Layers of colour

Wandering through the narrow streets of the Altrarno last week, we came across one of many Florentine paper and book binding shops in the city. My friend makes leather notebooks and Coptic stitch journals and I even help sometimes, and of course I have a passion for stationery, as many of you also do. The shop was fabulous! Chatting to the young woman, we learnt that the shop had been there for more than thirty years, started by her grandfather, but the family tradition went back for around a hundred years. Every surface was piled with pre-stitched signatures of paper, and she was binding legal documents, as they’ve probably been done for century’s. Realising how interested we were, she stopped what she was doing and showed us her marbling process instead.
Layers of colours were poured, splashed, and flicked into a tray with mysterious liquids, we watched, entranced.

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We wanted to buy the sheet we watched her making, sadly it wouldn’t be dry for some time.
This is one she made earlier.

Here she is in her beautiful shop, needless to say we bought some nice things from her. If ever you’re in Florence, pay her a visit at Via Sant’Agostino, near the Ponte Santa Trinita, she’s such a charming lady.

This post is for Ben Huberman’s weekly photo challenge, Layered.

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Santa Maria Novella . . .

railway station in Florence gets its name from the church just around the corner from it, and it’s where I arrived for a week in that lovely city. I took this early evening photo from my room on the fourth floor of the Rosso 23, looking at the Piazza Santa Maria Novella.

I’ll post more in the next few weeks when I’ve caught up a bit!