The A-Z of Motherhood

The A-Z of Motherhood

How many of us really know who we are?

For me, motherhood has been an enlightening experience, the beginning of a complex and colourful journey deep into my Self.

The A-Z of Motherhood documents this journey. Within the pages of the book are 26 words that map the first two years of my new adventure. Each page of handmade paper is dyed with the colour that corresponds to its specific word, amplifying the energy of the emotions.

Segments of my ultrasound scans are engraved into the custom wood type, stamped into the surface of the handmade paper, symbolic of the fingerprints of a newborn baby recorded at birth. Titanium rods representing the internal mental and physical strength of a mother hold the binding together, forming not only the crown of the child, but also the soul of the mother. The sterling silver beads symbolize the cord both physical and spiritual that links us eternally to our child. The book is protected by a hand stitched blanket cover made from Faribault Woolen Mills fabric containing the narrative of this journey that began in Minnesota.

I would like to thank Bridget O’Malley for assisting me with the paper-making, Gundrun Zapf Von Hesse for her typeface Colombine, Hedi Kyle for her wonderful piano hinge binding and Lilian Verner Bonds for her deep knowledge and understanding of colour.

I am very grateful to the Jerome Foundation for their generous support that enabled me to make this edition of 8 books. Please feel free to contact me if you are interested in further information.

Fold a flower for Mother’s Day at the Minneapolis Craft Market on April 24th 2016

Origami Carnation from The Origami Garden.
Origami Carnation from The Origami Garden.

Mother’s Day is fast approaching (May 8th 2016) so come and join me at the Minneapolis Craft Market on April 24th at Lakes and Legends Brewing Company and fold a beautiful little flower that will make your mum smile!

This is one of my own designs inspired from Egyptian mural paintings and is published in my recent book The Origami Garden.

Kathleen Sheridan from Origami and You and I will be holding free workshops at 1pm, 1.30pm, 2pm, 2.30pm and 3pm. We will also have copies of both The Origami Garden and Origami for All available for purchase – a perfect gift for this time of year!

We look forward to seeing you there!




nous sommes, my 2015 artist book

Detail of finished slipcases fitting together to create a perfect square.

As a self-employed artist, I often apply for different grants and opportunities in the hope that financial support will come my way. 2015 was a pleasant year as I had the good fortune to receive a grant from the Jerome Foundation to make an artist book. This included one year of 24-hour access to the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, a mentor, and a series of introductory workshops to learn the basics of paper making, letterpress printing, and book binding. The intention of this particular program is to offer artists the resources to create a book, fusing together newly acquired skills with aspects of their own artistic practice.

I must admit that before embarking upon this adventure, I knew very little about the book arts genre. For me, a book was an object, with pages, that contained printed information. I soon found out that the term for such a book is a codex, but that there are many other ways in which a book can manifest itself: a scroll, a box, a print, a sculpture, a t-shirt… the definition of a book for those in this field is merely a “contained narrative”. This gave me a lot to think about over the next few months and after many hours of contemplation, I decided to focus on the element of surprise that books offer us along with the experience they provide.

In the last few years I have become more and more interested in Eastern philosophies, numerology and the spiritual qualities of colour. I have also been experimenting with form and structure, often with paper, which has resulted in numerous origami creations (and a couple of authored books along the way.) So, my goal for this project was to combine all of these elements along with traditional bookmaking skills to create a visually stimulating book that would produce positive energy in the hands of the reader. There was so much to do and very little time!

Nous sommes is a physical manifestation of the spiritual nature of our souls, illustrated through the use of colour, structure, and form. It is a contemplation of life, the game we play; and the universe, the puzzle we all fit into. Just like life itself, my work consists of many layers, each offering an opportunity to participate, to pause, and to ponder.

This work will remain on show until February 19th at The Minnesota Center for Book Arts. I have produced a limited edition of nine books, please feel free to contact me for further information.

Here are some images from the year-long book creation process.





Parts of A Whole III opening at MCBA

Parts of Whole III


Join me at The Minnesota Center for Book Arts this Friday, the 14th of August 2015, for the opening of Parts of a Whole III.

This exhibition celebrates the book arts community and really shows off a huge variety of work created by over 70 different artists. There’s a lot to see from pencil drawings to handmade paper clothing and almost everything in between! Yes, I have a piece in the show so come along and join the fun!

I look forward to seeing you there!

The first copy of The Origami Garden!

Origami Garden

Here it is!

The Origami Garden - Ioana Stoian
The Origami Garden – Ioana Stoian

And as you can see I am rather chuffed with the result!

Here’s a glimpse of the inside showing a lovely little bird designed by Viviane Berty alongside the very traditional pigeon.

The Origami Garden - Ioana Stoian
The Origami Garden – Ioana Stoian

For those of you in the UK, you’ll be able to get your own copy on August 14th 2015 (only 18 days from now!). However those in the US will have to wait until the 5th of January.

A video tutorial is in the pipeline as is a giveaway and even a book launch! So much to look forward to!



Art a Whirl 2015


Art a Whirl is the largest art crawl in America with over 30,000 visitors and it’s only around the corner. Come and join the fun on May 15th-17th in the NE Arts District of Minneapolis,MN.

My studio will be open and I’m planning to show off some of my new work including letterpress prints and a large paper installation. More on that soon.

You can find me in studio 315 in the Casket Arts Building.

I hope to see you there!


Origami Garden – My new book!



Since the beginning of January 2014 I’ve been working on my second origami book: Origami Garden: Amazing Flowers, Birds, Bugs and Other Critters alongside a lovely team from Quarto Publishing.

It has been a very interesting experience collaborating with editors, graphic designers, art directors and of course many origami artists and creators who have contributed their works to this project.

I have never had so many rapid-fire deadlines in my entire life, and I’m proud to say I met each one right on time! :)

We are still in the last stages of getting everything ready for printing. I am eagerly awaiting the final colour proofs which should be with me soon. Maria Sinaskaya has kindly checked through all the diagrams looking for errors and I have gone over the contents quite a few times.

The release date for the book is tentatively September 12th in the UK and September 28th in the US. You can already pre-order a copy if you are as excited and impatient as me!

Check back soon for more information. I may even share one or two of the models with you before September.



Hand lettering on a very special bird house.

I’ve just completed my latest project – sign painting on a bird house! However this is not any old bird house, it’s an exact replica of a family barn built in 1928.

Constructed out of miniature planks of wood created from the original barn siding, as well as hand-made mini cedar shingles, this beautifully crafted edifice designed by architect John Yust and built by carpenter Bill Peterson houses seven individual ‘rooms’. It’s like a block of flats for birds!

The natural patina from the 87-year-old planks of wood is so authentic and brings a lot of charm to this piece. It did make the painting rather challenging, but that’s part of the fun.

My usual method of transferring the text with a cartoon didn’t work due to the rough textured surface; so I prepped carefully and painted directly on to the surface with oil paints. With this surface and the paints involved, it was a one-time opportunity only – no going back once the paint was on.

The main sign on the front of the barn measures 20cm x 6cm so that you can get an idea of scale.

I look forward to seeing the bird house installed in the owner’s garden and I hope it will be used by many lucky birds!