Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Bound: 15 Beautiful Bookbinding Projects

This new book from Kyle Books contains more than 15 beautiful bookbinding projects; it is filled with beautiful photographs and writing.  Rachel Hazell writes with reverence about her love of paper, ink, books, the process of bookbinding and the world around her in her homes in Edinburgh and the small Hebridean island of Iona off the west coast of Scotland.

After exploring "the pure joy of making books", Hazell covers the tools and materials necessary for bookbinding.  Techniques are taught next:  checking paper grain direction, folding, cutting, tearing, measuring, piercing holes, sewing, and gluing. 

This book contains two unique sections that I especially appreciate.  The first is the technique section entitled "inkery", where Hazell shows how to make unique patterns to decorate your books with.  The second is a diagram section in the back that includes a conversion table for paper sizes and weights.  (Paper sizes and weights are expressed differently in the US, Canada and Europe because of the various measurement systems.)

The 15 projects include something for all skill levels.  If you are a brand new bookbinder, you can make a book by folding a single sheet of paper.  If you are experienced, you can make a hard cover book with the classic kettle stitch.  In between are classics like concertina (accordion) books and a five-hole pamphlet book.  But there are many less common book structures included here too.  This great combination of projects makes the book both a classic reference and an inspiration for any bookbinder.

I tried the concertina book first - folding the perfect accordion is always a challenge, and Hazell's instructions and photographs are very clear.  I'm looking forward to trying some of the books I haven't made before, as well as decorating covers with her inkery ideas. 

I'll be happy to give this book some of my precious shelf space - thanks to Hachette for sending it!  

Monday, November 12, 2018

Daunted By Page 1?

When faced with the beginning of a new journal, many artists report "fear of the blank page" in spades.  Liz Steel, whose sketchbooks I admire, always paints her palette on the first page.  It works for me, so here is page 1 of my current journal.

Saturday, November 10, 2018