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Meet Crafty Wee Birdie's makers - No Books Were Harmed

Updated: Feb 12, 2021

No Books Were Harmed

Meet Jo Cowie. Jo has been with Crafty Wee Birdie Gift Shop since the very start back in 2015. She lives just along the road in Mosstodloch in the north East of Scotland.

Jo is a self taught, full time designer maker of no-cut, hand folded book art & workshop facilitator based in Moray.

Describe yourself in five words

Calm, methodical, focused, workaholic & bubbly

How did you get into your craft?

I saw pictures of oriental lanterns made from books and thought they were incredible. I made one and was captivated by the shapes made by just folding books, so continued to play, creating different geometric type shapes, until one day I made something vaguely resembling a heart, and at that point I was consumed with ideas and possibilities!

What is a typical day like for you?

Usually up around 7am. See to the dogs and head to my desk with a cuppa for around 8. I catch up with emails from the night before and select the books I’m going to use for that day’s orders (or add them to the order queue for the coming days/weeks). I then fold solidly, until late afternoon, when I start packing that day’s post office run. Once that’s bagged up ready, I continue folding, usually until around 7pm, when I break for supper, and go remind my husband that I still live here haha Once dinner’s eaten, I usually head back to the office, either to keep folding, or to spend a couple of hours designing orders to be folded in the coming days, or to tidy up . Most of the year I finish work around 8.30/9pm, but come the latter months of the year, I’ll be working from around 6am to around 1am as standard. It’s not a job, it’s a calling, a vocation, a lifestyle.

What projects are you working on now?

The focus on online retail is at the forefront of everything right now. I’m planning out various online events and collections with wholesale customers, as well as constantly creating new and unusual customer commissions. Where do you do most of your work? In my home office/library/studio. This used to be my spare room! I say that I used to live in a two bedroomed house, now it’s a one bed with a cracking office!

What has been your favourite new product, design or discovery over the last year?

My most eye opening discovery has been that I don’t need to do 100+ pop ups each year, for customers to still find & support me. A truly eye opening revelation!

Where do you get the inspiration for all your amazing projects?

Everywhere. My clients, nature, architecture, dreams, you name it. I’m fascinated by typography and masonry carvings.

What are your top tips for anyone looking to get started in crafting?

Be consistent, committed, considerate and confident


Jo loves working with clients to bring their idea/image to life in a book. So if you have any ideas for a custom order please do get in touch. She has created many unique personal folds for customers at Crafty Wee Birdie Gift Shop. These will be treasured forever.

Like what you see? You can find No Books Were Harmed in our Brands and Designers section of the website. Use promo code NOBOOKS10 at check out to get 10% off any No Books Were Harmed products. Valid until the 26/2/2021

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