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How to Make a Mountain Book
By Sally Monahan

This lovely book cover is very 3-D thanks to up to 5 layers of book board on the front cover. Use a very sharp and durable blade and cut the board in several passes.


Book board ready to cover with papers


Cover each mountain separately


Be sure to hide any board that will show


Lacy papers make great snow


The finished cover ready to be drilled for sewing.

The front cover is 4 layers of zigzag-cut mountains, adhered to an uncut piece of book board. So you need 5 pieces of book board total for the front cover, and one for the back cover. My book is 8 1/2 inches wide and 5 1/2 inches tall.
 
Cut the back zigzag mountainscape first. Then cut the one in front of it, using the back one as a guide. Duplicate some of the mountain tops for depth, and if desired add additional mountaintops that will appear to be closer. Repeat for the 3rd and 4th pieces of book board, creating a multi-dimensional mountaintop scene. Cut carefully so that your mountaintops will line up when the pieces are stacked together.
 
Using various decorative papers, cover the individual mountaintops on each piece of book board. Wrap the papers around the slopes of each mountaintop, mitering and notching as necessary. I used mulberry papers and momi gami (that crinkly metallic paper) as they are quite forgiving and thin enough so they won't bunch up.

Some things to remember - since the book board will be layered, you don't need to worry about completely covering the pieces - just the mountaintops and the front-most mountains. Also, remember to completely cover the sides and bottom of the pieces. I left extra paper extending from the bottom of the front most pieces, so that I could wrap it around to the back of all the layers once they were assembled. You could do this to the sides, too, for a more finished look. I also tore some papers to give a "foothills" effect in the foreground. Be sure to use the same decorative paper for each layer of the same mountain! 

 
The "snow" is the key to hiding the layers and making the mountaintops look seamless. Japanese lace paper works beautifully - just rip bits and glue them to each of the mountaintops, wrapping the paper around to the back. Then, starting with the top layer, glue it onto the 2nd layer. Add more "snow" to any mountaintops that are now 2 layers thick, wrapping around both layers to the back. Repeat the process by gluing the top 2 layers onto the 3rd layer, adding "snow" to the layered mountaintops, then gluing the top 3 layers onto the 4th layer, adding more "snow". Wrap any extended paper around the bottom and/or sides of the entire assembled mountainscape. 
 
Cover a piece of book board the size of your book with decorative paper - I used the marbled papers that sort of look like a sunset. Then glue the entire assembled mountainscape to the book board cover.
 
It's helpful to have a book press to help keep the layers from warping. Press each layer as it is glued together. You might need to add book board shims so that even pressure is applied to the entire glued surface.   
 
Proceed with the construction of your book however you prefer. I made a plain back cover and did a 4-needle Coptic stitch, using 8 signatures of watercolor paper, 3 folios per signature.
 
Have fun... think rooftops, high rise buildings, a forest, a beach scene... anything with depth and dimension.


The completed book cover

Sally says, "Spay and neuter your pets."