Examples

These are just a few examples of what is possible in the bookmaking industry. There are hundreds more binding techniques that I am anxious to try out!  

The first book I ever made was a Flat Back Case Binding. I call it my Little Black Book. I chose a black embossed fabric as well as black interior pages. A white gel pen would work well. I think this would make an elegant wedding sign in book.
  

   

For this Coptic book I went to Lowe's and got two pieces of Plexiglas cut into squares. I used a hand drill to poke coordinating holes through the covers, set colored eyelets through the holes then bound it together using shades of blue and green paper for the interior pages.  

  

  

  

 

Here is another fun take on the Plexiglas covers. This time I scrummaged through my arts and crafts supplies and chose an assortment of papers to make up the pages. From transparencies, graph paper, manila folders and envelopes, to patterned paper, cardstock and vellum, this is an eclectic book. I use it to make art and enjoy decorating every unique page. 

  

  

  

  

 

For my final in the bookbinding class I took, I made a book for my mom. Several things about this book make it one-of-a-kind. First, I splattered India ink all over the pages before tearing them down to size. Second, I printed journaling lines and/or pictures of me as a child on each of the pages. I made many errors trying to get the lines straight and almost threw away about 2/3 of my pages, but then I decided I liked the overall "chaotic" nature and used every single page. Third, I made a double cover. Essentially, I made two cases so it's a very sturdy and durable book. The inner cover is wrapped with more India ink splattered paper and the outer cover is black book cloth. Finally, I die cut a window from the outer cover and slid in a small picture of me as a toddler walking around in my mom's shoes. I use this book as a journal for my future children.


 

  

  

  

 

I've always loved leather bound books but couldn't find a piece large enough to bind a book. I ended up using a piece of dark brown vinyl for a faux-leather album. I used off-white yarn for the binding and love the overall look. My engagement and bridal pictures are stored inside. 

  

  

  

I learned how to make a clamshell box for storing books and made four Japanese Stab bindings to fit inside this one. I love the sound the box makes when I open and close it... I also love that there are limitless possibilities of Japanese Stab bindings - all you need to do is make a few holes and figure out how to loop them all together. I had a hard time deciding which four to try out, but love the results.
 

  

  

 

 

I took Coptic binding to a whole new level when I made my husband a custom journal. Over 30 signatures make this one fat book (a book is usually made up of 8-10 signatures and each signature has about 5 sheets - or 20 pages front and back). A clamshell box is a must to keep it from every day wear and tear. 


 

  

  

 

 

I attended a bookbinding workshop with my grandpa in 2007 and learned how to make a rounded spine. We made a very traditional book with pages that have to be torn open and flaps to keep the pages from wearing. The outside cover is Cave paper made only by a lady who literally lives in a cave in Iowa.


 

  

  

One of the best things about a Coptic binding is the book opens up completely flat - perfect for artists who don't like forcing their sketchbook down as they work. I made this book specifically for sketching and all the pages are made from high-quality sketchbook paper. 

  

 

  

Of course I had to make my own wedding sign-in book. I used leftover alencon lace from my dress for the cover, leftover ribbon from my sash for a decorative touch, and leftover embossed paper from my invitation envelope liners for the end sheets. You may recognize my book on the cover of the Weddings idea book published by Northridge Media (better known as Scrapbook Trends). Yes, that's me and my husband in the die cut window! 

  

 

  

 

 

Northridge Media publishes idea books every other month. When I first started working at the company they came out with Mini Albums, in which I had a 10-page article about how to make a Japanese Stab binding. In 2007 they published Mini Albums II and I had an article about how to make your own scrapbook albums. This year, in Mini Albums 2008 I have a 14-page article featuring step-by-step instructions on how to make a flat back case binding. You can purchase the idea book here for $17.95 plus shipping and handling, or you can purchase and download my article for $10.00 - simply email me and I can send you the file for you to print. Here is the book I made for the article. After the photo shoot I added buttons and string to keep it closed. I use it for note-taking at American Crafts. 

 

  

  

I attended another bookbinding workshop in 2008 with my Grandpa and we did a style of binding I've never done before: Ethiopic. It looks just like the Coptic binding, but instead of using one needle to do all the sewing, we used one needle per hole! There are four holes so we used four needles. It was intense.  I also used wooden covers - a medium I have not tried until now and I love it!


 

 

  

 

 

My husband's best friend saw the wooden book I made and he asked how much I would charge to make him one. I said, "Carlos, after everything you've done for us you think I'd make you pay for a book?" At the workshop I purchased an extra set of wooden covers and made Carlos a journal using a different color of paper for every signature.

 

 

 

When I made my altered book acrylic album (the third example here) I had a lot of extra supplies including over 10 signatures of random paper and covers with holes already drilled through them. I don't know why I never sewed it together but I finally did the same day I made the above book. I guess I was on a bookbinding craze. I ran out of red thread at the very last signature so one cover has black thread. I think it looks pretty modern. 

 

  

 

 

This book took me over a month to make from when I first thought of the idea to the finished project. I saw these tiles at Anthropologie and wanted to make them into a book. I bought some special masonry drill bits and got to work drilling holes. Both tiles broke and my drill bits were dull. I purchased new tiles (plus extras) and new drill bits and with plenty of time, patience and man power (or I guess I should say woman power) I successfully drilled four holes through two tiles. I rummaged through my scrapbook supplies and found sheets of yellow and blue patterned papers that matched the covers. After cutting them to size and poking holes through them for sewing, I searched for thread. I found some plain string, thought I had enough, spent some time waxing it, then I started binding everything together - until I ran out of thread. I took the whole book apart and waited over two weeks until I had the right thread and the time to re-try. I really like the finished product, it's fun to flip through. I used the Ethiopic binding with four curved needles.

I saw some pictures of a book with cassette tapes covers on the web and decided to make one for myself. I went to Deseret Industries and found some tapes. This book came together really fast because I used cheap lined paper and the tapes already have holes in them. The binding only took about 20 minutes. Here's the result:

At the beginning of 2008 I made some tiles at the high school where I student taught. Last weekend I finally I began the process of making the tiles into a book. When I first made the tiles out of clay I poked holes (for sewing the book together) through them before they were fired so I wouldn't have to drill holes once they were ceramic tiles. Been there, done that (see the tile book above the cassette book). Drilling holes through tile is a long and painful and often fruitless process. So I was nervous when I realized that the glaze I used to paint the designs was so thick that it filled in the holes and turned into glass when the tiles were fired. So much for my genius pre-hole punched tiles! I had to drill holes through my non-existent holes. I broke one of the tiles so I used a plain tile with pre-punched holes (yay!) for the back. I just painted it black to match the front cover. The pages are made from all shades of teal scrapbooking papers and cardstock. I like how it turned out, I think the bumps along the way make me appreciate it more. And so without further ado, I present my second tile book: