Much of a muchness

Things that make you go 'hmm'…

About Me


I live in deepest, darkest Dorset. My sons have both flown the nest and I am busy fighting the good fight against ‘Empty Nest Syndrome’. My ongoing effort to find my ‘talent’ has led me to try many hobbies – calligraphy, bookbinding, papermaking, silk painting, embroidery, photography – to name but a few. I also play tennis, I love to travel and I read voraciously (just bought a Kindle – 1000 books in something the size of one – marvellous!)  I love gadgets and ‘kit’ and am probably Apple’s best customer, I love my Mac. Paradoxically, I also have a passion for paper and stationery and cannot resist a beautiful notebook or an interesting pen.

I recently trained as a Maths teacher but decided it was not for me, worked in an art gallery and am now casting around for a new career. I am currently obsessed by bookbinding, making journals and sketchbooks. This has resulted in a huge stockpile of books and a collection of paper from all around the world – I LOVE decorative paper. I really must start to sell my books before they take over the house. Of late, I have been making personalised photograph albums and seem to have finally found a niche I can develop. I really enjoy designing and building websites too, so when I’m not bookbinding, I’m glued to my computer writing code. All in all, an era of self discovery and new ventures beckons, so watch this space…

I started this blog as the usual ‘ramblings and musings’ but it has developed all by itself into a bookbinding blog. As I have had quite a lot of interest in my books and albums, I am planning a web site as some point to sell them online. In the meantime, if any of my books or albums catches your eye or you’d like to discuss a personal project, you can always contact me using the form.

74 responses to “About Me

  1. julian bennett August 2, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    wOw. wOw. wOw.
    ohhh i want to see how you make these sublime books.
    awesome x8

  2. Navin August 12, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    Umm. you look very good. I don’t think you are that old. You can still entice a young man like me.. eheheh. jokes apart never mind.

  3. Diane August 12, 2007 at 7:14 pm

    Thanks for your very kind comments!

  4. Navin August 14, 2007 at 6:57 am


    I don’t know if i’ve to put this here or where, i just put a link on my blog. Hope you won’t mind. I think my visitors will also like your blog.

  5. RennyBA September 4, 2007 at 12:56 pm

    Thanks for sharing your talent – a very readable blog!

  6. Diane September 4, 2007 at 1:06 pm

    Thank you, you are very kind to say so! Especially as you are from Norway! I am loving reading about Norway on your blog, I must say.

  7. Myam September 5, 2007 at 2:17 am

    Your books are awesome!

  8. Diane September 5, 2007 at 7:57 am

    Myam, thank you. I love your blog, you are very talented. I like the book bags very much! And your instructions for your projects are very clear – thank you for sharing. A very inspirational blog!

  9. Bob September 6, 2007 at 2:32 am

    Like your blog and the fact you have a cool scope!

  10. Diane September 6, 2007 at 6:01 am

    I like your blog too! I forecast many happy hours reading it, wonderfully informative!

  11. Meredith September 9, 2007 at 1:16 am

    I’m so glad that you posted on LiveJournal – your books are lovely and I think here, I have found one of my new favourite blogs. Cheers!

  12. Diane September 9, 2007 at 7:18 am

    Thank you so much! I’m still not quite sure how LiveJournal works – I thought I was just posting to the Handmade Books Community but have come across lots of other beautiful web sites, and interesting people with a wide range of activity. What a bonus! I see you make handmade perfume – much harder to show people over the internet!

  13. ben September 10, 2007 at 11:48 pm

    hey ma!! xxxxxxx

  14. Diane September 11, 2007 at 7:21 am

    Hey you! Are you good? Weather nice?

  15. Gav September 11, 2007 at 4:15 pm

    Happy Anniversary! Clever Girl!!!

  16. Diane September 11, 2007 at 5:16 pm

    Happy Anniversary to you too! I am a clever girl sometimes!

  17. bloggergabby September 11, 2007 at 7:16 pm

    Hi Diane!

    Am very impressed with your versatility.
    Wishing you all the best in your endeavors


  18. Diane September 11, 2007 at 7:29 pm

    Thanks for that! I am looking forward to reading some of your stories!

  19. Jenny Hunt September 13, 2007 at 8:15 pm

    I think your books are brilliant – I’m really impressed with the technical skill and your choice of colour and pattern. Having seen them ‘in the flesh’ – they are also nice to hold and deserve to be filled with wonderful things!

  20. Diane September 13, 2007 at 8:35 pm

    Thank you, my friend! Your boats are a joy to behold as well!

