Tag Archives: book binding

Links on tiny books, illuminated books, handmade books

1. A New York Times story about a collection of tiny books.

2. The Book of Kells, digitized and online.

3. 800 illuminated manuscripts online

4. Larkspur Press in Kentucky (letterpressed books)

5. American Academy of Bookbinding

Bind a book

I’ve spent the last couple weeks learning to make my own blank journals. Here are some tutorials I’ve used to learn how to assemble the folded pages into signatures (4 sheets, 16 pages) and then to stitch these signatures into a text block.

Here’s a tutorial about completing the book by adding covers:

Next, I want to practice making my own book cloth and coptic-stitch notebooks:

Here are some photos of the books I’ve already made. In the photos below, the paper is heavyweight (70 lb. in top photo, 50 lb. in lower two photos) drawing paper, and the thread is cotton embroidery thread, and the covers are both recycled from books discarded from a library. I kept the original endsheets with the cover but took out all the other original pages, and then glued in the new text blocks to the endsheets.

Putting a new text block into an old cover.

Putting a newly stitched text block into an old cover. 

The text block here is 2-3 inches thick.

The text block here is 2-3 inches thick. It’s about to go into the recycled cover in foreground.

The press, which holds the book while and after I glue it, is made from a couple pieces of 1" thick scrap.

After the pages are stitched, they are compressed and glued. My press holds the book while and after I glue it, and it’s is made from a couple pieces of 1″ thick scrap and 4 carriage bolts of length 5-6 inches.

Close-up view of the text block after gluing.

Close-up view of the text block after gluing. The glue seems to keep the text block compressed.