over the three years leading up to the submission period, held throughout the greater Columbus area at libraries, senior and recreation centers, even in private homes or wherever a group could gather, helped spur ideas and participation.  Discussion of the Book’s genesis and goals and samples of a wide range of sewing and hand stitchery, beading, writing tools, fabric markers and paints, photo transfer processes, dyeing techniques and more, offered guidance and inspiration.


In submitting pages, participants also furnished a one-page summary about the creation of their page, including who worked on it, its inspiration and meaning, and any other information that might interest readers generations hence.  Information from these pages was condensed to create one-page display labels with mylar Braille overlays for the pages at exhibition.