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Submitted on
April 27, 2013
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PE: Bookbinding

Sat Apr 27, 2013, 1:55 PM

This article is a short introduction to bookbinding, including information about bookbinding terms, methods, tutorials and a feature of beautiful handmade books.

:bulletblue: What is bookbinding?

We all have books at home, whether they be schoolbooks, novels, journals or sketchbooks. They might be paperbacks or hardbacks, though I'm guessing not many of you own hand-crafted books. With books being commonly used and readily available items today we forget that books are (or can be) works of art! Bookbinding is a craft especially cultivated in the Middle Ages, where books were still quite rare and expensive. The art of bookbinding has survived until today, although it is no longer necessary to bind books by hand, since we have machines that can do that for us. Nevertheless, a hand-made book is a beautiful thing, and has the special appeal of something unique.

:bulletblue: Important Terms :bulletblue:

Tool for punching holes into paper, book board, signatures etc.

bone folder:
Tool used for folding and creasing paper.

end sheet:
Sheets of paper which come between the cover and the signatureblock.

Small band of cloth at the top and bottom inside of a book's spine. Mostly used for decorative reasons.

Process of sewing together the signatures (and the cover in some cases).

Group of folded sheets which together make up a complete book. A book can consist of one or more signatures.

:bulletblue: Binding/sewing techniques include: :bulletblue:

Case Binding

A type of binding used for hard-cover books. The textblock (signatures glued together) is glued to a seperate case, and the book typically has grooves along the spine. The technique requires many steps and is a time-consuming endeavor.

Cut away binding with headband by serendipity82

Coptic/Chain Stitch

Characterised by the chain of stitches that links the signatures together. The name stems from the Copts (early Christians in Egypt) who used this technique. It's popular for making journals and sketchbooks.

A5 lined purple coptic journal outside by ThePressGang-ink

Girdle Binding

A bookbinding method where the leather binding extends beyond the covers to end in a large knot, so that the book can be tucked into one's girdle (= belt). These books were worn by medieval European monks between the 13th and the 16th century.

The Girdle Book by BookArtiste

Limp Binding

A method in which the book cover consists of a flexible cloth, leather, vellum (high-quality parchment) or paper.

Leather Journal 1 by TherisFaan

Long Stitch

A technique used to sew together signature-block and cover (usually a leather cover). It is often used in combination with other stitches such as the chain stitch.

Leather Journals - the next batch by Bluelisamh

:bulletblue: Bookbinding tutorials :bulletblue:

Some great tutorials to get you started on making your own books!

Bookbinding Tutorial by JamesDarrow  Bookbinding Tutorial Pt1 by pipedreamer78  Bookbinding Tutorial Pt2 by pipedreamer78  Bookbinding Tutorial Pt3 by pipedreamer78  BOOKBINDING TUTORIAL part I by lenoki  BOOKBINDING TUTORIAL part II by lenoki  Bookbinding Tutorial by LightAesthetic  Book Binding Tutorial by keyanadrake  Rainbow Book Tutorial by Marenne  Book Binding Tutorial by Eyespiral-stock 

:bulletblue: Wonderful handmade books to have a look at: :bulletblue:

Journal Project by PaperandDust
Chameleon Diary by gildbookbinders  handmade book 25 by darkest-red 
  'Triskele Wolves' Photo album by morgenland  Chinese Style Book - Autumn Colours by Danisa-chanFolky-black by kinga76
Phoenix miniature book, OOAK by Maylar  Miniature book 21 by trixi-b 
Pocketful of Pigeons by cryslara  Spring Sky by kreativlink
Angel's flight - creative sketchbook by MyMandarinDucky  Gold Swirl Leather Journal by McGovernArts
Octavio by BCcreativity  Promise by luthien27
Crow 1 by VampireEmbrace

Thanks for reading, and have fun making your own books! :heart:

Bookbinding article written for #projecteducate's Surprise Community Week.

Information compiled from asking a book-binding friend and the tutorials featured above.
Add a Comment:
morgenland Featured By Owner May 16, 2013  Professional Artisan Crafter
Thank you so much for featuring my work.
Wonderful books you collect here :)
Riemea Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
You're most welcome!
Thank you! :)
Talty Featured By Owner May 4, 2013   Artisan Crafter
Featured here :) [link]
Riemea Featured By Owner May 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks a lot! :)
Talty Featured By Owner May 5, 2013   Artisan Crafter
:huggle: no problem
Riemea Featured By Owner May 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Syao-sama Featured By Owner May 2, 2013  Student General Artist
I really want to try bookbinding! What are some good, easy to get materials, for the outer part/cover?
Riemea Featured By Owner May 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
That's great! Hm, you'd have to decide whether you want to use fabric or paper for your cover. You can use any fabric you think would look pretty on a book (maybe buy discounted fabric or use something you have at home for your first try). If you're using paper, you can simply buy some paper with a nice design you like, or you can paint the cover yourself, like *PaperandDust does for example.
Hope this helps and all the best for your first book!
Syao-sama Featured By Owner May 10, 2013  Student General Artist
Thank you for the tips! When I stop at the art store or fabric store, I'll be sure to look out for anything I think would look nice :)
Riemea Featured By Owner May 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
You're very welcome! :)
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