Book Binding at the University of Edinburgh

Along the lines of sharing more of my learning experience here at the College of Art, I will share our book binding workshop, which began last Thursday. It is just for the MFA/MA in Illustration students, so there are just eight of us total. Jane Hyslop set up a wonderful workspace for us to share her obvious passion. Here were some of the examples she shared - all treasures that looked like normal books from the outside, until you opened them up and were surprised by all their clever tricks.
Here were the supplies: paper, awls, butter knives, bone knives, thread, needles, etc.
For all that I am passionate about books, I've never taken a book binding course. It was a blast! We first learned a simple method of sewing a signature (group of pages), then moved up to slightly trickier ways to work. This was my attempt at the Japanese Book Binding method. I used some nice sketch paper for the interior and heavyweight watercolor paper for the cover. I was pretty happy with it. In fact, I may paint a nice design on the front and give it to a friend as a Christmas present.
Then we moved up to a real, hardcover book design. Everybody got into it. We bought fun papers and experimented with different sizes, colors and textures. Cutting the paper down to size was a large part of the job. Here are Ailsa, Lily, and Narudee getting their projects ready. (Ailsa had done this before so was a little farther ahead than the rest of us.)
After the pages were folded and assembled, we learned how to sew several signatures together. Here are Catherine, Boris, and Jane.
     By the way, several countries are represented by my fellow classmates (2 aren't in the photos), but we have: England, Taiwan, Thailand, Chile, Scotland, France, and the US. It's part of what makes this experience so fun!
     I'll try to get a good photo of my work-in-progress for you. Meanwhile, most of us got our signatures together and the binding tape glued on. Next Thursday, we move on to the hard cover!

Update: Here is the final product - MY BOOK!
Okay - so it looks like a big black square - but it's so much more than that! Check out the inside, which is full of different kinds of papers on which to keep my ideas. I am so proud.


Robyn Hood Black said...

Finally catching up on a few of your wonderful posts - thank you for taking the time and TLC to share these wonders!!

Elizabeth O. Dulemba said...

It's my diary too! I love being able to reflect on all I've accomplished in such a short time! I'm glad you're enjoying it too! :) e