  21. laketrees September 18, 2007 at 2:08 am

    what a great photo Diane…..
    and a nice ‘about me’ too……..
    I think you will do very well with your books and please let me know when you start marketing them as I want the one with my name on it :D

  22. Diane September 18, 2007 at 6:40 am

    I am designing a web site to market them but I am also trying to build up my stock so I’ll keep you posted!

    PS the book does indeed have your name on it – clever you for spotting it!

  23. laketrees September 19, 2007 at 10:17 am

    haha Diane
    that’s great….I’ll probably see more books with my name on it…..between now and then…… :D

  24. Mohd. Hashim Khan September 22, 2007 at 7:22 am

    Really nice job! Books look pretty with your binding work :) I can remember my school days when I used to do lots of art & craft work and I was too goot at it and now I make good looking websites hehe, its an art too just the medium has changed.

  25. Diane September 22, 2007 at 8:29 am

    Thank you! You are right, making good looking web sites is very creative, I enjoy doing it too!

  26. Mimi Lenox October 4, 2007 at 2:20 am

    Great looking blog. Re-inventing oneself is always exciting. Good luck.

  27. Diane October 4, 2007 at 4:31 am

    Thank you. I like to keep it crisp and clean looking.

    Exciting is one way of putting it! It’s a bit scary but a lot interesting too. I am having a ball!

  28. Duane Spears October 11, 2007 at 2:53 pm

    You are quite the lovely lady indeed.

    Enjoyed your post regarding Hollywood. I lived in LA and area (Oxnard) for 30 years. Was a LA Motor Officer for 18 1/2 of those years, worked Hollywood Div and lived on a boat in Marina del Mar for a year when I was assigned to West Traffic out of Venice.

    Currently back in my hometown training to run the 800 meters. For more info go to I’m going to raise a billion dollars for other people’s charities and break my old high school record in the 800 which I still hold.

    I’ve just started this blog thing and I’m picking up some good ideas from others people’s blog. I like that widget you have where this other window pops up when your cursor is rolled over a word.

    The addiction to technology is one of the better addictions out there.

    Good luck with your books, they are things of beauty.



  29. Diane October 11, 2007 at 8:00 pm

    Thank you so much for your kind comments. I shall follow your progress on your blog and wish you luck in the enormous challenge you have set yourself.
    Well done you!

  30. lovelyloey October 13, 2007 at 11:32 am

    I love your bookbinding projects. I’m now quite inspired to learn! And I wish you all the best for your online shop!

  31. Diane October 13, 2007 at 12:55 pm

    Thank you! I am enjoying reading your blog. I trained as a Maths teacher so I am very interested in what you have to say about the system in Singapore. I shall read more soon.

  32. thegritsdotcom November 26, 2007 at 3:19 pm


    I can certainly relate to your “Empty Nest Syndrome” because it was after my son left home that my fascination with technology, particularly the Internet, and love of reading transformed my basic online reading club for adults in 2000, and children online book club in 2001into full scale reading and book promotion communities for readers and writers of all ages! Your handmade books are B E A U T I F U L!!! Please let me know when your official website to sell your books is online; I would like very much to add a feature to you on my website.

    Happy Holidays to you and yours!

  33. Diane November 26, 2007 at 3:42 pm

    Thank you for your kind comments.

    I love your blog(s)! As an avid reader, (who ends up staying up until all hours to read, because making books and blogging takes up all my days) I’m so glad to find somewhere that can help me indulge my passion for books!

    I shall certainly be a regular visitor.

  34. Navin November 27, 2007 at 8:54 pm

    Hi Diane, after long time, i’m writing some words… how is life rolling? hope you are doing fine :) keep in touch :)

  35. Diane November 27, 2007 at 10:46 pm

    Hi Navin!
    I visited your blog the other day! I am fine and I hope you are too! :)

  36. Navin November 28, 2007 at 8:08 am

    yeah, i’m super cool too….
    and i just moved to Santa Cruz, CA and having gr8 gr8 time…. learning new things..

    see ya around..byeeeeeeeee

  37. fracas December 2, 2007 at 1:25 am

    Your books are beautiful Diane! I came by through a link at atlindas.

    (Your blog made me feel a little wistful, since you’re using the Blix theme, which I had used for about a year. I just switched about two weeks ago because Blix can’t display a fuel roll properly.)

  38. Diane December 2, 2007 at 9:36 am

    Thank you!

