• The work area setup. Plenty of chipboard for cutting surfaces was helpful.
  • Papers cut down from large pieces of Strathmore 400 drawing paper. I disassembled a Moleskine for reference.
  • Papers folded in groups of three to form signatures.
  • Template with hole punch.
  • Signatures sewn together around binding tapes
  • Mull is a mesh fabric glued to the spine with PVA archival glue. This plus the binding strips holds the papers to the cover.
  • Lesson learned: xacto chisel blade does not make a clean edge for trimming. I'll either live with the deckle edges or find a better method next time.
  • Cover boards glued to mull and binding strips.
  • Grandpa's old vice makes makeshift book press. It actually worked pretty good. For the other pressings I had more material to even out the pressure.
  • I used straight fabric here instead of expensive book cloth. Utrechts art store only had nauseating purple book cloth that I couldn't bear to purchase. The cloth had problems though - glue bled through and discolored the fabric a bit. Next time I'll try sizing the fabric by pre-gluing rice paper
  • Glue brushed on to the cover board, the spine was attached directly to the fabric first.
  • Boards attached, corners trimmed.
  • Top part glued in preparation for folding around the edges.
  • Rough corner fold, I liked how it turned out, but it could have been crisper.
  • This is my favorite part of bookbinding for some reason. Makes it feel like a book somehow.
  • Skewers and boards and protective "press n' seal" saran wrap for final pressing. The saran worked very well because it somehow avoided the adhesion of the powerful PVA glue.

weekend book binding

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This weekend I tried out book binding for the first time. I was pleased with the results, but learned many lessons for doing a better job next time. I was inspired by (but not nearly as careful as) this writeup.

ramseyarnaoot, sketchySteven, besha, and 317 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 17 more comments

  1. Miss Creative 76 months ago | reply

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Study Is Art, and we'd love to have this added to the group!

  2. daniell-o 75 months ago | reply

    I work at a book factory, so I see quite a bit of this.
    It's a process.
    It makes me analyze books closer when I pass through the book section.

  3. annabelwynne [deleted] 74 months ago | reply

    Excellent pictures. One day I will learn how to bookbind - it fascinates me.

  4. TomSlatin.com 74 months ago | reply

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called www.flickr.com/groups/989877@N20/, and we'd love to have this added to the group!

  5. .CellarDoor Photography. 74 months ago | reply

    OoOOo that's some nice work ;)

    ...I hope to get to that standard!!! x

  6. DenaG.M 71 months ago | reply

    it's very interesting.
    thanks :)

  7. danaz1 71 months ago | reply

    It's beautiful.
    May I post it on my book blog?

  8. nate steiner 71 months ago | reply

    Please feel free danaz1

  9. danaz1 71 months ago | reply

    Thank you

  10. mikemiller28 [deleted] 70 months ago | reply

    www.bookmakerscatalog.com/ is a great place for supplies I use it all the time and for gr8 end sheets bradleypaper.com for decorative handmade paper the printed lokta is the best you can also buy the headbands for hard bounds from the book makers cataloge. Hope you continue to make more books, I'm working on 4 hard bounds myself.

  11. fazer53 65 months ago | reply

    Great idea!!! love the pics

  12. calafellvalo 59 months ago | reply

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Books and Roses , and we'd love to have this added to the group!

  13. angelpark85 55 months ago | reply

    Congratulations! Your photo has received the Amber Award from FotoVotr. It has been selected from the Flickr community because of its interest and popularity. For more information, please visit the FotoVotr Amber Group. We would be honored to have you join us!

  14. fabianfucci 49 months ago | reply

    I downloaded this for reference. Thank you!

  15. Freya3377 34 months ago | reply

    Thanks for sharing this photo collection Nate. It went along really well with a post on our blog. :) www.bookbuzzr.com/blog/

  16. 5FootGiant 26 months ago | reply

    I've had the same problem with chisel x-acto knives when I make books
    Have you figured out a solution to this yet?

  17. Ruslan Stepanov 14 months ago | reply

    Great tutorial!

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