Recent bindings- 2019

August 2019

Not much.

Actually that is not true. I was part of a pop up shop and had to keep producing stock.

So this year I have been practising with leather and paper. Mostly I make sewn board bindings or split board bindings.

As a little commercial venture I also make small photo souvenir books of the little village in which we live.

September 2019

Right now I am working on book repairs…..


December 2016

I looked over my working journal and realised that I had not bound as many books as in 2015. I’ve been busy writing. However what got me going this year were a few exhibitions.They give me a deadline and a theme.

This is all the binding I managed to do this year, although I am working on version 4 and 5 of a mini:The Prophet, due for April. (see below)(way below)

Because of the writing, I haven’t had time to experiment or improve my skills. What was the point of going to a week long tooling workshop if I don’t actually use it?

In my mind I am designing and tooling, but not so in practise. So when confronted with a blank cover, my mind is also blank! I need more time for practising. Complain, complain, complain…..I just bought some gold leaf from Joy Tonkin; maybe I’ll make up some designs and work on those in my spare time.

Last year I attempted a couple of islamic bindings. Mostly I practised the endbands; I also forgot that islamic covers are usually made in two parts.


I suppose an islamic binding can be like a case binding. I gave a green  one to my friend Amalia; however I had made the first one with the correct spine in two pieces. Version 4 and 5 will also have the correct spines.

However, my mind is full of design possiblities for the Perfume of Books and The Secret Life of Watermarks. I fear papermarbling may be involved…….



March 2016

I am busy writing a couple of books on bindings and watermarks. During this time I am spending a lot of time on the computer; but I am also working on a couple of binding techniques. I will be making some sewn board binding editions of the books and here are some prototypes:

Sewn board binding

Tango manual prototype

Here is a split board binding I produced for my friend Geraldine

Split board binding

Split board binding

Just playing around!

And lastly, an islamic binding prototype. I was going to enter a miniature competition, but I think my book writing is taking over. So I gave  model of The Prophet to my friend Yara.


Not much for the summer, but that’s computers for you!


September 2015

Has it really been this long? I feel like I am binding every week, but I suppose the reality is that I don’t spend enough time in the bindery.

Here is what I’ve been up to lately: I’ve been experimenting with millimitre binding, teaching myself.

I was also experimenting with leather on 100 cupboards, but I didn’t pare the leather thin enough. So no photos because it is UGLY!

May 2015:

This little orange binding is a recasing of a paperback. I’ve never done that before; never thought they were important enough to warrant that sort of attention. However I’ve come to realise that people want to learn bookbinding because they want to repair their old paperbacks.

The Amazing Maurice

The Amazing Maurice

Chris and I want to make a little free library out the front of the house. This is an opportunity for me to experiment. I used the reverse side of embossed gift paper. The design was made and printed from the computer. Luke’s treasure trove of books has provided me with plenty of material, plus i get to chat with him about his own bookbinding discoveries( and be not a little envious of the tools he is acquiring!).

In the pressing the embossing disappeared somewhat. I did it as a split board binding for the practise.

This is the box.

This is the box.

This is the box that this book

Tango guide

Tango guide

travelled in. It has a few pictures and a few flaps

2015-04-25 11.53.17getting close to the center

2015-04-25 11.53.31


2015-04-25 11.53.45

More adventures of Miss Tango Smurfette:

2015-04-25 13.20.332015-04-25 13.20.52 2015-04-25 13.21.38Now it’s June…..

This fortnight’s efforts:

MIss Smurfette and Chris's sewn board tango journal

Miss Smurfette and Chris’s sewn board tango journal

double concertina made from tipped folios, each pair sewn together

double concertina made from tipped folios, each pair sewn together

Repair and binding of old chinese books

Repair and binding of old chinese books


I recently entered a competition with another version of my tango guide: this time a pop up book


I take the holidays as opportunity to study and experiments with techniques. I often surprise myself at how much I do know, and yet there is still so much to find out about.



One response to “Recent bindings- 2019

  1. So beautiful! Great that this art is not being lost – it’s exquisite.


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