    Blix can’t display a lot of things properly! I would have so many widgets, that it is probably better that WordPress doesn’t allow Javascript!

    I like your new theme though, very cool!

  39. Gale Rainwater December 3, 2007 at 11:25 pm

    Diane your a very pretty and special lady. Thanks for all the nice comments on my website.

  40. Diane December 4, 2007 at 8:12 am

    Why thank you! You are most welcome – your photographs are stunning!

  41. totaltransformation December 20, 2007 at 5:28 pm

    Empty nester? I didn’t think you were a day over 30. Wow.

  42. Diane December 20, 2007 at 5:31 pm

    Now you are making me blush! Thank you for the blatant lie – it is greatly appreciated! :-)

  43. mywoodenrobot January 5, 2008 at 8:04 pm

    This is such a cool site. I love your books! I’m going to add you to my blogroll. =]

  44. Diane January 6, 2008 at 11:42 am

    Thank you! Let me know where I can see your blog and I will reciprocate. Glad you like my books and my site!

  45. migrationdiary January 16, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    What a fun blog and love your books too. I don’t have an empty nest (it’s quite full actually) but I live close to the Dorset border – Ringwood. Lovely town – absolutely love it here. Hopefully spring will be here soon. See you around


  46. Diane January 16, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    Thank you!

    Ringwood is nice isn’t it – so near the New Forest.

    It’s pouring down with rain (again) as I type this so I hope that Spring is on its way soon. I am bored with this relentless greyness – I NEED SUN!!!!

    Perhaps I will bump into you in Bournemouth on a shopping expedition!

  47. scatterbrain February 13, 2008 at 10:40 am

    Hi Diane
    I came to your blog via bijoux and banter, and I just want to say that I love your books! As an artist I’m constantly buying sketchbooks, notebooks and scrapbooks and always looking for something that is a beautiful work of art in it’s own right. Yours seem perfect!
    I will add you to my blogroll so I can keep on checking back here.
    BTW, if you are interested in seeing the books I’ve made, I can send you some pics


  48. Diane February 13, 2008 at 10:45 am

    Thank you for your kind comments!

    I would love to see your books but I can’t link to your blog – can you let me have the URL?

    I will email you with my email so you can send me some photographs :-)

  49. scatterbrain February 13, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Hello again

    you find me here

    and I’ll also email you re my books

  50. Lunes February 13, 2008 at 12:35 pm

    Haha so Scatterbarin has left a comment – great. Just wanted to say I have featured you in my blog Diane which was picked up by scatterbrain!

  51. Diane February 13, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    I saw! And I left a comment thanking you – which has obviously gone to the place where all the odd socks and gloves go…..

    Many thanks, you are a star. And I get to see your work and now scatterbrains and I love it all…. :-)

  52. هدایت اشتری لرکی February 24, 2008 at 6:40 am

    Happy birthday
    but let the time pass with hopeness

  53. Diane February 24, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Hedayat – thank you! You are very kind :-)

  54. Vanessa (the old friend)! February 26, 2008 at 9:11 pm

    It was lovely to see you again, I couldn’t help but wish the 15 years had not passed so very quickly! I am most impressed with your blog, together with your many talents! Your books are beautiful, they could even inspire me to write (something other than my eternal lists)………!! Enjoy those walks on the beach, I know I was always meant to live by the sea. Maybe one day I will again.

  55. Diane February 26, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    It was really lovely to see you again the other day. Such a nice surprise and I’m so pleased you dropped in, just wish you could have stayed longer. I hope we keep in touch now and you are most welcome to come and stay whenever you need a fix of sea side!
    I will definitely be dropping in to see you soon – hope you don’t mind!

  56. boyo April 2, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    I really enjoy reading you.

  57. Diane April 3, 2008 at 8:13 am

    I’m very pleased to hear that! It makes it all worth while :-)

  58. lilbooks May 18, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Diane, I just perused your site and your books are gorgeous! It’s kinda eerie–just to see that there are folks out there who dabble in bookbinding in just the same ways as me. I was getting flash backs of when I first started bookbinding, and I would just crank out book after book after book. I’m very impressed with your output!
    And I see from your profile that we’re practically neighbors! Not only that–I posted pics of bluebells on May 5, and you posted pics of bluebells on May 6th! (twilight zone music)…
    It’s funny, I recognize all you Falkiners papers–you don’t see them much on hand bound books in the US. But then back home I recognize all the papers from US vendors…the grass is always greener, I suppose…
    Anyway, this blogging thing is fun. It’s helping me find all kinds of bookbinding folk. You’re now on my reader list :)

  59. Diane May 28, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    Hi there

    Sorry, I’ve been away so only just read this. I’m thrilled you like my books, being so much further down the bookbinding road than I am, I appreciate your feedback!
    My output was getting to be ridiculous – I have slowed up a bit until I actually start to sell some of them – they are taking over my house…
    I do think you have a better range of contemporary paper over in the US. I do love Paper Source!

  60. noni June 10, 2008 at 4:55 am

    photographs are great……your perspective…..those poppies…and some landscape….remind some how…..Monnet……….

  61. Diane June 10, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    hi noni – glad you enjoyed my photographs. The poppies were gorgeous and I’m glad they reminded you of a great painter :-)

    No, I don’t do water colours – maybe I should learn :-)

  62. robert lord June 15, 2008 at 9:42 pm

    your book restoring looks great. that poem book should last for years, like to snoop through the English sites, family came from Drax area Yorkshire a long long time ago.

  63. Diane June 16, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    All I know of Drax in Yorkshire is the famous power station there! Where I live in Dorset however, there is a large house with huge grounds around it called Charborough House and it is owned by the Drax family (and is thus called the Drax Estate).
    Your blog is fascinating – a wonderful way to present your family history :-)

  64. JerseyGirl August 6, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    I remember where I saw your link, it was at the infamous RennyBA’s! He is a fellow traveler and blogger of mine as well, lol! Did you start your store or site for selling your journals? I only have one hand made one and I love it so much, i only hold it and feel the luxury of it :) . Gina

  65. Diane August 6, 2008 at 10:00 pm

    Renny (and his wife, Diane) have great blogs, I really enjoy them and I’m so pleased you found me at Renny’s.
    Now you just need someone to help you learn to knit socks…. :-)

  66. kaftansale October 5, 2008 at 7:49 am

    I just took a look at your page on how you made those books and I think it’s pretty elaborate and detailed. You must have love to do this stuff! I think I’m going to try it but in a simpler way.

    I think I’ll buy a big book and put some batik cloth as the cover.

    Won’t be as good as yours! :)

  67. Soori October 16, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    Wish I could marry you!

  68. Share Your Ideas April 8, 2009 at 4:32 am

    It’s awesome !! Really looking beautiful !!

  69. Jimmy January 16, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    Love your blog…

    Looking forward to your posts… The theme is nice too!


  70. Jewel June 14, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    I have been trying to find your blog again since originally commenting on it, to have a better look. I have enjoyed reading and nominated you for the Dorset cereals award. I am going on holiday to Wales soon, so will be able to experience the western side of the UK for myself. I will also soon have an empty nest of sorts when my son starts school and like you I found teaching was not for me either (years ago). Have been a secretary since, but would like a different career. I like your books, they are beautifully put together, and your web design too. I would like to do something like that myself. At the moment I just have an art gallery site of my own, which my husband helped me build.

    Although blogging seems to bring people of all nationalities together, I like to see a blog by someone else who is from the UK, as I am myself.

  71. Hair Laser Removal Treatment July 28, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    Diane, I just perused your site and your books are gorgeous! It’s kinda eerie–just to see that there are folks out there who dabble in bookbinding in just the same ways as me. I was getting flash backs of when I first started bookbinding, and I would just crank out book after book after book. I’m very impressed with your output!And I see from your profile that we’re practically neighbors! Not only that–I posted pics of bluebells on May 5, and you posted pics of bluebells on May 6th! (twilight zone music)…It’s funny, I recognize all you Falkiners papers–you don’t see them much on hand bound books in the US. But then back home I recognize all the papers from US vendors…the grass is always greener, I suppose…Anyway, this blogging thing is fun. It’s helping me find all kinds of bookbinding folk. You’re now on my reader list :)

  72. surviving suburbia August 10, 2010 at 8:54 am

    your books are so fab. i can’t resist a pretty notebook myself! my boys are still kids so i don’t have much leisure time for hobbies, but i know i’ll get to the same phase in life as you soon enough! thanks for sharing your talent and thoughts. it’s all very interestingly cool!

  73. Bethan Stritton June 4, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Hi Diane,
    I have been searching for co-book binder’s blogs for what seems like ages. Am very excited to have found yours and am now off for a proper expedition into your world and work. I am certain I’ll be back very soon too. Much love to Dorset from an Isle of Wight Book Maker! x

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